The only thing Americans have to fear from murder hornets is fear itself … experts say odds are low the remaining queens out there give birth to an army of killers.
Here’s the deal … a lot of folks were alarmed by recent reports that scientists in Washington found nearly 200 queens in the nest that was eradicated last month, the fear being … how many escaped alive and are now buzzing around?!?
But, you can breathe a sigh of relief … Chris Looney from the Washington State Department of Agriculture, which is studying the insects, tells us there’s no particular reason to believe a lot of murder hornets got out of that nest, and even if they did, the majority of those queens are unlikely to start their own nests. Phew.
Of course, there are scenarios where those queens might start their own nests, but fortunately, we’re told those odds are low … even in 2020.
The doomsday scenario would have to play out like this … a queen would need to mate with a male murder hornet, but that’s no simple task. It’s not like they have Bumble.
Let’s say the queen mates … the queen would then have to spend this winter hibernating. Well, surviving hibernation is not a given, and we’re told some of the queens would surely die in the process, just like any other bug.
There’s more hurdles after mating and hibernation … in the spring, a queen would have to find food and an appropriate nesting site. Again, no easy task, and the process exposes the queen to more potential danger and puts them at risk of dying.
Feel better now?!?
And, there’s this … Chris says murder hornets have only been found in Northwest Washington, so folks in nearby states have no reason to fear murder hornets flying their way.
In fact, he says WSDA scientists recently conducted a study showing it would take about a decade or more for murder hornets to invade another state … and that’s the worst-case scenario, because it’s likely to take even longer.
And, if you do live in Washington, we’re told the only worry should be about the murder hornet nests that are already made and haven’t been found. Just like the nest the WSDA eradicated last month, we’re told there could be a nest out there with a ton of queens, some of which will go off and form their own nests.
But, while some of those queens may be successful, by and large, they won’t be.
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