Thousands of bees swarm Downtown Greeneville

Bees swarm downtown Greeneville. (Source: Ron P. Metcalfe, WGRV)

GREENEVILLE (WATE) – An estimated 20,000 honeybees swarmed downtown Greeneville Wednesday afternoon and had to be removed by beekeepers.

The Greeneville Police Department said the bees were near the federal courthouse, 220 W. Depot Street, around 2 p.m. Officers said they were calling in a beekeeper to help.

WGRV Radio Greeneville reports longtime beekeeper Dale Luttrell was able to take the hive. His son Greg, who works at the courthouse, helped wrangle the bees and keep pedestrians at a safe distance.

Beekeeper Joel Hausser told WGRV photographer Ron P. Metcalfe the bees were carrying out their natural reproductive cycle.

“This is how bees reproduce naturally. They split the hive. They take the old queen and half the bees from the hive and go off to look for a new home. And they leave capped queen cells to keep that hive going,” said Hausser.

Hausser said during this process, the bees are not dangerous.

“Right now they’re very docile. They’re full of honey from the old hive. They’re just out here protecting the queen,” he said. “They’re not going to be aggressive toward anybody.”


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