Northern Ireland

Bees swarm to north Down coast

Phelim Breen placing the swarm into a box Image copyright Sonia Boal
Image caption Beekeeper Phelim Breen was called in to deal with the swarm

Bangor is buzzing, literally.

Beekeepers have been called to the County Down seaside town after swarms of bees settled on a car and the wall of a house.

One unsuspecting motorist got more than they bargained for when they parked their car only to find that bees had taken over the front of the vehicle.

"They're just resting with the queen while scout bees go and find a new home," said beekeeper Phelim Breen who dealt with the swarm.

"It's been the first reasonable day for the bees to swarm. They are not dangerous, as long as you don't touch them."

Nearby, a swarm moved onto the wall of Amanda McCullough's garden. It has since moved on.

"At about lunchtime, the lady next door was getting married and we were outside to see her dress when the air became thick with bees," said Amanda.

Image copyright Sonia Boad
Image caption Experts said the bees were resting with the queen while scouts sought a new home for the swarm

"Within half an hour they had settled on my wall, but I thought they were wasps originally.

"I phoned the council and the PSNI who advised me to leave them until the council opened on Tuesday.

"Initially, I thought there was 1,000 or 2,000 bees, but the beekeeper who came to my house told me that there was most likely around 15,000 bees in the swarm."

Photos of the bees have generated huge interest on social media with many people expressing fear.

"You have to accept that people will be scared," said David Wright from the Ulster Beekeepers Association.

"The swarm is relatively harmless. They've gorged on honey before they moved and are only looking for a new home."