I just came back from the local beekeeper's meeting in Damascus (my annual pilgrimage to pay my dues). The State Plant Board Bee Specialist, Ed Levy, was there to announce to the group that a confirmed swarm had been caught in southwest Arkansas. The information was to be the topic of the 10:00 PM newscasts. His reason for attending the meeting was to prepare us to disseminate correct information to people who will ask questions.
His main concern was that ordinances would be passed by cities that would prohibit keeping bees inside the city limits.
As he explained it, if European bees are denied access, AHB would fill the void. The best thing for the cities would be to allow European bees to be kept and deny feral populations of AHB.
Another bombshell for me is that AHB has adapted to cooler climates. I have to admit to dismissing ever having to deal with them because of projections based on what they were doing in Argentina. They are going further south there, too, and going higher in elevation.
He is saying that at the present time, they expect them to reach northern Missouri.
He also stated that they are in the Mobile, Alabama area and have been found in Florida, too.
Ed also said that they move north at the rate of 300 miles a year.