Killer Bees discovered in Bainbridge
BAINBRIDGE, GA (WALB) - A lot of folks in Bainbridge are worried after killer bees were found in their community. As we first told you Tuesday at eleven, tests confirmed bees found and destroyed there were the aggressive Africanized variety. It's the second colony confirmed in Georgia.
In October, a man died in a killer bee attack in Dougherty County. One unlikely young expert told us how potentially dangerous these bees are. "Killer bees will go to extremes to keep their honey and nectar protected," said 11 year old Christopher Carpenter.
Carpenter is quite knowledgeable on the subject. "They have been known to kill badgers, honey badgers, and other animals that have tried to steal their honey."
Killer bees first showed up in this country in Texas in 1990. They've been spreading ever since and established a breeding population in Florida in 2005. "It doesn't really surprise me that they're here in Bainbridge. I mean we're so close to the Florida line, which they're well documented down there," said UGA Extension Agent Mitchell May.
May says they could potentially impact crop growth, especially if they mate with the European honeybees. "I don't think they will be eliminated or eradicated, it's just we gotta learn how to deal with them"
Other Bainbridge residents are uneasy with the news. "We need that for pollination of our plants and ecosystem. There needs to be a balance, but there don't need to be killer bees in Bainbridge, Georgia," said Bainbridge Resident Zachary Hurt.
Carpenter says the Africanized Bees don't have any natural predators in the area. "As anyone would guess any area where animals don't have predators they will thrive in."
And when asked how he knew all this information, Carpenter replied, "I watch Animal Planet."
Department of Agriculture representatives will meet Thursday to discuss how to manage the Killer Bee situation. If you come across a hive you think could be Africanized bees, don't mess with it. You should call the Georgia Department of Agriculture.
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