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The Planet

Bee Roll

by Alexandra Marvar

July 2, 2008

A semi-truck trailer transporting 12 million bees overturned yesterday on the Trans-Canada highway. Oops.

The honey bees had been used to pollinate a crop of blueberries and were on their way home. We are torn over what's more fascinating here--the practice of commercial entomophily, or the mayhem and terror that could ensue when twelve million bees are turned loose en masse on the unsuspecting people of Canada.

Thankfully, rain kept the bees huddled around and in the truck, where bee specialists presumably worked to gather them and return them safely to their little bee community until their next pollination gig. No major injuries were sustained, though a Canadian journalist who, brilliantly, got too close to the truck was stung several times. (Shocking.)

The crux of this story is the quote from Richard Duplain, vice president of the New Brunswick Beekeepers Association, which also sounds like an ancient western proverb: "You certainly don't want to go walking through a field of disoriented, agitated and wet honey bees." Advice for the Canadian journalist, and advice for life.

Image: Poster for The Savage Bees, made-for-tv horror movie, 1976
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Bee Roll