Peter Crabbe, our Asian Hornet Co-ordinator has been assisting with the recent sighting in East Dorset … here is his latest update. 02.10.19
The original sighting was from a member of the public who had noticed hornets on an aphid covered willow bush in his garden for the last few weeks! It was only when he went to Abbotsbury tropical gardens and saw a poster that he realised it was Asian Hornets so reported it.
By 10.30am we were seeing Asian hornets feeding at a bait station. There were several bait stations surrounding the area. Some inspectors were monitoring ivy as the hornets were going for that in preference to some of the bait. Some of the hornets had been marked earlier in the week and Kevin Pope, our SBI and I caught one which was then released in the middle of the search area. This was seen to ﬂy into a wood. However some other trapped ones ﬂew in the opposite direction when released, just to complicate matters.
Around midday all the hornets vanished so we decided to search the woods. One of the inspectors had seen some activity near one tree and Kevin spotted the nest high up in a large oak tree. It was about 18 inches in diameter. Through binoculars you could see Asian hornets going in and out. Next step is to kill and remove the nest and then monitor the traps for a number of days to make sure there are no other nests.
Please make sure that you monitor traps regularly and remain vigilant.