These hornets are fierce predators and have the ability to slaughter an entire honey bee hive through decapitation in just a few hours, leaving piles of headless bee bodies behind. They also have an incredibly painful, toxic sting
. Thus far, there have only been isolated encounters with these hornets in British Columbia in Western Canada as well as Washington state in the Northwestern US.
- Usually 1.5 to 2 inches in length
- Large orange or yellow head with prominent eyes with a black and yellow striped abdomen
- The giant hornet has a quarter-inch long stinger that contains an enzyme mixture and neurotoxin that destroys tissue
- These hornets kill up to 50 people per year in Japan
- Forms large colonies that usually nest in the ground