Another Asian invasion - Murder Hornet

'Murder hornets' land in the US for the first time

Even as the US remains under attack from the coronavirus outbreak, a new terror has arrived: "murder hornets".

The 2-inch long Asian giant hornets have landed in the US for the first time, spotted on the west coast.

Multiple stings are deadly to humans and in their "slaughter phase" the hornets destroy honeybees, whose bodies they feed to their young.

Scientists are now on a hunt for the hornets, hoping to eradicate the species before they wipe out US bees.

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Though they typically avoid people, in Asia, "murder hornet" stings are thought to cause as many as 50 human fatalities a year, according to the New York Times.

The hornets made their first North American appearance in August 2019, in British Columbia, Canada. Months later, in December 2019, the flying insects were reported south of the border, in Washington State.

Washington State University (WSU) are unsure how or when the hornet first arrived in North America, but beekeepers in the region have reported gruesome hive deaths in recent months. Scientists are bracing for further emergence of the species, which begins its life cycle in spring.

The hornets are "shockingly large", said Todd Murray, a WSU scientist and invasive species specialist. "It's a health hazard, and more importantly, a significant predator of honeybees."

The insects, roughly the size of a matchbox, have large yellow-orange heads, prominent black eyes, and a black and yellow striped abdomen.

"They're like something out of a monster cartoon with this huge yellow-orange face," said Susan Cobey, a bee breeder with WSU entomology department in a press release.

The Asian giant hornet's life cycle begins in April, when queens come out of hibernation, and begin to feed and seek out subterranean dens to build their nests. Once their habitats are built in the summer and autumn months, worker hornets are sent to find food.

With their sharp, spiked mandibles, the hornets decapitate honeybees, using the bodies to feed their young. The hornets can destroy a honeybee hive in a matter of hours.

Though beehives are their primary target, when threatened the hornets can attack people. Multiple stings can kill humans, even those who are not allergic.

In Japan, where they're most common, murder hornets kill roughly 30 to 40 people each year.

"It was like having red-hot thumbtacks being driven into my flesh," Vancouver Island beekeeper Conrad Bérubé told the New York Times. He was stung through a bee suit and sweatpants underneath.

The WSU scientists will begin trapping queen murder hornets this spring, aiming to detect and eradicate the species.

Populations of honeybees and other pollinators in the US were already under pressure. Between 1947 and 2017, number of honeybee colonies in the US plummeted from 6 million to 2.5 million. And last year, researchers from the University of Maryland reported that 40% of the country's honeybee colonies died in a single winter, between October 2018 and April 2019 - the largest loss of its kind.

Pollinators, most often honeybees, are responsible for one of every three bites of food taken in the US, and increase the country's nation crop values every year by more than $15bn (£12bn), according to the US Department of Agriculture.
How the fukk did they cross an ocean.. someone had to have brought them over on a ship..

Let me guess, China’s also views them as a delicacy?
Ron in Regina
I watched a short video earlier tonight of one of these Asian hornets attacking and killing a mouse. Jesus Christ already! That was just one hornet alone. What can many of these do together in a swarm if they swarm??
Holly shit, I don't know how much this guy gets paid for this shit.. but it isn't enough..
Just call them the Murdering Chinese (insert racist shit here) Hornets..
The killer bees are back . Head for the hills .
bill barilko

Get a life you old fools.
And I'm sure some brainless twat will say this is also a chinese conspiracy.
And you did. Congratulations.
Quote: Originally Posted by gerryh View Post

And I'm sure some brainless twat will say this is also a chinese conspiracy.

They are from Japan, and they eat them with rice.

Unfortunately for our honey bees this is another of one of the consequences of highly globalize trade.
'Murder hornet' risk and name overblown, says B.C.'s top bee expert


A large invasive hornet is waking up for spring, and experts say a few of the bee-eating predators may soon be buzzing around B.C.
Last fall, a beekeeper in the northwest corner of Washington state found hives decimated by what American media is dubbing the murder hornet.
But B.C. bee experts, while concerned, don't expect swarms of Asian giant hornets this summer and say the threat is minimal and no reason to stay inside.
Fierce but few
In August of 2019, the first ever hive of these hornets, which are actually named Vespa mandarinia, turned up in Nanaimo. In September, the nest was tracked to a spot in the ground in the Robin's Park area, and beekeepers used dry ice to clear it out and collect specimens to study.

The world's biggest hornet decapitates bees with jagged mandibles and devours them, leaving a pile of bodies. Worse yet, the hornet's powerful venom is responsible for dozens of human deaths in Asia every year.
Despite this, B.C.'s top bee experts say the nickname is sensationalistic, unless perhaps you are a bee.
"It's a very formidable character. They are very fierce but very few. They are not overrunning the landscape out here. That is simply not going to happen," said provincial apiculturist Paul van Westendorp.
He doesn't advocate panic and suggests people leave the hornets alone.
"These hornets are not interested in us, but they can cause quite a bit of problems if their nests are disturbed," he said.
The Nanaimo nest of about 200 hornets was destroyed. A single hornet showed up in White Rock last November. A few weeks later, two individual hornets were found in Blaine, Wash.
"That strongly suggested there was a nest," said van Westendorp.
He said scientists are working hard to make sure the hornet — or its sister species, an impressive six-centimetre queen that showed up in a North Vancouver office last May — do not establish in B.C.
The hornets are considered apex predators, but their population is sparse, and scientists say none are alive in B.C. that we know of right now.
Gail Wallin is executive director of the Invasive Species Council of B.C. She said new anecdotal reports of the hornets south of the border are a concern.
"If they've over-wintered, then it's important that those nests be eradicated right away. These hornets certainly are a threat to the bee population," she said.
Honeybees, the rusty-patched bumble bee and more than 800 other wild bee species are listed as endangered in Canada.
The hornet's sting has proven fatal in rare cases.
"They are a health concern because they have a powerful sting ... and they are not something you'd want to be bitten by more than once or twice," said Wallin.
In Asia, a few dozens deaths each year are attributed to the hornet, most often if a nest is disturbed, said van Westerndorp.
If a nest is disturbed, a colony will initially send out one hornet, then more, but only if the intruder remains there. A giant Asian hornet can sting repeatedly and the insect's venom is nasty. It can cause an allergic reaction in some people......More

Why experts are cautious but not panicked about 'murder hornets' in Alberta


Alberta's ecosystem hasn't been stung by the so-called murder hornet — yet.
The species, which is native to Asia, has created quite the buzz across North America, so experts in the province are tracking its every move.
A Vespa mandarinia nest was found and destroyed in British Columbia last year, and more recently hornets were spotted in Washington state, sparking a flurry of panicked headlines about the invasive species.
The risk to insects, especially honey bees, is high.
The hornet is huge, about five centimetres in length, and known for how quickly and viciously it can decimate entire bee colonies. It's said this species can kill anywhere from 20,000 to 30,000 bees in a matter of hours.
Alberta has the biggest beekeeping industry in the country, with more than 315,000 colonies — which account for 40 per cent of the countries honey bee population.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry conducts bee research. Shelley Hoover is the head of the province's Bee Health and Assurance Unit.
"We're assessing the risk. There is a risk to beekeepers and human health," Hoover said. "There's a risk to honey bees and there's also a risk to the ecosystem because you're introducing a new top predator. It's not clear exactly how or to what extent it could be established in Alberta."
Hoover is sceptical the species can survive Alberta's winters. But she said research on the insect is sparse and a lot of the studies on the hornet were conducted in Asia, so there's a language barrier.
"I think in Alberta even if we were to have occasional sightings of this wasp, I think there are large areas of the province that are not suitable habitat," Hoover said. "They are a forest dwelling species, so areas where there are no tree cover they wouldn't do well in."
Hoover said the province is watching the situation closely but won't be attempting its own studies of the hornet.
"We're very reluctant to introduce anything to research it just in case it accidentally escapes."
Bert Blouin has been beekeeping for more than 20 years. While the hornets are a concern to him as a beekeeper, he says invasive species aren't new.
"There was a small hive beetle a few years ago actually there was a lot of concern," Blouin said. "It really messed up the beekeeping industry in northern Alberta."
Blouin said the beatles didn't survive the winter, and with the Asian giant hornet he hopes for the same.

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And they think they should ban shotguns...
Quote: Originally Posted by B00Mer View Post

They are from Japan, and they eat them with rice.

And I'm sure some brainless twat will say this is also a chinese conspiracy.
Maybe the killer bees and the murder hornets will kill each other off.
If the assassination bug doesnt get them first.
A group of Crows is called a murder. Shouldn't we be ascared of them too?
Quote: Originally Posted by taxslave View Post

A group of Crows is called a murder. Shouldn't we be ascared of them too?

I looked that up once. A very sarcastic professor had posted a list of answers to questions about crows. To the question "What is a group of crows called?" he responded "I'm sure poets call it all kinds of things. Scientists call it a flock."

It was a funny website. Another question was "How many different sounds do crows make?" The professor answered "We have counted about 250 different vocalizations, but they all pretty much sound like 'Caw'."
Murder Horner vs COVID-19

Ron in Regina
Depending on one's needs, there might be a solution. First you start with this: & then you modify it like this: