Japanese Hornets Slaughter Bees

I was reminded (by Missy) of a nature program I had seen on TV regarding insect defenses and offenses. Although the Bombardier Beetle was the director’s favorite, I have to say that the hornets vs. bees portion was my all-time favorite. The gist of the story was that 30 hornets could easily exterminate 30,000 bees in a few hours with minimal losses. The depiction shows hornets – roughly 5 times the size of a honey bee – severing bees from their respective heads in single bites. A well-remembered shot from the TV broadcast showed a slow-motion bee tossed through the air over the backs of its assailers with such nonchalance as to say, “What are these pebbles before me that I may thrust to the rear for proper disposal?” If you weren’t concerned with hornets before, now you’re vomiting from fear. The moral to this story is, “don’t be a bee.”


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  2. Those hornets were attacking were attacking European honey bees which have no natural defense against Japanese giant hornets. However, their distant cousins native to Honshu, have no problem defending themselves. In fact they use an interesting technique: they use their intensified body heat to overheat the wasp. In effect they “roast” the hornet to death. Nature’s checks and balances.

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