MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – Alabama state inspectors are in the Mobile area Tuesday checking traps for Africanized honey bees, also known as killer bees.
A killer bee was found in Baldwin County about a year ago, and the bee swarming season is just around the corner.
CHECKING BEE TRAPS
Randy Hamann is an inspector with the Alabama Department of Agriculture.
He’s checking traps he set up in Chickasaw, Bayou La Batre, and other port areas for Africanized honey bees.
Those bees are called killer bees because they’re more aggressive than the regular European variety.
Hamann said, “Europeans (honey bees), they might, if you really rile them up, might send out 10 or 20, where, an Africanized colony, you get them riled up, they can send hundreds.”
In fact, swarms of Africanized bees have been blamed for killing humans.
TIME FOR SWARMING
Hamann said prime time for bee swarms is mid-March to late April and, inspectors did find a killer bee in our area last year.
He said, “We did find one that was considered Africanized on I-10 in Baldwin County.”
But, the good news is Hamann said it was an isolated case.
Hamann said, “They’re not established. We didn’t really even release it to the press at that time, but, we’ve had two finds now in the last couple of years, so, its going to start happening more and more.”
And, that’s why Hamman checks all 125 bee traps in the Mobile area once a month.
Hamman said, “The peninsula of Florida is about two thirds covered now. They are starting to approach from southern Louisiana. There have been a few finds in Mississippi, so, we know they are coming this way.”
What did Hamann find in Tuesday morning’s check?
No bees, but, he’ll be back.