How to prevent being stung in your garden

Bees & wasps love bright colours

How to prevent being stung in your garden

Being stung by a bee or wasp is never fun, and for those with bee sting allergies, it can be quite daunting to spend time in the garden in the summer months. 

Fortunately, most bee stings are entirely avoidable. Bees, wasps, and hornets sting primarily to defend themselves, so the key to avoiding bee stings is to make sure the bees don't feel threatened by you.

Looking and smelling like a flower will not aid your quest to keep bug free in the garden, here are a few tips it may be worth taking on board for a safer summer…

1. Avoid Wearing Brightly Colored Clothing, Especially Floral Prints

This makes total sense; if you look like a flower they will be attracted to you. There's a reason beekeepers wear white. If you're wearing bright colors, you are just asking bees to land on you. Keep your outdoor wear limited to khaki, white, beige, or other light colors if you don't want to attract bees.

2. Avoid Wearing Perfume or strong fragrances.

Bees can detect and follow strong scents, and wearing them will attract nectar-seeking bees and wasps from a distance. Once they find the source of the flower smell (you), they're likely to investigate by landing on you or buzzing around your body.

3. Be Careful What You Eat Outdoors

Sugary foods and drinks will attract bees and wasps for certain. Before you take a sip of your juice look inside the can or glass and make sure a wasp hasn't gone in for a taste. Ripe fruits also attract the stinging crowd, so pay attention when snacking outdoors. 

4. Keep your shoes on.

Bees may nectar on clover blossoms and other small flowers in your lawn and some wasps make their nests in the ground. If you step on or near a bee, it's going to try to protect itself and sting you. Wearing shoes or foot covering of some description may be a better option.

5. Stay Calm

The worst thing you can do when a wasp flies around you is swat at it or dance around, hoping it will move on. If a bee, wasp, or hornet comes near you, just take a deep breath and stay calm. It's just trying to determine if you are a flower or some other item useful to it, and once it realizes you're just a person, it will fly away.

6. Keep Your Car Windows Rolled Up

If you have your car windows open whilst driving, you can guarantee there will be a flying insect or bug making an appearance, in this instance they will panic trying to find an escape route, which can certainly be unsettling for the driver.

If you do find yourself giving a ride to an unwanted stinging insect, pull over when it's safe to do so and roll your windows down. Don't try to swat at it while you are driving!

7. Keep your Recycling Cans and rubbish covered

Although this may be stored away from the house, there can be a build up of inquisitive wasps and fly’s hoping to find a tasty snack around the bin area.

Rinse your recycling tins, bottles and plastic to keep the temptation to a minimum and try to keep the dustbins tightly closed.

8. Pick your time of day

If you're really worried about bee stings, don't hang out where the bees are most numerous for example heavily floral areas of the garden and choose a time they are not quite so bust collecting nectar. Later in the afternoon and evenings could be an alternative.

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