Local beekeepers encourage residents to be outspoken about bee safety concerns

Local News

BROWNSVILLE, Texas (KVEO-TV) – This week, emergency crews in McAllen exterminated a swarm of bees after they attacked several people at a home including a firefighter.

City of McAllen Press Release

Glenn Simpson is a local beekeeper and owner of Bay Bees; he says municipalities need to learn how to deal with bees and would like to remind people that bees will only sting for the following reasons: to protect themselves, their home, and their family.

“Municipalities need to understand that these are not just a bunch of insects; they will kill you,” Simpson said. 

According to Simpson, bee problems turn out to be huge at times because there is not a proper way to report them.

He says people need to contact beekeepers because they know how to properly handle bees. 

“We do the same thing, we deal with bees just like they deal with fires every day,” said Simpson.

Dawn Johnston, owner of R9 Hive & Honey, says the job of a beekeeper is not only to protect the bees but also to keep the community safe.

“Our job to remove the bees is to make sure that anybody in the area is safe,” said Johnston. 

According to Johnston, attempting to destroy a bee colony with water or chemicals is one of the worst things to do.

Johnston’s daughter Devin says it is important for people to educate themselves and whenever one encounters bees it is best to do the following: cover one’s eyes, remain calm, and walk away.

Devin encourages the public to be outspoken about bee problems in the neighborhood by talking to the city about safety concerns.

“Talk to the people in the city; that you want them to be proactive in their training, in their bee responses,” Johnston said.

Johnston and Simpson want the public to know it is important to report a bee problem to them as soon as possible.

If stung by a bee, Simpson recommends to head indoors and place ice on the bee sting immediately.

He says many do not know whether they are allergic to bees so it is important to stay alert for reactions.

If one ends up experiencing reactions it is encouraged to call 911.

Those interested in becoming beekeepers or who would like to learn about bee safety are encouraged to reach out to Simpson or Johnston through their social media platforms.

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