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Asian giant hornet

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Asian giant hornet
Temporal range: Miocene-present, 15.97–0 Ma
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Vespidae
Genus: Vespa
V. mandarinia
Binomial name
Vespa mandarinia
Smith, 1852

The Asian giant hornet (Vespa mandarinia)[1] including the color form called the Japanese giant hornet,[2][3] and its name commonly said in Mainstream media in the United States, the Murder hornet, is a hornet originally found in Asia. It is the largest hornet, and so is the largest social wasp. It is very dangerous and hard to get rid of because it is a very invasive species. It was reportedly found in the western United States for sometime, but now it is gone from there.[4][5][6][7]

V. mandarinia is in the genus Vespa, which has every true hornet, including the Asian hornet and European hornet. There were originally subspecies, but it has been replaced by color forms,[8] there are 3 color forms known and are commonly classified as non-offcial subspecies, which is "japonica", "magnifica", and "nobilis".


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  1. "Giant hornet gets new name". agr.wa.gov. Retrieved 2022-07-25.
  2. Smith-Pardo, Allan H; Carpenter, James M.; Kimsey, Lynn; Hines, Heather (May 2020). "The diversity of hornets in the genus Vespa (Hymenoptera: Vespidae; Vespinae), their importance and interceptions in the United States". Insect Systematics and Diversity. 4 (3). doi:10.1093/isd/ixaa006.
  3. Piper, Ross (2007). Extraordinary Animals: An Encyclopedia of Curious and Unusual Animals. Bloomsbury Academic. pp. 9–11. ISBN 978-0-313-33922-6.
  4. BC Gov News: Asian Giant Hornet nest eradicated in Nanaimo.
  5. USDA New Pest Response Guidelines: Vespa mandarinia Asian giant hornet.
  6. "Hornets". Washington State Department of Agriculture.
  7. "WSDA News Releases". Washington State Department of Agriculture.
  8. Carpenter, James M. & Kojima, Jun-ichi (1997). "Checklist of the species in the subfamily Vespinae (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Vespidae)" (PDF). Natural History Bulletin of Ibaraki University. 1: 51–92.