First-Ever 'Murder Hornet' Nest Found in U.S. and Destroyed
The first U.S. "murder hornet" nest has been discovered and eliminated.
"Murder hornets," or Asian giant hornets as they are officially called, first emerged as a concern after four sightings of the bee-slaughtering insects were verified in Washington State in December 2019. Since then, the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) has been working to prevent the invasive species from establishing a presence in the state, and they made headway towards that goal Saturday when they removed a nest newly discovered near Blaine, Washington.
"Got 'em," the WSDA wrote in a Facebook post.
WSDA workers vacuumed the hornets out of the tree cavity where their nest was found and into canisters, The Associated Press reported. They donned protective gear thick enough to defend them against the hornets' six-millimeter long stingers. The suits also included face shields because the hornets can spit venom.
The tree will now be cut down and the nest searched for newborn hornets and to see if any queens have already left. Scientists think there may be other murder hornet nests in Washington State.
Quite a morning shooting Asian giant hornets and our WA Ag workers taking them out in Blaine. Love those sting-resi… https://t.co/uooInt70T9— Elaine Thompson /// journalism matters (@Elaine Thompson /// journalism matters)1603583575.0
Murder hornets earned their nickname because they attack in groups and can inject a victim with as much venom as a snake bite. They are native to China, Japan, Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam and other Asian countries, where they kill as many as three dozen people every year.
While that may sound like a lot, species of wasps, hornets and bees already common in the U.S. kill an average of 62 people a year, The Associated Press pointed out.
Honeybees in Japan have evolved to surround invading hornets and vibrate until they cook the intruder alive, The Guardian reported. But North American honeybees have not evolved with Asian giant hornets, so they would not have any such defense strategies. Farmers are concerned that the hornets could devastate U.S. honeybee populations if they were to spread. This would also have serious consequences for all the foods that bees pollinate.
The WSDA discovered the first U.S. Asian giant hornet nest around 4 p.m. on Oct. 22. The nest was located after the WSDA tied radio trackers to some captured hornets with dental floss, The Associated Press reported.
The rumors are true - our entomologists located the first-ever #AsianGiantHornet nest in the U.S. late yesterday. P… https://t.co/0LmpZToVHj— WA St Dept of Agr (@WA St Dept of Agr)1603464308.0
The first Asian giant hornet was trapped in the U.S. in July, the WSDA said. Since then, its entomologists have been working to locate and eliminate any nests.
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By David Reichmuth
Over the last month, I've seen a number of opinion articles attacking electric vehicles (EVs). Sadly, this comes as no surprise: now that the Biden administration is introducing federal policies to accelerate the roll out of electric vehicles, we were bound to see a reaction from those that oppose reducing climate changing emissions and petroleum use.
The majority of EVs sold in 2020 were models with a starting price (Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price) under $40,000 and only a fifth of models had a starting price over $60,000.
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On Friday, China set out an economic blueprint for the next five years, which was expected to substantiate the goal set out last fall by President Xi Jinping for the country to reach net-zero emissions before 2060 and hit peak emissions by 2030.
The Great Trail in Canada is recognized as the world's longest recreational trail for hiking, biking, and cross-country skiing. Created by the Trans Canada Trail (TCT) and various partners, The Great Trail consists of a series of smaller, interconnected routes that stretch from St. John's to Vancouver and even into the Yukon and Northwest Territories. It took nearly 25 years to connect the 27,000 kilometers of greenway in ways that were safe and accessible to hikers. Now, thanks to a new partnership with the Canadian Paralympic Committee and AccessNow, the TCT is increasing accessibility throughout The Great Trail for people with disabilities.
Trans Canada Trail and AccessNow partnership for AccessOutdoors / Trails for All project. Mapping day at Stanley Park Seawall in Vancouver, British Columbia with Richard Peter. Alexa Fernando<p>This partnership also comes at a time when access to outdoor recreation is more important to Canadian citizens than ever. <a href="https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/daily-quotidien/200527/dq200527b-eng.htm" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Studies from the spring of 2020</a> indicate that Canadian's <a href="https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/moneytalk-mental-health-during-covid-19-1.1567633" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">mental health has worsened</a> since the onset of social distancing protocols due to COVID-19. </p><p>The <a href="https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/safe-activities-during-covid19/art-20489385" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Mayo Clinic</a> lists hiking, biking, and skiing as safe activities during COVID-19. Their website explains, "When you're outside, fresh air is constantly moving, dispersing these droplets. So you're less likely to breathe in enough of the respiratory droplets containing the virus that causes COVID-19 to become infected."</p><p>TCT leadership took this into consideration when embarking on the accessibility project. McMahon explains that there has never been a more important time to bring accessibility to the great outdoors: "Canadians have told us that during these difficult times, they value access to natural spaces to stay active, take care of their mental health, and socially connect with others while respecting physical distancing and public health directives. This partnership is incredibly important especially now as trails have become a lifeline for Canadians."</p><p>Together, these organizations are paving the way for better physical and mental health among all Canadians. To learn more about the TCT's mission and initiatives, check out their <a href="https://thegreattrail.ca/stories/" target="_blank">trail stories</a> and <a href="https://thegreattrail.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/TCT_2020-Donor-Impact-Report_EN_8.5x14-web.pdf" target="_blank">2020 Impact Report</a>.</p>
By Kiyoshi Kurokawa and Najmedin Meshkati
Ten years ago, on March 11, 2011, the biggest recorded earthquake in Japanese history hit the country's northeast coast. It was followed by a tsunami that traveled up to 6 miles inland, reaching heights of over 140 feet in some areas and sweeping entire towns away in seconds.
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Nuclear power generates about 10% of the world's electricity (TWh = terawatt-hours). About 50 new plants are under construction, but many operating plants are aging. World Nuclear Association / CC BY-ND
<div id="07c42" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="ac2be7bdc1a748c089d24d27f01992a2"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1366694917045690369" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">🇸🇪 Nuclear Safety statement in IAEA BoG: Important safety upgrades introduced at 6 remaining nuclear power stations… https://t.co/FrgHv4N4UL</div> — SwedenUN Vienna 🇸🇪 (@SwedenUN Vienna 🇸🇪)<a href="https://twitter.com/SwedenUN_Vienna/statuses/1366694917045690369">1614680434.0</a></blockquote></div>
Author Najmedin Meshkati holding an earthquake railing in a Fukushima Daiichi control room during a 2012 site visit. Najmedin Meshkati / CC BY-ND
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