Passengers of a Jet Airways plane that landed in the Mangalore International Airport on Thursday had to stay put inside for 45 minutes before alighting as a swarm of honeybees descended on to the wings of the aircraft.

J.T. Radhakrishna, Airport Director, Mangalore, said a big swarm of bees parked themselves on the wings of flight 9W2463 from Bangalore. The pilot was told to keep the door closed till the bees took off.

But the meeting on the wings went on long enough to test the patience of the airport staffers, who used water-jets to evict the squatters. But the insects just shrugged it off.

The bees finally left after the pilot took them for a joyride around the apron (parking lot).

Mr. Radhakrishna said the swarm was from the forested area outside the airport and was moving from one place to another.

However, he clarified that bees were not a danger to the aircraft. “It is only birds that obstruct the airplane,” he said. A fire tender was on standby as a precautionary measure, he said.

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