Mindy Weisberger

Massive, deadly hornets affectionately known as “murder hornets” “hornets from hell” and “yak-killer hornets,” have been spotted in the U.S. for the first time.

These Asian giant hornets (Vespa mandarinia) are the size of your thumb; they’re orange-headed and orange-striped; and they’re extremely pointy at the back end. The hornets, which were detected in Washington state, prey on bees and are known for ripping the heads off honeybees by the thousands, The New York Times reported on May 2. Enormous curved stingers and powerful venom make the hornets uniquely dangerous to humans, and their stings are responsible for as many as 50 deaths in Japan each year, mostly due to allergic reactions to the venom, according to the Times.

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