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Beekeeper uses her bare hands to scoop out bees then gives them a queen & watches if they’ll accept her
Wearing no protective gear, Erika scooped the bees with her bare hands, but when she realized they were without a queen she brought them one and watched to see if they’d accept or reject her.
Irene Markianou
06.22.21

When you think of a beekeeper, the first thing that comes to mind- or, well, one of the first things- is the protective gear.

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Most of us are familiar with the almost astronaut-looking uniform beekeepers wear when they’re about to visit the hives.

And, of course, none of us would even imagine visiting the bees with no protective gear on. At all.

Well, there’s a courageous female beekeeper in Texas who, not only visits the hives with no special clothing on, but she also scoops swarms of bees with her bare hands.

That’s right. Erika Thompson, who runs Texas Beeworks, is used to having bees walking on her and is certainly not afraid of them. She’s rather fascinated, actually.

“I think it’s probably good that people have a healthy fear of bees. We should respect them—they can be very hurtful to people,” she has shared in an interview with Texas Monthly.

But, unlike other people, she knows when she can approach them safely.

As she explained, if she doesn’t notice signs of aggression on the bees’ part, she just handles them with everyday clothing on. Still, she does get stung occasionally, but she doesn’t mind.

The 35-year-old woman, who only decided to officially turn to beekeeping a couple of years ago, is also popular on Instagram, but basically a TikTok star. Her soothing bee-related videos draw the TikTok users’ attention and she’s followed by almost 6 million users today.

Her videos are mainly about bees, since -besides beekeeping- Thompson also goes to people’s properties and removes unwanted bee colonies.

In one of her recent videos on social media, she can be seen removing a swarm of bees from under an umbrella.

Instagram @texasbeeworks
Source:
Instagram @texasbeeworks

“I spent Memorial Day weekend rescuing bees and making outdoor spaces like this courtyard a safe place for people to gather,” she wrote on Instagram.

As she explained, the bees had gathered there during a storm, and they were clearly looking for a safe place to live.

“They tend to be very docile since they don’t have any resources to defend,” she explained, answering possible questions that would arise regarding her lack of protective gear.

Instagram @texasbeeworks
Source:
Instagram @texasbeeworks

Thompson goes on to explain that they have no food to protect from “invaders”, or babies, or even a hive for that matter, so they don’t get defensive.

What she did notice though, as she was carefully examining the bees while transferring them, was that there was no queen bee among them. And she knew those bees definitely needed one in order to survive.

So, she ran to her truck, where she always keeps queens, and brought one for them.

Instagram @texasbeeworks
Source:
Instagram @texasbeeworks

“[S]he was actually in my truck, then about halfway through the removal… I had a sneaking suspicion there wasn’t a queen to find, so I went a got her!” she replied in an Instagram comment.

Instagram @texasbeeworks
Source:
Instagram @texasbeeworks

Thompson then waited for the bees to move from the umbrella to the box themselves. When they all did, she checked to make sure the bees had accepted the new queen, and then took the box to her truck and drove home.

The amazing video has taken TikTok users by storm. It has already become viral with almost three million likes within a day.

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Head over to the video below and enjoy the rare view.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Irene Markianou
hi@sbly.com
Irene Markianou is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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