Tybee Island beehives suffer after not being warned about mosquito spraying


TYBEE ISLAND, GA (WTOC) - Beekeepers from Tybee Island Hives lost large numbers of their bees after they were not warned by Chatham County about a mosquito spraying Tuesday evening.

The first day of summer means bee season is in full swing, but after the mosquito spraying, Natalisa and David Strickland are less optimistic about their hives.

Dead bees had to be swept off the Strickland's rooftop. They have four hives and now each hive is much weaker and much less populated.

"This isn't the first time it has happened. We are on the call list. They have our GPS coordinates, and they are not supposed to fly over us," said Natalisa Strickland, beekeeper, Tybee Island Hives.

Instead of joyful posts about the honey being made, Tybee Island Hives is posting about their thriving hives getting "poisoned."

They say they just want more of a head up before spraying.

"We need to know, that should be our right, as a people to protect our family, our pets. Our bees are our pets," Mrs. Strickland said.

Tybee Island Hives said they would have used a screen on the beehives to keep the bees inside and safe if they had known the Chatham County Mosquito Control was spraying.

Chatham County is investigating trying to figure out why Tybee Islanders were not notified, and they released the following statement:

"Mosquito Control maintains a list of residents that wish to be notified when their area will be affected by Mosquito Control efforts. Last night either through a technology failure or human error, the residents on Tybee Island that were on that list did not receive notification."

Tybee Island Hives also said they are calling for other options outside of spraying for mosquitos, saying there are more natural and innovative alternatives for the County to explore.

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