'Murder hornet' nest found in Washington believed to be 1st in the US

By Allen Kim, CNN | Posted - Oct. 23, 2020 at 5:43 p.m.

WASHINGTON (CNN) — If you thought giant "murder hornets" had disappeared because they dropped from the headlines, you are mistaken.

Entomologists from the Washington State Department of Agriculture on Thursday located the first-ever Asian giant hornet nest in the United States on a property in the town of Blaine.

Using a new type of trap, researchers tagged several captured hornets with radio trackers, which they used to lead them to the nest. The cavity of a tree found on private property was housing the nest, and the entomologists saw dozens of hornets entering and leaving the tree.

First discovered in Washington state in December 2019, Asian giant hornets are an invasive species not native to the U.S. They are the world's largest hornet and prey on honey bees and other insects. A small group of Asian giant hornets is capable of killing an entire honey bee hive in a few hours, the entomologists said.

Asian giant hornets typically nest in the ground but can occasionally be found nesting in dead trees.

The owner of the property gave researchers permission to eradicate the nest and to remove the tree if necessary. They plan to remove the tree Saturday.

The department of agriculture has set up a network of traps around the state, and entomologists have been tracking sightings of Asian giant hornets in an effort to find and eliminate any nests.

The-CNN-Wire™ & © 2020 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

Allen Kim


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