US and Canadian scientists intent on battling murder hornets

Scientists in the US and Canada are exploring new ways to fight so-called murder hornets as the giant insects begin establishing nests this spring. Last Wednesday, scientists said that the battle to prevent the apex predators from establishing a foothold in North America is being fought mostly in Whatcom County, Washington, and the nearby Fraser Valley of British Columbia. It’s in these regions that the hornets have been spotted in recent years.

Sven-Erik Spichiger of the Washington state Department of Agriculture, which eradicated a nest of the Asian giant hornets last year: “This is not a species we want to tolerate here in the United States. The Asian giant hornet is not supposed to be here. We may not get them all, but we will get as many as we can.”

Paul van Westendorp of the British Columbia Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries said the hornets pose threats to human life, to valuable bee populations needed to pollinate crops and to other insects. quoted him as saying: “It’s an absolutely serious danger to our health and well-being. These are intimidating insects.”


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