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Oh Great, Now We Have to Worry About ‘Murder Hornets’?!

2020, please stop.

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I know it’s only May, but I think we can all agree that as far as years go, 2020 has been just one long poop sandwich buffet. But in case you thought that the coronavirus pandemic was more than enough reason to write off 2020 entirely, I have some terrible news. Apparently, Asian giant hornets have been spotted in the state of Washington.

The Asian giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia) is also known by the terrifying moniker, the “murder hornet”. Their queens can grow up to 2.2 inches long, and their stings are said to be some of the most painful and toxic in the insect world. Their stingers are long enough to penetrate a beekeeping suit, and victims have likened the pain to being stabbed with a hot piece of metal.

COOL COOL COOL VERY COOL. The hornets are known for attacking bee colonies, where they use their sharp mandibles to decapitate the bees and bring home their thoraxes to feed their young (that’s contender for most upsetting sentence I’ve written ever?). These murder hornets can wipe out a hive in just a few hours.

For a world that is already suffering from a dwindling bee population, the Asian giant hornet is a formidable foe. While only a handful have been spotted in the Pacific Northwest, beekeepers and entomologists are working hard to track and destroy hornet hives. But the clock is ticking to keep these hornets from establishing a serious and permanent residence in North America. Chris Looney, an entomologist at the Washington State Department of Agriculture, said “This is our window to keep it from establishing, … If we can’t do it in the next couple of years, it probably can’t be done.”

Have you stopped screaming yet? Nope, me neither! Considering that these IRL tracker jackers have chosen this cursed year to descend upon us, the internet has respondedthe only way it knows how: jokes jokes jokes.

2020 please.

(via New York Times, image: 20th Century Fox)

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Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. She currently lives in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband and two poorly behaved rescue dogs. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.