Supplier of mason bees and leafcutter bees - Zone 5a @ 4700 ft.
This thread is a jinx! I have been keeping bees for a whole 2 months (this makes me an internet expert now). I got stung for the first time tonight!!! Turns out helmet and veil dosen't work as well as a hooded suit. I was due and glad i got it over with.
I just thought i would of handled it in a manlier manner.
>I don't wear a veil unless
The first time you open a hive you expected to be nice and get 100 stings in about 2 seconds, I believe you will rethink that philosophy. Sooner or later it will happen.
i agree with mr. bush. A veil is a must. The rest is optional but you never know when they're PO'ed
also if your reactions to stings are decreasing (such is my case) then you are most likely not allergic
Last edited by the doc; 05-26-2012 at 12:29 AM.
>sounds like you are talking from experience.
There are more stories than one... but a classic is when you have a really booming box of brood and bees in your hand and you trip and the box falls hard and breaks to pieces... they were gentle right up until then... but then there is just the ones you thought would be in a good mood but the nectar dried up and you didn't know and the neighboring hives have been trying to rob them... or some bees that were very nice right up until they swarmed and turned totally vicious and today when you popped the top they covered your veil so you can't even see and that canvas jacket you thought was so sting proof proves to only be an illusion when you're hot and sweaty and it's stuck to your skin... and you not only get 100 stings in 2 seconds but you get them THROUGH your bee jacket... and you are thankful you have a veil on...
I had a yard of bees, last summer, which I had split to use some queens I had bought. My hives are all on 4way pallets. I set a pallet in front of each pallet already in the yd, 20 pallets. Then I equalized brood between each box of each 2 stroy hive, placing a deep on each space of each pallet, keeping them in line w/ each other. Then I left them alone for 5 days.
After 5 days I went back to go through each box to determine which ones had queens and which ones didn't. Having somewhat poor eyes, cataracts I guess, seeing eggs is really hard, so I found myself lifting my veil to see better. After a couple of hives I just left it off, hanging on my back.
It was a nice sunny day and bees were working at gathering nectar. So, I was able to go thru all 40 pallets w/out wearing a veil and only taking a couple of stings to the head. I thought it was worth it.
Maybe I get stung so much that one more sting doesn't mean much to me. Whereas one sting might mean a whole lot to someone else. To each his/her own w/out judgement.
Your body recognizes venom as a foreign substance. Each body determines the danger of that substance for itself and responds accordingly. Usually a bee sting is recognized by the body as a local attack and responds with a localized response much like it woudl for a small burn or cut. it sends the needed resources to that location in order to fight infection and begin healing. Pain and swelling are part of that response. Pain is the bodies way of sending a message for help. In some cases the body registers the venom as a much more serious threat and the entire body responds in an all out attempt to survive. This is part of what is considered the shock. Your body has gone on way overload because it misinterprets the threat or over responds. The response alone then becomes the greatest threat to your life. In my case the venom was all through my body in an instant once it reached my sinuses. so the entire body response was necessary but no less potentially lethal.
I don't think you could intentionally cause an allergic reaction in a person as it has to do with how their body chooses to respond. Partially it is shock just as a body will go into shock from sever injury. The shock is both potentially lethal while an act of the body trying to save itself at the same time.
IN addition to this reaction the body may have. is the effect of venom on different organs of the body. although venom in the skin is most often just pain and some swelling. venom to the heart, brain nervous system lymph nodes etc is much different. reaction can be lethal. As in my case, take a sting to the sinuses and it is like having snorted it. it is passed to your entire body including organs in a few seconds. Suppose you took a sting to your nervous system that had a similar transportation. it could potentially interrupt all thought. your heart beat, your ability to move etc. and this could last for as long as the effects of the venom last.
So as understand it a reaction can be caused in two ways. one your body over reacts. or the invasion of the venom is so wide spread that your body must react. my reaction was of the second type. It was actually the effects of the venom reaching places it normally would not have. like my brain, my heart, and my nervous system.
All work and no play makes a happy bee.
Good response Daniel. Basically it is a failure of your immune system that can happen at any time. Just because you got stung before without a reaction doesn't mean you won't have a more sever reaction on the next sting. Usually it is not the case but allergies can come on over time.
Mark, judging from the number of stings you have had over the length of time you have been getting them you will not develop an allergy. Those like myself who have had few stings of any kind are at risk.
I will say this to you Mark: you have been getting multiple stings I assume in the same area of your body. If you should all of a sudden get a bunch of bees go up your pants and get repeated stings in your crotch area it could be a totally different reaction. You body is accustomed to getting them on your hands, arms and head but not all areas of your body.
Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping
Honey Badger Don't Care ಠ_ಠ ~=[,,_,,]:3
So I guess it would have to be on the soles of my feet. Every other place is relatively exposed, more or less.
Well, since we are talking stings, the girls would have none of my mowing today, took 5 or 6 before donning my ultrabreeze.
Red Dirt Apiaries
two months so far...but i have nice bees...hahaha
Allergy has to do with the level of IgE antibodies to bee venom and the ratio of IgE to IgG antibodies (more IgG is good). IgG antibodies accumulate fairly predictably with increasing, ongoing exposure, which is why desensitization works and why folks who are stung daily or weekly are unlikely to develop allergies (because even if IgE levels spike, the high levels of IgG will compensate).So, I wonder what it would take to make someone allergic, to create an allergy in a person?
IgE antibodies accumulate unpredictably in different people. Some people will make a ton of them after one sting and become allergic. Some folks will tolerate stings for many years and suddenly IgE levels will spike. Some people will never accumulate IgE antibodies in a lifetime of stings. I don't believe there is a way to make any given person allergic. Different folks make antibodies to different venom proteins, and each person makes a slightly different-shaped antibody that binds to a different spot on the protein. This incredible adaptability allows the human immune system to respond to novel pathogens, but it also means that every person is different when it comes to allergies.
Since I got an ultrabreeze suit last summer and wear it when opening hives, the only time I've been stung was when I was just sitting out by my garden and forgot a bee was hanging out with me. When I stood up, I realized she was on the bottom of my foot and her stinger went right in - ouch.
I hardly feel the stings, it's the itching a day later that drives me crazy. Stings on the hand are my most common, about once a week. I havn't been stung through my jeans until recently.
My 2nd year beeWeaver hive got really hot and I went through it to see if the queen had been superceded. No she was there, HUGE and beautiful, but they were totally out of stores. I removed a few frames of bees and brood for nucs and fed the crud out of the remaining hive. Only took a few days for them to mellow out. But the several stings through my jeans on the inside of my thigh were fun. Trying to scratch there is not socally acceptable in a crowd, LOL...Went out the other night for my birthday and was just trying not to scratch.
It's the sticky stuff on everything I own, my drill, tools, doorknob, ketchen floor, LOL that I don't like too much.
Now THAT I agree with!
Red Dirt Apiaries