ZEIGLER, IL (KFVS) - Police say they were dispatched to at least four Zeigler-area bee swarms in a two week time span, three of which happened between April 25 and 26.
"Three in less than a 24 hour time-span is kind of an enormous amount of calls for bee swarms," said Zeigler Police Chief Ben Burkhamer on Tuesday.
Burkhamer said a normal amount is roughly one per year, based on what he's seen.
Carbondale Beekeeper Kenny Fisher said bee swarms are common in spring, and maintaining them is important for the area's ecosystem.
"About a third of our food comes from bees, so it's important to keep them," said Fisher. "We try to do everything we can to educate people on the importance of bees and train them on keeping bees."
Burkhamer said residents can usually call their area's law enforcement for information on how to properly treat a swarm.
"If you see a swarm of bees, give us a call," Burkhamer said. "We'll try to get them relocated and out of a populated area. We'll take them to an area where there's a farm and they'll actually be raised as honeybees."
"We're trying to save the bees in southern Illinois and keep them on the increase instead of decline," Fisher said.
Experts at Fischer Delta Research Center said one in every four bites of food we eat was grown with the help of pollinators like bees. However, each year the bee population declines by at least 33 percent.
For more information on bees, click here.