Bees from Roberta's rooftop beehives have reportedly been "terrorizing" the restaurant's Bushwick block. A tipster tells Gothamist that hundreds of bees recently began descending on Moore Street on a nightly basis, swarming around all the outdoor lights and crawling all over the sidewalk. They are reportedly "not agressive," and "almost act as if they're drunk," but nonetheless "Everyone is scared they might start attacking their dogs, or obviously us humans too." In the morning, dead bee bodies litter the sidewalk.
It's not clear why this is happening now, since rooftop beehives have long been a part of Roberta's identity as the quintessential cool Brooklyn restaurant without causing any problems. Complaints to both Roberta's and the Health Department have apparently had no effect on taming the swarms. UPDATE: The Roberta's team responds that "allegations of swarming bees have been exaggerated," and that the team is currently looking into ways to address the concerns of its neighbors. Read on below for the full statement.
The Roberta's team responds:
"There's been a lot of buzz about the bees on our rooftop lately. We would like to clarify the situation. We adopted two hives from the New York City Bee Association and are working together to create an adequate rooftop home. Allegations of swarming bees have been exaggerated. Everything we've done is in compliance with the Department of Health and the City. In fact, we had the DOH stop by this afternoon and they again approved the conditions of the hives. As explained by a representative of the the New York Bee Association, "bees are 'free range,' they forage in nectar and pollen for up to three miles. They are not interested in graffiti, beards, or ironic t-shirts. They like water, nectar, and pollen along with sunshine. That is about it. They are predictable."
Bees have always been an essential part of the garden ecosystem at Roberta's, and we have been working with the Association to properly maintain the hives and keep the bees happy. In response to the community's concerns, we are exploring ways to address the situation. We've had rooftop bees for over 5 years. One of our co-owners, Brandon Hoy, has experience in bee-keeping, so the bees are in good hands with the Roberta's team, the garden team, and the New York City Bee Association."
· Bees From Roberta's Hives 'Escaping & Terrorizing' Neighbors [Gothamist]
· All Coverage of Roberta's [~ENY~]