Bees living on Notre Dame roof survive fire

Thousands of bees call the old cathedral home

PARIS (CNN) - Thousands of bees that live on the roof of Notre Dame Cathedral are alive and buzzing.

Notre Dame has housed three beehives just beneath the rose window since 2013. They moved in as part of an effort to fight bee die-off.

“I got a call from Andre Finot, the spokesman for Notre Dame, who said there were bees flying in and out of the hives which means they are still alive!” beekeeper Nicolas Geant said to CNN. “Right after the fire I looked at the drone pictures and saw the hives weren’t burnt but there was no way of knowing if the bees had survived. Now I know there’s activity it’s a huge relief!”

Each hive has about 60,000 bees.

The cathedral’s beekeeper said Monday’s devastating fire didn’t harm the bees because the hives are 30 meters below the main roof where the fire spread.

The beekeeper says he won't know if all the bees survived until he can inspect the hives, but he's confident the hives didn't burn because bees have been spotted flying in and out.

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