Beekeepers John Holubeshen, left, Moufida Holubeshen, Peter Lange and Conrad Berube took down a nest of Asian giant hornets on Wednesday night behind Robins Park in Nanaimo. (Photo submitted)

Nanaimo beekeepers take down nest of invasive giant hornets

One nest eradicated at Nanaimo’s Robins Park, but there are still Asian giant hornets around

Local beekeepers went and disturbed a hornets’ nest last night.

Four people, including members of the Nanaimo Beekeepers Club, eradicated a nest of Asian giant hornets that they located along the creek behind Robins Park in Harewood.

Conrad Berube, local beekeeper, said it was John and Moufida Holubeshen, were provided with information about stings and specimens.

“They had a map of tracking information like that and made some very good guesses as to what the biological requirements of the hornets would be,” Berube said.

They called him up because he has experience with removing yellow jackets’ nests, and along with club president Peter Lange, the four of them bundled up in heavy clothing and took down the colony. A carbon-dioxide fire extinguisher was used to “anaesthetize” the hornets, Berube said.

“We proceeded to remove the wasps basically by the handful, putting them in the alcohol until we got to a point where we could remove the rest, which we did,” he said. “We were pretty sure we got the great bulk of the inhabitants.”

Berube said the group initially hoped it was close to wiping out the hornets, but he said there has now been a report of another nest site close by.

“It may be more than a few nests in the area. We’ll see. The good news is, they seem to be restricted to a small area,” he said.

Berube was stung four times during Wednesday’s operation and said although he’s fine, someone who isn’t used to the venom could swell up considerably. He said aside from the health risks for humans, the hornets eat honeybees that are already being harmed by varroa mites and pesticides.

“Our honeybees are already under siege by a variety of factors…” he said. “A predatory hornet that could take out a colony in a matter of hours would be none too welcome.”

The B.C. Ministry of Agriculture noted in a press release that the hornets are being preserved for further research and testing to try to determine their point of origin. The report of a second nest in the area is being investigated, the government said. Those who come across an Asian giant hornet can call the Invasive Species Council of B.C. at 1-888-933-3722 or visit http://bcinvasives.ca/report.

RELATED: Invasive honeybee-eating hornets with toxic sting found in Nanaimo



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

West Kootenay jogger barely escapes bruin attack

Man spends two hours up in tree, bear not located

Young farmers find a home through land-matching program

Young Agrarians links would-be farmers with landowners who have land to spare

Morning start: A history of the Arrow Lakes

Here is your Kootenays’ morning start for Wednesday, May 27

Restorative pole project underway in Edgewood

The pole was made almost 50 years ago to pay respect to local First Nations

B.C. legislature coming back June 22 as COVID-19 emergency hits record

Pandemic restrictions now longer than 2017 wildfire emergency

B.C.’s essential grocery, hardware store employees should get pandemic pay: retail group

Only B.C.’s social, health and corrections workers are eligible for top-ups

Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto vying to be NHL hubs, but there’s a catch

The NHL unveiled a return-to-play plan that would feature 24 teams

B.C. sees 9 new COVID-19 cases, one death as officials watch for new cases amid Phase Two

Number of confirmed active cases is at 244, with 37 people in hospital

Nanaimo senior clocked going 50 km/hr over limit says her SUV shouldn’t be impounded

RCMP say they can’t exercise discretion when it comes to excessive speeding tickets

Illicit-drug deaths up in B.C. and remain highest in Canada: chief coroner

More than 4,700 people have died of overdoses since B.C. declared a public health emergency in early 2016

CMHC sees declines in home prices, sales, starts that will linger to end of 2022

CMHC said average housing prices could fall anywhere from nine to 18 per cent in its forecast

B.C. Paralympian named to Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame

Three-time world and Paralympic gold medalist Sonja Gaudet is part of 11-member class

Risk of COVID-19 low in schools, Interior Health states

Medical Health Officer reassures parents as some children and staff head back to class June 1

Most Read