Vespa Mandarinia

As if we didn’t have enough to worry about in 2020, nature is dropping the hammer on us once again.

Asian Giant Hornets.

August of 2019 marks the first verified sighting of vespa mandarinia in British Columbia – A month later a nest was found in a park in Nanaimo BC and quickly destroyed.

They have now made their way south to Washington State, where there have been at least two verified sightings.

Scientists are now in a mad dash to find and destroy any foothold these “murder hornets” may have, because if they establish themselves on this continent it could be the end of the north american bee population.

At least japanese honey bees have a defense against these giants – they swarm the hornets, ball up and vibrate their bodies to raise the interior temperature of the ball to precisely 117°F, (47.2°C) cooking the hornet but not hurting the bees.

European honey bees have no such defense.

Just 30 of these monsters can decimate a colony of up to 10,000 bees in an afternoon.

In Japan, they are known as “great sparrow bees,” probably because they measure 5 cm (2 inches) in length with a 7.5cm (3 inch) wingspan.

Their stinger is over 1cm (1/3 inch), long enough to sting right through a standard beekeeper suit with a sweater underneath.

They carry 2 toxins in their venom: a cytolytic peptide (mamastoparan) that dissolves flesh, and a neurotoxin (mandaratoxin) that disrupts your nervous system.

A single sting from one of these behemoths has the potential to cause renal failure.

Like all bees, wasps and hornets, they are extremely aggressive towards anything that gets too close to their nest.

So far this year we’ve had forest fires that burned down Australia, a viral pandemic that we are still dealing with at this very moment, now we might have to deal with hornets the size of birds with hypodermic needles in their ass that can potentially cause kidney failure, or worse.

Fuck this whole year so far

#natureismetal

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