Researchers have been trying to catch the invasive insects and prevent an attack since they were first discovered in the state last year. More than two inches long, the horn gets its nickname from its tendency to attack and kill honeybees and potentially humans.
Officials announced Friday that they had identified the Asian giant horn earlier this week from a trap set near Birch Bay on July 14.
“This is encouraging because it means we know the traps work,” said Sven Spichiger, chief entomologist at the Washington Department of Agriculture (WSDA) in the statement. “But it also means we have work to do.”
This work includes looking for nests using infrared cameras and setting more traps, the message said. The State Department of Agriculture plans to distribute special traps that will catch the bows and keep them alive so that they can be tagged and traced back to their colonies. When the agency finds the colonies, they destroy them.
The hope is to find the nest in mid-September before the colony begins to create new reproducing queens and drones, the statement says.
Researchers are not sure how these giant hornets native to Asia ended up in Washington State.
But do not get too close.