Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?
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  1. #1

    Default Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Someone left a comment on my blog insisting that worker bees don't die after stinging. He wrote:

    "I do Apitherapy, and when I started about 1in 8 died, after 10 years, I got to the point where less than 1 in 50 died from stinging. The bees that sting, lose the stinger, but do not die, live the same lifespan as those that have not stung, and are welcomed back into the hive even without the stinger. There are hundreds of Apitherapists with the same experiences. Frederique Keller, President of the prestigious American Apitherapy Society (Apitherapy.org) uses beestings with accupuncture on patients several times a day and sees the stingerless bees days later going from flower to flower. Just because tens of millions of people believe something does NOT make it fact. False things do not become fact until they are posted on FaceBook or on the Internet."

    I could not find any information on this claim. I could see a bee who didn't lose her stinger surviving and I know they don't die instantly, but what this person is claiming surprises me. Anyone have info on this?
    Beekeeping Instructor / Live Bee Removal / San Diego, Ca / 90 hives. Check out my new book: Queenspotting

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Sounds like a story made up so that people receiving the therapy are lead to believe that no bees are harmed in the process. It makes sense. Magic therapy with magic bees.
    Honey Badger Don't Care ಠ_ಠ ~=[,,_,,]:3

  4. #3
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    I don't know about that but some apitherapist use a special screen mesh to have the bees sting through, you get the venom but the bee doesn't lose it's stinger since it doesn't go deep enough to catch the barb.

  5. #4
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    G. M. Doolittle also stated that all bees did not die after stinging. I can't remember how long he had bees survive, but it was several days.
    42 + years - 24 colonies - IPM disciple - Naturally Skeptic

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Hmm that's pretty interesting, to be honest I've always gone with the popular wisdom they die, but mostly that's because when I get stung the bee gets a slap! I know the ones that do live keep fanatically chasing me until they get squished.

    Trick would be for someone with a hive handy, say, the back yard, to collect a few bees and make them sting something and lose their sting, then mark those bees with white paint, then see if any are still around in a few days.

    As an aside, a little known trick bees have is that if they sting something but get no reaction and decide it must have been something not worth stinging, they can walk around in circles and wind their sting back out. This can be observed if you watch a bee sting something such as your suit, but make no reaction, sometimes the bee will wind it's sting back out rather than let it pull out and leave it there. I've seen this on my actual skin also, I mostly don't wear gloves and sometimes get stung on the hand or arm when I can't do anything because I'm carrying a box or something, then as I watch the bee winds itself back out and flies off complete with stinger. Mostly though they do lose their stinger but sometimes they decide to fight another day.

  7. #6
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    This sounds like baloney to me. The apitherapist who's quoted in the original post said "The bees that sting, lose the stinger, but do not die." So they're talking specifically about bees who lose their stingers, not ones who sting through a screen, or so shallowly that the stinger remains intact.

    If you ever look at a bee that stung you, you can see her back end ripped open with stuff hanging out of it. Doesn't seem like a recipe for a long life to me. I have seen the bees that stung me, die after they do it. Sure, they fly or crawl around for a while, but then they die.

    I agree with Nabber86 that this is probably just made up so that people who get the therapy feel better about not hurting any bees in the course of the therapy.

    I have a form of autoimmune arthritis and on the occasions when I've been stung while doing beekeeping inspections, it did relieve the pain. And interestingly enough, I don't react to the stings--no pain from them--so it's a win for me. Definitely not for the bee, though. They die. I don't like hurting bees, so I take the stings if I get them by mistake/stupidity, but don't administer them on purpose.

  8. #7
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    The bees that leave just the stinger sac might live for a couple days, but the ones that leave a trail of intestines probably are the lucky ones and only got a couple hours.
    But wait I forgot, anything that's posted on the internet is true!

  9. #8
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    Thumbs Up Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nabber86 View Post
    Sounds like a story made up so that people receiving the therapy are lead to believe that no bees are harmed in the process. It makes sense. Magic therapy with magic bees.
    My first thought as well Nabber. There must be a gap in my education because I don't know how to tell anything about a bee's stinger when the bee is normally engaged on a flower....Harley, the use of a screen is interesting....Oldtimer, I've never seen a bee change its commitment to sting, I'll have to do my own research on that, thanks.
    ...We don't see things as they are, we see things as WE are...

  10. #9
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Well the key difference in their mind, if the bee flys off he lives.

  11. #10
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    I think he's using Yellow Jackets!

  12. #11

    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paulemar View Post
    I think he's using Yellow Jackets!
    lol
    Beekeeping Instructor / Live Bee Removal / San Diego, Ca / 90 hives. Check out my new book: Queenspotting

  13. #12
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    The ones I use for apitherapy on myself die. I thump their head off before I put them in the garbage can. Get it over quick.
    The more I learn about bees, the less I know.

  14. #13
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    Default Re: Apitherapy user claiming worker bees don't die after stinging?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paulemar View Post
    I think he's using Yellow Jackets!
    Hahahahahahahaha! That was awesome! Hahahahaha! ROFL

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