Two new Asian giant hornet sightings reported in Whatcom County

Sep 8, 2021, 1:27 PM
Asian giant hornet...
An Asian giant hornet with a tracking device attached to its body. (Washington State Department of Agriculture)
(Washington State Department of Agriculture)

The Washington State Department of Agriculture reported two new Asian giant hornet sightings on Wednesday, spotted close to where a nest was eradicated two weeks ago.

State vacuums over 100 Asian giant hornets out of Whatcom County nest

That could potentially mean that there is an additional nest in the area. The WSDA is tagging hornets with GPS trackers and following their movements to determine whether they were left over from the destroyed nest, or part of a new one.

All of 2021’s hornet sightings — as well as the nest that was removed — have been in the same area where a nest was destroyed last year. The nest found last month was inside of a dead tree in Whatcom County east of Blaine.

WSDA workers vacuumed 113 hornets out of that nest, catching another 67 in the surrounding area using nets. An estimated 1,500 additional hornets in the nest were reported to be in “various stages of development.” The department credited help it received from the public in tracking down the nest, stressing the importance of reporting sightings of the invasive hornet.

State begins Asian giant hornet tracking effort

Asian giant hornets are not native to the United States. They are the world’s largest hornet and prey on honey bees and other insects. They are known to attack honey bee hives in the late summer or early fall, and a small group of them can kill an entire honey bee hive in a matter of hours.

Right now, the hornets are believed to be contained to northwest Whatcom County.

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Two new Asian giant hornet sightings reported in Whatcom County