By Starla Pointer • Staff Writer • 

The buzz on bees and honey

* Bees can't see white or red. Beekeepers often uses hives that are white so they appear neutral, and non-threatening, to bees. Merz paints his hives pale yellow, aqua, green and gray to help his bees determine which one is theirs.

* Honey is antiseptic, antibiotic and antimicrobial. Some people use it to treat wounds. Some people who are allergic to poison oak have told Merz that eating honey made from those flowers reduces their sensitivity to the plant.

* If you're stung by a honey bee, pluck out the stinger right away, Merz said. Otherwise, it will continue to pump venom.

Most people aren't seriously hurt by bee stings. The bee itself will die after stinging you, though.

Yellowjackets are a different story: The wasps retain their stinger and will keep stinging over and over.

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