Mary Weaver said she and her husband discovered the house they recently purchased in Skippack, Pa., had 450,000 bees living inside the walls. Photo by PollyDot/Pixabay.com
Aug. 3 (UPI) -- A couple who recently purchased a Pennsylvania farmhouse said they had to pay $12,000 to have 450,000 bees removed from inside the walls.
Sara Weaver said she and her husband bought the 1872 farmhouse in Skippack without conducting an inspection because they had been searching for a home in the area and wanted to move quickly when they saw the house on the market.
Weaver said they bought the house in the winter, so the bees weren't active at the time.
"On the seller's disclosure it said 'bees in wall,' and that was it and I think because one, we didn't see them and two, we were just so floored that we actually found land in the [school] district that was within our price range that I didn't really ask any questions about those bees," she told CNN.
"I didn't think it would be that big of an issue. It didn't even cross my mind but when spring arrived that's when we started to see them."
The Weavers hired Allan Lattanzi, a general contractor and professional beekeeper, to get rid of the insects in the walls.
Lattanzi said he had been to the house about four years earlier, but the previous owner decided she couldn't afford the cost of removal and decided to leave them.
The beekeeper said he removed an estimated 450,000 bees, comprising three colonies, from the walls of the home. He said the bees appear to have been living inside the house for about 35 years.
The Weavers said the total cost of the bee removal and reconstruction on damaged parts of the home amounts to about $12,000.
Lattanzi said the bee colonies have new homes at Yerkes Honey Farm, where he keeps his own bees in man-made hives.