A swarm of bees clump together in an Iona man’s backyard Tuesday afternoon. See how it all played out in the video above. | Photos and video courtesy Arik Durfee
IONA – Attack of the bees!
A swarm of bees descended in an Iona homeowner’s yard Tuesday afternoon. Arik Durfee tells EastIdahoNews.com they clumped together in an aspen tree in his backyard around 2:30 p.m.
“Our kids had been out playing with the dog. They came in to give the dog a drink. Then we looked out and in a matter of one minute, there was this cloud of — it had to be millions of bees,” Durfee says.
He thought the bees were building a hive at first, but quickly realized it was just bees.
It didn’t take long for the swarm to clump together.
“Within half an hour, they had all settled into the tree and weren’t buzzing around anymore. They were completely centered around that one tree,” says Durfee.
Durfee’s daughter and her friend came out to get a closer look and got stung in the process. Both of them are fine.
Shortly after the bees started to gather, Durfee didn’t want to go outside and disturb them but he still wanted to see what was going on. He got out his drone and started recording. (Watch his video in the player above).
Several hours later, Durfee called his neighbor, Clip Holverson, who has kept bees in the past. He came over to help him remove the swarm from the yard.
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“They like to gather around the queen, so I held a box where I thought the queen was and swept them into the box,” Holverson says.
It took several attempts, but after about an hour and a half, he had them all removed and took them over to his house where he had an existing hive because his bees froze to death during the winter.
After Holverson brought them home, another neighbor shot video of the bees walking into the hive.
Video provided by Beau Bunnell
Over the next several hours, bees continued to clump in Durfee’s yard and Holverson had to make several more trips to remove the bees.
“They came back because that’s where the queen was when they left,” Holverson says.
Even though the queen bee wasn’t there, her scent was still present, says Holverson.
Durfee spent some time spraying down the tree with a hose to try and remove any scent or trace of the queen.
As of Wednesday morning, there was another small clump in Durfee’s aspen tree.
It’s not entirely clear why the bees gathered there in the first place. Holverson says bees will often roam if their nesting place has been destroyed. They will pick a spot to gather until they decide where to build a new nest.
“It might’ve been something where they hung out there for a day and then moved on,” Durfee says.
The reason they chose Durfee’s yard is purely coincidental, Holverson says.
Durfee thinks an old robin’s nest in the tree may have been the initial attraction for the queen and the rest of the swarm decided to follow.
“Between phone calls and Facebook, we warned everyone in the whole neighborhood this was happening,” says Durfee.
Courtesy Arik Durfee
Courtesy Arik Durfee