When it comes to stinging insects, it is important to know which species you are dealing with and the threats they may pose. While they can be distinguished by their physical appearance, being able to recognize different nests can help homeowners identify various species from a safe distance.
Nicknamed “killer bees,” Africanized honey bees are dangerous stinging insects that have been known to chase people for more than a quarter of a mile. Although slightly smaller than European honey bees, Africanized honey bees are nearly impossible to visually distinguish from their counterparts. Workers gather pollen and nectar from flowers to feed the colony and will attack if they feel threatened.
Africanized bees live in small colonies, so they can build their nests in unique places that are prime locations for accidental run-ins with unsuspecting passersby. They have been known to live in tires, crates, tree limbs, utility poles, mailboxes and overturned flowerpots. This species is highly adaptive and can nest in a multitude of places around the yard.
Although the venom of an Africanized bee is no more dangerous than that of regular honey bees, they tend to attack in greater numbers which can cause more harm. An attack can cause severe injuries or even death in some cases due to the high volume of stings. Africanized bees are highly sensitive to noise and vibration, meaning the slightest movement can disturb a colony. Sting symptoms include pain and swelling, while those experiencing systemic reactions may suffer from difficulty breathing or even anaphylaxis.
What To Do:
Upon discovering a nest, homeowners should contact a licensed pest control professional to assess the situation and effectively remove the nest from the property. When it comes to stinging insects, nest removal is not a “do it yourself” job. Any attempts to remove the nest will disturb and threaten these pests, causing them to attack, sometimes in large numbers.
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