Nest of invasive Asian giant hornets destroyed in Nanaimo

A group of beekeepers and some government scientists have tracked down and eradicated a nest of invasive and destructive Asian giant hornets in Nanaimo.

The nest was discovered in the ground in the Robin's Park area on Wednesday evening, according to a press release from the B.C. government.

With some advice from the provincial apiculturist and help from a government entomologist, the beekeepers used carbon dioxide to clear out the nest.

The hornets will be preserved and examined to determine where they might have come from, according to the press release. Officials are also investigating reports of a second nest in the area.

Asian giant hornets are the largest of all hornet species and they feed exclusively on insects, including honeybees.

The insects were found for the first time in B.C. in August, and reports from the public helped lead the way to the nest.

Stings from these hornets can be very painful, according to the province. People who are stung more than 10 times are at risk of developing a toxic or allergic reaction.

The hornets are currently dormant, but anyone who comes across a nest should leave it alone and leave the area.