By Dana Kozlov

(CBS) — It’s a dangerous and baffling crime: somebody stealing bees, right under the nose of a Chicago beekeeper.

But why? The answer is honey and money, CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov says.

The McKinley Park Community Garden lost a little of its color this month.

Three beehives once stood on bricks.  They were stolen, likely in the dead of night, with hundreds, even thousands, of bees inside.

The hives belonged to Jana Kinsman of Bike-a-Bee, an urban farming organization. She thinks the thieves knew exactly what they were doing.

Local beekeepers do, too.

Dan Andronic says each hive weighs about 150 pounds and costs about $500. With honey going for $10 a pound right now, each hive could produce more than $1,000 of the sweet nectar. But why not just buy the bees?

Lidia Andronic says there’s a bee shortage. That’s an even bigger problem, considering almost half of our food comes from bee pollination.

“They are an absolute necessity for the human race to actually survive,” she says.