TAKING ACTION: Africanized bees in Madison County

Taking Action
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MADISON COUNTY, Ala. --WHNT News 19 took action to look into claims of Africanized bees in Madison County after someone emailed with the concern. This is a matter state departments are staying on top of.

Maynard Dalton, beekeeper of Daltonwood Farm, didn't expect to get Africanized bees when he ordered a queen for his colony.

"I'd ordered bees from this guy before, and he sent some very good bees, very good queens. This time, they were not so good," he said.

The queen had enough african DNA that when she laid eggs, it resulted in Africanized bee colonies. After an incident that left one dog dead from the bees, Dalton called in the Tennessee and Alabama state bee inspectors.

"They got here, we went out, we killed two colonies of bees, which is very painful to a beekeeper," said Dalton.

But it is the best way to stop them. There's already a lot of fear surrounding bees in general, but especially Africanized bees.

"The african bees are more aggressive, and if they're disturbed they attack. If they're not disturbed, they go about their business," said Dalton.

There is no way to just look at a bee and tell if it's Africanized. But, Dalton said there shouldn't be any of them in the area.

"Both the state inspectors are watching the area now very closely to make sure that no bees had escaped before we killed them," he said.

He said the best thing to do if you see a bee, don't bother them and they won't bother you. This isolated incident happened a year ago. As far as beekeepers in the area know, there are no reports of Africanized bees since then.

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