Bees, honey, vanish in Abbotsford hive heist

Bees come and go from a bee hive in West Bath, Maine on April 30, 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Pat Wellenbach

ABBOTSFORD, B.C. - Police in Abbotsford, B.C., are searching for a thief with sticky fingers, but it's not money or jewels that has gone missing.

About 500,000 bees, as much as 3,600 kilograms of honey and 100 hive frames vanished from a remote Fraser Valley property, east of Vancouver, sometime between July 7 and 26.

Total value of the brazen bee burglary is estimated at $100,000.

Police say the targeted hives were set far back the road, on property along the Canada/U.S. border south of the Abbotsford airport, and the keeper had last checked his bees in the first week of July.

Officers combing for comb say equipment and trucks would have been needed to make the gooey getaway, and they hope someone saw something that could make charges stick.

They also believe they are searching for someone with bee keeping expertise because they say relocating that number of potentially belligerent bees can be dangerous without specialized knowledge.