A family heard buzzing behind their shower for years. Then they found 80,000 bees.

·2 min read

A Florida family suspected there were bees behind their shower wall but were shocked when they found 80,000 of them.

For years the Graham family heard buzzing behind the wall and at times saw a bee escape from the tiles in their home in St. Petersburg. In October, they decided to call Elisha Bixler, owner of How’s Your Day Honey and professional beekeeper, to see if the bees could be relocated.

When Bixler began chiseling at the wall, she found a 7-foot-tall hive.

"It was from the floor to the ceiling with at least 80,000 honey bees," Bixler told USA TODAY.

The beehive had about 100 pounds of honey that dripped everywhere, Bixler said. She gently cut through the honeycombs to save the babies in the nest before finding the queen.

"Once you find the queen, the entire colony will follow where she goes."

The queen was placed in a box, and Bixler continued the 5½-hour process of removal. Once the hive was removed, the Graham family said goodbye to the unwanted visitors and kept 20 pounds of honey as a souvenir.

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According to Bixler, the Graham family believes the bees got in when the roof was replaced years ago but was not properly sealed. She said the nest was the biggest has she encountered this year.

Bixler told USA TODAY she brings all bee rescues to her backyard, which sits on half an acre, and nurses them back to health before releasing them. The honey the Graham family did not take, about 80 pounds, will go to them.

"We make a joke that it's the honey bee hospital," she said.

Follow reporter Asha Gilbert @Coastalasha. Email: agilbert@usatoday.com.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Beekeeper finds 80,000 bees behind Florida family's shower wall

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