Bees are a dreaded summertime foe.  And yet these insects are so important to the ecosystem.  They are one of the many pollinators that keep our plants and trees reproducing.  Without them, plant life would die out, and we wouldn’t last much longer.  So, in order to protect this important species, mother nature has given them the unique ability to sting to protect themselves.  Will bees attack at night? When their hives are threatened, they will protect themselves by stinging, regardless of the time of day.  

Honey bees are not aggressive insects.  They are only interested in protecting their home.  Honey bees produce one of the most coveted food sources is the animal kingdom: honey.  Honey is extremely high in sugars and carbohydrates, and a much sought after delicacy by predators.  To keep these predators at bay, honey bees will protect the hive with their life.   Literally…


So what do you do if you stumble upon a bee hive and they come in to attack?  What to do if a swarm of bees attack you is very important information to know.  You must not panic, but you do need to take the situation very seriously.  A bee attack can result in anything from a slight inconvenience to a very lethal situation.  Many people have an allergic reaction to bee stings that can be fatal if not properly treated quickly.  Because of this, it is important to move quickly and with purpose, but not frantically.  

The first thing to remember is that the honey bee doesn’t want to sting you.  If it does sting you, it will die.  So bees will often fly aggressively toward you, or dive bomb your head before actually stinging you, in an attempt to scare you away.  If you don’t heed this warning, they will sting.  The best defense is to run.  Bees fly at about twelve to fifteen miles an hour, and most people can run faster than that.  Attempt to find shelter in a place where you have an escape.  

People have hid in a cave without a second exit, and have died from their stings because they could not get to a hospital in time, so it is important to go to a car or other shelter that you can get away from the bees from.  Don’t jump into the water.  Bees will wait until you come up for air and sting you.  Try to cover your face.  Stings to the face are much more severe and can temporarily blind you as you try to get away.  If nothing else, pull your shirt over your face.  Stings to the abdomen are less severe than to the face.  


Of all the bees out there, the Africanized honey bee has the worst reputation.  Because of some bad press, the only other species that got it worse were the murder hornets.  I guess there’s also the cocaine hippos in Columbia, but I’m getting off topic…  The Africanized honey bee is not a different species of bee, but more of a different race.  They have genetic and behavioral differences, but other than that, they are pretty much identical.  

These bees have adapted much differently than European honey bees because of their different habitat.  Predators in Africa are much larger, and more likely to destroy a hive for its honey.   Because of this, their behavior is much different than that of the European honey bee.  Their stings are the same.  They die when they sting.  But Africanized honey bees are much more aggressive.  They will attack in larger numbers, and chase much longer.  This can be very dangerous for people not only who have bee sting allergies, but also young children and the elderly.  If you are having issues with bees, contact your Oklahoma exterminator.  


Many different insects have stings, including most bees and wasps.  The honey bee is the only bee that has a barbed stinger.  This barbed stinger causes the bee to leave the stinger behind, with the two venom glands.  One gland produces the acidic parts of the venom, and the other produces the alkaline ingredients.  Leaving the stinger behind also removes some of the internal organs of the hind gut, leaving the bee to die later.  

The venom is a cocktail of poisons, but the most prevalent one is melittin.  Over fifty percent of the venom is melittin.  This substance is what causes the burning sensation when you get stung.  Other than the melittin, there are up to fifty other poisonous ingredients in a bee sting.  Interestingly, queen bees have a stinger, but don’t use it to protect the hive.  They will fight to the death with other potential queens, until one survives and becomes the new queen.  


An interesting behavior found in honey bees is a behavior known as shimmer.  Some bees will sit on the outside of a hive, covering the hive.  They will raise their hind bodies in unison, much like the wave at football games.  When done in mass, this makes the bee hive look as if it “shimmers”.  Scientists were unsure of why they did this for many years, until some research had been done.  Contact your Tulsa exterminator for more details.  

In 2008, a journal published a paper solving the matter.  It was found that when a hornet was near a nest, honey bees were more likely to shimmer, and more of them would shimmer.  This behavior was also effected by how direct the path was that the hornet was taking toward the hive, and how close.  The more aggressive behavior, the more honey bees would partake in the aggressive shimmering behavior.  


Have you found a bee hive in your home or yard?  Are you having issues with bees, wasps, scorpion, ticks or other stinging insects?  If you are, then it’s time to call in your professional Tulsa pest control company.  Here at TermMax Pest Control, we can give you a free estimate and eliminate your pest issues fast.  We service the greater Tulsa area including Owasso, Bixby, Turley, Collinsville, Broken Arrow, Bixby, Sand Springs, Jenks, Sapulpa, Claremore, Pratville, Catoosa, Coweta and much more.  Call today! We’re here to help!

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