Japanese honeybees learned how to ‘cook’ murder hornet: report

Deadly hornets from Asia that measure up to 2 inches long and can wipe out entire honey bee colonies within hours have been spotted for the first time in the U.S.

These so-called “murder hornets” represent a threat to the honeybee population. The hornets-which have been blamed for 50 deaths a year in Japan—have been spotted in Washington, and according to the New York Times, can rip through a hive, killing a bee every 14 seconds.

But researchers found an interesting defense that Japanese honeybees have employed against the larger opponent.  Bees in Japan have been known to form a ball around the invader and vibrate to produce heat that essentially can cook a hornet to death. The report said bees can survive in extreme temperatures and can kill a hornet in an hour.

The Times reported that European honeybees—which are common in the U.S.—try to sting the hornet, which proves futile due to their tough exoskeleton. A researcher told the paper that the Japanese honeybee learned to adapt through generations.

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“Our honeybees, the predator has never been there before, so they have no defense,” Ruthie Danielsen, a beekeeper in Washington, told the Times.

Fox News’ Robert Gearty contributed to this report 

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