T Nation

Giant Wasps


Fuck. That.


I seriously hope that's a photoshop job.


Looks like an Asian hornet. Tho photo is misleading, though. They usually grow to just under 2 inches, which is large, but the photo makes it looks huge. They are about the size of the cicada killers, Sphecius speciosus.

Those hornets are the ones that attack honey bee hives. There was a whole thread a while back on here about that.




Anyone have any experience getting stung by one of these cocksuckers? I run away like a little baby from regular yellow jacket/hornet type things. I think I would have a heart attack if I saw one of those in real life.


this is out of wikipedia


The stinger of the Asian giant hornet is about 6 mm (¼ in) in length,[1] and injects an especially potent venom that contains, like many bee and wasp venoms, a cytolytic peptide (specifically, a mastoparan) that can damage tissue by stimulating phospholipase action,[2] in addition to its own intrinsic phospholipase.[3] Masato Ono, an entomologist at Tamagawa University near Tokyo, described the sensation as feeling "like a hot nail being driven into my leg."[1].

An allergic human stung by the giant hornet may die from an allergic reaction to the venom; but the venom contains a neurotoxin called mandaratoxin[4] which can be lethal to people who are not allergic if the dose is sufficient. About 70 people die each year in Japan after being stung by giant hornets.[5]

A few interesting notes on Vespa mandarinia's venom and stinger:

* The venom contains at least eight distinct chemicals, some of which damage tissue, some of which cause pain, and at least one which has an odor that attracts more hornets to the victim.
* The venom contains 5% acetylcholine, a greater concentration than is present in bee or other wasp venoms. Acetylcholine stimulates the pain nerve fibres, intensifying the pain of the sting.
* Vespa mandarinia uses its large crushing mandibles, rather than its sting, to kill prey.
* The venom of the Asian giant hornet is more toxic than that of most other bees or wasps, giving this species one of the greatest lethal capacities per colony.
* The enzyme in the venom is so strong that it can dissolve human tissue.
* Like all hornets, V. mandarinia has a barbless stinger, allowing it to sting repeatedly.


Eh, the description of it's venom is basically like any colony dwelling wasp. It is used for defense, hence it has pain inducing properties. Now I'm not saying it doesn't hurt, but if you've been stung by other paper wasps, bumble bees, honeybees, you know just about what it feels like to get stung by this guy. However, since this hornet is bigger, it has a bigger venom gland, so it injects more venom than it's smaller cousins, which will hurt more.

One thing to note about wasps and hornets is that solitary nesting females use their sting to subdue prey. It's a paralyzing shot rather than a enemy deterrant. The stings from solitary nesters (mud daubers, potter's wasps) have been reported as less painful than those of colony nesting wasps. It is believed that worker stings are for nest defense, and since paper wasps and hornets don't hunt prey, this stands to reason. The adult wasp feeds on nectar. They gather caterpillars and grubs, which are minced before returning to the nest, to feed the larvae. Paper wasps and hornets have powerful jaws that allow them to collect their quarry without the use of a sting.

Mud daubers, tarantula hawks, and other "spider wasps" are solitary nesters that prey on spiders, and they need the sting to subdue prey that is often as big as them. This sting also paralyzes the spider, but does not kill it, whose living body will serve as food for the larvae. The female lays an egg on the spider, backfills the nest hole, and the egg hatches onto it's living dinner.


Reason #67 why indoor sports are better: Shit like that.

Fuck going outside.


Haha, it's not that bad outside.

Then again, I practically lived in the woods as a kid. Pretty much got used to nature and it's dangers.


One of my goals for my upcoming trip to Japan is to catch one of those bastards. I just hope he doesn't call out for some help from his buddies.


god speed


Are you an entomologist? This isn't the first time I've seen an informative post on insects from you. It's always nice to see something on biology that doesn't put me to sleep. :wink:


Haha, technically no. I do have a bio degree, with a concentration in zoology. Insects have always been a fascination for me. I guess, when you grow up next to hundreds of acres of bottomland forest you tend to notice a lot of nature and it's behaviors. I enjoy informing people on the things that are around them all the time but don't notice or don't understand. There is such an amazing world going on all around our human activities that sometimes I wonder how it goes unnoticed by so many.

It's a bit nerdy, but when I see people get interested in a zo topic, as you did, I feel that my studies are useful and worthwhile.


You will find me nowhere near one of those things. FUUUUUUUUCK -- THAAAAT!!!




pretty sure it would kill you, at least if this is one of those jap giant hornets.


A single sting, no...unless you then learn you are allergic and go into anaphylatcic shock. Then you could most certainly die.


Haha, if you're quoting the South Park episode, I laughed my ass off at it.


Looks like BigRagoo was spot on with suggesting an Asian Hornet.

Here's another pic.

Still agree with belligerent - Fuck. That.


tastes like?