Why are they called “Killer Bees?
The proper term is Africanized Honey Bee (AHB). The popular term “killer bee” is the result of media shorthand. There is no doubt that the Africanized Honey Bee is more aggressive than docile European Honey Bees. But deaths by bee stings are extremely rare. A small percentage of the population is allergic to bee venom, just as certain people are allergic to peanuts. In a normal person a bee sting will not kill. In fact, it is estimated that it would take approximately 1,500 bee stings to kill a 150 pound healthy individual. Africanized Honey Bees have been in South and Central America since 1957 and in the United States since 1990. Deaths from their stings are very rare. Your odds of being struck by lightning are greater. Nonetheless, a non-beekeeper should exercise caution when around any bee hive.
Africanized honey bees have received a great deal of notoriety because they defend their hives (or colonies) so diligently. Many more bees come to the defense of the colony and they are much more likely to sting, even with minimal or no provocation. Victims of attacks by Africanized honey bees may be stung hundreds of times. Away from the hive, however, they are no more aggressive than other bees or wasps. They will not form large swarms and hunt for you. 5. What should I do if I am attacked? The best strategy is to RUN away as fast as you can. Get to the shelter of a house or car as quickly as possible. Because the bees target your head and eyes, try to cover your head as much as you can, without slowing your progress. Do not flail or attempt to swat the bees, just get away fast. If you are far from shelter, try to run through tall brush. This will confuse and slow them while you make your way out of the area. If you see someone being attacked by bees, encourage them to run away or se