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Expert Warns of Massive Bee Activity in Borough Park

By Gustavo Solis | June 23, 2013 11:45am
 NYPD bee expert vaccumed up 15,000 bees Satruday afternoon.
Bees in Borough Park
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BROOKLYN — The NYPD’s leading bee expert vacuumed up a swarm of 15,000 bees from the side of a building in Borough Park Saturday.

It was the second swarm he’s seen in the last two weeks in that area, he said.

“There have to be at least two hives in the area to create these large swarms,” Detective Anthony Planakis said. “If there's only one [hive] generating these swarms, that's a pretty big hive."

The size of the swarm, five pounds, also stood out because swarms usually weigh three or four pounds, Planakis said.

Planakis arrived at the building on 20th Avenue and 51st Street about 10:15 a.m. Saturday. He separated the queen from the other bees and then vacuumed the large swarm.  When the queen is removed, the bees are docile because they have nothing to protect, he said.

He was done by 1:30 p.m. and reported zero injuries. 

Planakis said the beginning of summer signaled the start of swarm season. It is crucial to spray down bees' former gathering spots with smoke to stop more from being drawn to the smell, he said.