But murder hornets become most dangerous from late summer to early fall, when they ravage through honey bee populations. WSU researchers said the hornets attack the bee hives, decapitating and killing the adults and eating the larvae and pupae.
Just a few of the hornets can completely destroy a hive in a matter of hours.
WSDA says on their website that the hornets do not typically go after humans, but if they do, not even beekeeping suits can protect against the hornets' stingers, which are longer and more dangerous than a bee's.
Newsflash !! Giant Hornet KNOCKS OUT Media personality!
Media personality Delf Jacobsen has shown what the sting is like on his show "Brave Wilderness." The video shows an "instant goose egg" forming on his arm where the hornet stung.
Researchers say the sting of a murder hornet is painful and packed with neurotoxins. Even if someone is not allergic to the hornet, multiple stings have the potential to kill.
Conrad Bérubé, a beekeeper and entomologist in Nanaimo,said that the day after he got stung, he legs ached like he had the flu, and the sting was the most painful sting he's ever experienced.
Territorial officials are tracking the hornets and setting up traps to hopefully ease any possible harm.
In his decades of beekeeping, Ted McFall had never seen anything like it.
As he pulled his truck up to check on a group of hives near Custer, in November, he could spot from the window a mess of bee carcasses on the ground. As he looked closer, he saw a pile of dead members of the colony in front of a hive and more
carnage inside — thousands and thousands of bees with their heads torn from their bodies and no sign of a culprit.
“I couldn’t wrap my head around what could have done that,” McFall said.
Only later did he come to suspect that the killer was what some researchers simply call the “murder hornet.”