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

PQBeat Podcast: Pro hockey goalie Connor LaCouvee of Qualicum Beach

Listen: Netminder talks BCHL, college, pros and training during a pandemic

Petition underway to get RDN to improve Sandpiper water quality

Campaign urges regional district to make issue a priority

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

COVID-19: Some gyms re-open in Parksville Qualicum Beach

Fitness facilities create space to allow appropriate social distancing

High tech fish transport system set up to ‘whoosh’ salmon past Big Bar landslide

Fish will spend roughly 20 seconds inside the system, moving at roughly 20 metres per second

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Snowbirds jets will not be leaving Kamloops, just yet

The Snowbirds have been in Kamloops since May 17 when a plane crashed killing Capt. Jennifer Casey

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

COVID-19 checkpoints ‘up to them,’ Bonnie Henry says of remote B.C. villages

Support local tourism economy, but only if you’re invited in

CVRD testing Shawnigan water after complaints of metallic taste, odour

“This type of problem has come up a number of times in summers in the past”

Three people facing mischief charges after protests at Premier John Horgan’s home

Special prosecutor was appointed to avoid real or perceived undue influence

Most Read