John Metcalfe was CityLab’s Bay Area bureau chief, covering climate change and the science of cities.
There were “thousands and thousands and thousands.”
They say the agriculture industry and colony collapse disorder are decimating Europe’s bee population. You wouldn’t know that walking into the Yard Bar & Kitchen in Cardiff, however, where a massive swarm of bees recently shut down its beer garden.
The incident began on Monday when a queen bee somehow showed up among the patio furniture. Where the queen goes the hive will follow, and that’s what happened to a table that rapidly grew a thick crust of humming bees. The BBC describes the aftermath:
Customers at The Yard on St Mary Street were ushered inside and a sign was put up that read: “Please use side entrance. Bee Aware!”...
[Manager John Muldoon] said: “This swarm of bees descended from nowhere. There were thousands and thousands and thousands of bees.
“I managed to get hold of the beekeeper and he was happy enough to come down and spend a few hours here.
“Everybody who was inside had a front row seat as they could watch the exhibition.”
Somehow in all of this, nobody got stung.
British bees are prone to angry swarming, at least to believe the BBC’s exhaustive coverage. In just the past couple of years, the news organization has run with “Bees swarm on shop window in London's Victoria Street,” “Bees swarm around car at Bournemouth's Castlepoint centre,” “Bee swarm closes Hove's Cardinal Newman school,” “Jersey residents warned over bee swarm increase,” and the wonderfully photographed “Post box attracts swarm of bees in Sketty as 'staging post.'”