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Asian Giant Hornet Kills 42 and Injures over 1,500 People In China

Found throughout East and South-East Asia in countries such as China, Korea, Japan, India and Nepal, the Asian giant hornet is the largest hornet species in the world. They grow from 3.5-3.9 centimeters in length (1.4-1.5 inches), roughly the size of a human thumb, and the queens can grow longer than 5 centimeters (2 inches). Producing on average of 1,000 to 2,000 offspring every breeding season.

Human Attacks

It is very hard to predict and prevent attacks as hornet nests are usually in hidden, secluded sites such as tree hollows or sometimes even underground.

These Asian giant hornets have venom that destroys red blood cells, which can cause kidney failure and death. Some people are also allergic to stinging insects, triggering a deadly anaphylactic reaction, which can result in cardiac arrest.

Hornets are very aggressive creatures and more active during September and October, which is their mating season. Since July, they have killed 42 people and injured over 1,500 people in China.

Protecting Yourself

People get in trouble when running into a hornet nest, which is roughly shaped like a basketball that looks like it’s made of gray paper. When coming in contact with one of these, the hornets respond as if they are under attack.

The giant hornets are very attracted to human sweat, alcohol and sweet flavors and smells. They are also especially sensitive when animals or people run. One of the victims told a local media that, “The more you run, the more they want to chase you.” When spotting a hornet or their nest, the best thing you can do to protect yourself is not panic, and calmly just calk away.