Winning the battle against Asian hornets

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 27-09-2019 01:00:00 · 7 Comments

Measures to control the spread of the Asian hornet “plague” are proving effective in Portugal according to the authorities.

The Ministry of Agriculture has assured that the plan for surveillance and control of the Asian hornet (wasp) in Portugal “is effective,” adding that by June more than 5,600 nests had been destroyed, as many as the total in 2018.

In statements to radio station TSF, the Minister of Agriculture, Capoulas Santos, said that in the first six months of this year 5,645 nests were destroyed, which means that “in the last three years, 14 thousand nests have been destroyed”.

The Action Plan for the surveillance and control of vespa velutina (Asian hornet) in Portugal adopted by the Government in January 2018 and strengthened in early 2019, “is effective”.

In addition to the plan, the Ministry recalls that a manual of good practices has been adopted “which must be scrupulously respected, taking into account the high capacity for dispersion and dissemination of this species, as well as the danger it may represent.

“It is a species that, if it feels threatened, attacks in swarms, and can carry out persecutions over hundreds of metres, producing multiple bites”.

Among the measures adopted is the SOS Vespa Platform of the Institute for Nature and Forest Conservation (ICNF), created in 2015, but which is currently under maintenance.

On this electronic platform, sightings of Asian hornets and their nests are recorded, as well as the state of the nests (destroyed or active).
The information collected is forwarded to local councils which are in charge of destroying the nests.

In 2019, the Government provided €1.4 million to

support councils in the destruction of nests, a sum for which 137 councils have applied.

As part of the implementation of the plan for the control and surveillance of vespa velutina in Portugal there is a specific training programme that has already reached over a thousand trainees.

Since its detection in Portugal, the progression of the Asian hornet has been recorded from north to south and from the coast to the interior.

The Asian hornet is a predator of bees, so it has a direct impact on beekeeping production, requiring permanent monitoring of hives by beekeepers, especially in places where the presence of vespa velutina is detected.


Eucalyptus ´Eucalyptus globulus´ is also considered an invasive species. (moderator, you can add this to previous comment ; )

By João from Lisbon on 03-10-2019 01:29

Vespa Velutina is one of only dozens fo invasive species in Portugal...from plants, mammals, reptiles, and fish to birds, the list is very long.

In some countries and some cases, a ´bounty´ is collected by those involved in eradication programs of invasive species.

Perhaps a ´bounty´ for just reporting the location of this pesky wasp would be sufficient to gain the upper hand in it´s control. A 50 euro bounty would encourage those in local populations to report the nests first, and help to limit the negative impact they pose to our environment. Obviously, proffesional exterminators would be alerted and compensated for their subsequent removal.

By João from Lisbon on 03-10-2019 01:20

Moderator, Mr. Chura’s unbalanced remarks should be removed. Asian wasps probably arrived on foreign fruit, which most of us eat at some time. World trade is not a crime, and although we need more staff and more biocontrol at port, harsh punishments are not the answer.

By Jude Irwin from Beiras on 02-10-2019 07:53

A few pictures of the beasties would be helpful!

By Scarlett Verkuijlen from Algarve on 30-09-2019 05:49

It is possible to automatically defend bees with a laser and audio detection gear. It was done some years ago for mosquitoes by Jordin Kare and company.

By Keith Henson from USA on 30-09-2019 04:10

In every article about this species, you need to show photos of it and it’s nest to aid recognition and differentiate it from less harmful species.

By Jude Irwin from Beiras on 29-09-2019 09:55

If people were not so egotistical in wanting things from foreign countries because their eyes desire,
We wouldn't have this problem
Those egotistical are definitely brain dead an are only concerned about what they want an have no consideration for others,
People like this should be jailed for life an that not a 20 year sentence that can be pardoned, People would be to darn scared to bring in unwanted problems like this,

By David Chura from Other on 28-09-2019 03:37
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