Tag Archives: Hornets

Asian Hornets found in the UK

22 Nov Asian Hornet

The Asian Hornet has been found on UK soil. The first confirmed sighting was back in September in the Tetbury area of Gloucester and in October another sighting was confirmed by Defra in North Somerset.

They are a similar size to the native European Hornet at around 3cm long but have a much darker colouring. However, they are more vicious than other types of hornet and carry a much larger amount of potent venom.  A handful of people in France, where they are thought to have been introduced in a shipment of pottery from China in 2004, have died from anaphylactic shock following being stung by the insect. But the main threat these non-native species pose is to bees in the UK. An Asian Hornet can devour up to 50 honey bees every day.

The Asian Hornet is a notifiable species so if you think you’ve seen one then you must contact the GB Non Native Species Secretariat (NNSS). If you think you’ve spotted one, email details of the location and a photograph to send an email   alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk or you can submit details online and let them deal with it. An active hornets’ nest should not be provoked or disturbed. They will set up a surveillance zone around the sighting. Local bee inspectors will use infrared cameras and traps to locate any nests which will then be destroyed and hornets killed.

Because of the danger they pose to bee colonies and potentially other native species it is important that any possible sightings are dealt with quickly and by experts. At the moment pest control companies are not allowed to treat Asian Hornets and all cases must go through the NNSS.

Find out more about the Asian Hornet.