Asian hornet with deadly sting identified in the UK for second time this year
19 April 2023, 10:57
The Asian hornet has the ability of threatening the UK's honey bee population and killing humans with its sting.
The deadly Asian hornet has been identified in the UK for the second time this year.
The hornet, which is a venomous species native to China, was first sighted in Northumberland on 5th April and most recently in Folkestone, Kent, the British Beekeepers Association confirmed.
As well as posing a risk to humans, the Asian hornet could threaten the UK's honey bee population as just one hornet can kill up to 50 bees per day.
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Meanwhile, a whole swarm of the hornets could kill a hive of 30,000 honey bees.
The Asian hornet's sting can be deadly to humans, which means it is important to avoid approaching any potential nests.
Qualified beekeeper, Sue Kittle, told Kent Online: "These hornets are very defensive of their hives and can do what is called a mass attack.
"We need to track them down and find out if this sighting is the beginning of a nest."
She added: "Last year was a fantastic year for hornets in France. It is possible they hibernated over the winter and have come across the Channel.
"It also could have been stowed away on a lorry, but we don’t know yet."
The Asian hornet, which was sighted for the first time in the UK back in 2016, can be identified by its yellow legs and orange face.
People have been urged to download the Asian hornet watch app by the British Beekeepers Association to help identify further sightings.
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