General — 17 February 2018 — by Albert J. Ciego
Killer bees had better not attack you on the weekends, because the Dept. of Agriculture “doesn’t work on weekends”

The bees killed three dogs and stung their owner on Saturday; Agric workers went to remove the bees on Wednesday

BELIZE CITY, Wed. Feb. 14, 2018– Kevin Sanchez, a resident of Mex Avenue, and his family lived in their house with fear for four days, believing that kiiler bees would swarm and attack them after the bees, which were nesting in their yard, swarmed and stung his father and their three dogs.

The father escaped into the house, while the three dogs, which were tied at the time, died shortly after they were attacked.

The incident occurred at about 10:00 Saturday morning, but the bees remained in the family’s yard until 11:00 this morning, Wednesday, when officials from the Agriculture Department went to the home and took away the hive and the bees.

On our visit to the house today, we saw that most of the bees were gone. A few remained, but they are expected to go away soon.

Sanchez told us that on Saturday morning while his father was cleaning the yard, the bees swarmed and attacked him and the dogs. They did not know that the bees were in the yard near the bushes, and it was probably the sound of the lawn mower that agitated them.

He said that although his father was stung, the dogs were his concern, because they were tied. They alerted the police, the City Council and the Agriculture Department, which has the responsibility to remove this type of bee, but were told that department personnel did not work on weekends, and would come to their home on Tuesday.

Sanchez said that there was nothing they could do but wait and hope that the bees did not swarm again, because there were children in the house and a boy, 14, who is disabled. God knows what would have happened if they had swarmed again, he said.

Mary Sanchez, Kevin’s mother, said that she is still emotional because the dogs were a part of the family. They guarded the yard well and alerted them of any intruders. She could leave clothes under the house, and everything would be well, she said.

She said that the Department of Agriculture should have an emergency plan to deal with such emergencies on weekends. She calls on the authorities to put one in place before another fatal incident involving the bees occurs.

The attack on Sanchez and his dogs took place three weeks after killer bees swarmed and attacked Omar Cruz, 62, in his yard in Unitedville, Cayo District, on the morning of Saturday, January 21. He was also cutting his yard with a lawn mower when suddenly, the killer bees attacked him. He tried to get away, but reportedly fell and that was when the bees began to sting him in great numbers.

After the bees’ attack abated, Cruz was rushed to the Western Regional Hospital in an unconscious state, and then to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for further treatment, but he died shortly after.

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