The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

June 9, 2014

Tree cutter treated after hundreds of bees sting

BY Trenton Little Staff Writer

Monday, June 9, 2014 — A Jerry Shaver Tree Company worker is recovering after being stung by more than 100 bees Tuesday during a routine business stop. The stop occurred on the front lawn of Terry Ritchie’s Badin home.

Ritchie said he ran as he noticed the swarming bees explode from the tree. The worker was still on the ladder so he was unable to escape the swarm. The other worker was stung about 10 times.

“He was throwing handfuls off his head, neck and arm,” Ritchie said.

After eliminating all of the limbs, Ritchie said it was the trunk that the honeybee nest was nestled in. Once the trunk hit the ground, the bees burst out of the limb, attacking the two workers.

Working in his lawn and around that tree on many occassions, Ritchie never noticed any sign of bee activity. However, when the tree trimming contractor climbed up the tree, the workers and Ritchie noticed the bees.

“When the worker climbed up the tree, some bees started flying around,” Ritchie said.

Stanly County Beekeepers estimated the hive to be around two years old and estimated it contained approximately 50,000 bees.

“They came out and got it ready, smoking the area of the remaining bees, and closed one end of the log,” Ritchie said.

After examining the log and honey bee nest, the bee keepers found a honey comb.

The worker was treated and has been released from Stanly Regional Medical Center.

Shaver was contacted, but unavailable for comment as of presstime.

To submit story ideas, contact Trenton Little at (704) 982-2121 ext. 33 or email