The Asian Hornet: Part 1

Asian-HornetFrom Bee Craft September 2011

Introduction – Biology THE ASIAN hornet, Vespa velutina, is an aggressive predator of honey bees and other beneficial insects. Physically, it is superficially similar to the native European hornet, V crabro, but despite its fearsome reputation V velutina is slightly smaller (2.5–3 cm long). It has a dark ‘velvety’ thorax, from which the subspecies nigrithorax derives its name. Its clearest distinguishing features are that, while V crabro has a comparatively yellow abdomen, in V velutina only the third segment is yellow and it also has yellow legs (see Figures 1 and 2).

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