Monitoring for the Asian hornet

Monitoring for arrival of the Asian hornet is strongly encouraged throughout the UK, but especially in areas where likelihood of arrival is considered to be highest (S & SE England). We strongly encourage that all beekeepers monitor for the Asian hornet. Should you wish to monitor for the hornet’s arrival, some helpful tips and advice on how to make your own trap can be found in our fact sheet ‘An Asian hornet monitoring trap‘ and on our youtube video How to make an Asian hornet monitoring trap.

Information from beekeepers in France shows that nest numbers can be reduced over time by > 90% in areas where traps are deployed in springtime coupled with IPM techniques and nest location and destruction. Should the Asian hornets become established in the UK, springtime trapping will thus be a very useful management tool. When hanging out traps, please remember that it is important that damage to native wasps, hornets and any other insects is kept to an absolute minimum.

Where to report sightings

If you think you have seen an Asian hornet, please notify the Great British Non Native Species Secretariat (NNSS) immediately. In the first instance sightings should be reported through the free Asian Hornet Watch App, available for Android and Iphone.Other methods of reporting the hornet also include using the NNSS online notification form. Finally, you can send any suspect sightings to the Non Native Species email address . Where possible, a photo, the location of the sighting and a description of the insect seen should be included.

If you would like to know more about the Asian hornet or any other Invasive Species, the NNSS website provides a great deal of information about the wide ranging work that is being done to tackle invasive species and tools to facilitate those working in this area.

It is also important that beekeepers sign up to BeeBase. In the event that the Asian hornet (or any other exotic threat to honeybee colonies) arrives here, efforts to contain it will be seriously jeopardised if we don’t know where vulnerable apiaries are located.

Hornet images courtesy The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA), Crown Copyright