Bees, Wasps and Hornets

These flying insects are something to take note of. They are attracted of course to plants that offer pollen and nectar, and may be found near a water source, or cool, damp places with a lot of food.

Ground nesting bees will avoid damp areas. Have a look at what sorts of insects you may expect to encounter as part of your pre-trip planning if venturing out, and prepare accordingly.

They will attack if you disturb them or their nests, such as if you are bush whacking and knock out a nest. Bees die after they sting, but hornets and wasps do not and may also sting repeatedly.

Click here for a pdf (from  Utah State University - Cooperative Extension that gives much info on these insects as well as Yellowjackets.

Have a look here for information on avoidance, staying calm, avoiding heavily scented products, clothing as well as what they are attracted to. They are also attracted to leftover fruits and pet food, so if you are dealing with an emergency while in an urban setting, keep this in mind.
During a survival course an instructor advised us to stay away from a certain tree, where there was a hornets nest. As for wild animals, respect these creatures and give them a wide birth, or you may just find yourself screaming and running through the forest with a cloud of angry hornets after you.

This can be extremely dangerous for diverse reasons. For one thing you can twist an ankle or fall and injure yourself among other things.

And whether or not you fall, if the insects get you and start to sting you, you have another problem on your hands, a potentially big one for that matter. Many people are allergic to these stings and may have an anaphylactic reaction, which is a very serious and potentially fatal condition if not promptly and properly treated.

If you are allergic or anyone in your group is allergic to stings, be certain to pack EpiPen auto-injectors (synthetic adrenaline) and antihistamines (Benadryl will do) and know how to administer them.

This is an important part of pre-trip planning if you are planning a trip out in the wilderness. Always be prepared and have an extra EpiPen so that an extra dose may be administered if necessary to do so, or if the other EpiPen was damaged or mechanically defective for some reason or other. Every person who has allergies needs their own doses.

In an emergency situation while out in the wilderness, you will need to properly select a shelter site. One of the things to look out for are hornet and bees nests. Avoid them! Have a look at the shelter building page on my site for more information.

Here are some links to help you learn more about bees, wasps and hornets as well as EpiPens.

1. Pest Control Canada. Here you will find a description between the three insects as well as other info.

2. EpiPen® - Canada

3. EpiPen® - UK

4. eHow ? A video showing the difference between a wasp and a hornet.


What's the Difference Between a Wasp & a Hornet?