Bee Saga IV: Why is AHB a problem?

06 August 2012

Yesterday Jacob decided to harvest some honey. I thought this was a lovely idea. It was a lovely day. Honey is lovely.

He came back half an hour later sans honey. He informed me that they were building their comb "weird." He said they were extra aggressive, and that he'd been stung three times through his cowhide gloves. (He reported this as if he were proud of the little buzzers for achieving such a feat.)

These bees have been generally more aggressive than our last hive. After Jacob pokes around in either of the hives, it usually takes them a day or two before the bees completely settle back down. If we go outside on these volatile days it's not unusual to get chased by a rogue scout. So I wouldn't have thought much of this affair except that I later found this tab open on my laptop:

What is AHB you ask?  AHB is apparently the nice way of saying AFRICANIZED Honey Bee...which is the nice way of saying KILLER BEE.

I've never been stung, so as far as I know I'm deathly allergic. And we have a fourteen month old. And he's never been stung, so he's probably deathly allergic too. And Jacob's researching whether or not they're KILLER BEES???? 


Where in Los Angeles County can AHB be found? Thirty feet from my front door. 

All day today one of them has been buzzing outside our windows. The whole front of our apartment is windows, so it's easy to see her.  Wherever we are, she buzzes outside the corresponding window. She's terrorizing us. It's like she's our pet dog that's gone rabid or something. I decided I should probably go kill her since she'd obviously figured us out and the last thing I needed was for her to go back, do her little wing dance, and tell all her sisters where we live.

Let me just interrupt to say: I'm not a scaredy cat when it comes to these things. At all. Remember this post. I thought that picture was funny. On the spectrum of typical female fear of rodents, bugs, and creepy crawlers, I definitely fall under "butch."

So out I went, armed with the cliche magazine ready to end her life. As soon as I got close to her she abandoned her post by the window and hurled herself right at me. I swatted the air a couple times, and then my mission devolved into a tribalish freak out dance as I jetted back inside and slammed the door. Inside my dance continued as I swung my hair around and shrieked, convinced that the bee was stuck in my ponytail. Jake was giggling in his highchair, apparently finding my derangement delightful.

Now that my heart rate has gone down, I can safely say I'm mortified. A royal basket case. I e-mailed Jacob and said I'm not letting him in the house unless he makes me an offering of that bee's carcass.


Worst of all, baby and I are 100% housebound. Jake can't play on the porch at all, and it's making both of us crazy. Even the balance-the-ball-on-the-yoga-mat game can only last so long.

If you want to read more about our beekeeping adventures (from back when we were all friends) you can go here or here or here.

Otherwise I hope you have a happy Monday that is free of vengeful stinging insects.


  1. I generally don't comment on my wife's posts, but I feel compelled to defend both my parenting and all my sweet bitches.

    These are the SAME bees that we have had for many months without incident, and whose honey we have been enjoying without complaint. Heretofore, my bees have never stung a person that wasn't actively digging in their hives (me).

    The term "killer bee" is very offensive, let alone "KILLER BEE." Shame on you. And these insects have no superpowers. They are just marginally more defensive than regular bees.

    We are not horrible parents and we would never endanger our baby, internet.

  2. the nerve...

    i think i'm going to turn the comment moderator on.

  3. I am trying to control my laughter here in the middle of the office. WOW. I love you guys!!


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