You might remember reading about “murder hornets” in a previous post; these hornets are very huge and originate from Africa, but they have been making an appearance in the United States for the past three years.
Today’s news item concerns a yellow-legged hornet that is brand-new to our nation. Vespa velutina, a native of Southeast Asia, has been named as our newest invasive species. It is related to the “murder hornet” that we previously stated. This month, the hornet has been seen in Georgia.
This hornet, unfortunately for us, eats honeybees. As you may already be aware, honeybee populations have been declining in recent years as a result of a number of reasons, such as habitat loss and incorrect pesticide use. We rely on the honeybee, one of our most significant pollinators, to maintain the health of our ecosystem. According to the FDA, honeybees contribute $15 billion or more to our crops.
According to the organization, crops pollinated by honey bees produce foods including apples, melons, cranberries, pumpkins, squash, broccoli, and almonds, as well as around one-third of the food consumed by Americans.
The new yellow-legged hornet actually favors honeybees over other kinds of food, despite the fact that there are existing hornets that prey on honeybees in the United States (such as the bald-faced hornet and the yellowjacket).
Most hornets feed on the larvae of other insects, and many kinds of hornets prey on the nests of other social bee and wasp species, according to The Land-Grant Press. Following that, they continued, “Vespa are known as the ‘true hornets’ and are exceptional predators.”
It is now up to scientists and academics to figure out how to limit the spread of this threat once the alarm has already been sounded. We’ll keep an eye out for any updates on this situation and let our readers know.
An employee from pest control in Melbourne, FL said the following: “We have not seen this hornet in our area yet but like all invasive species it may only be a matter of time before we do.”