In China, quite a number of people are being stung by hornets. Since July of this year, 42 people have died and about 1,675 have reported more minor suffering from being stung by hornets.
But what are these hornets and how dangerous can they be?
The Vespa Mandarinia, more commonly known as the Asian giant hornet, is the largest species of hornet in the world. They can grow up to 1.5 inches and the queens can grow up to two inches. These wasp-like creatures can be found specifically in China, Korea, Japan, India, and Nepal.
They carry venom that destroys red blood cells, and causes kidney failure or even death. However, scientists say that before the venom kicks in, the allergy that people experience when stung by hornets is what kills them since the sting of the hornet can trigger an airway closure or even cardiac arrest.
Scientists also say that the reason behind the increasing number of attacks is probably the dry season, which makes it easier for hornets to breed. Also, the decrease of these hornets’ prey such as spiders and birds lead them to hunt for new prey. Urbanization can also be blamed since their hives get destroyed whenever infrastructures are built.
While the Chinese government is making plans of reducing the hornet attacks, experts say that to avoid hornets we shouldn’t run when we encounter one, or better yet, people shouldn’t try to disturb them by destroying their habitat.