Police and fire units arrived in the neighborhood of Loma Bonita in Puerto Vallarta after several frantic residents reported a swarm of aggressive bees stinging adults, children and pets.
Authorities blocked the area and discovered a hive of agitated African Bees. After three hours, firefighters had controlled the situation and eliminated the beehive, but not before treating several people for bee stings and the removal of a resident’s dog that had died as a result of bee stings.
This subspecies has been determined to constitute one part of the ancestry of the Africanized bees, also known as “killer bees”, spreading through the Americas.
A single African bee sting is no more venomous than a single European bee sting, though African honeybees respond more quickly when disturbed than do European honey bees. They send out three to four times as many workers in response to a threat. They will also pursue an intruder for a greater distance from the hive.
Although people have died as a result of 100-300 stings, it has been estimated that the average lethal dose for an adult is 500-1100 bee stings.