Monday, May 27, 2019
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The 200,000 bees of the cathedral are safe and sound

The bees of the cathedral of Notre-Dame de Paris escaped the fire. – Georges GOBET / AFP

The 200,000 bees of the hives of Notre-Dame have survived
the fire that ravaged the roof of the cathedral Monday, as reactions from around the world flock to worry about their fate.

"The bees are alive. Until this morning, around 11 am, I had no news, "says AFP the beekeeper Nicolas Giant who looks after the hives of Notre-Dame located on the sacristy adjoining the cathedral. "At first, I thought the three hives burned, I had no information. But then I could see on the satellite images that it was not the case and the spokesperson of the cathedral confirmed to me that they entered and left hives ", he continues.

A species that does not abandon its hive

Nicolas Géant has received messages and calls from all over the world asking if the bees had died in the flames. "It was unexpected. I have received calls from Europe, of course, but also from South Africa, Japan, the United States and South America, "he says.

In case of fire and at the first signs of smoke, the bees "gorged" honey and protect their queen. "This species (the European bee) does not abandon its hive. They do not have lungs but CO2 puts them to sleep, "says Nicolas Géant, who hopes to see his bees again next week. Each hive produces an average of 25 kilos of honey each year, sold to the staff of Notre-Dame, who has been sheltering them since 2013.




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