Our team supporting Cargill partnered with a local bee farm to remove a large swarm and find them a new home.

Gary Kerr, Facilities Account Manager, helps oversee our Cargill account and, in the summer months, he looks forward to seeing more wildlife around the sprawling site. However, earlier this month, he encountered something truly unexpected: a large swarm of bees on one of the outdoor terraces, covering an HVAC system pipe.

“This is not something we had an established policy for,” says Gary. “But my first thought was how do we keep the site safe and what’s the best possible way to remove the bees without harming them.”

Gary placed one of his team members by the door to the terrace to stop anyone from inadvertently walking out there, consulted with the site’s safety manager, and then started calling local beekeepers. One of the first organizations he spoke with was Butler Bees, a local farm that offers honey and bee products as well as safe, humane swarm and hive removal.

The team from Butler Bees arrived that same afternoon and started to gently brush the estimated 10,000 bees into specialized boxes.

“It was amazing,” says Gary. “Once they got the queen into the box, all the other bees climbed straight in. We then left the boxes out there for a couple of hours to get the remaining scouts who had been out scouting a location for a hive.”

Once the process was completed, Butler Bees transported the boxes back to their property where the bees will be able to grow a hive.

“I’m really proud of how we handled this situation,” says Jeff Walters, Senior Vice President, Strategic Accounts. “Instead of using a can of bug spray to get rid of the bees, we found a solution that both kept the site safe and also preserved nature. That’s our safety culture in action. We were able to deal with the problem quickly and effectively without causing any harm to the bees or people.”

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