From the Gallic lands, the Asian wasp (so called because it comes from Southeast Asia) or black wasp (due to its characteristic color) has been expanding to other European countries, such as Portugal and has come to Spain, where its stings ended life of three people in the summer of 2018 and two others have died this year.
The deaths related to his puncture have caused panic and commotion, to the point of deserving the nickname of “murderer”. But is it really that dangerous? The answer, according to Rentokil Initial, the main pest control company in Spain, is “no more than a common wasp”. The difference is, mainly, that its size is much larger, so “it is capable of inoculating more venom and producing a more painful reaction .
Still, no one wants to have to be bothered by an insect, much less one that is painful. For this reason, it is convenient to know how to recognize it and take the appropriate measures to avoid contact with it. This type of wasp has almost the entire black body (with the exception of some dark brown areas) and some yellow or orange spots, as on the head). “It is easy to recognize since it is the only one so dark in all of Europe, ” says the document from the Ministry of Ecological Transition. In addition, they are much larger: they can be around 3.5 centimeters.
How to avoid being bitten
Rentokil Initial’s recommendations for avoiding Asian wasp stings are very easy to follow.
- Inspect the house for hornets during the spring and summer seasons. If one is found, a distance of between 3 and 5 meters must be maintained.
- Keep garbage cans covered as food can draw them indoors.
- Close doors and windows or use mosquito nets to prevent them from getting through.
- If one is observed, it is important to stay calm, not yell or wave your arms to scare them away. Sudden movements can make them aggressive.
- Avoid strong colors and odors. Like garbage, scents like colognes or perfumes can also attract them.