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Video: Ouch! Mountain bikers attacked by swarm of bees

One rider was stung 80 times during the incident which happened on a race in Spain in March.

Here's a video that will make you wince - a group of mountain bikers in Spain who were attacked by a swarm of bees. 

Just looking at the footage is painful, and we reckon the fact that two of the riders dumped their bikes altogether shows how intense it was.

The incident happened in March during the Tropical Bike Motril competition in Spain.

José Miguel Rodríguez, the vice-presidente of the organising group, was stung 80 times and had to be treated at a hospital in Granada, as did four other competitors.

"I've never suffered so much," he said.

"When I got home my wife was frightened. I had to take anti-histamine medicine."

He added: "I feel really bad at night."

At 37 seconds into the video, you can see a beekeeper on the right-hand side of the screen.

Bees can feel vulnerable when their hives are disturbed, making them more likely to attack as a means of defence, while some species in Spain and elsewhere can be attracted by human sweat.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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andsaw | 7 years ago

I have just bought a an almost invisible hair net to go over my helmet as being bald have had wasp and bees stuck in the vents and then lifting it just before they sting me only to go down the back of my top and sting me at the bottom of my neck, heres hoping it sorts it.

ktache | 7 years ago
1 like

And there I was thinking the sound of angry bees in the woods was the Hope freehubs.

Valbrona | 7 years ago
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The nearby beekeeper was obviously manipulating his colonies - you can just see his hives.

However, for bees to attack like that they were not bees I would be proud of. Most beekeepers breed for docility since aggressive bees can make manipulating colonies a frustrating experience.

He needs to do a bit of re-queening. Get some gentle bees.

DrJDog | 7 years ago
1 like

A bee flew up my baggies and stung me right near the goolies once.

fenix | 7 years ago

I remember being at the National MTB event in Shropshire a few years back - spectating.  This massive hornet appeared and the spectators fled.  Never seen one before or since - scary looking dude. 

Glad I wasn't one of the MTBers - dont see what they could do to avoid attack - doesn't look like the kind of trails you'll outrun angry bees on ! 

Wolfcastle50 | 7 years ago
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Surely they just need to get back on their bikes and ride hard and fast, not push them slowly.

Mind you, hard and fast is my answer to most situations.

DaveE128 replied to Wolfcastle50 | 7 years ago

Wolfcastle50 wrote:

Surely they just need to get back on their bikes and ride hard and fast, not push them slowly. Mind you, hard and fast is my answer to most situations.

That was kind of my thought too, but it's probably far easier said than done when you have bees in your helmet stinging your head!

I once had an insect fly down my t-shirt when cycling, sting me three times, and exit from the sleeve.  Can't begin to imagine what 80 stings is like! This has to be one advantage of lycra, but it doesn't help if you're attacked by an angry swarm!

Chris Hayes | 7 years ago
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A few years ago (when cyclists were a rarer thing) I was descending through the Ashdown Forest when I felt a presence over my right shoulder.  Glancing over, there was a massive buzzard gliding a few feet away checking me out.  Amazing experience to come so close to one of these creatures, but glad  it realised I wasn't prey and kept its talons to itself ....

MandaiMetric | 7 years ago
1 like

A snake once crossed in front of me on a tree shaded section of East Coast Park bike path. The snake was maybe 1.5 metres long with dark brown/black scales. Not easy to discern in the dappled light. It finished crossing the path before I reached it, so I just steered to the other side and peddled past. However, as I did so, it lifted it's head maybe 20-30cm off the floor and unfurled hoods at the side of it's head. I didn't stick around to find out what it would do next.

When I got home later, I discovered the snake was a Naja Sumatrana (aka Equatorial Spitting Cobra) :-O and of course there is a  Strava segment for that path is called Snake Pass , which I'd previously assumed was named that since it was a bit twisty crying


dottigirl | 7 years ago

After being stung a couple of times a few years ago, I always carry antihistamines in my saddle bag, along with a couple of paracetamol, ibuprofen and codeine. 

I've mentioned cycling through a swarm in Richmond Park before - my jersey was half-unzipped and a couple went down my bra. I ended up dancing half-naked by the side of the road, trying to shake them out of my bra. 

tritecommentbot | 7 years ago

Pathetic. Stand and fight.

barbarus | 7 years ago
1 like

Jesus, if it's not Bears it's bees!

DaveE128 | 7 years ago

Lesson for race organisers - maybe try to coordinate with local beekeepers if there are hives along the course!!

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