El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

An aggressive colony of bees invaded a far east El Paso neighborhood.

An extractor went out to the home where the bees have been for several years to relocate them, but the aggressive bees wouldn’t allow it.

Our sister-station, CBS4, reported about the homeowner’s problem with these bees on Monday. Reporter Ashley Claster got a look at the beehive Monday in the Mission Estates community, and the bees were everywhere around her.

The bee specialist estimates there are almost 1 million Africanized bees living in the walls and the roof of the house. An older couple currently lives in the home and they said the beehive has been in their walls for three years. But now the bees are getting mean and the homeowners are worried about the neighbors, their pets and their children, who walk right past this house every day after school.

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

On Tuesday morning, bee specialist Pyong Livingston tried to extract the hive. He said he doesn’t want to kill the bees, just move them out of the area. But his work Tuesday made the bees mad. KFOX14 photojournalist, Rudy Reyes, got stung at least eight times when he was recording video of the crew trying to remove the hive.

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

“I went on top of the roof. I went there with my camera and he was with his helper,” Reyes said. “As soon as they got there and opened the roof, the shingles from the roof, it was, like, believe me, it was like a horror movie– seeing this swarm of bees just coming out in a black cloud. Within seconds, I started getting stung by bees. I got two in the eye, in the head, and I just went into my unit. Even though I went into my unit, I still got bees inside my unit.”

“They’re mixed breeds — Africanized and European together. So, they are hybrids and they are maybe 20, 30 times more aggressive than regular honeybees,” Livingston said. “We were swarmed. We found that, as soon as we opened a little area, we thought there were maybe 20,000 bees. It turns out to be over 100,000 bees. So they swarmed us and they started biting me all over, even with the suits.”

The street is blocked off, but our crew saw children walking right past the cone barriers on their way home from school.

The city of El Paso said the bees are not the city’s responsibility. The city said the homeowner is responsible for calling a beekeeper to relocate them or exterminate them.

The bee specialist removed a large chunk of the hive Tuesday, but there are still bees left. Murphy will have to fix the roof and walls after the specialist is done.

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

“They’ll remove the bees for a price, but then I have to get a contractor to rebuild the wall and the roof,” Murphy said.

“And that’s something you can’t afford?” CBS4 reporter Ashley Claster asked.

“Absolutely not,” Murphy said.

“They are an elderly couple. Their budget is extremely low,” said neighbor Martin Edgar, who has seen bees on his property. “They also take care of a special-needs (person). I know that their medical bills are way up there.”

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

Murphy and her neighbors said the bees need to be taken care of now, before someone gets hurt.

“Hopefully, somebody in El Paso can please help, step up and help,” Edgar said.

El Paso, Texas: A million aggressive Africanized bees threaten an entire neighborhood

Mary Greeley News
www.marygreeley.com

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