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Butterbean

Bee stings

Let me first say I know nothing about bees other than I know they sting but it doesn't hurt as bad as a yellow jacket or hornet.  Other than that, I know little to nothing hence my question.  Today was a beautfiul day.  Clear skies and a light breeze with temps in the 60's F.  I was checking some hives with a friend of mine who may have taken me up on my offer to set some hives next to my clover fields.  Anyhow, the bees were very active and the numbers had grown since the last visit.  Bees were feeding on red maple and there was a lot of activity.  We were standing about 30 feet from the entrances when one hit me in the back of the head.  It continued to peck my hat then another joined in.  We briskly walked away from the hives a sought out a dark area to hide.  By the time we reached the cover of the shelter we were stung a total of four times.  He told me this was odd for them to behave like this on a day like today.  What might have set them off?  Do they just hate me and I should give up my ideas of owning my own hives or what?  I was wearing a blaze orange hat and a dark shirt and jeans if that matters.  Just curious.
milkermel

In my experience they are more attracted to colour than the plain white or camo colours

For some reason they seem to be able to sting far better through jeans then loose cotton trousers.

I am new to beeking, and ignored the advice to not wear jeans,  I learnt the hard way when moving a hive this year and receiving 6 stings to various areas of my legs, I wonder if they are able to detect the warmth of skin in contact with denim.  Will never do it again
Butterbean

Thanks.  I don't think I'll look at any more hives wearing a blaze orange hat.
Lorrainelovesplants

They dont like......

the colour brown
anything stripey
anbything nylony (causes an electrostatic current
thunder
sweat
anti-perspirant (yes, you cant win) and ......

anti-dandruff shampoo (the aluminium content)
Lorrainelovesplants

dont ask how ive managed to find these things out...Im a sad git with no life....
milkermel

Lorraine - Im interested yours dont like brown?? My beek trousers are a karki brown and I have had no problems with it so far maybe its because it is more greeny then brown??

And as for dislikes dont forget the mobile phone!!  They really dont like those!
Lorrainelovesplants

I know the ones you mean....I think they are pale enough.....
Im talking brown brown....

I always find that going into a dark shed is enough to get them to disappear, but some persistent little followers will follow me right to my house door.

After getting one in my hair a couple of years ago (right next to my ear) I dont de-suit till Im indoors and have been checked by another member of the family..
milkermel

Cant say I blame you! had two lovely ones this year one on the ear and the other into my hairline above my forhead.

Day three I looked like a klingong with the swelling!  Cant wait to start another season of stings - Apis to the ready!
danro

I was told any dark clothes\solid colour were a "no no"
Bees are also much more aggressive if there is no queen present to organise them.
Perhaps she did not make the winter?

They are very sensitive to odour, a friend of mine is always covered in bees when we finish looking in the hives another friend and I are generally clear.
We tease him that "they can small the fear" but is probably the detergent or soap he uses or his sweat....

HTH

Danro
Lorrainelovesplants

The bee in the hair thing was a helluva day.....

very hot, and me and my then bee mentor (a few years back this) were taking the hive apart and putting it all back while the sweat was running off me (I always wear a thin sweatshirt and jeans under my suit with a wooly hat).....

I have to say here that I am firmly of the 'no sucker is getting through my defences' camp.

Well, post bee checking we stood in the driveway having a good old yap, hood down to releive the heat,  whilst unknown to me a sneaky one crawled up the back of my shoulder into hair....
It was at this point I heard it........
and ran like a headless chicken round and round the garden sccreaming whilst my mentor (a quiet old chap) and husband STOOD AND LAUGHED.

Eventually, after a few mins they decided to have pity and hubby rugby tackled me to the ground and mentor found the bee and squashed it....

I was not the best company for a while,and when we had our next group meeting, my lovely mentor told them all....


It really wasnt funny at the time.  But I share this with you all.........

If we had filmed it and put it on 'Youve been framed we'd have got 500....
Butterbean

Update on the bees I mentioned.  Turns out they had been taken over by some african bees.  Apparantly the african bees will send out a group and infiltrate the hive, kill existing queen and replace it with theirs.  In a few weeks time the hive will be africanized.  My friend worked with them for three weeks and each time the bees became more and more agressive.  He said he had never seen anything like it and came to this conclusion.  He destroyed the worst hive and replaced all the other queens with new queens and hopefully order will be restored in a few weeks.  For his trouble he was stung 18 times wearing a full suit.  (Note: I told him this is not how you get someone interested in bee keeping)
kaz

This post just reinforces my view that bees are not for me
lottie

That's what I thought--I only went on the beekeeping course with my O.H. years ago on the understanding I was just going for company and refused anything hands on as I was frightened of bees. I got suckered into handling my first frame of bees and was fascinated and hooked. Given previous problems and my allergies I have to take a loratadil tab before I check the bees and carry an epipen---but I'd hate to give them up.

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