Insects and Sports

The Golf World is buzzing about Sergio Garcia and “bees”. In the WCG match play in Marana, AZ, Garcia’s shot landed near the edge of the green. In the video below, you can see a swarm of insects buzzing around a nearby hole in the ground. Most likely, those are not bees at all but ground nesting yellow jackets. Garcia, citing a bad experience with “bees” as a child moved his ball a couple of times to put distance between him and the bees. Garcia felt that his opponent had made a concession at the hole to allow him to move the ball. To assuage his conscience, he made a concession to his opponent on the next hole, which was one reason he lost the match.

I would like to know more about the “bees”. Golf courses use a lot of pesticides for insect control and usually don’t have these problems. How did the groundskeepers miss the hazard? I would like to know if the insects in the video are truly bees and not yellow jackets. The behavior described fits yellow jackets better. Was it a positive ID?

Good golfers have to be focused on muscle control and hitting the ball. This is one reason I don’t play golf. I would be too interested in the bees and other insects on the golf course to focus on the game. Video of the “bees” is below.

About jjneal

Jonathan Neal is an Associate Professor of Entomology at Purdue University and author of the textbook, Living With Insects (2010). This blog is a forum to communicate about the intersection of insects with people and policy. This is a personal blog. The opinions and materials posted here are those of the author and are in no way connected with those of my employer.
This entry was posted in by jjneal, News, Sports. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Insects and Sports

  1. Alli says:

    My son had the same problem in soccer. He’d see a butterfly and lose all interest in the game!

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