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I've been wanting to become a beekeeper and actually have geared up and have a nuc waiting. I asked all my neighbors before but yesterday one told me she had a severe allergy!! Should it end my plan? Ugh!! So bummed!
 

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Is she absolutely sure she's allergic to honeybees? I say this because my husband is quite allergic to yellow jackets (which sting a lot more people than honeybees do). He's not allergic to honeybee stings.
 

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Tell her to stay away from your bees. I'd bet she's not allergic, just scared and wants to dictate what you can and can not do.
 

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Uggggh....You told the neighbors you were getting bees WHY?!? :scratch:

Where is the hive going to be? In other words, will it be out of sight? I wouldn't volunteer ANY info. As others have said, I bet her statement is more out of fear, than true knowledge of a severe allergy. Pure speculation of course...

People that don't know about bees assume that if there are bees next door, their yard is going to be full of bees all the time. It is quite the contrary. Bees go up and out to forage. The area immediately surrounding the hives is not their choice feeding area.
 

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I never tell the neighbors. By the time they figure it out, all of their imagined disasters have already not happened...

Everyone thinks they are allergic to bee stings. Very few people are. Ask if they carry their epipen with them... if they don't have an epipen it's very questionable that they are allergic. Ask what kind of reaction they had last time they were stung by a bee. Ask how they got the stinger out (odds are they've never even been stung by a honey bee, but rather by a yellow jacket or some other hornet.
 

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I have a man that occasionally comes by to talk. We were watching the bees on the clover, and he remarked that I have a lot more bees on my clover than he does. I laughed and told him its because they don't have far to go. He then mentioned he was allergic, I asked about do you carry an epi pen, no it just itches when he gets stung. I don't tell unless asked or I know of an issue( swarm in a neighbors tree). But my opinion is when they leave my hives, they are not my bees. They can be robbers, feral, or someone else's, but unless I see them go into my hives, Im not sure they are my bees
 

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It is true that most folks who say they are allergic aren't.

On the other hand, beekeepers who assume that someone who says they are allergic is lying/mistaken give all beekeepers a bad name...and show their ignorance to those who are allergic, whether they take precautions or not.
Pure selfish thinking.
 

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It is true that most folks who say they are allergic aren't.

On the other hand, beekeepers who assume that someone who says they are allergic is lying/mistaken give all beekeepers a bad name...and show their ignorance to those who are allergic, whether they take precautions or not.
Pure selfish thinking.

The odds are in favor that they are mistaken, I don't ever assume anyone to be lying unless they are a known liar. I look at it as an opportunity to educate them and try to do it in a gentle way. You can feel them out without ever insulting them too, like Michael said, ask them how they remove the stinger and possibly give them tips if in fact they are allergic. A prime example is my father in law, said he wouldn't come over once I got the bees because he was " deathly allergic" Through casual conversation I found out he based this diagnosis on the fact that his lips swelled real bad once when he was stung I'll give you 3 guesses where he got stung and the first 2 don't count. Also after casual conversation I found out that he has nothing other than localized swelling and itching when he gets stung on the arm or anywhere else. I wasn't as gentle as I could have been in giving him his education since he was my father in law, but long story short he still visits.....................now if I can only get him to eat bananas LOL
 

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They're advertising Epipens on television these days. That tends to put the notion in every mommys little head that their family is in mortal danger from bee stings. In fact, the ads are designed to plant that little seed of fear in order to sell more product. It seems to be working:

Third-party net sales in the Specialty segment increased 13% to $176.1 million. Specialty segment sales were driven by the strong performance of its flagship product – EpiPen auto-injector – for severe allergic reactions. Favorable pricing and volume aided sales of the product in the quarter. Mylan and Pfizer (PFE - Analyst Report) have an agreement for EpiPen, under which Pfizer manufactures and Mylan markets the product.

Adjusted gross margin during the fourth quarter of 2013 improved to 51% from 49% in the year-ago quarter. Margins were positively impacted primarily by strong sales of EpiPen auto-injector, driven by favorable pricing and volume. Adjusted operating expenses climbed 9.3% to $476.7 million during the reported quarter.
The actual number of deaths from bee stings, while increasing, is still tiny compared to most other risks:

There were 1802 animal-related fatalities with the majority coming from nonvenomous animals (60.4%). The largest percentage (36.4%) of animal-related fatalities was attributable to “other mammals,” which is largely composed of farm animals. Deaths attributable to Hymenoptera (hornets, wasps, and bees) have increased during the past 60 years in the United States and now account for more than 79 fatalities per year and 28.2% of the total animal-related fatalities from 1999 to 2007. Dog-related fatalities have increased in the United States, accounting for approximately 28 fatalities per year and 13.9% of the total animal-related fatalities.
http://www.wemjournal.org/article/S1080-6032(12)00086-5/abstract
Note that the 79 deaths are from ALL Hymenoptera, not just neighborhood honeybees, and will include those caused by AHB attacks.

The likelihood of a neighbor dying from your bees is miniscule, but once they get it in their head that they're "allergic" there's little you can do to dissuade them.

I agree with those who advise you to simply not mention it.
 

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Everyone thinks they are allergic to bee stings. Very few people are. Ask if they carry their epipen with them... if they don't have an epipen it's very questionable that they are allergic. Ask what kind of reaction they had last time they were stung by a bee. Ask how they got the stinger out (odds are they've never even been stung by a honey bee, but rather by a yellow jacket or some other hornet.
Exactly. If they are allergic the epi-pen will do the trick. If they don't own one, I doubt they are allergic.
 

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Anyone with a legitimate allergy reading this thread would legitimately feel like beekeepers are incapable of reasonable behavior.
 

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Anyone with a legitimate allergy reading this thread would legitimately feel like beekeepers are incapable of reasonable behavior.
Hopefully anyone reading this thread would wonder whether they were actually allergic or whether they were simply subject to a normal reaction, and then go have themselves tested to find out if they truly were at risk.
 

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And what about a responsible person who says they are allergic after having a serious reaction or or a legitimate allergy test?

What kind of response do we appreciate when discussing our own health issues...that we are delusional and ignorant? That usually doesn't go over very well.
 

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Anyone with a legitimate allergy reading this thread would legitimately feel like beekeepers are incapable of reasonable behavior.
Not true AT ALL!

I have severe allergies of other sorts and have been politely questioned about them and happily responded with answers. I would hope that people who say they are allergic to bees would do the same.
 

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So, do you carry an EpiPen in case you come against a food you're allergic to??

Most people don't, and feel that they can adjust their lifestyle to prevent their coming in contact with the allergen. We don't say the allergy isn't real just because they don't carry an EpiPen…
 
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