First asian giant hornet nest eradicated in Blaine

Entomologists with the Washington State Department of Agriculture successfully eradicated the state's first asian giant hornet nest. 

The nest was was discovered late last week on private property in Blaine thanks to a reported sighting from a member of the public back in Septemeber. Entomologists used radio tags to track a live asian giant hornet back to the nest.

Entomologists vacuumed out 85 hornets and collected another 13 live hornets with a net. The nest is no longer a threat to honeybees in the area, but entomologists say this is only the start of their work and they suspect there may be more nests in Whatcom County. Managing entomologist Sven-Erik Spichiger says he believes there are at least 2 more nests.

Fortunately no one was hurt in the operation. Spichiger credits the chilly weather on Saturday for keeping the hornets docile during eradication.

WSDA commends the public for reporting asian giant hornet sightings and setting up traps. In the coming weeks, the state's pest program team will investigate whether the nest had begun to produce new queens or not. 

The operation is a major breakthrough in learning more about the invasive species. Spichiger says the captured hornets will be used for research for the first time in the United States.
Entomologist will continue to set up traps through at least November in Whatcom County.
WSDA says every report leads the agency closer to finding a nest so it's critical to report sightings. There are 3 ways to report them:
Online: AGR.WA.GOV/HORNETS
Email: HORNETS@AGR.WA.GOV
Phone: 1-800-443-6684