AUG 24, 2018 7:30 AM PDT

What are The Killer Bees?

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

Killer Bees are actually known as “Africanized Honeybees” and they are a hybrid of two species: the European honeybees and the African honeybees. Since honeybees are not native to the Americas, the hybrid bee was created in the mid-1950s by a Brazilian scientist named Warwick Kerr who intentionally was seeking ways to improve the Brazilian honey industry.

The hybrid turned out to look the same as the European honeybee that many scientists turn to DNA sequencing to tell them apart. The purpose of crossing over the two species was to maximize bee survival and honey production. Although, the bee was successful in producing honey and surviving in Brazils humid climate, that did not remain for too long due to a lab accident that involved a visiting scientist accidentally lett out a group of Queen Bees into the environment.

However, the question still remains…why are these hybrid bees referred to as ‘killer’? Watch the video below to know.

 

About the Author
  • Nouran earned her BS and MS in Biology at IUPUI and currently shares her love of science by teaching. She enjoys writing on various topics as well including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
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