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Author Topic: Just got stung on the face for the first time.  (Read 3366 times)
Javin
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« on: July 17, 2012, 10:38:21 PM »

So this evening I decided to try and split the hive (yeah, I know, it's late).  The girls have completely drawn out comb in five medium hive bodies, and we've even been able (eg: had to) pull out five frames of honey.  We're within a mile of two flower nurseries, so we've done really well.  So I decided to try and split my one super strong hive into a couple of nucs to see if they'd overwinter.

Thing is, I don't own a bee suit.  So I went out in a long sleeved shirt, veil, and gloves.  Here's the end result:

For starters, I apparently am one of those folks that has to touch the stove before I'll believe you when you say it's hot.  I tried to work the hive just as the sun was going down, in spite of every bit of information saying this is the WORST TIME to work the hives.

I got tagged five times on my right arm, right where the gloves met the shirt.
I got tagged once on the stomach, since apparently a button-up shirt isn't enough to deter the stings.
I had one little hard-ass get into my veil, and even as I prayed to the apiary gods not to let her get me, she tagged me on the bottom lip.

So yeah, long-story short, the two nucs now have plenty of brood and honey in them, but I couldn't find any eggs (couldn't get deep enough after getting tagged 8 times) to find any eggs to allow them to build queen cells.  My main hive is still plenty strong enough (over 10 frames of capped brood) but my two nucs may or may not have inherited the queen (couldn't find her) and I'm fairly certain neither have eggs to produce a queen from.

All said and done, this has proven to be a painful experiment.  At some point soon, I either have to find a queen to put into the two nucs (preferable, for genetic diversity) or get back INTO the now angry main hive and find some eggs to allow them to create queens. 

Either way, I'm super gun-shy now.  I need to get a real bee keeper's suit, and would recommend any cowboy trying to do their own thing do the same.  Ice doesn't seem to help the swelling go down, either.  And I have a meeting tomorrow afternoon.  This'll be interesting...
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2012, 11:15:03 AM »

Did you take some benadryl?  It will help "some".

The closest I've come to a face sting was one beside my adams apple....wasn't too bad, though.  I'm still dreading a sho'nuff sting on the face.   Undecided

If you're going to invest in protective clothing definitely look at the ventilated clothing.  Also, do a little research as there are pros and cons to the different offerings...elastic that has quickly lost it's elasticity, veils that have detached from hoods, legs of suits with no zippers (put suit on before boots), etc.,.  I have a Golden Bee jacket and have been very pleased with it...I've had no issues worth speaking of...not cheap as the imports...it's made in Louisiana.

Well, you definitely have an ice-breaker for your meeting. Wink

Best wishes,
Ed
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Javin
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« Reply #2 on: July 18, 2012, 11:21:50 AM »

Fortunately, I think purposely getting stung over the past month has done its magic.  In spite of the numerous stings, the swelling is minimal, and even the swelling on my lip that I wasn't able to get the stinger out of for a few minutes is going down to a "normal" size.  The sting on the stomach and armpit have completely disappeared.  Still, not looking forward to digging back into the hive to find some eggs.  :/ 
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Joe D
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« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2012, 08:51:15 PM »

last year when I went to pick up my hives,(old established hives)boxes were in bad repair.  I got stung twice on the right eyelid and on the lip, that swelled pretty good.  I don't mind to much wearing a suit now.  Good luck with your bees, and you may  want a jacket and veil anyway.



Joe
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Sundog
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« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2012, 09:37:51 PM »

I took a "Rocket Bee" hit very near my eye a few weeks ago and my eye was swollen shut for two days.  Another inch over and I might have lost an eye.  Now I wear safety glasses if nothing else, even when the bees are calm.

Still having fun!
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Lone
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« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2012, 06:05:56 AM »

A picture tells a thousand words, Javin.

We won't know exactly what your stings look like unless you show us...
 grin

Lone
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Javin
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« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2012, 10:47:03 AM »

*heh heh*  If I get tagged again, I'll take pics.  The swelling and itching went away super fast this time (within 36 hours - fast for me).
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tryintolearn
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« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2012, 10:04:37 AM »

oh it hurts so good when they get you on the neck under your jaw...yeeks
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yelnifok
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« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2012, 01:11:40 AM »

javin, I just joined this forum and had to jump in. Listen to your elders - they were right. I hope you were able to establish your two nucs. Were you able to find fresh eggs or did you have to buy queens. I usually over winter 3 or 4 nucs but it has been so hot and dry here this year that all of my colonies have cut way back on laying/raising brood. They have plenty of nectar/honey but not much pollen. So no nucs this year- maybe? By the way- congratulations - your tagging was just a short intro into being a beekeeper, it will happen again. I would agree that you need to get a jacket with attached veil. Good luck. ...
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jaseemtp
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« Reply #9 on: August 16, 2012, 05:09:34 PM »

I no longer feel I have to be macho and work the bees without protection.  I was stung 7 times in the face for working the ladies in one of their off days.  At a bare minimum I wear a veil when I do any bee work.  I may look like a dork or a wuss for it but its not worth losing any eye over.
Jason
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JP
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« Reply #10 on: August 16, 2012, 06:21:40 PM »

Jason, beekeeping should be an enjoyable experience. Either wear protection or go with nicer bees. Its your call. No-one is judging what you look like when you work your bees. Some may tease you a bit but who cares?  grin


...JP
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jaseemtp
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« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2012, 06:43:54 PM »

I agree wholeheartedly with you JP. I however am not as fortutisious as you are when involving removals. I don't know if it's me or our nasty Texas bees. I can tell ya that there is no way I would remove bees in my area without protection, honestly I have ordered one of the stingless suits as I do not like the 20+ stings I receive through my suit on darn near every removal.
Some of my hives are so nice I think I could work them in the nude, others there is no way I'm messing with without a veil and long sleeve shirt. Every removal I have done I do requeen in hopes of getting nicer bees. Maybe next time I go down to south east Texas ill hop the river and take you to lunch.
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kathyp
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« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2012, 08:50:14 PM »

i cover all the way up.  i hate getting stung because i swell up and itch like crazy.  not worth it. 
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #13 on: August 16, 2012, 10:13:10 PM »

I used to swell up pretty bad. Used benadryl and hydro cortisone together every time I got stung. This year I took at lease 4 hits right between the eyes, one in the tip of my nose (that took a while to get out) and one on my ear lobe. None of them swelled up. After 30 minutes I could not tell where I had been stung. I'm pretty sure they all came from the same hive. After I removed 3 supers of honey they calmed down. I haven't been stung since. I don't wear any protection unless it gets rough, it's too hot and humid.
Jim
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Javin
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« Reply #14 on: August 17, 2012, 09:40:20 PM »

Can you give me a little more detail there?  Did you take benadryl as a pill or use it as a cream?  Same with the hydrocortizone?
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bernsad
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« Reply #15 on: August 17, 2012, 10:34:55 PM »

Suppository! What's worse, the condition or the cure?
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #16 on: August 18, 2012, 09:34:16 AM »

Can you give me a little more detail there?  Did you take benadryl as a pill or use it as a cream?  Same with the hydrocortizone?
Liquid benadryl....the only kind I've been able to find is "children's" benadryl.  When I first got bees I used it a couple of times but really can't say it helped tremendously or not.  Now, I just don't worry about it much.  If I got lot of stings for some reason I would probably be looking for the bottle, though. 

In regards to finding only "children's" benadryl....do you think the manufacturers are trying to tell beekeepers something.  grin

Ed
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American blood spilled to protect the freedom and peace of people all over the world.  320,000 USA casualties in WWI, 1,076,000 USA casualties in WWII, 128,000 USA casualties in the Korean War, 211,000 casualties in the Vietnam "conflict", 57,000 USA casualties in "War on Terror".  Benghazi, Libya, 13 USA casualties. These figures don't include 70,000 MIA.  But, the leaders of one political party of the United States of America continue to make the statement..."What difference does it make?".

"We can't expect the American People to jump from Capitalism to Communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving them small doses of Socialism, until they awaken one day to find that they have Communism."..."The press is our chief ideological weapon." - Nikita Khrushchev
JPBEEGETTER
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« Reply #17 on: August 18, 2012, 04:13:45 PM »

On my last trapout this year, I was going up the ladder, with no protection at all to check for bees going back in an area and one tagged me on the eye lid... went back down ladder and put on pull over.. hurt like the dickens, did not want to loose an eye as that one is my good one . Have amd in the other , so be careful.. Just because they are calm one day don't mean they will be all the time...
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Beeboy01
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« Reply #18 on: August 18, 2012, 06:39:24 PM »

I got a good sting last year just under my left eye, It looked I went 10 rounds with Mike Tyson and I had to call out sick from work the next day because i couldn't see out of that eye. This spring I picked up a sting on my earlobe and walked around all day with what looked like a fried egg on my ear. I'm getting used to it, gotta laugh and keep on going.
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Javin
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« Reply #19 on: August 30, 2012, 01:30:41 AM »

For anyone that's interested, I found that trying to keep benadryl in stock, it was expensive, and got a lot of funny looks.  Apparently its used to make meth or something.  If you wanted to buy more than one pack of it, you had to sign some paperwork.  So for a 24 pack of it at Wal-Mart, it was around $5.  (At 2 pills per dose, that's just shy of 50 cents per.  Doesn't sound like much, but a bit of a pain when on a tight budget.)  We go through quite a bit in a year between our seasonal allergies (though to be fair, since using the honey, I haven't had to take it but twice) and stings, and the fact that we have a friend that's deathly allergic to everything but air... Even air is suspect...

I went to Costco the other day, and I kid you not (I can show you a picture of the bottle) for FOUR DOLLARS I got a bottle of SIX HUNDRED (that's 600) pills with the same 25mg of diphenhydramine that the stores sell.

Anyone know what the shelf life of this stuff is?  I figure I'll be around 98 by the time I use it all.

Edit:  K, so looked it up and apparently Benadryl is not used for meth.  Still can't find why our Wal-Mart keeps it behind the pharmacy counter and makes you sign something to get more than two packs of it.  Either way, cheap place to get it in bulk: Costco.
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