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35,000 Bees Found Hidden in Ceiling of Brooklyn Apartment

"Mickey the Beekeeper" says it was the fifth-largest hive he's found hidden in NYC-area homes this season

What to Know

  • The building manager called a beekeeper after residents reported an upswing in bees buzzing around the place
  • Well-known beekeeper Mickey Hegedus cut through the ceiling and found a colony of about 35,000 bees
  • He says it was the fifth-largest hive he's found hidden in NYC-area homes this season

More than 35,000 bees were found in a Brooklyn apartment last week in what the man tasked with removing them described as one of the bigger hidden hives he's found in New York City. 

Stuart Mulzac, who owns the East 21st Street apartment in Flatbush where he lives with his mother, tells News 4 bees would fly in through the window from time to time but he had seen a lot more in recent weeks. Other people in the building were having similar problems, and the building manager called third-generation bee rescuer Mickey Hegedus, aka "Mickey the Beekeeper."

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Hegedus cut a large hole in a bedroom ceiling and found the sprawling colony; the bees apparently used a missing brick on the building's exterior as an entry point. Neither Mulzac nor his mother were hurt by the bees, but they were left with a sweet reward: at least 30 pounds of honey now stored in their fridge.

"I wouldn't imagine that a beehive would start in the ceiling but it did," said Mulzac. "And they had a lot of time in there to construct their hive, and this is what came out of it." 

Hegedus tells News 4 it's the fifth large hive this season he's found hidden in the walls of New York City-area homes. 

The 52-year-old beekeeper has been at this for years; he says it's been a particularly busy season because of the early bloom and recent rains.

Queen bees can lay thousands of eggs in a day, Hegedus says, so hives can grow exponentially in a relatively short period of time. He estimates the bulk of the Brooklyn hive likely formed in six to eight weeks.

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