How to Escape From Killer Bees

How to Escape From Killer Bees

While we wish every bee was as friendly as Barry B. Benson, this is unfortunately not the case.

In usual Survival Cat fashion, let's get to it...

1. If bees begin flying around and/or stinging you, do not freeze.

Staying put and swatting at the bees only makes them angrier, get the hell out of there!

2. Get indoors as fast as you can.

3. If no shelter is available, run through bushes or high weeds.

This will help give you cover and ideally confuse the bees/make them lose sight of you.

4. If a bee stings you, it will leave its stinger in your skin.

Do not pinch or pull the stinger out--this may squeeze more venom from the stinger into your body.

Rather, remove the stinger by raking your fingernail across it in a sideways motion.

Do not let stingers remain in the skin, because venom can continue to pump into the body for up to ten minutes or so.

5. Do not jump into a swimming pool or other body of water--the bees are likely to be waiting for you when you surface.

Contrary to popular belief, this isn't always a great move.

This may work, however, if you're able to stay underwater long enough while you swim to a different area before you rise back up to the surface.

Analyzing The Risk of an Attack

How likely is it to be attacked by a swarm of bees?

The Africanized honeybee is a cousin of the run-of-the-mill domesticated honeybee that has lived in the United States for centuries.

The name, "killer bee," was coined after some magazine reports about several deaths that resulted from Africanized bee stings some years back.

Africanized honeybees are considered "wild;" they are easily angered by animals and people, and likely to become aggressive.

These are the bees you really want to avoid.

Bees "swarm" most often in the spring and fall.

This is when the entire colony moves to establish a new hive.

They may move in large masses--called swarms--until they find a suitable spot.

Once the colony is built and the bees begin raising their young, they will protect their hive by stinging.

It is also worth noting that while any colony of bees will defend its hive, Africanized bees do so with gusto.

These bees can kill, and they present a danger even to those who are not allergic to bee stings.

In several isolated instances, people and animals have been stung to death.

Regular honeybees will chase you about fifty yards, whereas Africanized honeybees will pursue you upwards of three times that distance.

Excuse our French, but yes, it would behoove you to run like hell if you encounter these types of bees.

More often than not, deaths from stings occur when people are not able to get away from the bees quickly.

Animal losses have occurred for the same reasons--pets and livestock were tied up or penned when they encountered the bees and could not escape.

How to Minimize Risk

  • Avoid the creation of bee colonies in or around your home by filling in holes or cracks in exterior walls, filling in tree cavities, and putting screens on tops of rain spots and over water meter boxes in the ground.
  • Do not bother bee colonies; if you see that bees are building--or have already built--a colony around your home, do not disturb them. Call a pest control center to find out who removes bees and have them sent over.

Pour Conclure

One bee can be a fun buzz.

Two bees can be interesting to watch.

More than three can make things... uncomfortable. 

To sum up, simply keep your distance, and if you need to get rid of them, phone the bee man!


-Alexander @ Survival Cat

The information presented to you here today is from Joshua Piven's book, The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook - an excellent on-the-go addition to any hiking pack or bug-out-bag.

However, something like the SAS Survival Handbook will be more practical for everyday use while outdoors.


If you're gearing up for your next adventure, take a peek at our catalog and see if there is anything you'll need to accompany your travels.

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