Many Cape residents awoke last week to the shocking discovery that their beloved garden plants had been trampled. The realising of the culprit is even more shocking than the discovery itself.
According to meteorologist and entomologist’s alike, a certain sub species of bee, that has long since been confined to a remote part of the world, have felt the effects of global warming and used the prevailing trade winds to navigate to the western cape. The theory being that the recent dry climate has allowed this species of bee to migrate with ease to our shores.
The species of bee is much like our honey bee but with one large difference. It’s 50 times bigger than our little guys.
“Think about it”, said entomologist Hadley Mons. “Our natural honey bee wing stroke is incredibly fast, about 200 beats per second. We know the giant bee is about the same but just the sheer size of the wings give it enough downward force to flatten most plants and even small tree’s. Add the weight of the giant bee landing on said plants and you end up with a garden that is no more.
The public are encouraged to be aware. If you are allergic to bee’s, then staying indoors is maybe your best bet. Researchers are still in the early stages of discovery, and sightings are rolling in from all over the province. There have been reported cases in Stellenbosch of missing livestock, which begs the question, what does a bee 50 times the size of a normal bee eat? Is pollen enough to satisfy their cravings? Bees are known for their ability to work together towards the hives main goal, which could lead to them “hunting” in swarms. At this early stage though this is purely speculation.
Expeditions to find the bee’s hive have been launched by Cape Town volunteers, with fears that the bees have taken up residence in upmarket coastal areas as the lifestyle suits their current needs. The queen bee is reported to weigh more than a small horse and has been spotted briefly during the 1970’s. It is not known at this stage if she has aged well or not.
We at Cape Contours will keep you updated on the situation as we receive more information. Bee careful out there.