Sightings of Asian hornets significantly down this year


Nineteen queens have been seen, with all but five being captured, and two primary nests have been discovered.

The invasive insects have been spotted across the Island, from St Catherine and Archirondel to St Brelade’s Bay and Corbière.

By the end of April last year, 33 queens had been seen (27 of which were killed) and six nests had been destroyed.

Alastair Christie, Jersey’s Asian hornet co-ordinator, said it was not known why numbers this year were so much lower than 2019.

‘You might think the lower number is great news, but it could just be that, for whatever reason, the season is a week or so later this year,’ he said.

‘I don’t think the reduced number of sightings has anything to do with the lockdown. If anything, people are getting outside more than ever as they are making the full use of their two hours. And people are getting out into their gardens too, so if anything the lockdown is working in our favour,’ he added.

The Asian hornet volunteers are not allowed to actively track nests and visit people’s homes during the lockdown, but anyone who finds a queen is being asked to trap it and keep it in their freezer for later analysis.

‘People have been absolutely fantastic in reporting sightings and doing what they can to trap the queens. We can’t thank them enough,’ said Mr Christie.

Anyone who sees an Asian hornet should phone 441633.


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