What is the craziest place you have seen a bee colony survive

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New Bee
Sep 1, 2018
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This is the outdoor section at my local B&Q. I was walking round with my beesuit on, so one of the staff pointed out their bees. For the last 4 or 5 years they have had honey bees living inside the metal columns (the pink rectangles) at the back of the yard. The columns are 100mm ish square section. I think they do have some sort of cap at the top so they don't fill up with rain but they must have bee sized holes in them. Apparently in the middle of summer when it is very hot you can smell the honey whilst walking round the yard. They must be freezing in the winter, very hot in the summer and to fit a whole colony inside, the nest must be several metres high.

Obviously they generate a few swarms which occasionally means the staff have to rope off some of the outside area whilst the swarm is deciding where to go. I started sucking my teeth describing how difficult it would be to remove them alive. The staff member was very quick to say how much they liked having them there and that they did not want to get rid of them. They were very happy to take my number in case a swarm settled close to the ground and they needed them to be removed.

Interesting that they’re not just in one column but several, by the sound of it
Met up with family at Llangollen yesterday and while walking around - spotted this good sized mature colony.
The colony seems to have been in-situ for quite some time. They breed them strong in the Welsh valleys!

If the video doesn't work... the video was of the semaphore signals at Llangollen station clearly visible from the bridge with very heavy bee flying traffic to/from the signal cross-arm.

Original video uploaded this morning just kept crashing my Firefox when attempting to play from the webpage. I've tried to re-encode and upload


  • petal_20240711_190820a.mp4
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out in Lesotho I found one colony living in the far corner of the floor of a 30 foot shipping container - they would access the container through a hole near the door, then fly/walk the whole length of the interior before accessing the nest through a hole in the floor.
bait hive.JPG
I was also shown a colony that had happily lived in a stack of old tyres


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