Neighborhood feuds can become ugly, but most of the time these conflicts get started over trivial matters, such as ugly lawn ornaments that are not approved by the HOA, or large trees with canopies that hang over a neighbor’s property line. However, an ongoing feud that involves several homeowners in one Missouri neighborhood is becoming quite heated. In the town of Pacific, several residents have been complaining to the mayor and city council members about having sustained bee stings from a beekeeping neighbor’s personal outdoor hive. While these claims may sound legitimate, several beekeepers have admitted to being skeptical of these accusations.
Recently, the mayor of Pacific, Steve Meyers, presided over a hearing in which three residents were given a chance to express their grievances about the bees that their neighbor, Dawn Metzger, cultivates within a hive in her yard. Long time Pacific resident, Robert Villery, was the first to make his case for why the city should ban bee-cultivation within residential areas. Villery claimed that he had been stung multiple times by Metzger’s bees, and that the bees were “relentless.” Villery further stated that anyone who didn’t believe him should take a short moment to investigate the bee-situation within the neighborhood. Later on, two more residents, Carrie Adkins and Helen Biedenstein, joined Villery in his complaints against Metzger’s bees. Despite the women’s claims that they had sustained stings from bees that they had witnessed swarming away from Metzger’s hive, the mayor, five beekeepers and a local conservationist are finding the claims doubtful.
The professional beekeepers and the mayor believe that the residents may be mistaking Metzger’s bees with wasps or wild bees that originated from a nearby wooded region. The beekeepers also found it unlikely that the residents were stung by bees that they had personally witnessed leave Metzger’s hive, as such a scenario is unrealistic. So far, no action has been taken to have Metzger’s active beehive removed, but the council ensured the accusers that bee behavior would be closely researched in order to ascertain whether Metzger’s active beehive poses a threat to her neighbors.
Do you believe that Metzger’s bees are responsible for inflicting numerous stings on nearby residents?