Watch for giant hornets

The Asian giant hornet has yet to be detected in North Carolina, but the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is asking residents to keep an eye out and report sightings of the pest.

The world’s largest species of hornet, the insects measure 1.5 to 2 inches long and have an orange-yellow head with prominent eyes, and black-and-yellow stripes on their abdomens. They do not generally attack people or pets but are known to rapidly destroy beehives.

“There are many wasp and hornet look-alikes that are beneficial insects, so residents are asked to exercise caution before deciding to kill any large hornets,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler.

Cicada killers and European hornets do occur in North Carolina and can be confused with the Asian Giant Hornet.

To report a suspected sighting, take a photo and submit it using the instructions at projects.ncsu.edu/cals/plantpath/extension/clinic/submit-sample.html.

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