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Swarm of angry bees delay Pittsburgh flight

Published August 3, 2012 2:29 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Imperial, Pa. • A beekeeper says he had to be called into gather up a swarm of thousands of bees that delayed a Delta Air Lines flight from Pittsburgh International Airport to New York.

Master beekeeper Stephen Repasky tells KDKA-TV he was called out on Wednesday when the bees gathered on the wing of the plan as crews were getting ready to fuel the plane.

Repasky says such swarms form when colonies become too large and the queen leaves half of her bees behind to find a new home. Some swarms can contain 25,000 to 30,000 bees.

Repasky says it's likely there's a wild honeybee colony at the airport somewhere.

The beekeeper was called to remove the insects because they're a protected species that cannot legally be killed.