Bees aren't always sweet

Posted: Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Regarding the issue with beekeeping in Woodland subdivision in Kenai, as a homeowner in that subdivision, I am concerned about the safety issues created by the bees. Earler this summer, my dog was stung when she stepped on one of the bees in my back yard. I had no idea that anyone in the neighborhood was keeping hives (because it is against city code to keep livestock within the city limits), so I didn't think to register a complaint with animal control. The vet bill was $55.

The bees were a constant nuisace this summer, as they spent a lot of time in my yard, on my lawn sprinkler, and in the flowers. As a result, I was not comfortable spending any time enjoying the back yard with my dogs for fear of them or myself being stung again.

I am not against bee-keeping. I think it is a noble pursuit and I am glad people are doing it. However, the fact is that bees are a stinging insect, and Woodland is a densely populated neighborhood where children, and family pets spend a great deal of time outdoors.

What will happen if a person with bee venom allergies is stung? Is the beekeeper prepared for the liability associated with keeping an animal that can potentially kill a person? If that be the case, and the measure is passed to allow bee-keeping within city limits than I propose they register and inform all households within bee-flight distance of the risks and benefits associated with the hive.

It's not about how wonderful the bees are. It's about the safety of the human population.

Holly Hecht, Kenai

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