Written by: Margo Rose Ghertner
It was a regular workday for Jason Johnson of Ghertner Maintenance and Remodeling at a community clubhouse. Built in 1840, the clubhouse is a restored mansion residents in the community can use for social gatherings and physical fitness.
Jason noticed that a group of bees were swarming from a pipe, which extended from a brick wall outside of the historical clubhouse:
Through efficient communication, Jason contacted Tim Struzynski, manager of the property, and eventually, Ghertner Maintenance and Remodeling contacted Patty Ghertner, beekeeper extraordinaire, to evaluate the situation.
To her dismay, the bees were too high for her to reach, but instead she sent Kent Knapp of GMR information of how to appropriately preserve the safety of the mass of bees. This lead to the contacting of the notorious “Bee Man” of Hendersonville, who quickly returned Ghertner and Company’s request to take a look at the scene. Cutting a large section of the ceiling out in order to access the bees, he describes the scenario as “the largest colony he’s ever seen,” consisting of about 160,000 bees.
This year, the United States considered declaring the honey bee an endangered species, disappearing from 87% of its original range. This is why it’s so important to humanely remove such a high quantity of bees—which is exactly what the Bee Man did.
After cutting open a 10’X2’ section of the ceiling, the Bee Man successfully vacuumed the bees and moved them to his location.
After removing the bees, the Bee Man removed the honeycombs as many residents watched from a window in the mansion. He provided the residents with fresh honeycomb for everyone to enjoy.
Thanks to the swift communication and desire to better our planet, Ghertner and Company successfully made sure that the endangered species and their residents were treated with care… and fresh honey.