Remember the Asian giant hornets? Well, Washington state certainly does.

The “murder” hornets first generated national attention back in 2020 when the Washington State Department of Agriculture first located and destroyed a hornet nest.

In 2021, the hornets hit the media again when three more nest were located and destroyed by the department.

On Wednesday, the Washington Department of Agriculture tweeted that DNA samples show the hornets from the 2020 and 2021 nests are related.

The WSDA followed up the tweet with another saying the 2021 nests were not started by the same queens that started the 2020 nests.

According to KXLY the queens in the 2021 nest did not mate with any of the nests the WSDA knows about. While this doesn’t necessarily mean there are more nests out there, there is currently no evidence of it.

Should Iowa be Worried?

Experts at Iowa State University say there is no evidence that the Asian giant hornet could survive in Iowa. The Hornets don’t tolerate very hot or cold temperatures. Colonies that have been found in the U.S. tend to be in more temperate areas.

Iowa’s Killer Insect

The Asian giant hornet got its nickname of murder hornet because they prey on other bees. They are known to attack other hives and destroy them in a matter of hours. While you may not find any here in Iowa, the cicada killer wasp is a common insect found around Iowa.

The cicada killer wasp is the largest wasp you are going to find in Iowa, growing up to 1.5 inches long. While their large appearance may be off-putting, they are not here to create a nuisance to humans.


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