Albany first responders attend workshop on 'killer bees'

The first sign of Africanized killer bees in Georgia was October 2010

Ever since an Albany man was killed by Africanized honeybees, many people have been wondering how can they protect themselves from the so-called "killer bees" and what's being done to stop their migration. A workshop was held Tuesday for EMS and other first responders to understand these bees a little more.

Experts have been studying Africanized honeybees for over 50 years--yet their best advice for when you come in contact with them is simple--run. Run and keep running until you are no longer being attacked. It may take awhile, though, since their radius can encompass a few city blocks.

The second best thing you can do is find shelter, either inside your car or house. Keith Delaplane is an entomologist with the University of Georgia and says a few bees may follow you inside your home or car, but not to panic.

"And they find a few bees follow them in there, they panic and jump back out. So over fear of two or three bees following you inside your truck, you jump back out where there's 10,000 waiting on you," Said Delaplane.

If you are stung, call 911 or the fire department. However you should call an exterminator if you just find a hive on your property.

Bill Behrend is a beekeeper who has experience with the European honeyees and says he plays an important part in fighting against these Africanized killer bees.

"If we can keep the queen lines gentle and easy in a managed colony, then we'll be able to keep that aggressive line in that Africanized bees present to us at a minimum,"

Action is already being taken in Dougherty County, bee expert Barry Smith is laying out over 30 traps that will capture bee swarms to be tested. That way they can determine if the bees are settling in the area.

Africanized bees only attack when they feel their hive is being threatened. You are safe as long as you don't provoke them.

They can set up a nest virtually anywhere, including tool sheds or trash cans.