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Africanized bees now discovered in 17 Oklahoma counties

Updated:
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Africanized bees have spread to 17 counties since they were first discovered last year in southwestern Oklahoma.

Last August they attacked a work crew in Tillman County, stinging them dozens of time. Several crew members were treated at a hospital.

In the past 12 months, the bees have been reported as far north as Roger Mills County in western Oklahoma.

Oklahoma State University entomology professor Phil Mulder said Tuesday the bees are something Oklahomans will have to live with.

They are similar in appearance to common honey but unlike those bees, the Africanized bees will attack, and the swarm will pursue people for longer distances.

Other counties where the Africanized bees have been found are Beckham, Harmon, Jackson, Kiowa, Washita, Caddo, Comanche, Grady, Jefferson, Garvin, Cleveland, Pottawatomie, Johnston, Bryan and McIntosh.

Scientists are still evaluating bees from Tulsa and McCurtain to see if they have spread there as well.
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