CREATED Apr. 15, 2012
LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. - A disabled Lehigh Acres couple is finding themselves in a sticky situation after someone dumped a tire full of thousands of bees and honeycombs near their house.
Not getting any help from local agencies, they're turning to Fox 4 Troubleshooter Colleen Hogan, who's getting them results.
John and Linda Cooper love their Lehigh home.
"We love it out here," Linda Cooper said. "It's quiet and peaceful."
But that peace, was shattered a few days ago when they noticed a big black tire, dumped near their home.
"We heard bees humming," John Cooper said.
Sure enough, the tire was home to a colony of bees!
"It was completely covered with bees," John said.
"There had to be a couple thousand," Linda said. "It was dripping with honey."
The tire with the bees showed up a few days ago.
"We were concerned about the neighborhood kids and dogs," Linda said.
John tried for days to get a local agency to remove the bees but didn't have any luck.
"I tried calling the sheriff's department, they told me to call the city, I called the city, they said call the county, so we called the county, county said you gotta look up the people who own the property," he said.
That's when they reached out to Fox 4. We reached out to the "Bee Guy," B. Keith Councell, a beekeeper and owner of Councell Farms.
He's seen this many similar situations like the couple's tire problem over the years. He says bees can take over everything from the inside of walls of homes, to old furniture dumped on the side of the road.
"Generally in Lee County, our colonies range around 60,000 bees," Councell said. "This hive may have been 30,000. But if it had been left, it would've gotten bigger and bigger."
Councell cleared away the combs for the couple so the bees could move on.
"What I'll do is clean this up so they don't have any issues with the bees here," he said.
"Keith was more than willing to come out and take care of them for us," John said.
"It's good to know that somebody cares," Linda said.
Councell normally charges for his services but since this couple gets by on their disability checks, he agreed to clean up the combs for free.
If you have a bee problem, you should check in with your local code enforcement first to see if they can help or point you in the right direction.
Colleen Hogan, reporter