Asian giant hornets could establish themselves in the United States after being spotted in Washington state. These murder hornets can injure and worse, kill humans, and they wipe out bee hives. The Huffington Post has more details:
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“They’re like something out of a monster cartoon with this huge yellow-orange face,” Susan Cobey, a bee breeder with Washington State University’s Department of Entomology, said in an April news release from the university.
Though they aren’t usually aggressive to humans unless their nests are disturbed, their stings are venomous enough to kill someone who gets stung multiple times. According to the Times, the hornets kill up to 50 people a year in Japan and folks on the receiving end of the sting have compared it to the feeling of being speared by hot metal.
They’re also devastating to honey bee populations, wiping out hives and partially consuming the occupants. Last November, a beekeeper in Blaine, Washington, was shocked to discover thousands of his bees with their heads ripped off ― the murder hornet’s signature move.
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