April 9th, 2009
07:36 PM ET
8 years ago

White House hit by swarm of bees

Beekeeper Charlie Brandts was dispatched Thursday to deal with a swarm of bees on the White House grounds.

Beekeeper Charlie Brandts was dispatched Thursday to deal with a swarm of bees on the White House grounds.

(CNN) - The Secret Service is always on the alert for aerial assaults - but on Thursday, White House grounds were hit by one unexpected airborne threat.

A swarm of honey bees took over a bush located between the Northwest security gate of the White House and the area where television networks stand-up positions are located early Thursday.

CNN photojournalist John Bodnar said he came through the Northwest gate around 12:30 pm and was warned about the bees by Secret Service on duty in the guard post. "I walked out and thought it was a swirl of blossoms blowing in the wind, but turns out it was a swarm of bees," he says. Half an hour later, they were still issuing warnings."

White House carpenter Charlie Brandts, who is also a beekeeper and will be managing two bee hives in Michelle Obama's garden, came over to the area around shortly before 2 pm wearing protective gear and carrying a cardboard box. Brandts was reportedly able to get the queen bee in the cardboard box and many, though not all, of the other bees followed. CNN has not yet been able to confirm the capture of the winged invaders.

Filed under: Popular Posts • White House
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. Chi Town

    Shouldn't this have been posted in the Morning Buzz... HA

    April 9, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  2. truthsayer

    Holy mackerel....what a news story!

    April 9, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  3. Franky

    That's hilarious...the Secret Service issuing warnings for bees. I could imagine too..."Watch out! Get down!! Run!!!" LOL!!

    Then I'll be like, "Haaaaa.." And before you know it, is bees that are jeopardizing my future instead. That is hilarious...

    April 9, 2009 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  4. Dee Dee

    Sign from God?? Anyone?? lol.

    April 9, 2009 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  5. Dave NYC

    OMG its God's retribution for America electing a progressive president!

    Just kldding.


    April 9, 2009 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  6. Will they stop at nothing?

    The thinkgs the Republicans will do to attack President Obama!

    April 9, 2009 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  7. Tom in CA

    I hope that Charles Brandts got hazardous pay for today's beekeeper duties.

    April 9, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  8. Veronica

    "CNN has not yet been able to confirm the capture of the winged invaders."

    Well, you ARE a 24/7 news outlet ... get on it!

    April 9, 2009 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  9. Shirley In California

    Strange – possums, raccoons and now bees. Something is not right here.

    April 9, 2009 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  10. suspicious!

    uhh uhh, i bet you those republicans did it, they got a truckload of bees and dumped them near the white house! dick cheny, you are my first suspect.

    April 9, 2009 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  11. Joseph, Boston

    The last sentence sounds like it's straight out of the Onion.

    April 9, 2009 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    Haha...all the GOPers in Congress must've emptied their bonnets...

    April 9, 2009 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  13. ib

    I guess the bees are also upset with Obama and his global warming taxes.

    April 9, 2009 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  14. EBC, MD

    Hey, let's make some White House honey? I bet those bees made some YUMMMY Honey with all those roses on the grounds.

    April 9, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  15. Frank

    Took over a bush? I wonder which one? 😀

    April 9, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  16. David MacKinnon

    Were these "killer bees" illegals from South America or home grown? Did Homeland Security upgrade the alert level, perhaps Lou Dobbs could do a full expose of this new threat.

    April 9, 2009 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  17. Predictable

    The bees were just there to get a bailout, give them a break.

    April 9, 2009 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  18. Jordan Shaw

    How do I become head carpenter and bee-keeper at the white house?

    April 9, 2009 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  19. suresh

    Are those bee Republicans? If they stung then had to be. If not, then are just the regular type.

    April 9, 2009 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  20. Lance

    There is a great movie about bees called, "Bee Movie". Watch it and you will see why they went to the White House. Have fun!

    April 9, 2009 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  21. MARK

    Probably Republican bee's....wouldn't put it passed em!

    April 9, 2009 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  22. sfw

    What is going on....Bees,Raccoons and Michael Steele

    April 9, 2009 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  23. Janet

    For Crying Out Loud!!! We have had a bee hive of Honeybees for over 2 yrs that came into our "TINY" backyard, uninvited. And yes, we are very welcomed in have them. Honeybees are rapidly disappearing at a very alarming speed. For anyone who does know the the value of the bee, pls do some research. We are active in our Fla. backyard. We only have native plants that we labored over a long time to plant. Then came the BEES! Of course, we are not idiots running thru the area they have called home (fallen bat house). They are very docile, as are we, when we need to trim bushes around them . Water is happily enjoyed which we supplied for them. I do not know if the White House bees were destroyed, but I truly hope they are now in the hands of a trusted beekeeper. No one should have to play around bees. Yes, they do sting to hurt. It's that my gut reaction was to save the bees from the White House. I bet Obama hated it if they died. It is quite apparent his
    family in the White House are the only ones, in many years, that have a heart.

    April 9, 2009 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  24. John

    Really? This is news? Seriously?

    April 9, 2009 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  25. Gene

    Bees? They're really republicans in disguise buzzing around! Jk

    I can't wait to see if there's any "a plague from God" comments 🙂

    April 9, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
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