News

Find the latest information on Asian hornet sightings in the UK

01 October 2018

Find the latest information on Asian hornet sightings in the UK
Find the latest information on Asian hornet sightings in the UK on a new gov.uk webapge.

For more information on Asian hornet and links to useful materials to help with identification, visit the alert page here

Identification sheets and posters are available online and can be ordered, free-of-charge, by contacting nnss@apha.gsi.gov.uk.

If an Asian hornet is seen it can be reported via an online form, the Hornet Watch app; or by sending a picture to the alert email address: alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk

Asian hornet update

26 September 2018

Asian hornet update
A new nest has been located by the National Bee Unit in New Alresford, Hampshire, following a report from a member of the general public. The nest was promptly destroyed by the APHA Wildlife Team and the NBU is continuing to search for further nests, with support from local beekeepers.

As previously reported there have also been confirmed cases in Hull and Cornwall. Two nests have now been destroyed in Cornwall and surveillance in this area continues. No live hornets have been seen in Hull since a single dead Asian Hornet was found in a house, despite extensive surveillance.

The New Alresford response highlights the importance of public awareness of this species and we are encouraging all stakeholders, particularly in the Cornwall and Hampshire regions, to help raise awareness of the need to be vigilant and report this species.

Identification sheets and posters are available online and can be ordered, free-of-charge, by contacting nnss@apha.gsi.gov.uk.

If an Asian hornet is seen it can be reported via an online form, the Hornet Watch app; or by sending a picture to the alert email address: alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk


BES invasive species symposium announced

25 September 2018

BES invasive species symposium announced
The British Ecological Society has announced their invasive species symposium will be held on 1-2 November 2018 in London.  The emphasis of this meeting will be on connecting people, sharing ideas and building a foundation for better collaboration between ‘pure’ and ‘applied’ invasion scientists.

The programme will include 3 keynote speakers drawn from different invasion science sectors. They are also offering 12 x 5-minute ‘lightning talk’ slots for oral presentations and an afternoon poster session. The talks and posters will be focused on research that information invasive species management and/or policy. 

Find out more: https://www.britishecologicalsociety.org/event/invasion-science-connecting-research-management-policy/

Asian hornet: second Fowey nest destroyed

21 September 2018

Asian hornet: second Fowey nest destroyed
The National Bee Unit has located and destroyed a second Asian hornet nest in Fowey, Cornwall.

The Asian hornet is smaller than our native hornet and poses no greater risk to human health than a bee. However, they do pose a risk to honey bees.

Investigation work by the National Bee Unit has continued in the area since the discovery of a nest in the town earlier this month. That nest was promptly destroyed and removed.

Work is now ongoing to ensure no further nests are present. Local beekeepers in the surrounding area are supporting this effort, including in Liskeard where a single sighting of an Asian hornet occurred. Members of the public are also encouraged to report any further sightings of Asian hornets.

Nicola Spence, Defra Deputy Director for Plant and Bee Health, said:

“While the Asian hornet poses no greater risk to human health than a bee, we recognise the damage they can cause to honey bee colonies.

“I am pleased our well-established protocol to contain them is working so effectively in Fowey.”

Intensive surveillance by inspectors from the National Bee Unit has taken place around Hull, East Yorkshire, after the finding of a dead Asian hornet in a house. No further Asian hornets have been seen in the area. There is no evidence to suggest the sighting in Hull is linked to the sightings in Cornwall.

Nicola Spence added:

“It is reassuring that we have seen no further hornets in Hull however the discovery of a second nest in Fowey emphasises the need for continued vigilance.

“During September the number of hornets in a nest can reach a peak and this will increase the chances of members of the public seeing this insect.

“I want to encourage people to look out for any Asian hornets and if you think you’ve spotted one, please report your sighting through the Asian hornet app or online.”

If you suspect you have seen an Asian hornet you can report this using the iPhone and Android app ‘Asian Hornet Watch’ or by emailing alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk. Identification guides and more information are available.


Asian hornet: Fowey nest destroyed as two new sightings confirmed in Liskeard and Hull

11 September 2018

Asian hornet: Fowey nest destroyed as two new sightings confirmed in Liskeard and Hull
The National Bee Unit has called for the public to report any suspected Asian hornets after two further confirmed sightings in Liskeard, Cornwall and Hull, east Yorkshire. At this stage, there is no evidence to suggest the Cornwall and Hull sightings are linked.

The Asian hornet is smaller than our native hornet and poses no greater risk to human health than a bee. However, they do pose a risk to honey bees and work is already underway to identify any nests in the Liskeard and Hull areas, which includes deploying bee inspectors to visit local beekeepers and setting up monitoring traps. As part of this work, bee inspectors from APHA National Bee Unit are carrying out surveillance and monitoring in a 1-2 km radius around the sightings.

The hornets in Fowey were first discovered earlier in September and the National Bee Unit moved swiftly to find the nest and remove it. During September the number of hornets in a nest can reach a peak and this will increase the chances of seeing an insect.

Nicola Spence, Defra Deputy Director for Plant and Bee Health, said:

These sightings in Liskeard and Hull underline the need to remain vigilant. I want to encourage people to look out for any Asian hornet nests and if you think you’ve spotted one, please report your sighting through the Asian hornet app or online.

While the Asian Hornet poses no greater risk to human health than a bee, we recognise the damage they can cause to honey bee colonies. I am therefore pleased our well-established protocol to contain them has worked so effectively in Fowey.

If you suspect you have seen an Asian hornet you can report this using the iPhone and Android app ‘Asian Hornet Watch’ or by emailing alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk. Identification guides and more information are available.


Asian hornet identified in Cornwall

04 September 2018

Asian hornet identified in Cornwall
The National Bee Unit has confirmed a sighting of the Asian hornet in the Fowey area of south Cornwall.

This Asian hornet is smaller than our native hornet and poses no greater risk to human health than a bee. However, they do pose a risk to honey bees and work is already underway to identify any nests, which includes deploying bee inspectors to visit local beekeepers and setting up monitoring traps.

Previous outbreaks of the Asian hornet have been successfully contained by APHA bee inspectors who promptly tracked down and destroyed the nests. The intention is to do the same in this instance.

Nicola Spence, Defra Deputy Director for Plant and Bee Health, said:

While the Asian Hornet poses no greater risk to human health than a bee, we recognise the damage they can cause to honey bee colonies. That’s why we are taking swift and robust action to locate and investigate any nests in the south Cornwall areas following this confirmed sighting.

Following the successful containment of the Asian hornet incursion in North Devon last year and Tetbury previously, we have a well-established protocol in place to eradicate them and control any potential spread.

We remain vigilant across the country, working closely with the National Bee Unit and their nationwide network of bee inspectors.

Bee inspectors from APHA National Bee Unit have started carrying out surveillance and monitoring in a 1-2 km radius around the initial sighting.

If you suspect you have seen an Asian hornet you can report this using the iPhone and Android app ‘Asian Hornet Watch’ or by emailing alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk. Identification guides and more information are available.


Thin strip of image show tree trunk and bark