TikTok bee-f? TikToker's critique of beekeeping influencer goes viral

Some on social media have accused beekeeper Erika Thompson, who goes by @TexasBeeWorks on TikTok of staging her videos. Others maintain she's the real deal.

6/13/2021 8:30:00 AM

A TikToker has gone viral for accusing a beekeeping influencer of misleading viewers about how she handles bees and for promoting bad practices when handling a hive.

Some on social media have accused beekeeper Erika Thompson, who goes by @TexasBeeWorks on TikTok of staging her videos. Others maintain she's the real deal.

Thompson, who has been profiled inThe Washington Postand owns her own beekeeping company in Austin, Texas, has become something of a bee celebrity influencer on TikTok. In one video, she helps singer Jason Derulo remove a hive from his home.Her videos, typically showing her handling the bees with her bare hands without wearing a traditional beekeeping suit, have amassed hundreds of millions of views.

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But @LAHoneyBeeRescue, whose account has 22,000 followers, claimed that it's actually Thompson's husband who does most of the work behind the scenes."She doesn't show her wearing protective gear when she analyzes the hive at first. She shows herself removing comb her husband has pre-cut for her very courteously," @LAHoneyBeeRescue said.

@LAHoneyBeeRescue says that Thompson is setting a"dangerous precedent" and that her videos are faked. Read more: NBC News »

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