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Rare Photograph: Image Shows Exactly Why Bees Die After Stinging You

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"As far as I know, nobody's been able to record anything like this."

(Photo: Kathy Keatley Garvey. Used with permission.)

It's not an urban legend that after you've been stung by a honeybee (it must be a honeybee, not just any type of bee) it will die. This is because part of its abdomen with the stinger gets stuck in you.

Now in a very rare photograph, evidence of this was taken happening in real time. Photographer Kathy Keatley Garvey, a communications specialist in the University of California-Davis' Department of Entomology who maintains the "Bug Squad" blog in her free time, was able to capture the image, according to the Sacramento Bee.

(Photo: Kathy Keatley Garvey. Used with permission.) (Photo: Kathy Keatley Garvey. Used with permission.)

According to her blog post, apiculturist Eric Mussen and Garvey were checking the hives at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility at UC-Davis when Mussen told her to get ready with her camera as he knew a bee was going to sting him:

I removed the lens cap and aimed my camera at the bee. The bee was NOT about to sting him--the bee WAS stinging him.

I shot four photos within a second. My camera can shoot as fast as eight frames a second. Settings: 640 ISO, 1/250 of a second, aperture of 13.  Camera: Nikon D700, equipped with a motor drive and a 105mm macro lens.

Garvey contacted the Blaze and said this isn't the first time such an action has been captured on camera, but it is extremely rare. Check out more of Garvey's photos of "The Sting" here.

In capturing the image, she has also won top honors at the Association for Communication Excellence competition.

This story has been updated since its original posting to correct factual errors and to include more information. It was first reported that this was the first time anyone had captured an image like this, which Garvey informed us is not the case. 

(H/T Cubicle Bot)

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