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Doctors Discover Four Bees Living Under Woman's Eye, Feeding On Her Tears

A Taiwanese woman who thought she had an eye infection was actually playing host to four bees living in her eye, in what doctors have called a "world first".

According to CTS News, the woman, 29 -- identified only by her last name He -- had been tending to a family member’s grave and was pulling out weeds when the insects flew into her eyes.

She assumed it was soil and washed her eyes out with water, but later began experiencing severe pain under her eyelid. It was at Fooyin University Hospital in Taiwan where doctors discovered four little sweat bees embedded in her tear ducts, where they were feeding off the moisture and salt of her tears.

A metalic green sweat bee gathers pollen from a flower. Image: Getty

“I saw something that looked like insect legs," the hospital’s head of ophthalmology Dr Hung Chi-ting said at a press conference.

"So I pulled them out under a microscope slowly, and one at a time without damaging their bodies."

He was lucky she had not excessively rubbed her eyes after feeling pain, which could have led to further damage and potentially a loss of sight.

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All four bees were removed alive and the young woman is expected to make a full recovery, her sight intact.

Sweat bees -- also known as Halictidae -- are not typically aggressive insects, but they are attracted to human sweat, thus earning them their name.

They have one of the least painful stings of all stinging insects and can be found all around the world.

Featured image: Getty

Contact the author: vquested@networkten.com.au