Mary’s Monday Metazoan: I think she might be sending a message

I don’t know why Mary suddenly thinks highlighting a giant man-killing hornet would be appropriate…

…but I’m not going to argue with her.


  1. says

    Holy crap. This is totally not your fault, PZed, but I’m gonna have nightmares tonight! Whoosh.

    I have both an allergy and a phobia to these wee thingies: the allergy can kill me, the phobia comes in my reaction to the stimulus, which is irrational and probably danger-increasing (think anime-character flailing of arms and running about). I once asked a police officer to shoot into my car (back in the days when they didn’t do that at the drop of a pixel) to free it of the infestation (two wasps), while parked in the middle of a six-lane valley-crossing bridge in Toronto (see above re: two wasps). Thankfully for all concerned, the officer in question bravely got in and removed the wasps in some manner. I don’t know whether she killed them or what, but she made it so I could get back in my car and drive on.

    She also recommended I maybe consider putting the windows up.

  2. ButchKitties says

    In the words of Godzilla, “Yeah… that looks like a nice tall glass of NOPE.”

  3. says

    @2: Then do *not* read any of the news stories on this topic — the wasps in question are *not* “wee thingies”. Just a friendly warning.

  4. says

    LOL @6, no, I wasn’t going to read the story. Ima have a nightmare just from seeing the picture twice, I’m sure as hell not going to go read more about such concentrated evil. :D

    Besides, “wee things” is just a relative thing. Compared to me, they are wee; in my eyes, they are monumentally enormous, and also have enormity. EVIL! KILLER!

    Several years ago I was photographing a wedding ceremony in the US when I was introduced to a local Baltimore resident that is some sort of digging hornet or something, and is I swear not less than a 3 or 4 cm long, as big as my little finger. Apparently non-aggressive, but did I ever have a long few nights trying to get back to sleep, and in my memory the thing’s about as big as my hand.

    *shudders and looks for comforting things*

  5. says

    At the risk of anthopomopomorphosizing, am I the only one who thinks it looks like it’s staring at the camera thinking “wtf?”

  6. gingerbaker says

    These bloody b******s may be Asian or Japanese in name and origin, but they are here all over the U.S. as of this year. Be afraid.

  7. NitricAcid says

    The players in my D&D game hate these things…or at least, the fictional, statted-up version thereof….

  8. mothra says

    The U.S. reports of Vespa mandarinia appear all to be eye wittless testimony rather than reports from qualified people (i.e. Entomologists- Hymenopterists). The similar but smaller European hornet, Vespa crabo, was first detected within the U.S. in 1840, from New York. It is now widespread east of the Great Plains.

  9. mothra says

    Insert [Recent] reports. . . . I have not checked reports to see if A.P.H.I.S. [Animal Plant Health Insepection Service] has authentic records of this creature from port interceptions.

  10. michaellatiolais says

    I recently saw some fascinating behavior from some yellow hornets which are apparently fairly common in the San Francisco bay area. One landed on the remains of a piece of bbq chicken and proceeded to cut a fairly substantial piece of cartilage off with its mandible before flying off. Two returned and proceeded to continue this harvest until I threw the piece away.

  11. spamamander, internet amphibian says

    Nuke…orbit… you know the drill. (Yes, I am apiphobic… how did you guess?)

  12. =8)-DX says

    My ex-father-in-law used to kill hornets with his slipper. Wasps were much easier – he just caught those in his hand and broke their back by throwing them on the ground. I’ve also killed a few hornets in my time, but admittedly not this big – I’d probably just scare this one away by spreading my hands out and flailing.

  13. Azuma Hazuki says

    IIRC, the Crested Honey Buzzard eats these.

    I know all about the Cane Toad problem in Australia, and other cases of invasive species for pest control. This is different. I don’t care if we’re navel-deep in crested buzzard down by 2050; these things are the living embodiment of nope.

    They are the size of a lumberjack’s thumb. Their venom is acid When they sting, they coat the victim in a “hey come sting this guy!” pheremone. 30 of them can take on 30,000 bees and win. They are the man-headed scorpions described in Revelation.

    In short: do not want. But Mr. Buzzard does.