Lynn and Loretta Ahlbrecht called on the resourcefulness and skills of 15-year old Cody Sievert to save the small southwest Minnesota town of Gibbon from a swarm of bees on recent Sunday. The Ahlbrechts were leaving their home when they noticed a lot of bees buzzing around them, their car — everywhere. “At first we thought maybe they were just passing through, but then we saw they were congregating on a branch of a tree by our house,” Loretta said.
Cody Sievert, who is a local bee expert, lives on a nearby farm. It took him about 20 minutes to arrive with his equipment. In that time, the swarm had, for the most part, settled on one branch. Cody explained the only way a swarm of bees would calm down like that is if there is a queen with them. Evidently, the queen landed on the branch and the rest of the bees settled on top to protect her.
Cody assessed the situation and opened a “bee box.” Loretta explained his process: “He sprayed the bees with a little sugar water, which he said would make their wings sticky so they couldn’t fly and they could lick it off. He clipped off the branch and put it in the box; they all seemed to take right to it and in no time, the branch was empty and the bees were all in the box, almost like they knew Cody was there to give them a home. It was one of the coolest things we had ever seen.”
The Albrechts said it was about two hours from the time the swarm moved in until the bees were boxed up and on their way to their new home on the Sievert farm about 5 miles north of Gibbon.