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Africanized Honey Bees


"Africanized honeybees are not to be feared, but they are to be respected. By understanding how they behave, you can avoid close encounters with AHBs or respond appropriately if a problem develops." 

                                                                                                                       Dr. Eric Mussen

Listen to Extension Apiculturist Eric Mussen of the UC Davis Department of Entomology talk about Africanized honey bees on the national Fox Network (8/1/12).  Read Dr. Mussen's article Africanized Honey Bees in California.  Dr. Mussen Honored by California State Beekeepers Association. 


 If you disturb an Africanized honeybee colony, follow these steps to protect yourself:

1. Run. 
2. Never swat at the bees. Swatting and waving your arms at bees aggravates them more. Cover your head with your shirt or jacket while running because Africanized bees tend to sting the face and head. 
3. Do not jump into a pool. The bees will just wait for you to come out.
4. Never stand still or get boxed into a place outdoors where you cannot escape the attack.
5. Seek immediate shelter in an enclosed building or vehicle. Isolate yourself from the bees.
6. Do not attempt to rescue a victim without the proper protective gear and training. Doing so could make you the second victim. 


General Information:

Killer Bees-Africanized Honey Bees! What Are They and Why Are They Here

Map of the spread of Africanized Honey Bees per year

Government Agencies re: Africanized Honey Bees:

U.S. Customs & Border Protection Article (8/27/07)
CBP Finds Africanized Honey Bees on Vessel

County of Los Angeles, Agriculture Commission Weights & Measures

Los Angeles County West Vector & Vector-Borne Disease Control District

Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania - Best Management Practices

Tennessee Department of Agriculture

Utah Department of Agriculture and Food What's Buzzing About Honey Bees! 

U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service-Carl Hayden Bee Research

Educational Institutions/Research Organizations provide Advice, Guidance, Information:

University of Arizona, Africanized Honey Bee Education Project

Alabama Cooperative Extension System

University of Florida IFAS Extension

University of Georgia, Cooperative Extension

Oklahoma State University, Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources

University of Riverside, Entomology Department 

University of Tennessee, Agricultural Extension Service 

Utah State University, Cooperative Extension 

Recent Attacks by Africanized Honey Bees:


7/7/2015  Killer Bees Terrorize Florida Neighborhood

6/20/2015 Man Killed By Swarm Of Bees While Mowing Lawn

3/27/15  California: Swarm of Killer Bees Sting, Kill 3 Pet Dogs Officials Say

3/22/15 Man Stung 100's of Times at Baseball Game in Utah


10/9/14  Killer Bee Attack Leaves 1 Dead, 4 Injured in Arizona

7/24/14  Honey Bees Sting Texas Man About 1,000 Times

3/10/14  Woman, Teen Hospitalized With Hundreds of Bee Stings Following Collision,0,5944930.story

3/7/14 100,000 Killer Bees Attack Park Rangers in Florida; Rodney Pugh, David Seledon Stung Hundreds of Times [Video] 

3/6/2014 Bees Swarm Palm Desert Neighborhood, Woman Stung 1,000 times

2/17/14  Swarm of Killer Bees Attack Spectators at "Tope" Costa Rica


11/7/13 Africanized Bees Kill Pit Bull, Injure Another In Florida Neighborhood

8/3/13 Africanized Honey Bees Attack in Peoria, AZ

7/26/13 Thousands of Bees Attack Couple, Kill Horses in Pantego, TX

6/18/13 Killer Bees in Tennessee? (with Video)

6/6/13 Killer Bees Leave Texas Man Dead, Woman in Serious Condition  (with Video)

3/16/13 Swarm of Bees Kills Puppy in California 

3/5/13: Dog Dies After Bee Attack


California Couple Hospitalized After Bee Attack (Fox25News - July 25, 2012)

Man Dies After Honey Bee Attack - City Warns Residents of Bee Dangers (Nogales Intl. - July 17, 2012)

16 Dogs Aattacked by Africanized Bees; Three Critical (LA Times - June 8, 2012)

Killer Bees Swarming Into Oklahoma ( - April 26, 2012)

Tennesssee Africanized Bees Discovered After Beekeeper Stung (Huffington Post - April 11, 2012) 

Personal Accounts from LACBA Members: 

2012 LACBA President, Jim Lindsey's son was attacked by Africanized bees while working in their apiary resulting in multiple bee stings. Due to this unfortunate incident, Mr. Lindsey has closed his family run apiary. However, Jim is a passionate beekeeper and will maintain a few gentle European hives. 

2011 Former LACBA President, Clyde Steese, was attacked by Africanized bees while working in his apiary and rushed to nearby hospital. 300 stings were found on a single sleeve before they stopped counting. The aggressive Africanized hive which had infiltrated his European colony has been destroyed. Clyde continues to maintain bees in Los Angeles county and travels his bees to almond pollination. 

In these cases, the docile honey bee hives had been taken over by aggressive Africanized honey bees.

We'd like to thank Derek Roach of Pro Pacific Bee Removal for the following Graphic. 

Pro Pacific Bee Removal - Africanized Honeybee Facts