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You are here: Home / Animals / Species Profiles / Africanized Honeybee
Species Profiles

Africanized Honeybee

Africanized honeybeeScientific name: Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier (Ellis and Ellis 2008; Sheppard and Smith 2000)

Common names: Africanized honeybee, African honey bee, killer bee

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Selected Resources

Native To: Originally from Africa; first hybridized in South America (Hall et al. 2010)

Date of U.S. Introduction: 1990, first found in southern Texas (Hall et al. 2010)

Means of Introduction: Imported and bred with European honey bees to increase honey production (Hall et al. 2010)

Impact: More aggressive than European honeybees; negative impact on honey production industry (Hall et al. 2010)

Current U.S. Distribution:



Selected Resources:

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Featured Creatures - African honey bee
University of Florida. Entomology and Nematology Department.

Invasive Species Compendium - Apis mellifera scutellata
CAB International.

Global Invasive Species Database - Apis mellifera scutellata (insect)
World Conservation Union. Invasive Species Specialist Group.


Africanized Honey Bees (PDF | 51 KB)
DOI. NPS. Saguaro National Park.

Africanized Honey Bees
USDA. ARS. Carl Hayden Bee Research Center.


Arkansas Honey Bees & Africanized Honey Bees
Arkansas State Plant Board.

Pest Profile - Africanized Honeybee
California Department of Food and Agriculture. Plant Health Division. Pest Detection/Emergency Projects Branch.

Honey Bees in Los Angeles
State of California. Los Angeles County West Vector and Vector-Borne Control District.

Africanized Honey Bees (2006; PDF | 20 KB)
State of California. Orange County Vector Control District.
See also: How to Bee Proof Your Property (PDF | 102 KB)

Africanized Honey Bee Facts
State of California. Pasadena Health Department.

Bee Alert - Africanized Honey Bee Facts (PDF | 70 KB)
State of California. San Diego County. Land Use and Environmental Group. Agriculture Weights and Measures.

Africanized Honey Bee Task Force
State of California. San Mateo County. Agriculture and Weights and Measures.

Responding to the Introduction of Africanized Honey Bees (AHB) in North Carolina
North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Plant Industry Division.

Africanized Honey Bee in Utah
Utah State Department of Agriculture and Food.


Bee Alert: Africanized Honey Bee Facts (PDF | 307 KB)
University of California - Davis. Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Africanized Honey Bee, Apis mellifera
University of California - Riverside. Center for Invasive Species Research.

Honey Bee Research and Information
University of California - Riverside. Entomology.

Africanized Honey Bee
University of Florida. Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

Bee Alert: What is the Africanized Honey Bee? (PDF | 56 KB)
New Mexico State University. Agriculture and Home Economics.

Introduced Species Summary Project - Africanized Honey Bee
Columbia University. Center for Environmental Research and Conservation.

Africanized Honey Bees in Oklahoma
Oklahoma State University. Entomology & Plant Pathology.


Africanized Honey Bees: Identifying Africanized Honey Bees
San Diego Natural History Museum.


Ellis, J., and A. Ellis. 2008. African honey bee, Africanized honey bee, or killer bee, Apis mellifera scutellata Lepeletier (Hymenoptera: Apidae). In: J.L. Capinera (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Entomology (Vol. 4, pp. 59-66). Dordrecht: Springer.

Hall, H.G., C. Zettel-Nalen and J.D. Ellis. 2010. African honey bee: what you need to know (PDF | 340 KB). University of Florida, IFAS Extension. Fact Sheet ENY-114 (MG113).

Sheppard, W.S., and D.R. Smith. 2000. Identification of African-derived bees in the Americas: a survey of methods. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 93(2):159-176.

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Last Modified: Nov 18, 2015
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