Times Square Hot Dog Cart Swarmed With Bees, Causes Disruption

Joe Raedle / Getty Images

New York sells itself to tourists as a place where anything can happen. Today the tourists that usually flock to Times Square saw exactly that, with a hot dog cart inexplicably swarmed by bees. Such a large amount of bees settled on the umbrella of one of the city’s iconic carts, police had to be called in and the sidewalk was cordoned off.

The story is developing, so there is no clear-cut explanation as to how so many bees appeared in Times Square or what made this specific hot dog cart their ideal destination, but the NYPD is currently undertaking the task of removing thousands of bees from the cart, located at the intersection of Broadway and West 43rd Street, directly outside of the Hard Rock Cafe.

This surreal moment caught the zeitgeist of the internet in what hasn’t exactly been a quiet Tuesday afternoon, but such an unexpected development had to bring the best out of Twitter. Several theories arose, some taking the logical path of a Queen landing on the cart and attracting a swarm, while others took the road less traveled and considered that perhaps the bees just wanted one of those classic New York Water dogs. Politics wasn’t far away from the discussion as Twitter user @WillieMiller527 said, “That’s more bees than Trump had people at his inauguration…”

This isn’t actually the first occurrence of an unexpected swarm of bees in New York City. On August 18, the NYPD was called in to remove a hive of bees who had taken over a fire hydrant in Midtown Manhatten. Armed in a beekeeping outfit and vacuum hose, Chief Terence Monahan was forced to suck up the colony, presumably to be released somewhere that isn’t Midtown Manhatten.

Given that the bees returned with a vengeance in much larger numbers today, it does raise questions about the capabilities of the constraints caused by this issue and how many experts in bee removal exist in the New York Police Department.

With the growing threat of bee extinction and the potential fall of humanity arising due to it, perhaps this is an adaptation by the species, forced to migrate to the city while the proliferation of pesticides has made their old way of life inhospitable. Maybe this is the new trend for the bee and with the growing popularity of beekeeping in New York City, maybe this is a perfect swarm for everyone involved.