However, two queen bees managed to survive and were captured by entomologists from the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA). The WSDA said it is unclear whether both queens are virgin queens or one is a virgin queen and the other is an old queen.
The entomologist said in a Facebook post that they were able to remove 85 wasps from their hives, all of whom survived. WSDA opened the nest log on Thursday and is analyzing its content. There are some adults in the hive ready to emerge from their cells, and the WSDA won’t have a final number until they can count all wasps.
WSDA says all specimens will be studied for research.
The Asian giant wasps were originally discovered on October 22 in a tree hole near Blaine, Washington. Using a new type of trap, the WSDA researchers tagged a number of wasps captured with radio monitors, which are used to guide them back to the nest.
The Asian giant wasps often nest in the ground but can sometimes be found nesting on dead trees.
First discovered in Washington state in December 2019, the Asian giant wasp is an invasive species not native to the US. They are the largest species of wasps in the world and are prey to honey bees and other insects. According to the WDSA, a small group of giant Asian wasps are capable of killing an entire honey bee hive in a matter of hours.
And honey bees are not the only reason these creatures have been nicknamed the “killer wasps.” According to experts at Washington State University, multiple stings from the Asian giant wasp can kill a human.