It had entered the “slaughter phase.”
An invasive and destructive “murder hornet” has been spotted in Washington state for the first time this year, and the alien-looking insect was behaving accordingly — attacking a hive of paper wasps.
A Whatcom County resident reported the Asian giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia), which can reach 1.75 inches (4.4 centimeters) in length, on Aug. 11, just 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) from the first-ever U.S. sighting of this species in December 2019 near Blaine, Washington, according to the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA).
“This hornet is exhibiting the same behavior we saw last year — attacking paper wasp nests,” Sven Spichiger, WSDA managing entomologist, said in the statement. “If you have paper wasp nests on your property and live in the area, keep an eye on them and report any Asian giant hornets you see. Note the direction they fly off to as well.”