Death of a Warrior – Asian Giant Hornet

While taking a walk this afternoon in the hills near my home I happened upon a dying specimen of the famous Asian Giant Hornet (Vespa mandarinia). These insects are called suzumebachi (sparrow bee) in Japanese and are the largest hornets in the world. The insects make their living hunting other insects and specialize in attacking honeybee colonies where they will kill all of the bees and consume the larvae. The native honeybees of Japan, however, are not without defense as they will sometimes ambush en-mass an intruding suzumebachi, covering the hornet with their own bodies. This causes the body temperature of the wasp and bees to rise, killing the wasp which has a lower maximum temperature tolerance than the bees. Imported commercial honeybees have no such defense and are easy victims to suzumebachi in Japan and other parts of Asia. Correction: In the video I commented that the suzumebachi may consume the honey of a bee hive which is incorrect as these giant hornets actually eat the bee larvae.

The following poem was submitted for this video by YouTube member reymiland:

“Fearless, the
warrior falls.
A sting can kill!

..flutter,
..shudder,

..stillness.

No judge to life
death comes.”

—-

Welcome to the the Real Japan Monsters blog. Bringing you high definition videos and photographs of some of Japan’s most fascinating wildlife.

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~ by softypapa on July 3, 2010.

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