Posted: 07/06/2012 12:36 pm
Alberta is abuzz about a bumbling bandit you won't bee-lieve.
Bill Termeer maintains more than three thousand colonies of bees to produce honey on his apiary in Alberta, Canada. In May, some of his employees noticed hives had gone missing. Since then, reports The Edmonton Journal, the thief has made off with 154 hives -- around 3 million bees -- adding up to losses of about $60,000 for Moondance Honey, Termeer's company.
Bee thievery is a rare occurrence in Alberta, which produces an annual average of just over 30 million pounds of honey. “We always keep a close watch for bears – those are our biggest threat," said Rodrigo Mendez, a representative of the Alberta Beekeepers Association to The Toronto Sun. "But having to worry about someone stealing your bees too is a lot harder.”
Termeer suspects another beekeeper has been dipping into his honey pots, likely to cover losses to his own hives from parasites, diseases, and 'winter kill.' According to The CBC, Alberta has seen only five cases of stolen bees in the last decade.