An Indian beekeper trusts his insect friends so much that he lets 60,000 of them cover his face.
The 24-year-old, known as Nature M.S., regards the bees as his ‘best friends’ and says they do not regard him as a threat.
Nature has been keeping bees on his face since he was seven years old, impressing his childhood friends with the trick in Kerala.
He also holds the Guinness World Record for the longest time with his head fully covered in bees, at an astonishing four hours, 10 minutes and five seconds.
Even experienced beekeepers can suffer dangerous allergic reactions – but the risk of stings on his lips or eyelids does not worry Nature, who says he is to blame for any stings rather than the bees.
He said he was first introduced to the buzzing creatures by his father Sajayakumar who is himself an award-winning beekeeper and a honey maker.
Nature – who has a brother with the bee-themed name of Nectar – said his first experience of being covered by bees was when he put a queen on his hand.
He said: ‘Soon a swarm of buzzing insects crowded around as they covered my arm within 15 minutes.
‘They were on my hand in search of the queen and to protect it. The next day I tried a similar stunt with the queen on my head and within moments my entire head and face got covered.
‘My father’s advice always comes to my mind and eliminates any nervousness or fear.
‘My father always advised me to be calm with the bees and treat them like a friend. He also asked me to take deep breaths and never lose patience or give in to fear.
‘Initially it was not that easy, but I never felt awkward ever, in fact, I felt awesome.
‘There was no problem with them on my face at all and I could see everything, I even did a little walk and a dance.
‘Right since the very first experience, I got attached with the honeybees. Even before I learnt the fact that honeybee stings are dangerous, I had developed a special bond with them.’
Nature said he has been stung by the bees, but it is his fault when it happens and not theirs.
He said: ‘Without any fault of mine a bee would never sting me at all.’
His affection towards bees has led him to pursue academic studies in apiculture and he is currently studying for a masters at a college in Bangalore, India.
He dreams of pursuing a doctorate in this field to protect the bees and learn more about them and bee rearing.
Nature said: ‘Honey is the favourite and the sweetest thing in the world for humans, everyone loves to have honey.
‘Bees are my best friends and I wished others too can love my friends as I do. I and my father started campaigning about bee protection and the importance of beekeeping.
‘People are often scared about bees because they sting.
‘Honeybees are the key insects in society, it is our duty to protect them. Without honeybees, the earth could not sustain us all.’