Two men are in hospital after hundreds of bees swarmed a California neighborhood.
The swarm of bees surrounded a man and volunteer police officer on West Adlon Road in Encino, on May 15, Los Angeles news station KABC reported. The man was stung multiple times by the angry bees and rushed to a local hospital.
The volunteer with the Los Angeles Police Department was stung while trying to swat the bees away, falling to the ground as the swarm surrounded him. He attempted to stand up a second time but the swarm was still too big, and he dropped down once again.
The volunteer had been in the area responding to a call at the time, the LAPD said in a tweet. He remained conscious and was taken to the hospital after being treated at the scene by paramedics.
There were also reports of another woman being stung multiple times by the bees.
“Wishing him a speedy and full recovery. We thank him for volunteering to protect and serve. All of our LAPD volunteers are invaluable,” the LAPD said on Twitter, sharing a video of the attack.
A professional bee remover, Izak Kharrazi, later arrived at the scene to remove the swarm. Kharrazi told news station NBC4 that he was greeted by “hundreds” of bees in the area. He said that he headed straight over to the neighborhood when two friends notified him of the incident after seeing it on the news.
While working to remove the bees, he found a hive under the roof of a nearby home.
“I do have a license to kill or save them, whichever it is. And this one, because of the situation and the emergency, I had to spray them and kill them,” Kharrazi said.
Bees only usually sting people when they feel provoked or threatened. It is not clear what caused them to swarm the two men.
Bee venom contains multiple proteins, enzymes, and peptides. Once introduced to the body, it targets the immune system. Those who are allergic to bee stings can die just from one sting. Single bee stings are not usually dangerous to those not allergic.
However, multiple stings can be life-threatening. A person can survive 10 bee stings per pound of their body weight, according to the USDA. The most stings an adult should be able to endure is around 1,000.
If a person is stung more than a dozen times or so, they will start feeling the effects. A person stung by bees too many times may become nauseous. Other symptoms include diarrhea and vomiting.
Do you have an animal or nature story to share with Newsweek? Do you have a question about bee stings? Let us know via [email protected].