Bayside Trail Near Cabrillo Lighthouse Invaded by Bees

by on July 7, 2020 · 1 comment

in Ocean Beach

Cabrillo Lighthouse from the access road to the Bayside Trail

by Joaquin Antique

The popular Bayside Trail at Cabrillo National Monument has been temporarily closed due to bee activity that has resulted in stings to multiple visitors.

Over the past two weeks, this reporter has made several visits out to the Cabrillo lighthouse hoping to walk the always pleasant 2.5 mile roundtrip Bayside Trail. Each time, the trail was blocked about halfway down by a sign forbidding passage and warning of aggressive bees.

After walking a short distance past the sign to take pictures of the bees, your intrepid reporter and his scofflaw companion were checked out and then pursued by several of the persistent insects who followed them back up the trail about 75 feet before giving up the chase. No stings resulted.

Bayside Trail during happier days

One of the monument’s rangers told us that an attempt was made the previous week to seal or reduce the entrance of the bees’ hive in the hopes that they would take the hint and relocate, but this move was unsuccessful. The ranger said the bees were “Africanized” and extremely aggressive. Several visitors have been stung, she said. Further attempts to make the bees move on will be attempted soon according to the ranger.

Trail Blocked!

Speaking as a former beekeeper, I can attest that these bees were definitely more feisty than the western honey bees (apis melifera) I used to work with in Shasta County. Those bees were quite gentle and rarely would sting, but eight of my hives were ultimately destroyed by a black bear with a sweet tooth ending my career as a beekeeper. In that tragic incident that occurred over a week long period, the bear consumed the honey, wax, larva, and bees leaving behind only a tangled pile of wire, nails, and splintered wooden bee boxes.

No bee activity noted at the tide pools on the ocean side of the monument

The OB RAG will continue to monitor this situation and keep our readers informed as to when the trail finally reopens.

All photos by Joaquin Antique except the couple with the child, photo by National Park Service

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Frank Gormlie Frank Gormlie July 7, 2020 at 9:24 pm

Great photo of the tide pool area. Is that whaz-her-name with the hat?

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