Boozy Asian hornets targeting beer gardens this summer - claims expert insect exterminator
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Asian hornets are prowling beer gardens in their droves, an expert exterminator has warned. Punters at UK pub gardens are being asked to be on the lookout for the dangerous insects after being spotted frequenting pint glasses and Champagne flutes.
Francis Russell, an Asian hornet exterminator from Guernsey, has told national newspapers the key difference between sweet drink-loving wasp and the Asian hornet. “We have noticed over the last few summers that Asian hornets have a taste for alcohol,” he said.
“We have pictures of hornets over beer glasses. We’ve got them over glasses of Champagne and they do seem to find summer parties, barbecues, pub gardens and that’s where we occasionally get reports of Asian hornets turning up.”
Francis and his team even headed to a local brewery to produce beer mats asking customers to track and take photos of the critters. He said: “They like booze, so to raise awareness we went to a brewery to do beer mats and are encouraging people in pubs who are out, to take photos for different demographics.”
Photos will allow experts to work out where the hornets’ nests are so they can make sure the species are contained and not harming local bees. “They impact our native insects so our biodiversity is at risk here - our honey bees, butterflies, bumble bees, wasps; they’re all going to be predated by these hornets,” Francis added.
It’s not only local species affected by the Asian hornet, humans have also died from the predator’s 6mm stinger. Francis said: “If you disturb a nest, they will attack. People in Spain and Portugal have died from Asian hornet attacks, so we want to keep people safe.”
Experts are suggesting there could be three times more hornets in the UK this summer than previous years.