New migration of the Africanized honey bee

No honey bees are native to the New World.

European colonists in the 1600s and 1700s brought honey bees with them, some of which became feral. But honey bees are essential to U.S. agriculture, pollinating more than 90 crops. That pollination leads to yield and quality improvements worth more than $14 billion annually.

Africanized honey bees more ardently defend their nests than do the European honey bees that are common to the United States and sting in greater numbers with less provocation.

There are very minor genetic differences between African and European honey bees, but it is not yet known whether these differences govern the honey bee traits that people are most concerned about.

After 5 years of being fairly settled, Africanized honey bees have been on the move for the past 2 years, spreading into four new states—Florida, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana—since fall 2005.

Before that, Africanized honey bees had spread into five southwestern states— Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, California, and Nevada, in that order—between October 1990 and 2005.

[link to USDA]