Mission Trails Hikers Beware: Two Women Stung By Swarm of Bees

Two women hiking at Mission Trails Regional Park this morning have reportedly been stung by a swarm of bees.

The woman say that they were  hiking in the western area of the park near Tierrasanta with their dog when they were both stung.  It is not known if the dog was stung.

How you can protect yourself from bees:

Stay away from honey bee colonies.

  • Africanized honey bees sting to defend themselves or their nest.
  • If you can avoid disturbing them in any way, they usually will not sting.
  • To avoid approaching a nest by accident, listen for the steady buzz produced by a colony and look for flying insects
  • Look for bees to nest in cavities such as holes in the ground, crevices in rocks, hollow trees, discarded tires, saguaro cactus cavities, or water meter boxes.
  • Homeowners commonly encounter colonies when doing yard work.
  • Do not climb a tree, kick over a log or roll over a rock without checking first for bees.
  • If you do see a colony, do not stand in front of the entrance or in the flightpath.
  • Treat honey bee colonies as you would any other venomous creature, such as a snake or a scorpion.
  • Be alert and stay away!

Wear appropriate clothing.

  • When hiking or hunting in the wilderness, wear light-colored clothing.
  • The animals most likely to attack a bee colony are skunks and bears, so honeybees respond most violently to anything that is dark-colored or fuzzy.
  • Wear white socks, because honey bees are known to sting the ankles of persons wearing dark socks.
  • Always wear full-length pants when hiking and long-sleeved shirts if possible.
  • Avoid wearing shiny jewelry and leather, which attract bees.

Avoid wearing perfumes or scents.

  • Bees are sensitive to odors such as perfumes, soaps, after-shave lotions, and hair spray. These odors may either attract or provoke bees. Even sunscreens may have odors that increase your chances of an attack.

Avoid excessive motion when near a colony.

  • Bees are able to detect movement, and are much more likely to respond to an object in motion than one that is stationary.
  • Avoid flailing your arms or swatting at bees.
  • Do not panic if you spot a bees’ nest, just move away slowly and deliberately.
  • Avoid operating any machinery (mowers, line-trimmers or chain saws) near nests.
  • If you are attacked by several bees, then the best strategy is to run to shelter as quickly as possible.

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