Scientists Are Racing To Capture ‘Murder Hornets’ Before Their Numbers Increase

Scientists in the USA have finally managed to capture one of the infamous ‘murder hornets‘ and are now upping their efforts to find the colony before they start breeding.

The Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) stated that more than 1,300 traps have been put out in an attempt to snag the fearsome insect after it invaded the USA last year.

Well, you can’t just have animals called ‘murder hornets’ cutting about the place, can you?

Also, just look at it. They were never gonna be called ‘friendship hornets’ were they?

Credit: Quinlyn Baine/AP/Shutterstock
Credit: Quinlyn Baine/AP/Shutterstock

The two inch Asian giant hornets actually get their nickname for something even more horrific than you might think.

You see, when these cuddly critters get hold of honey bees, they are capable of ripping their heads clean off in large numbers.

Aren’t you glad you’ve got that little factoid of a Sunday morning?

Anyway, it’s a serious issue – not least because they’re an invasive species that’s tearing the heads off bees.

The WSDA confirmed that one of the creatures – which can grow to nearly six centimetres long – was caught in a trap near Birch Bay in Whatcom County on July 14.

Now, they just need to get hold of the rest of them.

Credit: Ted S Warren/AP/Shutterstock
Credit: Ted S Warren/AP/Shutterstock

Sven Spichiger, the agency’s managing entomologist, explained: “This is encouraging because it means we know that the traps work.

“But it also means we have work to do.”

Sven and his chums have got their work cut out for them, but they’ve got some pretty handy technology to assist them along the way.

The plan is to use infrared cameras to look for where the hornets are nesting and lay down traps in order to catch the hornets alive.

Then, they’ll tag them up and try to trace them back to colonies, that will then be destroyed.

It’s tough on the poor murder hornets, but they’re an invasive species and can’t be allowed to proliferate in the area.

Also, they’re absolutely f***ing horrifying.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

The WSDA are hoping that they can identify and destroy the nest by mid-September because the hornets will start creating new queens and drones around then, meaning that they’ll be tougher to shift.

Nobody is completely sure exactly how they managed to get into Washington State from Asia in the first instance.

It could be through container ships, or packages shipped across to the USA from Asia, or travellers coming back to the US from overseas.

Either way, the hornets have got to go.

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