12 things you need to know about invading killer Asian hornets

Picture: The Food and Environment Research Agency, Crown Copyright

Picture: The Food and Environment Research Agency, Crown Copyright

First published in News by

Asian hornets are causing quite a buzz, with reports they are heading towards Kent and have already claimed six lives in France.

Here are 12 facts you should know about them…

1) Asian hornets can spray their poison up to half a metre.

2) Their stings can be deadly. Those who are allergic may go into anaphylactic shock and die unless treated promptly. Six people have died in France since 2004.

3) Like many wasps, they can attack en masse as a nest, so it’s best not to disturb them.

4) The queens grow up to 3cm in length and the workers up to 2.5cm

News Shopper:

Picture courtesy of the Food and Environment Research Agency (Fera), Crown Copyright

5) They have an entirely brown or black velvety body, bordered with a fine yellow band. The fourth abdominal segment is almost entirely yellow or orange. Their legs are brown with yellow ends and the head is black with a yellow face.

6) Asian hornets fly during the day and, unlike the European hornet, stops at night.

7) One Asian hornet can kill 40 bees in a minute. Just a handful of Asian hornets can destroy an entire nest of honey bees in only a couple of hours. 

8) The European hornet has hundreds of individuals per nest but the Asian hornet will have thousand of the creepy crawlies associated with one nest.

9) It is one of the most aggressive hornets. Though it is slightly bigger, the native Euro hornet is still no match for the Asian in a fight.

10) After in became established in Korea in 2003, it spread northwards at a rate of between 10 and 20 kilometres a year.

11) Since arriving on the continent in 2004, it has spread rapidly throughout most of France, Belgium and northern Spain.

News Shopper:

Picture: Fera, Crown Copyright

12) Asian hornets are just as at home in cities, building nests in shed, garages and sewers where access to food and water is easy.

Comments (5)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

12:12pm Mon 21 Apr 14

Sidcupman says...

How did it get established in Korea to start with?

If we find some who can we call?
How did it get established in Korea to start with? If we find some who can we call? Sidcupman
  • Score: 2

3:46pm Mon 21 Apr 14

mumcabs says...

How can they be killed without harming bees and our own native insects? That should have been included in the facts !
How can they be killed without harming bees and our own native insects? That should have been included in the facts ! mumcabs
  • Score: 4

6:41pm Mon 21 Apr 14

danm5577 says...

Best get new batteries for my insect bat!
Best get new batteries for my insect bat! danm5577
  • Score: 2

8:33am Tue 22 Apr 14

molsey says...

Another reason why the UK must tighten up on Asian Immigration.
Another reason why the UK must tighten up on Asian Immigration. molsey
  • Score: 0

4:50pm Tue 22 Apr 14

bnorther says...

Ill file this one along with the "Mutant Rats" and "Killer Spiders" that NS loves scaremongering about.

How many people exactly died from the spiders?

0.
Ill file this one along with the "Mutant Rats" and "Killer Spiders" that NS loves scaremongering about. How many people exactly died from the spiders? 0. bnorther
  • Score: 2

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree