Author Topic: Africanized 'Killer' Bees Advance North in U.S.  (Read 656 times)

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Africanized 'Killer' Bees Advance North in U.S.
« on: April 12, 2012, 03:52:56 PM »
Quote
Africanized 'Killer' Bees Advance North in U.S.
By William Browning | Yahoo! Contributor Network – Tue, Apr 10, 2012.. .


The Associated Press reports a colony of partially Africanized bees have been found in East Tennessee. This is the first time Africanized, or "killer," bees have been found in Tennessee. The Tennessee Agriculture Department determined a genetic test found a beekeeper's colony in Monroe County contained partially Africanized specimens. Officials will be conducting tests in surrounding colonies to see if there are any more killer bees in the area.
 
Here's a look at the presence of Africanized bees in America.


Origins

African honey bees were imported to Brazil in 1956. The Smithsonian indicates the bees were thought to increase honey production in the South American nation. A year later, 26 African queen bees along with European honey bees escaped from an experimental colony and began interbreeding. Africanized honey bees were then created as a hybrid species.
 
Columbia University states European honey bees didn't survive South America's tropical climates very well. Hence, the African bees were brought to Brazil to try to survive. The new species did all too well. The new bees have since moved north into Central America, Mexico and the United States.

Since they were introduced in Brazil, Africanized bees have killed over 1,000 humans. Africanized bees are more aggressive and will sting victims 10 times more than more docile European bees.
 

In the U.S.

The University of California Riverside reveals Africanized bees were first spotted in the U.S. in southern Texas in 1990. The aggressive species then spread to Arizona and New Mexico in 1993 and then California in 1994. As of 2011, a Department of Agriculture map reveals counties in Nevada, southern Utah, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and Florida also have Africanized bees.


Fearsome Stings

Many horrifying reports of deaths have been attributed to Africanized bees in the U.S. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported in October 2010 Africanized honey bees killed a 73-year-old man in Dougherty County. It was the first time Africanized bees were found in Georgia. Curtis Davis was clearing brush on a farm with his tractor when over 100 bees stung him to death.

One attack happened in September 2011 in Bisbee, Ariz., near the Mexican border. Workers attempted to move a 200 pound hive that contained around a quarter million Africanized bees on a farm. When the bees were disturbed the swarm attacked workers and livestock, according to the Associated Press. Thousands of bees stung a 1,000-pound hog to death. An 800-pound sow went into a coma and lost her litter of unborn piglets.
 
In Santa Ana, Calif., four men were hospitalized just days after the hog was killed in Arizona. A hive of 60,000 bees was removed from a storage yard. A man in wheelchair was attacked and three others came to his aid.
 
The colony in Tennessee was determined to be 17 percent Africanized. The USDA considers bees that are 50 percent hybrids to be truly Africanized. The colony was purchased from a dealer that brought the bees from outside of Tennessee.
 
http://news.yahoo.com/africanized-killer-bees-advance-north-u-202000829.html

I remember the 70s Killer Bee Scare; they were supposed to have killed us all long before now...

 

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