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Jul 18,2007
Four attacked in Texas bee swarm
by UPI

PAMPA, Texas -- Four people were stung in Pampa, Texas, when a local beekeeper set off a swarm while trying to capture a rogue hive, Amarillo Globe News reported Wednesday.

Ken Ebel, who has been a beekeeper for about five years, said he was called to the area of North Duncan to remove a garbage can hive that contained 80,000 to 100,000 bees, shortly before 1 p.m. Tuesday.

"When I figured that they were pretty aggressive, I left them in the can," Ebel said. "I covered it and moved it. I kind of doused it and took it out of town."

As Ebel was neutralizing the hive, however, a swarm of bees escaped and attacked him, an animal control officer, a mail carrier and a Pampa News reporter/photographer assigned to snap pictures of Ebel at work.

"The bees went everywhere," said reporter Kerri Smith, who suffered multiple stings. "As soon as I started swatting at them, more started towards me."

Smith said she went to Pampa Regional Medical Center where she had 14 stingers removed and where she saw Ebel getting treated for his own five stings.

Authorities said they put out some traps so they could try and contain the bees.

Copyright © 2007, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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