Where Did European Hornets Travel From?

The European Hornet, also known as the Giant Hornet due to its massive size, was first introduced to America back in the 1800’s. They came into the New York area and have spread throughout America. They are well established in Virginia. Most wasps and hornets found in America are active during the day and rest at night unlike the European hornet. Due to the European hornet’s size and social nature, they're regarded as a threat and often require removal. Eagle Pest Services will share more about the European hornet and how to prevent their invasion.


European Hornet Identification

The European hornets are able to get up to two inches in length. They have the same body shape as a bald faced hornet. However they are a reddish brown color with yellow abdomen and black stripes with a pale face. The European hornet is found in 31 states, most being in the East or Central part of America. For such a large hornet they are social and can have up to 400 colony members. They appear or become most active during the late summer months when they will gather food. European hornets will prey upon other insects such as grasshoppers, flies, and other wasps and bees. They also feed on tree sap, fruit, and honeydew. Unlike most wasps, hornets, and bees, the European hornet is active at night. They are drawn to light. Often a European hornet will fly inside home due to the lights inside the house. They may even continually run into closed windows when the lights are on.


How to Find & Identify a European Hornet Nest

European hornets will take over other beehives or build their nests in hollow trees and even in different types of human structures. They will crawl inside hollow places and begin to build their nest from the inside out. When a European hornet invades an area, they can become very destructive. They will rip tree bark for their sap, kill trees, and shrubs. Like bees and other species of wasps, and hornets, they can and will sting to defend their nest. However, they have a smooth stinger and are able to repeatedly sting anything that threatens their home. Their stingers also produce venom that hurts and causes itchiness and swelling. For those who have allergies to stings, European hornet stings can prove life threatening.


Hornet & Wasp Prevention

One way to help keep European hornets away from your home is that you can use yellow colored light bulbs for all of your exterior lighting. The yellow light deters many pests including European hornets. For those with fruit trees or gardens, you are at a higher risk of attacking European hornets. Remove any spoiled or unwanted fruit throughout the season. The scent from decaying fruit draws more European hornets. Maintain a clean yard and regularly prune or care for all of the surrounding vegetation. Most European hornets like a quite place with little disturbances to nest. Regular yard maintenance helps deter hornets.


Stinging Insect Control

If a hornet’s nest is discovered on your property or close to your home, you may want to call a professional. Unlike most bees, wasps, and other hornets that have poor vision at night, the European hornet can see excellent at night. As there is no safe time to remove the hornet nests, they are a bit more hazardous to remove on your own. Contact a pest control company that provides bee, wasp or hornet hive removal services. Eagle Pest Services can help protect your home or commercial property from pests all year long. If you need help combating pests, contact Eagle Pest Services today.