Asian Hornet Outbreak - Herefordshire Pest Control

Amidst reports of an Asian hornet outbreak in Cornwall, bee keepers are being asked to be extra vigilant whilst bee inspectors are being deployed to monitor local bee hives. Whilst the Asian hornet isn’t any greater risk to humans than a bee, they pose a serious risk to honey bee populations causing damage to honey bee colonies.

Members of the public are also being asked to be on the look-out for signs of the Asian hornet and to report any sightings to alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk together with a photo. We’ve seen a rise in calls for pest control for hornets recently although we’ve yet to come across an Asian hornet.

If you have a hornet nest, or think you’ve spotted an Asian hornet give PGM & SON Hereford a call on 07964 370480.

The 'Asian hornet', scientific name Vespa velutina, is an invasive non-native species from Asia. It first arrived in France in 2014, and has since been spreading rapidly, with the first UK sighting in 2016. It is a highly effective predator of insects, including honey bees and other beneficial species. It can cause significant losses to colonies, other native species and potentially ecosystems. Isolated Asian hornets nests have previously been spotted in Devon, Somerset and Gloucestershire. As Gloucestershire is the next county to Herefordshire, we encourage people to be extra vigilant particularly in September which is the peak activity period.

So, what should you be on the look-out for?

Well, the Asian hornet normally can be found high in trees or man-made structures (e.g. sheds), but sometimes closer to the ground (e.g. ceramic plant pots).

As highly aggressive predators, they hunt honey bees and other insects and feed on fruit and flowers. With a glut of blackberries at this time of year it makes for an excellent food source. To spot the Asian hornet, use the comparison below:

Asian Hornet

  • Queen up to 30mm long

  • Worker up to 25mm long

  • Legs yellow at ends

  • Dark brown / black abdomen with yellow /

  • orange band on 4th segment

  • Head dark from above, orange from front

  • Dark antennae

  • Entirely black velvety thorax

  • Never active at night

European Hornet

  • Queen up to 35mm long

  • Worker up to 30mm long

  • Legs brown at ends

  • Dark brown / black abdomen with yellow /

  • Yellow abdomen with brown on upper part, not banded

  • Head yellow from above and front

  • Yellow antennae

  • Thorax black with extensive brown markings

  • May be active at night

For more information, please visit: alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk or http://www.nationalbeeunit.com/

Hornet stings can be much more painful than a typical wasp sting due to the levels of venom they carry and, like wasps, they are capable of stinging multiple times. They’re also quite loud – a nest of hornets can sound quite frightening.

Normally, hornets are great for the environment – they are important pollinators and nature’s pest controllers as they feast on aphids, making them a gardener’s best pal. However, the Asian hornet poses a real threat to honey bees and so speedy action needs to be taken to identify the species of hornet and deal with it correctly.

If you’ve found a hornet’s nest you should call a professional pest controller to give you advice and NEVER APPROACH OR TOUCH OR ATTEMPT TO MOVE A HORNETS NEST YOURSELF.

If you’ve got a hornet nest, don’t panic – call PGM & SON Pest Control Herefordshire today on 07964 370480. We’ll get rid of hornets for you, treat hornets’ nests and destroy and remove hornets’ nests for you.

And we don’t just stop at tackling hornets’ nests – give us a call if you’ve got a wasp problem or any other pest problem for that matter!!

PGM & SON is an established Pest Control Company serving Herefordshire and all local villages. Our Upper Tier Carrier Dealer registration permits us to carry, handle and dispose of customers controlled waste. Controlled wastes include commercial, industrial, household and hazardous waste. ABOUT US PGM & Son provide pest control solutions to residential and commercial businesses across Herefordshire. Our company is a well respected and experienced pest control service. Any of your bug and pest problems will be quickly eliminated with quality & guaranteed work by our professionally trained technicians who can control pests safely, legally and effectively.

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