European Hornets

, 12 September 2018
European Hornets
© Bob Foreman

By James Duncan

Woods Mill Engagement Officer

There's little doubt that the European hornet, Vespa crabro, is a rather fearsome looking insect. But this ferocious exterior betrays a species that is in fact rarely aggressive. Unlike their infamous relatives, hornets are unlikely to disrupt your picnic. Their sheer size - between 2-3 cm's for workers and males, 3-4 cm's for queens - and riotous buzz can however make them an intimidating proposition. They're our largest and most impressive eusocial wasp species, displaying the very highest level of organisation of animal sociality and frequently more than doubling the size of our more familiar common wasp, Vespular vulgaris. Both belong to the order Hymenoptera, comprising bees, wasps, ants and sawflies. Woods Mill currently resounds to the frantic commotion of hornets - particularly at night. This is where they differ from other members of the wasp family, Vespidae. Hornets are attracted to light. This behavioural trait can leave them viewed with no small amount of trepidation. On warm autumn evenings there's little doubt they'll pay a visit if their nest is placed in close proximity to a well-lit dwelling. Many a recent Woods Mill moth trap has been plagued by them. 

Hornets can of course potentially pack a punch. They harness a sting typical of their family group, though it's non-barbed and won't be pulled from the hornets body, unlike that of a honey bee. It's used predominantly in defence of the hive. The sting doesn't contain high levels of toxic species-specific compounds that tend to be wielded by invasive Asian hornets, and it's toxicity is on average lower than that of the honey bee, Apis mellifera. It is of course worth noting that stings can still trigger allergic reactions, and those susceptible to wasp venom will likely suffer the same from hornets. But the simple fact is that the European hornet is a docile creature, avoiding conflict and rarely displaying any form of aggression unless the nest is approached or the colony is threatened. It suffers from an undeserved reputation.

The hornet queens are the sole colony survivors of a UK winter and they emerge as the weather finally starts to warm in early spring. They waste little time searching for a suitable location for their paper-pulp nest, mixing saliva with chewed plant fibres to create a hardy cement. Though the hornets display an avid attraction to light, the nest site will be quite the opposite, most likely built in a darkened tree hollow or sheltered cavity, usually two metres or so above the ground. Queens lay eggs into individual paper cells which then hatch as infertile workers. Whilst these tend the nest the queen settles into life as an egg-laying machine. The nest expands throughout the summer with new queens and males emerging in early autumn, keen to mate after a 'nuptial' flight. Life is short for the males who quickly die off, followed a short time later by the original queen and workers. The newly mated queens will then search for a hibernation site, never returning to the original nest.  

© Neil Fletcher

© Neil Fletcher

Only 60 years ago the European hornet was a rare beast in the UK, and it was only central southern England that harboured a population. In the last 30 years it's substantially increased its range, spreading both east into Sussex and Kent, and north towards Yorkshire. Unfortunately it's still much maligned in many areas of the world and is in fact locally endangered and even threatened with extinction in parts of Europe owing to the destruction of its nests.

Hornet dietary requirements are surprisingly varied and their substantial hunting abilities sees them capture a wide variety of invertebrate prey. Interestingly this prey is largely used to feed the growing brood, not the adults. In return for this supply, the larvae willingly oblige the adults by exuding a sugary liquid for them to feed on. They have a huge appetite for high energy food sources and can also be found feasting on tree sap, nectar, fruit and carrion. Hornets ultimately do a fantastic job in predating what are frequently regarded as both garden and agricultural pests. Their assistance in maintaining the natural balance of other invertebrates is no doubt a benefit and it seems a great shame that they themselves should be considered a pest. Their presence in a farm or garden should perhaps be welcomed with open arms. 

How to identify Asian Hornets


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Comments

  • Steven Robinson:

    Hi James. Interesting read. Having worked in woodlands at wakehurst as a nature reserve warden for 30 years the hornet is a fairly recent visitor and often occupies a dormouse box or 2 . I agree they are a creature that keeps its self to itself and l was very comfortable with their close presence. However last September walking the same route with my dog l have done countless times l was stung repeatedly on my head, arms and back. No matter how far l ran they continued to chase and sting the dog was stung too. And l would say having been stung by wasps and honey bees that a hornet sting packs a far bigger intense pain then the wasps and bees. So guess what I’m saying is that l now have a respect for the hornet and never assume that they will not attack and sting. It was a good painful lesson and l always educate visitors on my experience not to be complacent that the hornet will not attack and sting although 99% of the time they will buzz by. Cheers steven

    21 Sep 2018 17:41:00

  • Frank:

    Just seen our first European Hornet this year, in Burghfield, came for a quick drink and brush up before flying off.

    25 May 2019 16:48:00

  • Teresa:

    This bank holiday weekend i’ve had to remove 2 from the house or perhaps it was the same one on two different occasions? We live not far from Woods Mill. They are a bit of a surprise, as they are so big.

    28 May 2019 19:04:00

  • Christine I.E. White:

    Have also just seen ( for the first time ever! ) the above European Giant Hornet,in our garden in Poundbury, Dorchester, Dorset – on the same day – 25th May 2019.

    29 May 2019 09:08:00

  • Sharon Barker:

    Hi James, I’m in north Essex and we regularly see hornets here. I’ve just been watching (and videoing on my phone) a hornet flying low over my garden pond and almost hovering as it repeatedly dipped its tail (not head) into the water over a small area of pond weed. Any idea what it was doing? Thanks. Sharon

    30 May 2019 11:43:00

  • Mia Pollitt:

    Hi James, I experienced seeing for the first time a European Hornet on 23rd May 2019, it was trapped in my sitting room by garden door, in Crewkerne, Somerset. Wondered why the dog didn’t want to go into the sitting room !

    31 May 2019 15:41:12

  • Jill Gainsford:

    Never seen these before, but have seen two today (or the same one twice). They are massive! We live between Heathfield and Uckfield.

    31 May 2019 17:59:06

  • Jill Gainsford:

    Never seen these before, but have seen two today (or the same one twice). They are massive! We live between Heathfield and Uckfield.

    31 May 2019 18:43:00

  • Fleur:

    Have just seen my first European hornet. It was dipping it’s ‘tail’ into our recently installed garden pond. Happy to see new wildlife being drawn to the water, though I wouldn’t feel happy if ideas any nearer !

    01 Jun 2019 10:37:00

  • Tina:

    We saw a European hornet for the first time yesterday in our garden in a Redditch, Worcs, we were amazed at the size of t!

    02 Jun 2019 04:46:00

  • john buckler:

    just found dead hornet well inside our house having never seen one before. This is Somerset on the mendips close to cheddar gorge.

    02 Jun 2019 08:18:00

  • Rupert:

    European hornet Hagley Hall, Worcs 02/06/19

    03 Jun 2019 08:18:00

  • Andy:

    One of these beauties landed on our patio door, massive and very striking! Plymouth

    05 Jun 2019 19:22:00

  • Mark:

    I had never seen one in Oxfordshire, or anywhere else for that matter, before this summer, 2019. There is clearly a nest close to where I work. They are regular visitors now. Impressively large, like flying thumbs. They look kinda nice too.

    08 Jun 2019 11:25:00

  • philippa barton:

    I have what I am pretty certain is a European hornet next in an empty bee hive. what should I do about it?

    09 Jun 2019 14:21:00

  • Shelley:

    I have just seen one of these on the roof of my house. It truly was huge and the buzz was extremely loud! I dropped my garden shears and ran for cover ! I live in Cardiff

    10 Jun 2019 11:33:00

  • John Dunn:

    A queen was showing an interest in a small bird box, thought it was just hunting but there was evidence of cell building. I moved the box about 10 meters as it was too close to my back door. Happily nest building continues. I was surprised it chose such a small site. I live in Tadley North Hampshire

    10 Jun 2019 16:24:00

  • Angela:

    12 June 2019 European hornet, a queen, 3.8cm, very lively, in bedroom in Devon village. Trapped and then put it outside next morning. It eventually flew away.

    13 Jun 2019 22:04:00

  • Sharon:

    Just caught 4cm one inside for second time within a few days (so maybe a queen and same one). Definitely had them around us for last 5 summers at least. We live next to woods in Chailey, in the heart of Sussex. Glad to have been able to look up info about them. Letting ‘her’ out a bit further away this time…

    14 Jun 2019 13:30:00

  • dhiren smiles:

    Having removed a European Hornets nest with 9 populated cells week or so ago from a disused nest box, we now have a second colony starting in a nest box on the north face of the house. This is a second queen, even larger than the first easily 5cm long. We live in North Devon.

    15 Jun 2019 13:42:00

  • Dee Smith:

    Just had a visit from Hornet, flying through window of cottage where we are staying on holiday in the Bodmin, Cornwall area. Apparently the owners have been visited before

    18 Jun 2019 07:19:00

  • Bryan:

    Caught a European Hornet today and was absolutely blown away by how big they actually are! The one I caught was over an inch in length and was very colourful indeed. Wish I could’ve posted a pic 😔

    18 Jun 2019 13:09:00

  • D. Henchliffe:

    Regularly see hornets on the marina where I live in the south Derbyshire.
    I noticed they were catching wasps & cutting their heads off with a pile( off heads)on the floor.

    20 Jun 2019 14:53:00

  • First saw a European Hornet in my Abergavenny (South Wales) garden last summer. We keep bees so I was alarmed to see two yesterday. Thank you for your information.

    21 Jun 2019 09:20:00

  • Shelagh Graham:

    This species of hornet has been seen three times at my daughter’s house in Central Lancashire. Twice in the greenhouse and once in the house.

    22 Jun 2019 17:16:00

  • Ade:

    Found two or three recenrly in my cottage, I always release them. Do they nest in roofs commonly ???
    Also great advice, thank you.

    22 Jun 2019 20:36:00

  • Chris Sellers:

    I have seen several of the workers in and around my house over the past fortnight (I live in East Devon). While being reminiscent of a Lancaster bomber (one actually flew within a few inches of my right ear, leaving a draught of wind – seriously) none has offered or shown any aggression. I am now trying to educate my daughter about these fascinating insects – such as the meaning of the markings on these insect (signifying to potential predators that it would be unwise to mess with them). My main concern is that my dog shows a very marked propensity to try to bite any and every flying insect in and around the house – I had to dissuade her from trying to bite a hornet this morning which was crawling about on one of my shoes!

    23 Jun 2019 13:01:00

  • James:

    Just caught a queen hornet making a nest in my garden in central devon.

    23 Jun 2019 19:06:00

  • Jackie Wood:

    We live at Upper Hartfield, East Sussex, on the fringes of Ashdown Forest. Plenty of European hornets here, we spot them daily. One came down the chimney and was discovered by my husband as he removed ash. It was sooty and cross! We kept our distance. I can confirm attraction to light. My bedroom window was open for one minute this evening before a hornet flew in.

    23 Jun 2019 19:33:00

  • Richard:

    I have now seen 6 or 7 of these, just West of Looe, in Cornwall, over the last month. Most have been very large. Today’s was around 40-45mm.

    25 Jun 2019 20:20:00

  • Cara Smith:

    Hi, Just found a nest in my shed, Its freaking me out? Any advice please, I can send pictures? Thanks

    28 Jun 2019 12:33:21

  • Robin Skipper:

    Seen the Hornet three times around our work shop in Hadlow Dowen East Sussex it was on the gate post for a good hour the other day ,then came back the next day flew around for a bit then off ,can’t mistake the noise thay make ,I got a picture of it , the size off it very pretty really did not seem aggressive like wasps though

    28 Jun 2019 21:29:00

  • Stephen:

    Hi, just been woken up this morning, 29/06 by loud droning buzz in bedroom. Huge hornet doing slow circuits of the room. I got out of bed and pulled curtain back from open window to allow it easy exit which it took. I live two miles west of Stratford upon Avon. Presume this hot spell brought it northwards.

    29 Jun 2019 08:24:00

  • Alison:

    I have just come across one of these buzzing in and out of our nesting box (near York). It’s an absolute beast, and very loud indeed. I’m happy enough to leave it there but my husband is seriously allergic to wasp stings – does anyone know if these are likely to induce a similar reaction if he were to be stung?

    29 Jun 2019 14:58:00

  • David LAWTON:

    I have just pickled up a dead giant hornet in the house after we got back of holiday. We live near to Bakewell in the Peak District

    30 Jun 2019 13:16:00

  • Richard:

    Found one of these dead in my Daughter’s bedroom. It was huge!! Must of been a queen. We live in a wooded area in Wiltshire, just South of Marlborough. Savernake Forest is about a mile away!!

    30 Jun 2019 22:29:00

  • Barry Harper-Smith:

    Just seen my first ever European Hornet. It’s massive! We live near St Neots, Cambridgeshire

    01 Jul 2019 23:05:00

  • Peter barnett:

    Have had two in two days I think 1 drone 1 Queen minal near savernake forest

    02 Jul 2019 13:52:00

  • denis:

    I live near Abergavenny on the Welsh borders and most years I have had 1-2 hornets over the summer but this year I am getting 3-4 almost every day coming into our garden house located near woodland which is probably where they are nesting. They are quite scary with their size and loud buzzing and despite reports of their docility I’d not want to get stung by one as I have a bee/wasp allergy.

    02 Jul 2019 16:15:00

  • Beverly Taylor-Armitage:

    Multiple European hornets 🐝 in the air today. Horses very freaked out and needed to be stabled.
    Hay making in the area so probably nests have been disturbed.

    Incredible size and buzz……like humming birds.

    04 Jul 2019 09:56:00

  • Amanda Tatham:

    This spring I found three enormous hornets hibernating in my cottage, one was alive. I put on a shoe I hadn’t worn in the winter and felt something in the toe – luckily that one was dead. Early this morning a huge hornet flew in through my bedroom window and it’s deep buzz woke me. I quickly drew the curtain. It went out and I closed the window but it hovered outside trying to get in again. I’ve not seen them here before in 55 years.

    06 Jul 2019 06:48:00

  • Joy:

    We were woken this morning by a loud buzzing. I gently moved the curtains to find what I believed to be a hornet. I have never seen one before and was shocked by its size. I gingerly opened the window and it flew away. We live in Staffordshire.

    07 Jul 2019 13:39:00

  • Amanda Tatham:

    This spring I found three enormous hornets hibernating in my cottage, one was alive. I put on a shoe I hadn’t worn in the winter and felt something in the toe – luckily that one was dead. Early this morning a huge hornet flew in through my bedroom window and it’s deep buzz woke me. I quickly drew the curtain. It went out and I closed the window but it hovered outside trying to get in again. I’ve not seen them here before in 55 years.

    07 Jul 2019 20:44:00

  • lesley hutchings:

    Found one on my conservatory floor this morning , placed it outside , hopefully ok as the conservatory is not insect friendly !
    A few years ago one night one flew into our bedroom and hid in the wardrobe , i didnt believe my husband til the next morning when it was trying to get out a window

    10 Jul 2019 12:40:00

  • Moira Billing:

    European hornet appeared in my garden room in Thatcham back in June in one of the lights. Sadly died but was impressive – 3.5cm long and 5.5cm wingspan

    11 Jul 2019 07:57:00

  • Peter Beeson:

    I have just found one of these hornets in Heydon, Norfolk.
    Unfortunately I killed it to photograph and identify – sorry.
    The current ‘bad press’ caused a bit of a knee-jerk reaction, they are quite alarmingly big in a small room, added to memories of an attack by South African hornets when I lived there.

    16 Jul 2019 15:58:00

  • Angie:

    We saw what we thought was an ordinary Hornet but after looking it up after remembering its distinct yellow head and big wings (similar to a Harrier Jump Jet face on) very big with a loud drone…spotted in Creepy Crawley, West Sussex

    19 Jul 2019 10:23:00

  • Barbara:

    Think we have a nest in an oak tree in the garden close ro the house. Mortimer. Berks. Have young grandchildren. What should we do?

    19 Jul 2019 14:19:00

  • Jean Thorpe:

    Had five in the house yesterday… they were madly busy in the evening due to the light. Am happy to live alongside them if we can but they are a little intimidating.
    My son is convinced there is a nest in the chimney…need to investigate.
    Fleet, Hampshire

    24 Jul 2019 07:35:00

  • Jean Thorpe:

    Had five in the house yesterday… they were madly busy in the evening due to the light. Am happy to live alongside them if we can but they are a little intimidating.
    My son is convinced there is a nest in the chimney…need to investigate.
    Fleet, Hampshire

    24 Jul 2019 23:22:00

  • MERRIX JOHN:

    Just found a nest in centre of the lawn

    28 Jul 2019 11:55:00

  • Mark:

    Have these Hornets nesting in one of my bird boxes about 4 metes up on the high point of the house, had 2 in the house (they are VERY BIG) after accidentally leaving the windows open, now see about 5 hornets going in and out all the time, I live in Hailsham.

    28 Jul 2019 16:52:00

  • Kate:

    My 1o year old son just found a found a dead european hornet in his room – really gave us the heeby jeebies!! Found this site while trying to identify what on earth it was! There’s no doubt – it exactly matches the pictures/size description. Never seen one before. We live in NW Leicestershire (East Midlands).

    29 Jul 2019 15:48:00

  • Len:

    Had two in our kitchen last night, managed to catch and release outside. They kept trying to get back in,was unable to open patio doors all evening. Got up this morning and they are on the patio looking very docile or dying, was able to collect them up easy and leave on patio table. Will see what happens when it warms up a bit. They are very beautiful.

    08 Aug 2019 05:58:00

  • Valerie:

    Found one outside resting by the porch light two nights ago, and now tonight one came into the garage buzzing round the light. Managed to catch it and put it out in a large aquarium net! (Hastings)

    08 Aug 2019 21:00:00

  • Laura griffiths:

    Saw four hornets on my mint plant today, they are lovely, albeit scary, to look at!

    13 Aug 2019 21:21:00

  • Sam Dixon:

    15 Aug 2019 09.30am
    One just landed (briefly) on my leg. Astonishing! Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex

    15 Aug 2019 08:30:00

  • Elizabeth:

    Seen a European hornet twice in my garden. A few weeks ago on Blackberry bushes and just seen one again on apple windfalls. I live in virginia water surrey.

    18 Aug 2019 12:04:00

  • M:

    Just seen one outside in the front garden in South London!

    21 Aug 2019 11:26:00

  • Ian:

    We have a nest in our chimney here in Mid Devon there’s lots of buzzing all night We will leave them until they go hopefully they won’t block it!

    22 Aug 2019 17:16:00

  • We have a nest on my father’s studio, you can hear them chewing the wood from quite a distance. We accidentally left the outside light on last night, when we opened the back door a dozen of them invited themselves in! A bit of light reconfiguration and some patience and they left without causing any trouble. On the bright side we’re hardly seeing any common wasps and the garden looks great. It does seem rather late for them to be building a nest… East Sussex.

    24 Aug 2019 06:44:00

  • Sam:

    Hi James
    We had one banging against the kitchen window last night, and it was still there the following morning. It’s very docile so my husband was able to move it to a safer spot up the garden. It’s nearly 3cm! We’re in Cranleigh, Surrey.

    25 Aug 2019 07:54:00

  • Helen Cooper:

    And one in my garden in Cambridge: again, not a species I had seen here before.

    25 Aug 2019 17:35:00

  • peter ritter:

    For the last few weeks we’ve had pretty large hornets fly into the house late in the evening. I usually open the window wide and switch the lights out – to allow them to leave again. But tonight was really bad. There were at least 4. I caught them with a jar and paper and threw then back out, but before I knew it another one was in the house. We can’t keep the windows open at night, which is a problem with this heat. Don’t know what is scarier, the hornets buzz or my wife’s screaming. It sounds like they are being reported all over the country – so not too endangered. I may eliminate one or two the next time one is in the house. I’m sure there is a nest somewhere nearby.

    25 Aug 2019 22:06:00

  • Neil Anderson:

    Just watched one hunting honey bees on flowering plant in my back garden in Sidcup Kent ,it gabbed a bee and flew away with it to a nearby tree.

    26 Aug 2019 13:26:00

  • joanne Thompson:

    Wow I have massive fear of wasps due to a allergic reaction when i was younger so I’m always on edge in the summer, however we have moved to a new house next to the woods, tonight I saw the biggest type of wasp/hornet ever!! thought it was a asian hornet (me thinking worst as always) turns out to be a European hornet. Took a picture of it and identified it, wow they’re big…..I live in Wakefield, west yorkshire.

    26 Aug 2019 20:41:00

  • Mandy:

    We have four or five visit the garden attracted to the lights every evening for the past two weeks. Absolutely massive! Near Southampton Hampshire

    26 Aug 2019 21:02:00

  • Catherine:

    We’ve had four or five huge ones in the house each evening for the last week,m. I’m terrified of them but my partner is able to persuade them to leave pretty easily with cup and paper. We’re in South Norfolk. No idea if we have a nest and having read this article won’t be in a hurry to try and find it!

    27 Aug 2019 21:32:00

  • Liz:

    We have a European hornet nest in a small bee hive (nuc box) in our field. Just noticed it yesterday. I live in Nantwich, Cheshire. They haven’t caused any trouble with our bee colonies. I will not get too close to the nest, just in case….

    28 Aug 2019 08:24:00

  • Sharon:

    I had what I have identified to be a European Hornet in the house last night. The buzzing was so loud and intense. I shut the doors and window overnight and managed to capture it in a glass, before releasing back to the garden this morning. I live near Southend-on-Sea in Essex and only have a small back garden. The nearest woods are half a mile away. Quite scary!

    28 Aug 2019 11:08:00

  • Liz:

    We have a European hornet nest in a small bee hive (nuc box) in our field. Just noticed it yesterday. I live in Nantwich, Cheshire. They haven’t caused any trouble with our bee colonies. I will not get too close to the nest, just in case….

    29 Aug 2019 17:05:00

  • Caroline Crick:

    We’ve had 2 fly in during the evening this week. Never seen them before. Hockley Essex

    01 Sep 2019 21:11:00

  • Yvonne Adam:

    Have one sitting on my front porch. Seems a bit dozy. We live in Billingshurst West Sussex

    02 Sep 2019 14:42:00

  • Catherine:

    I’ve been watching a large nest in the trunk of a Spanish Chesnut next to the pergola in the Hill Garden, Hampstead Heath, north London. They appeared to be foraging from blossom on nearby shrubs but now wonder if they were taking the other pollinators who were visiting the blossom?

    04 Sep 2019 11:26:00

  • Andrea:

    We made the mistake of leaving a bedroom window open for fresh air on a cool September night, and returned to the room to find 20-30 of these beasts sitting on the curtain rail. A couple patrolling around the ceiling. Scared they’re moving in for winter. Considering sealing off the room – there’s just too many to disperse. Does this happen to other people? How do we get them to leave, without pesticides?

    06 Sep 2019 23:01:00

  • Lesley:

    Just had one land on my conservatory window to take a breather. The size of it made me take a closer look and find out what it was. I live in Coventry.

    07 Sep 2019 10:15:00

  • Steve Clarke:

    We have what we’re pretty sure is a European Hornet in our garden today here in Southport, Merseyside. Haven’t seen one for years, is it unusual for one to be this far north?

    07 Sep 2019 10:39:00

  • Lesley:

    Just had one land on my conservatory window to take a breather. The size of it made me take a closer look and find out what it was. I live in Coventry.

    08 Sep 2019 13:23:00

  • Jennifer Ford:

    I’ve been helping out the Wasps for the past couple of years behind our fence in Partridge Green. Honey and water in a dish with apples and blackberries. I usually see about 2 European Hornets join in. However, there are around a dozen that visit now and hardly any wasps. They are amazing.

    13 Sep 2019 16:25:00

  • Baly:

    My brother took a photo of one relaxing on his wall. Never in 49yrs have i seen a hornet in Wolverhampton. First for us.

    21 Sep 2019 17:45:00

  • Peter:

    We have a nest nearby and at the moment they are visiting us every night – attracted by the house lights. FYI we live on Cleeve Hill, Cheltenham.

    24 Sep 2019 07:19:00

  • Jim:

    I work at Langdon Hills in Essex and we have a colony that appears to come biennially!
    They are very territorial but only sting when provoked (I didn’t mean to – honest!)
    Fantastic nest architecture 😁

    25 Sep 2019 07:21:00

  • Laura:

    We have a nest currently somewhere very close to the house and my husband is allergic to wasp stings. One is intimidating enough let alone the amount we are getting at night. Concerned

    29 Sep 2019 21:54:00

  • Mike:

    There is a very large burrow of these hornets on the South Downs just above woodingdean, I sat and watched them earlier today, they were having a good clear out of the burrow entrance.

    10 Oct 2019 14:47:00

  • Kaye hamer:

    Just found a large hornet here in Carmethenshire

    19 Oct 2019 13:51:00

  • Emma:

    Hubby has had a nasty sting off one this morning. It was hiding in his pajama top! Hes in Essex.

    21 Oct 2019 05:42:00

  • Marilyn:

    Saw one of these Hornets earlier this year (maybe June or July). It was huge. I live nearby woods in Lanark, Scotland.

    25 Oct 2019 10:30:00

  • Julie:

    Oct 2019..hornet flew in and landed on me..it was dark outside and attracted to the light on ceiling..i live in hampshire…i have a brilliant photo

    26 Oct 2019 21:18:00

  • Bruce:

    European Hornet in the orchards of our N Yorkshire garden, just north of Harewood village. Warm sunny day, lots of dead fruit on the ground and lots of wasps chewing away! We left it to its business…..

    27 Oct 2019 13:53:00

  • Clair Rushin:

    Witness a European hornet for the first time inside a hollowed tree curious to see it as it was also curious to see I. Bradgate park Leicester.

    05 Jan 2020 13:10:00

  • Ashley Roffe:

    I used to see these regularly when working in villages in the Bodiam area of East Sussex. I have worked on a roof within two metres of a nest and the hornets ignored me. I liken them to a Chinook; you frequently hear one and know what is coming before you see it.

    18 Jan 2020 09:40:00

  • Ashley Roffe:

    I used to see these regularly when working in villages in the Bodiam area of East Sussex. I have worked on a roof within two metres of a nest and the hornets ignored me. I liken them to a Chinook; you frequently hear one and know what is coming before you see it.

    19 Jan 2020 09:08:00

  • Peter Bryant:

    Gnosall, Staffordshire.
    I believe I’ve encountered my first one last night, I was in bed when my son said there’s a wasp in the house, leave it alone I said, it’ll be alright. A few minutes later it was flying round my bedroom lamp.
    During the night I got up, when suddenly I had this very painful burning sensation in my foot, I thought I was having a cramp…but no, I’d stood on the hornet…he was then evicted from the home.
    First one I’ve ever come across, hopefully his presence here is a result of the recent storms.

    25 Feb 2020 07:27:00

  • Julian Mortimer:

    My mum (aged 94) keeps them in the roof, believes them to be good at controlling garden pests. There has been a new nest up there for more than 20 years. Lots of abandoned old ones, too. She left a window open one night, with the lights on, in the dining room. They all came round for tea! She turned off the lights, and they left. Lovely creatures, big yellow heads and edgy markings. Keep meaning to set up a camera in the loft space, but a little hesitant, since that is their turf. Interestingly, don’t see much of them in the garden!

    25 Feb 2020 14:49:00

  • Ian Carroll:

    On holiday in Brittany and found 3 European hornets crawling around together on apex wooden beam in attic bedroom. Tried to usher them out but I was stung on the head and my pal ( who is a beekeeper) was stung on arm. Didn’t half hurt!!! Hurt more than any bee sting, I can tell you!

    14 Jul 2020 16:48:00

  • Patrick:

    There seem to be multiple Swarms of these in the fields behind East Dean in in the South Downs… almost on every other tree And bush .. gave me a bit of a panic as they seemed to be following me while walking my dog… had to constantly swing my jumper around to keep them away!

    REPLY: Thanks Patrick. I doubt very much that these were hornets. They are almost certainly Summer Chafers. These are beetles which congregate on the downs right about now. I was out watching wildlife on the Downs last night and there were a lot about. They are completely harmless and have been here for a lot longer than we have. They congregate on bushes or other tall things. They obviously mistook you for a hawthorn bush.

    17 Jul 2020 20:59:00

  • James England:

    I’ve been stung this year by honey bees (I keep hives) wasps and two hornets. I stood on one in my kitchen a few hours ago. Personally the pain from the hornet is orders of magnitude greater than the wasps or bees. I’m interested in how this is possible if the toxicity is lower? Different type of poison? The pain from a hornet is quite extraordinary. Thanks

    Blimey, sounds like you've been getting your fair share of insect venom this year! Guess keeping hives is likely to make the chances a bit higher. Awesome you have them though, that must be such a pleasure. Interesting you found the Hornet sting significantly more painful, doesn't seem to be the case for everybody. I think envenomation is always complex due to the cocktail of chemicals & I certainly can't claim to be any kind of chemist 😄 I think generally toxicity is lower but the venom contains more of a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine which may make it seem worse. But who really knows! James

    02 Aug 2020 19:12:00

  • Hugh Rooney:

    06/08/2020 – 1.30pm
    Single, apparently foraging, very sizeable hornet (? European) spotted here in Kippen (Stirlingshire). First time spot over the right years we’ve lived here.

    06 Aug 2020 12:47:00

  • Hazelle:

    2 large hornets buzzing round an outside light tonight. Have had a few of these visitors this year. No problems so far…

    08 Aug 2020 22:26:00

  • Ian Cadman:

    just been round to our friends house for a bar b que, the outside lights were on and we noticed a large wasp buzzing around the light, on closer inspection we realised it was a european Hornet, as we watched more Hornets started to appear around the outside lights, we decided to leave when we counted to eight. obviously they must have a nest near by , as they were coming and going with more frequency and growing numbers. keep your burgers Rich we’re off!!!!

    08 Aug 2020 22:32:00

  • Ioan Jones:

    Sighting in North Shrewsbury.

    09 Aug 2020 14:34:49

  • Caroline Penley:

    Wondering how many hornets typically make up one nest? Also wonder why we have only ever seen them at night (if we leave certain lights on). I spend a lot of time admiring other insects but haven’t seen a hornet in daylight.

    A Hornet nest at its peak may contain a few hundred individuals. The workers are active throughout the day and night, though as they're attracted to light we tend to spot them mostly at this time - they're usually bumping into windows! During the day they spend a lot of time foraging within the tree canopy, making them less visible as a whole. James

    12 Aug 2020 08:03:00

  • Pujan Soni:

    We had a European hornet fly in through our bedroom window late last night about 10pm. Thinking it was an Asian hornet (you can’t believe how big the European hornet is til you see it. They are HUGE!), we shut the door and slept in the other bedroom as we lost it somewhere in the room. I can confirm they are attracted to light, they buzz ferociously and contrary to what is said here, this one seemed very aggressive.
    Thinking it had flown out the window we settled into bed the following night to find it creeping next to the bedside lamp inches from our face. Hit it with a shoe and ejected it out of a window. You will be shocked at how big they are, it is not a joke. I dread to think of the size of an Asian hornet. We live in Hayward’s Heath, West Sussex.

    17 Aug 2020 23:21:00

  • Mark Garrity:

    Noticed a large bee in garden, looked it up and found out it was a hornet. We now have 3 or 4 visiting the garden attacking the apples on the Appletree. They tend to Spend all day mining it out just leaving skin. Finished one now on to next Apple. About three times the size of a wasp. Not sure if they are normal Euro Hornets or large variety. Tend to leave us a line. Have a number of pictures but don’t know how to send them.

    18 Aug 2020 20:11:00

  • Mark Garrity:

    Sorry should have said I live in Bagshot.

    18 Aug 2020 20:16:00

  • Lorraine Borley:

    European hornets coming in at night In Basildon Essex x 3 last 2 weeks Aug 2020 and 1 last summer. Pictures taken.

    19 Aug 2020 08:25:00

  • Nicola Percival:

    Should have said – I’m in Tetbury in the Cotswolds

    19 Aug 2020 22:36:01

  • Nicola Percival:

    We’ve had one in our living room this evening. Couldn’t believe the size of it! It came in through the open window and landed on the lampshade. Hasn’t moved from there for hours now. Turned the light off, shut the door and went to bed… window still open so it can make it’s own way out! I have no wish to harm it – although they’re rather intimidating! Except to our very curious puppy of course, had to pop her in the kitchen out of the way.

    20 Aug 2020 08:26:24

  • David Taylor:

    I’ve had four European hornets in my house in the last 6 days. Managed to capture each one and release them with the help of my son. I live in Frant, East Sussex. Been here over 13 years and these are the first hornets I’ve ever seen.

    20 Aug 2020 22:34:00

  • Anne evans:

    My husband has seen a number of them going in and out of a little hole in the brickwork of the pine end of the house.
    Great ! On the other pine end we have a large bee population in the eaves. Too much wildlife for me!!!

    22 Aug 2020 22:00:00

  • Mark:

    Unable to find the nest but we have upwards of 20 hornets each night trying to get into the house. We are unable to have any windows open in the eveing otherwise they get in and we have to try and catch and evict them. On our kitchen windows 2 nights ago we had about 30 of them all together, it was quite frightening. We are surrounded by woods and live just outside Horsham, West Sussex. Would very much like some assistance to remove them as they are very much becoming a pain.

    24 Aug 2020 10:57:00

  • Sussex Wildlife Trust:

    @ Mark: Hornets are certainly attracted by house lights, so if you are able to turn off the room lights, open a window and shut the door they should hopefully leave by their own accord.

    24 Aug 2020 14:22:44

  • Chris Kee:

    Saw a European hornet hovering over a cut meadow, close to the ground near Ockley, Surrey.

    27 Aug 2020 12:59:00

  • James Arbuthnot:

    We have a nest of European hornets in a tree in our garden. They seem to be fine there, and we’re not fussed. But we’ve just acquired a beehive with its colony of, say, 10,000 bees. Will the hornets pose an existential threat to the bees?

    30 Aug 2020 11:04:00

  • Chris White:

    We live in East Devon near a wooded area and have regular European hornet visitors from August onwards. They do keep to themselves, but my main concern is their predatory nature on honey bees. They hunt them in our flower beds and literally spend all day killing them and coming back for more. I don’t want to use any traps but would love to save the bees! Any ideas or advice would be appreciated. Thank you.

    As sad as it is to witness, there really isn't anything to be done. European Hornets are a native species and like many wasps, are predatory, typically feeding other insects to their growing young. However, they won't generally hunt the same prey all year round. Honey Bees are not their only prey and their predation won't impact the overall survival of the bee colony. In many cases they may even predate other insects that are harmful to bee colonies. This of course is markedly different to invasive Asian Hornets, who pose a significant threat to bees. James

    31 Aug 2020 07:36:00

  • Sussex Wildlife Trust:

    @ James Arbuthnot: European Hornets will take honey bees but not habitually, so shouldn’t be a problem to your hive

    31 Aug 2020 09:09:43

  • On our allotment they have a nest at the base of a slatted compost bin, the entrance not 5cm above ground level. This morning, owing perhaps to the drop in temperature, activity was greatly increased to the extent that a one-way system was in place, those exiting doing so via a side entrance.

    31 Aug 2020 11:20:00

  • Jo Barrett:

    I spotted a European Hornet today in my back garden. He was on his own. My neighbours have a pear tree dripping with fruit so I expect he came from there.
    Waterlooville, Hants.

    04 Sep 2020 18:53:00

  • Kat:

    We have a nest just outside our door in a bird box, we live in Devon and In quite a secluded plot surrounded by woodland, there is ample food of all kinds for them, but I have to confess they make me slightly uneasy… we have young (ish) children and cats, dogs etc… they are quite intrusive especially at night! I accept they will be in the woodland, but they’re a little too close to home for me.
    We really are thinking about pest control, which saddens me, because of course they haven’t done anything other than go about their day/nightly duties, but I do have huge concerns about the safety.

    04 Sep 2020 21:21:00

  • Jeff Chambers:

    Live in Horsham West Sussex. Have had 3 of these in the house over the last month. Lived here 14yrs first time we’ve seen them. Wonder if the lockdown has had an effect on their proliferation this year? There must be a nest nearby.

    04 Sep 2020 21:30:00

  • Pippa:

    We live near Usk in Monmouthshire. Never seen one before but there seems to be a nest nearby as almost every night we have at least 1 trying to get in the house. Unfortunately they drive our dog mad and she tries to kill each one she sees, often successfully.

    06 Sep 2020 20:48:00

  • Jamie:

    We are in Groombridge and have just seen the European Hornet 3 nights in a row attracted to our exterior lights. It’s huge!! And what a noise. Awesome

    07 Sep 2020 20:05:00

  • Nicola Percival:

    Should have said – I’m in Tetbury in the Cotswolds

    07 Sep 2020 22:21:00

  • Jane:

    We have several coming in each evening when the bedroom lights are on. Need to remember to close the windows as the noise they make is scary and I’m allergic to wasp and bee stings so need to avoid them. Not seen this many before. There must be a nest nearby but haven’t located it yet. What time of day are they most active? Tunbridge Wells

    08 Sep 2020 07:22:00

  • Anne Harris:

    I have a farm at Lower Dicker East Sussex and regularly have a hornet’s nest and four or five bumble bee nests each year. This year I have two nests only a couple of hundred metres apart ! One in a hollow telegraph pole and one very large one in the hollow wall of an old wooden portacabin (one too many). In the past they have made small nests in hollow poles an one huge nest in next door’s shavings horse dung lump

    08 Sep 2020 15:00:00

  • Jono walker:

    was on my way back from my sons school and I saw a huge European hornet land on the fence next to us, first thing i noticed was the sheer size of it, second was its yellowish/orange face which seemed to be staring right at me! Now I’m absolutely terrified of wasps/hornets so I quickly walked passed, it then flew by me and the sound it made was very very intimidating! Sounded like a may bug. I’m in Hastings, east Sussex and its about the 3rd one I’ve seen in the last year or so.

    09 Sep 2020 10:14:00

  • A Parry:

    We had 2 in the bedrooms last night – Kent East Sussex birders. Never seen a hornet in England before. Relieved to hear that they are unfairly maligned …but nonetheless definitely not keen to have them in the house !

    09 Sep 2020 19:48:00

  • Paul Duck:

    I was in the yard outside my flat in West Sussex yesterday and noticed a rather impressive looking insect on a buddleia flower. After a Google I can say with some conviction that it was a European Hornet. As someone else has mentioned, the head was colourful with a vivid yellow hue.
    I enjoyed having a look but certainly didn’t touch!

    10 Sep 2020 07:26:03

  • A Parry:

    We had 2 in the bedrooms last night – Kent East Sussex birders. Never seen a hornet in England before. Relieved to hear that they are unfairly maligned …but nonetheless definitely not keen to have them in the house !

    10 Sep 2020 13:57:00

  • Sam:

    Hello, we’ve lived in the same house for three years, garden backs onto fields near Cheddar gorge. Each year we have a hornet or two visit our garden, I think the still water and plums may be the reason. But today we saw one slice up a big dragonfly on the road in front, it made 3 trips taking a chunk each time. I even helped chop the long body at one point, it had made such a huge effort! Very uninterested in us. Since learning they fear moving water I now like their visits.

    10 Sep 2020 20:41:00

  • Sam:

    Hello, we’ve lived in the same house for three years, garden backs onto fields near Cheddar gorge. Each year we have a hornet or two visit our garden, I think the still water and plums may be the reason. But today we saw one slice up a big dragonfly on the road in front, it made 3 trips taking a chunk each time. I even helped chop the long body at one point, it had made such a huge effort! Very uninterested in us. Since learning they fear moving water I now like their visits.

    11 Sep 2020 19:16:00

  • Sam:

    Hello, we’ve lived in the same house for three years, garden backs onto fields near Cheddar gorge. Each year we have a hornet or two visit our garden, I think the still water and plums may be the reason. But today we saw one slice up a big dragonfly on the road in front, it made 3 trips taking a chunk each time. I even helped chop the long body at one point, it had made such a huge effort! Very uninterested in us. Since learning they fear moving water I now like their visits.

    13 Sep 2020 13:02:00

  • Emma H:

    We live in Bentley, Worcestershire. Just had 2 hornets attracted to our outdoor lights. They are big and noisy and a bit intimidating. Although they didn’t seem interested in us. There’s an abundance of fruit trees Nearby so I expect that’s the attraction. Last year, 2 flew in to the house in February I think. Docile and massive, again attracted to the light.

    13 Sep 2020 20:16:00

  • Sam:

    Hello, we’ve lived in the same house for three years, garden backs onto fields near Cheddar gorge. Each year we have a hornet or two visit our garden, I think the still water and plums may be the reason. But today we saw one slice up a big dragonfly on the road in front, it made 3 trips taking a chunk each time. I even helped chop the long body at one point, it had made such a huge effort! Very uninterested in us. Since learning they fear moving water I now like their visits.

    14 Sep 2020 08:26:00

  • Susan Jarvis:

    A hornet has been visiting the grapes in our greenhouse in North Devon for several days. About an inch long, so would it be a male or worker having a last fling?

    14 Sep 2020 16:57:00

  • Mike Sankey:

    We have a family of hornets around here.
    Normally it’s one a year, but currently we have them attracted to the lights in the garden, at least 5 at a time

    14 Sep 2020 20:14:00

  • Margaret:

    Outskirts of Liphook East Hampshire, rural location. Been sat indoors every evening for the past 2 weeks with the lights out and the windows closed. We have a massive European hornet population. As in they are clamouring over our windows trying to get in. This year is the worst I’ve ever known it . Looking outside at the street lights we can see them buzzing around. The area is crawling with them. Good for nature, bad for my electric bill as we’ve had to purchase extra fans to keep cool during this warm weather . Netting is up over all windows but they chew through it ! Roll on winter when we can have our lights on!

    15 Sep 2020 20:11:00

  • SammyJ:

    hello, found a European hornet in our bathroom this morning, no windows and had to trap it in there till the hubby gets home as dont want my 2 little kids annoying it.
    Shocked me the size of it for definite.
    I’m on haywards heath, mid sussex.

    16 Sep 2020 10:22:00

  • Roger:

    Edge of New Forest.
    Just had to evict 4 european hornets from our kitchen. They are fast they can get back into the house before I can.

    16 Sep 2020 21:47:00

  • Louise Goodwin:

    Saw a European Hornet while I was at work yesterday in St Helens on the Isle of Wight. Landed on a customers glass which I lifted and placed onto an empty table. About 3cm in length,never seen one before. It buzzed off back into a wooded area shortly after.

    19 Sep 2020 06:34:00

  • Jonathan Davies:

    Not seen a hornet for three years, but there were loads around Bubbenhall Meadow Nature Reserve (Warwickshire) this afternoon. Big respect to these beautiful insects.

    19 Sep 2020 15:38:00

  • Poppy:

    We’ve seen these a few times recently, we first had a few around the garden (about a month ago) and then had one fly into one of our bedrooms. We thought that was it but a couple of days ago, we had one fly into our kitchen making a horrendous noise and it was massive but tonight me and my family were all sat in the conservatory and we had around five or six all flying around the windows trying to get in to the lights it was terrifying!-south west Dorset

    19 Sep 2020 20:44:00

  • Linden:

    I have just seen two hornets in the garden, under an old plum tree. I have lived here for over 30 years and never seen one here before. I live in Nuneaton Warwickshire

    21 Sep 2020 16:45:00

  • Ronalie Cobley:

    We have a nest in one of our sheds, wedged between cans of paint. Quite large and fascinating, from a distance.. Several hornets zooming in and out all day, very active and industrious! Unfortunately gorging on our apples before we can! They seem to exude a brown sticky mess dripping from the nest! Shed window left open at night!
    We are in W. Sussex countryside. Don’t want to destroy them…hoping they will go eventually so we can clean up!

    22 Sep 2020 12:54:00

  • Andy:

    56 & just seen my first European Hornet, it’s attracted to something in the compost bin. Beautiful. (Bishop’s Waltham)

    22 Sep 2020 14:03:00

  • Dan:

    European Hornet Queen buzzed past my head in my Worcester garden yesterday (west of the river) and it sounded like a helicopter! Huge and lovely beast. Trapped it to observe it for a while and take pictures. Released it after about 30 minutes and it flew off to the horizon. Fantastic.

    29 Sep 2020 10:33:00

  • Natalie:

    Just saw a European hornet crawling around on the pavement. It scared me a little however I still managed to snap some pictures of it. This was in East Sussex near Eastborne!

    07 Oct 2020 16:28:00

  • Heather:

    Just found a queen I think in my ironing today .it the flew into the tree in our garden.
    Rawcliffe goole

    09 Oct 2020 19:18:00

  • Tracy:

    One of these european hornets paid us a visit tonight. Caught in my hair scary experience it was huge so might have been the queen one.
    Saffron walden , essex

    12 Oct 2020 20:53:00

  • Linda:

    Just released a huge queen that came down our chimney near Norwich in Norfolk.

    16 Oct 2020 19:26:00

  • Paul:

    I have what appears to be a European Hornet trapped in my (cold) wood burner, approx 30mm long. Not sure how it got in there, but it does look a little sooty!

    16 Oct 2020 23:16:00

  • Roger:

    Found a dozy hornet outside our kitchen door this morning. 4cm in length so assume it’s a queen. First one I’ve ever seen down on the Somerset levels near Taunton.

    23 Oct 2020 17:56:00

  • Nick:

    We’ve had a European Hornet nest in the roof of our old stone garage next to the house all summer (South Gloucestershire).Mindful of their benign reputation we’ve watched them busily come and go all day from their hole ,flying fast over our patio on their missions and they never bothered us ( although they were attracted by the backdoor light at night). I did some work on the garage about 10 feet from their hole and they were fine with it. They’ve finally just vanished, presumably to hibernate.

    24 Oct 2020 11:33:00

  • Kris Jones:

    Just seen a European hornet on the bricks of our garden shed – it stayed for quite a while. We ve never seen one close up before- very large! We live near Nantwich in Cheshire.

    25 Oct 2020 10:54:00

  • Sheila Short:

    European Hornet got in my hair in Kenilworth yesterday, seemed quite sleepy. Noisy, think it came from a wheely bin outside a charity shop as I dropped stuff off

    31 Oct 2020 20:47:00

  • Bill:

    My son had one in his sitting room recently in Colwyn Bay.It sat & watched Match of the Day then flew away out of the window! Based on the coloration probably a Wolves fan! Very beautiful insects.

    30 Dec 2020 11:54:00

  • Bryden:

    Just found one of these in a shoe on the patio, currently giving sugar water as he/she seems very weak. South Yorkshire here end of March – I was surprised and glad I didn’t put my shoe on!

    30 Mar 2021 18:55:00

  • Bryden:

    Just found one of these in a shoe on the patio, currently giving sugar water as he/she seems very weak. South Yorkshire here end of March – I was surprised and glad I didn’t put my shoe on!

    31 Mar 2021 17:38:00

  • Dunmore:

    19.30 May 6th 2021
    Just found one in the bedroom. Debated what to do with it as it looked so fearsome. Decided killing it would make too much of a crunch so we let it go into the field opposite. Guessing it was a queen by the size and time of year so I hope she’s not planning to come back and take up residence! Staplecross, East Sussex.

    06 May 2021 18:34:00

  • Mary Hill:

    I’ve just found one of these in my sons room. It’s a rainy day and it was hugging the radiator. I’m in West Yorkshire. I’ve put it in a glass and given it some sugar water. And kept it warm. I reckon she’s a queen as 3-4cm big. Question is: what do I do with her?

    20 May 2021 15:39:00

  • Shirley Gray:

    Just had a huge one head butting the bedroom window… do I need to be worried? ;)

    27 May 2021 21:38:00

  • Ian Shepherd:

    Just found a queen in my lounge – think she might have fallen down the chimney, as I had heard something a few minutes before seeing her on the fire guard. Her wings were damaged or malformed, so she won’t be flying anywhere. I put her in the field over our garden fence, but am now hoping she doesn’t start a new colony in the garden! Rudgeway, north edge of Bristol

    30 May 2021 15:28:00

  • Amanda Jones:

    Just rescued a queen (judging by the size) buzzing in our lounge. We have a wood burning stove and regularly rescue them tapping on the glass from the inside! Fairly sure the eggs are laid on the wood store outside and ultimately incubated in our stove. They’re magnificent, straight from The Land That Tine Forgot.

    31 May 2021 08:20:00

  • Tina Cooper:

    Two seen in past two days, I think different individuals as one seemed to come from the toolshed & the other was outside the day before. Both queens I think. Beautiful creatures. Will they wipe out bees hives though? Live near Arundel W. Sussex

    ANSWER: European Hornet will take insects including honey bees, but wouldn't wipe out a hive

    31 May 2021 16:57:00

  • Sue Garvey:

    North Staffordshire: a very large insect was hovering over our new pond today in the sunshine, frequently dipping into the water. Thought it was a humungous wasp at first, but it was waaaay too big for that (about 4-5cm long) and not as yellow, and it was too fat to be a damselfly or dragonfly. A bit of research tells me it may have been a hornet. Glad to know they’re not as EVIL as wasps!!!

    02 Jun 2021 13:49:00

  • Steve Cook:

    I’m down in a lovely village in Neath called Bryncoch in South Wales. One decided to come in though an open kitchen window. I heard an intermittent drone-like buzz and thinking it might be a neighbour out with a strimmer I thought I’d confirm it … holy mother of God I wasn’t prepared for what I saw – it was not a pretty sight (sorry bug lovers!), orangey-brown and about an inch and a half long. Thankfully with a little further opening of the window it flew out. My wife had the same experience in the greenhouse a few hours later – might have been the same one … I’m presuming a queen going by what I’ve read.

    02 Jun 2021 18:59:00

  • JOHN REYNOLDS:

    03/06/21 JUST HAD A MASSIVE QUEEN HORNET IN THE HOUSE AT WELLINGTON HEATH, LEDBURY, HEREFORDSHIRE. WE GET THEM EVERY YEAR BUT THEY STILL SCARE ME. I HAVE NO IDEA HOW IT GOT IN AS I HAVE BEEN IN ALL DAY, SO ASSUME IT HAS BEEN HIBERNATING IN HERE ALL WINTER AND IT SEEMED QUITE DOSY!!!!

    03 Jun 2021 15:49:00

  • Mary:

    Was stung by one in east London last night. Trod on it in the dark, brushed it away with my hand and it stung me again. Extremely painful. Wasn’t sure if it was European hornet or Asian but looking at pics online am fairly sure it was European.

    04 Jun 2021 08:55:00

  • Stephen:

    Back again in the old garage, groggy Burton on Trent Staffordshire lass! Watched as she ‘cleaned’ herself.

    05 Jun 2021 23:01:00

  • Cerrys Hill:

    Aberdare, South Wales, 06/06/21 – Queen European Hornet buzzing around my garden, sounds like a chainsaw! She is absolutely huge and very beautiful.

    06 Jun 2021 15:43:00

  • T Tapper:

    Several European hornets came into the house last summer. Seen one in my son’s bedroom this morning and another or perhaps it was the same one in my daughter’s room this evening. Have decided to close all our windows despite the heat!

    06 Jun 2021 20:22:00

  • Darren:

    Found a dead one today, 6/6/21 in Yorkshire (york). It was in my outside plastic storage box.
    Must be 3 times the size of a normal wasp, shame I can’t upload a picture.

    06 Jun 2021 21:15:00

  • Lisa:

    Hillbrow, West Sussex – found a huge one buzzing around the house, managed to get her and put back outside. (think its a her, over 3cms in length) quite pretty really.

    09 Jun 2021 09:05:00

  • Annie Keighley:

    First time I’ve seen one of these. It came down twice on the pond and scared the frogs!

    12 Jun 2021 20:48:00

  • Louisa:

    Spent the last couple of hours trying to deter a very persistent queen from using my february new bird nesting box. Based on this article I’d put it at a perfect height and place for her. Sorry queeny, my garden is so very very tiny and we will always be too close if you make it your nest. Tgere are plenty of woodlands behind the house for her and the woodpeckers have given her plenty of other options. I’m so sorry, but I smoked her out and then plugged the hole with tissue doused in peppermint oil, with a few other tissues nearby. She’s finally given up.
    I feel bad now I’ve read they’re quite docile, but my garden really is tiny and I have to use that area as its where the water butts are and the potting area. I hope I don’t scare away all my bees too though 😢

    17 Jun 2021 18:59:00

  • David hall:

    Just seen a 4cm queen giant hornet in apple tree.in Upwey,dorset. Went for camera and she had disappeared 😕

    19 Jun 2021 08:54:00

  • Ambi Pure:

    Lindfield warm afternoon. Poured out the dregs of a can of Stella “a friend” had mostly drunk but decided had enough. Within seconds loud buzz & about the biggest hornet I’ve seen came to investigate. Walked all over the liquid but did not actually drink any & left. Very orange, would be surprised only 4cm.

    26 Jun 2021 15:20:00

  • Hajera & Ridwan:

    We went on a casual stroll and lo and behold, we were ambushed by what we know now as the European Hornet. My husband was violently attacked by a Hornet and he was running, trying to fend for himself. His glasses fell off and he had to sacrifice his tuna sandwich thinking the hornet was after his food. I’m disappointed to say it wasn’t and continued following him, as amusing it was for me. Another hornet arrived and attacked me. We ran for our lives and we were lucky to enough to escape without any casualties.
    Beware, the threat is real.

    14 Jul 2021 20:49:00

  • JJ:

    We must have a nest nearby. During the last two days we have been visited by two hornets yesterday and four today. They get themselves behind our net curtains in the living room and can’t get out. Unfortunately for them a couple of them have died there. They are huge, but pretty sure they are the European version.

    21 Jul 2021 10:09:00

  • Mo:

    I have never seen a hornet until this week. I live in near Windermere. There have been at least 3 in my house each day since the first sighting. My neighbour has around five bee hives , also new. I also have lots of aphids on my plum trees. I am wondering if it is a good or bad thing to have them about. I can’t figure out where the nest is so that I can keep my children and dogs away from it. Any tips for finding out?????

    23 Jul 2021 21:06:00

  • Mo:

    I must add that the hornets that have come into my house are quite docile and easy to remove with the glass and paper technique.

    23 Jul 2021 21:11:00

  • John jones:

    Just seen 1 august a European hornet entering a wasps nest, haven’t seen it come out, does anybody know what the likely outcome will be?

    01 Aug 2021 13:24:00

  • Richard:

    I live in Walberton, West Sussex and was cutting my leylandii hedge yesterday when I was stung by what I now belive was a hornet. There may be a nest in the hedge but I have not dared go back to look! Despite having had no reaction to wasp and bee stings in the past, I had an anaphylactic reaction to this sting and although only a sore arm remains today, it was not an experience I would want again.

    02 Aug 2021 09:21:00

  • Joanne:

    I live in Galley Common Warwickshire I had three hornets come into the kitchen at night massive they were very loud looked like the European, my daughter got stung by one as it hid in the paper dog biscuit bag and one flew into the pg tips box! Bloody massive!

    03 Aug 2021 21:03:00

  • david:

    I’m in Grimsby, heard it first unusual low heavy buzzing couldn’t believe my eyes seeing it. Thought it was an Asian hornet but was more yellow overall, easily 4cm long.

    07 Aug 2021 15:19:00

  • Jessica:

    Every summer we find the odd hornet in upstairs rooms , today tree surgeons working on the garden noticed a lot of activity with Hornets entering our shed through a broken window , Hurstpierpoint West Sussex

    09 Aug 2021 12:32:00

  • Jessica:

    Every summer we find the odd hornet in upstairs rooms , today tree surgeons working on the garden noticed a lot of activity with Hornets entering our shed through a broken window , Hurstpierpoint West Sussex

    09 Aug 2021 15:34:00

  • Martyn Patrick:

    I have loads visiting my moth trap, around 8 each night ( the week 8th-11th August.
    Becoming a problem with my records as they eat and break up many moths.
    The bottom of the trap is covered with the remains of mainly Yellow Underwings, which strangely quite selective,
    Do they prefer them for some reason?
    Beautiful creatures though.
    No sightings of the Asian Hornet yet.
    CV37 0JG Near Stratford upon Avon Warwickshire.

    11 Aug 2021 20:10:00

  • susan:

    Hi, wonder if anyone can help…. this summer i have seen a hornet everyday entering and leaving a hole in my raised border it or they are in and out all day is it likely to be a nest? i didnt think they used the ground for nesting in the UK.

    13 Aug 2021 19:08:00

  • Ron:

    I have just seen one of these struggling to fly, it was carrying a fairly large bumble bee. I assume it killed it and was taking it back to the nest, to feed the rest.
    I have seen many of these in my garden for the last 5 years throughout summer, I live in Southend, Essex.

    14 Aug 2021 09:46:00

  • Dave Buckley:

    We live in Cheshire and have a colony in one of the speakers mounted under the eaves on our shed wall. There is a port which they use for access. We’ve put music through it as we do, with no visible effect on them whatsoever! So far nobody has been stung and we’ve just got on with business as usual in the garden. We’ve had to unwillingly dispatch a few of them who have been in the house, presumably attracted by the lights, otherwise we’ve been intrigued observing them and even noticed them marking territory with tiny squirts of fluid.

    17 Aug 2021 18:19:00

  • Antony Blackburn:

    Just saw my first European Hornet of the year resting on my Canna Lily in the back garden. Saw one last year that I thought was the invaisive Asian Hornet, much better informed now. Not big enough to be a queen, probably a drone, but big enough all the same. I live on the periphery of Stratford-upon-Avon. Sorry not quick enough to get my phone before it was gone

    20 Aug 2021 16:21:00

  • Isabel Fielden:

    Just seen a European hornet on my buddleia bush. I live in between Cheltenham and Gloucester, Gloucestershire. Two years ago I found a dead one in my water butt, so they are around. It was an impressive looking insect.

    24 Aug 2021 14:28:00

  • Fran Gwilt:

    We’ve had them around for the last 9 or 10 years here, just outside Banbury – we’re quite rural where we are, with no street lights.

    Although they are a bit of a nuisance, particularly at night if we’re eating outside or have the windows open, they do tend to keep themselves to themselves.

    But they’re nonetheless terrifying if they pitch up in a gang – in 2018, we regularly had a gang of about 20 buzzing at the window attracted by the light every evening.

    Although I’m scared of them close up, I oddly quite like them…IF they keep themselves to themselves!

    25 Aug 2021 11:54:00

  • Fran Gwilt:

    We’ve had them around for the last 9 or 10 years here, just outside Banbury – we’re quite rural where we are, with no street lights.

    Although they are a bit of a nuisance, particularly at night if we’re eating outside or have the windows open, they do tend to keep themselves to themselves.

    But they’re nonetheless terrifying if they pitch up in a gang – in 2018, we regularly had a gang of about 20 buzzing at the window attracted by the light every evening.

    Although I’m scared of them close up, I oddly quite like them…IF they keep themselves to themselves!

    26 Aug 2021 10:26:00

  • terry oflinn:

    just seen hornet in my back garden in lincolnshire,,impressive

    29 Aug 2021 12:16:00

  • Richard Phillips:

    Reepham Norfolk. Went into the garden about 9pm with an LED torch and suddenly heard a loud buzzing. I thought “ That’s a big bee or wasp”. I know now it was our European Hornet. It bumped into my head, I started waving my arms about and run around and it was still bumping my head. I ran indoors to escape, I hoped, then suddenly the loud buzz started again as it had landed on the back of my jumper. The wife panicked screaming “Kill it” and the dog legged it to the lounge. The hornet buzzed about then settled on the ceiling strip light, only then I could see it’s actual size. Doors and windows to the garden wide open and lights off for about an hour it had taken off. May have been my LED torch as I passed the apple tree that stirred it up but I know more if a next time visit .

    03 Sep 2021 13:50:00

  • Heather Simpson:

    It’s nice to see everybody is hornet stories. We have a nest in our back garden – it’s probably 5 m also from the patio door but on the raised area. It’s in a blue tit nest box which was quite a big box – like a log with a lid and a small hole. I noticed them going in and out of the hole and then over the next few days they chewed the whole bottom out of the nest box. I went and had a look underneath it with a torch at night (had I known they were attracted to light I would not have done this!). I didn’t seem too bothered at the time though and I saw the Queen it was absolutely huge compared to the other very large orange hornets. I was fascinated by the hexagonal chambers of the nest. Over the next few days the list started to protrude out of the bottom of the box and they started to cover it all around to look like a giant kind of fungus growing at the bottom of the bird box. I go and look most days and they don’t seem to bother at all. I have told them they are very welcome and I am happy to have them stay as long as they keep to themselves. This morning I noticed that a lot of the nest (the bit that was protruding out at the bottom of the bird box) had come away. It seems that they had only just finished it but it is just disappeared and I couldn’t see it on the floor. I was wondering if something might have attacked it and led me to this page although I can’t see that there is any information on what might have caused this. Anyway the bottom hexagon chambers are really exposed again. They are so incredibly industrious and are working away constantly on the nest walls. I was glad to learn that they leave the nest and don’t return. The nest is right above the bird bath and I haven’t been wanting to fill it up but I thought the noise of the hose might disturb them too much. Very glad I learnt about them being attracted to light as I shone the torch in there a few times! I do hear a few of them bouncing off the patio windows as well at night. It will be a shame when the nest has gone as it has been quite fascinating watching them build it from scratch. I live in Wiltshire and it’s the first time we have had a hornets nest even though we live adjacent to a great big patch of trees.

    03 Sep 2021 14:44:00

  • zoe lawther:

    Thanks for the information, we’ve been extracting these as carefully as possible from our kitchen at night. We thought they were queen wasps looking for a nest site as we had a visiting giant hornet every night, (with a hornet nest in a large tree stump) 6 years ago ad didn’t realise that hornets could be smaller or have yellow faces. It was only when I found 2 dozy ones on the kitchen steps this morning that I could study them properly so thought I’d double check. We’re lucky to live on an estate with extensive woodland so get all sorts of fascinating moths and creatures visiting us. It’s always lovely despite the obvious frantic light removal and ducking that we have to do!

    05 Sep 2021 06:39:00

  • Helen:

    Northamptonshire countryside.
    Came home after a few nights away to discover I had left my bedroom window open and the light on. Then felt sad to spot the carcasses of 10 or 15 very large ‘wasps’ on the floor.
    Later in the evening, light on, window open, very loud buzz and thud as something hit the lampshade. Obviously a hornet from its size, so lights off, curtain open, windows wide, hoping the light outside would attract it instead. After it seemed quite chilled walking over the window pane gave it a helping hand out the window courtesy of a glass and piece of paper. Bimbled off happily, no sign of aggression.
    So this article has confirmed that hornets are definately attracted to light, and unfortunately my room became an untimely grave for too many of these magnificent beasties.
    As I was searching on the net this evening (with light on and windows closed!) I heard a thud on the window and just watched one crawling up and down the glass from outside. So beautiful the colours, and the furry thorax.
    Glad to read more about them.. thanks for the info!!

    05 Sep 2021 20:11:00

  • Jill Holland:

    For the last 2 years we have had hornets crawling up our windows attracted by the lights, they are huge, most mornings we are finding them on the ground very docile, searched for a nest but never found one, not great as we have 6 dogs who snap at them and have to keep them in at night and first thing in the morning, the only way we are getting any relief from them is sitting in complete darkness

    05 Sep 2021 21:24:00

  • Kevin Snape:

    near Rotherham, South Yorkshire, 5th September 2021 mid afternoon today, reading in the garden, a very large wasp which I now know to have been a European hornet landed on my finger, I remained still and it began biting with quite sharp nips. It did not seem agitated, neither was I but it continued to explore the back of my hand and bite. It did not attempt to sting. This continued until I got to my feet and went indoors but it remained around me the while. I have read that hornets are reported to bite when threatened but I suspect that this was experimental foraging. Is this behaviour unusual I wonder?

    05 Sep 2021 23:04:00

  • Barry Nelson:

    We have several clumpsof Sedum around our garden wich attract bees and other nectar drinking insects every year. They have just come into flower and lots of bees have already discovered them. So too have the hornets, several of which are patrolling from clump to clump and catching bees.

    07 Sep 2021 13:54:00

  • Elizabeth Upton-Perry:

    Hi, I’ve just helped a European hornet from my lounge tonight. (9.00pm). I’ve never seen one before and couldn’t believe how big it was, also very beautiful.

    07 Sep 2021 20:42:00

  • Darron Preston:

    We live between Ross on Wye and Gloucester, very rural location.

    We usually get a few every year at around this time (emerging young?) but this year we have had more than I’ve seen in 20 years. We obviously have a nest nearby. Normally we just ignore them but with this heat we’ve had the windows open and as a result they come a calling.. 6 in our lounge tonight.

    We do have a very attractive garden planted for pollinators so have a huge variety of bees etc but I’m wondering what is different this year to cause a huge spike in their numbers?

    07 Sep 2021 22:14:00

  • Tony Fisher:

    I live in Strensall, just north of York.
    I had three worker hornets in my back garden about 3 weeks ago, feeding on some fruit that was heading for the composting bin. Not aggressive at all, but very impressive.
    Last night, I was leaving my son’s house at about 10pm and I heard a very impressive buzzing. A hornet was trying to headbutt his French windows, attracted by the light.
    I’ve heard rumours of a nest on Strensall Common, but have not been able to find it.

    08 Sep 2021 09:38:00

  • Cynthia:

    I’ve had a similar experience to Richard, Walberton (minus the leylandii hedge). Whilst gardening on Saturday I felt an impact on the top of my head (like being hit by a falling acorn) and then intense pain – I’ve had 12 or more wasp stings in one go before and this was worse than all of those put together! I then had what turns out to be an anaphylactic reaction – very scary indeed. Never had a problem before. By the end of that fabulous tennis match on Sat. evening, I had recovered somewhat. Think it must have been a hornet, though I didn’t see it and I’ve never seen one here, near Aberystwyth, west Wales – I’m told they are about though. On the advice of a medical friend, I’m going to ask GP for an EpiPen, as further reactions after the first one can worsen – Richard, get yourself one just in case.

    13 Sep 2021 23:11:00

  • Patrick Doherty:

    18/09/2021.
    In a bit of a panic I killed one in our Conservatory this evening.
    I then took the trouble to find your website and realise that killing it was probably unnecessary. Quiet wooded area between Stratford on Avon and Evesham.

    17 Sep 2021 06:44:00

  • Jacqui:

    We live near Stroud, Gloucestershire and have seen many hornets this year and suspect they have a nest in the owl box in our garden.
    When the PIR light comes on about 20-30+ hornets aim at the light and bounce off it and lit windows getting more disturbed as time goes on. Beautiful creatures but getting frightening now so feel they need to be removed as we cannot use the patio from dusk and several are still there in the morning.

    17 Sep 2021 07:14:00

  • AndyCampbell:

    Entered the bathroom tonight and heard the unmistakable sound of a hornet. Probably a newly hatched queen looking to hibernate. Haven’t seen so many this year or common wasps, we have a lot of woodland and will normally have to destroy 5-6 nests a year. We do have a lovely bees nest in an old squirrel’s dray, has been there all summer.

    24 Sep 2021 06:13:00

  • Judy Boylan:

    September 2021. I have just seen a European hornet in Cornwall. My house is near the sea and next door to Wood. He was very data and I think dying but have left him to it.

    We have also had a lot of yellow jacks into the house and as everyone said they’re a bit terrifying. Plus one was in my coat and I did get stung.

    25 Sep 2021 12:32:00

  • Andy:

    September 2021- Cardiff Hi – just had one fly into my kitchen- caught it under a pint glass to a video and let it go. Was surprised how big these are !

    26 Sep 2021 16:50:00

  • Judy Boylan:

    September 2021. I have just seen a European hornet in Cornwall. My house is near the sea and next door to Wood. He was very data and I think dying but have left him to it.

    We have also had a lot of yellow jacks into the house and as everyone said they’re a bit terrifying. Plus one was in my coat and I did get stung.

    28 Sep 2021 21:48:00

  • Keith:

    We have a hornets nest in an oak tree about 50 yards from the house. Don’t see them often in the garden. The queen was around early summer (5th June), it was vast, unfortunately I couldn’t get a decent picture that showed the size. It was about 4x by volume of the normal hornets. They are still active and start buzzing about if you hang around the nest. Tunbridge wells, Kent

    30 Sep 2021 13:06:00

  • Paul Billings:

    We have about 60 of them buzzing around a beech tree in the garden, they maybe gentle ginats, but still pretty scary!

    06 Oct 2021 10:31:00

  • Gerard Daly:

    I have just taken a picture one in my back garden as i didn’t know what it was.

    27 Oct 2021 14:56:00

  • PHIL:

    16 April (2022) Hornet sighting (Today) – North Staffordshire……..

    17 Apr 2022 09:09:00

  • steve:

    had a queen hornet in my bedroom. yeovil somerset today may 1st 2022

    01 May 2022 18:59:00

  • David:

    I live in Burbage Wiltshire and just found one in my railway carriage. Captured it in a glass for identification, worried that it was the notorious bee-killer and wondering how to eliminate it, and if I should report it. Your useful article identified it. Finding it is not a pest and beneficial I have just released ?her?….. Maybe a Queen?

    10 May 2022 15:39:00

  • Barbara:

    For the very first time I have seen a hornet in my garden on several occasions in Northumberland

    11 May 2022 17:13:00

  • Alastair Warringto:

    I’ve heard that some organisations will collect Hornet Swarms to boost the populations in places such as the Forest of Dean. Does anyone know how to contact these people as I can find nothing on line. I live in Shropshire and have friends in Worcestershire who are seeing a lot of hornets.

    15 May 2022 17:10:00

  • Peter GREEN:

    My son came across one Sunday, at a village called Bubwith, in E Yorkshire

    16 May 2022 06:48:00

  • Sarah:

    Thanks for help identifying. We have seen several. Kenilworth, Warwickshire.

    16 May 2022 18:16:00

  • Andy:

    Hi James. What I believe after some online research was a European Hornet appeared in my garden this afternoon (27 May, 2022). It was the first I’d ever seen and it frightened the bejesus out of me! Its sheer size was what scared me and I fled indoors after alerting my neighbour, who was also in his garden. Apparently they are not as aggressive as wasps but still, I’m inclined to move rapidly in the opposite direction if I see another. I live near Blaenavon in SE Wales, by the way.

    27 May 2022 16:40:00

  • Daniel:

    One of these hornets flew into my house, wokingham

    30 May 2022 23:39:00

  • Paul:

    Love your article. I had one in my car yesterday. Initially I was startled, mainly because of its size, but upon study was fascinated. I let the widows down & it flew away.

    08 Jun 2022 12:28:00

  • Diane:

    Just had one in our conservatory (Sevenoaks, Kent) Sounded like a helicopter! Never seen one before. Got near enough to take some pics to try and identify.

    10 Jun 2022 18:21:00

  • Jack:

    Just seen one of these in hull it’s massive

    10 Jun 2022 23:15:00

  • Julian Hodgkinson:

    Just found one in our greenhouse in Northwich, Cheshire. At least 4cm in length and quite docile for now!

    18 Jun 2022 13:08:00

  • Julian Hodgkinson:

    Just found one in our greenhouse in Northwich, Cheshire. At least 4cm in length and quite docile for now!

    19 Jun 2022 14:03:00

  • Stephanie Huse:

    Ihave just had a Hornet land on my garden in Windsor Berkshire it was on the garden yesterday and again today. I was surprised at how big it was, but it flew away after landing on the garden pool for a while

    22 Jun 2022 11:50:00

  • Jan Cope:

    Driving along a country lane today near Farnham Surrey I heard a bang on my partially opened passenger front window. Something caught my eye flailing around on my skirt. It was an enormous European Hornet that was seemingly a little dazed. I continued driving in order to get to a safe place to stop. Fortunately for me a lady helped me remove the hornet from my skirt. It then flew towards her house and she panicked! Being trapped in a car with a huge hornet was not a happy experience but I hope she survived and gets over her headache.

    24 Jun 2022 22:22:00

  • Betty:

    Hi James. Don’t know if this is a hornet. But large furry bodied fast flying insect. Slender body. Doesn’t land on flowers but hovers. About 3/4 inch long body about 1 inch wing span. Tip to tip. Ginger colouration including wings. Wing action is a blur because of fast action. Has visited twice to my garden this week which is adjacent to large working allotment
    Many thanks. Hope you can name it for me.

    13 Jul 2022 07:13:00

  • Sussex Wildlife Trust:

    Hard to say without a photo. Might it be a Hummingbird Hawk Moth? James

  • Kay:

    They are definitely in Surrey as I just photographed one on my buddleia

    22 Jul 2022 10:38:00

  • Paul:

    Just had a visit from a Euro Hornet which was gorging itself on tree sap much to the annoyance of the number of wasps doing the same thing, I decided to remove the hornet but have since realised I should have let it stay, interesting thing.

    13 Aug 2022 16:09:00

  • Janice Obrien:

    I think I had a European hornet in my house one evening this week, it was about 1.5” to 2” long the body was quite plump not narrow like the pictures of Asian hornet. I have a lot of lavender in my garden so I am very used to bees but this was something else.

    14 Aug 2022 10:15:00

  • Richard:

    Interesting reading, have evicted 2 tonight after realising they’re attracted to the lights indoors with the window open, must be a nest near by as I got followed by 1 in the dark when I had a torch on, in Newdigate, Surrey

    14 Aug 2022 22:39:00

  • Simon brook:

    Hi, we have a large number of hornets feeding on our fruit trees and was wondering how far away will the nest be. Does anyone know how far they will travel from the nest?

    18 Aug 2022 20:56:00

  • NICKIE BITSCHI:

    East Devon. In May a female decided to take up residence in a a somewhat ornate bird box my grandchildren had given to me for my birthday. I was thrilled tho they weren’t so pleased! She and her family have fascinated me and have been no trouble at all, just coming and going as I observed. They filled the box and built a porch with their papier-mâché. What particularly amused me is wording on the box, ‘ Home Sweet Home’. Wish I could attach a photo. It’s now gone quiet, so I guess they have either flown or died!

    24 Aug 2022 09:58:00

  • Michelle:

    Last night heard the most tremendous buzzing, thought it was a bumblebee but then saw the most enormous thing flying around in my kitchen. It appeared darker than the photos. Couldn’t get it out – went down this morning and 2 were frantically buzzing around. Managed to get them out but so scary. Would they be queens and would they be trying to lay eggs? Burgess Hill West Sussex.

    25 Aug 2022 08:12:00

  • Sussex Wildlife Trust:

    Hornet queens hibernate during the winter, and emerge in spring to begin building a nest and lay eggs then

  • Katy:

    We have a huge one in our kitchen a week about. It got trapped in the light fitting and died in the night. This eve we had another much smaller one come in. We must have a nest near by. Kingston upon thames

    25 Aug 2022 22:45:00

  • william rowe:

    Seen one today

    26 Aug 2022 16:58:00

  • Sue Glyn:

    I first saw a European hornet in Somerset in the early eighties. It was huge and never have seen one before I was intrigued. It was before the age of computers etc and so even though I tried I was never able to find out what it was. However, over the last ten years or so I have seen more and more in my garden in West Sussex, especially this year. I love watching them and bees and wasps on the various plants in my garden,

    28 Aug 2022 10:59:00

  • Lizzie:

    A European Hornet came into my lounge last night, attracted by the lights. Once I turned the lights off it went back outside! Horsham, West Sussex

    29 Aug 2022 08:01:00

  • Lydia:

    Gentle giants they may be but the story that the sting is only as painful as a honey bee is nonsense. I just got stung by one that was sleeping in my bathrobe and it’s the most pain I’ve ever experienced. It went right down my arm and I roared for 15mins. It’s burning hours later too. They’re beautiful but pack a MUCH bigger punch than a wasp or bee, believe me!

    30 Aug 2022 11:44:00

  • Mr Sheeran:

    I have had European Hornets flying in my accommodation every evening for the past 2 weeks. Each evening, not the same one!

    Location:
    Bicester Oxfordshire

    30 Aug 2022 21:44:00

  • Robert Bicheno:

    My wife and I returned from a night out whilst on Holiday in EAST HOATHLY

    We left our caravan outside light on and roof lights open luckily with fly screens closed. hornets up to six around the light and inside the roof lights other side of fly screen. managed to go through the door and close it with out them following. turned the lights of they went elsewhere .

    pretty scary really.

    04 Sep 2022 21:30:00

  • Nicola:

    I live in west Somerset and I think that there must be a nest in next door’s uninhabited garden as am seeing hornets every dry night at the moment. Can’t say I like them in my bedroom but have now sorted out some netting for the window. Very loud buzz and they bang at the window trying to get to the light. Seem to be plenty of them.

    05 Sep 2022 20:49:00

  • James Tennant:

    Just this morning found my first hornet’s nest…..bottom of a hollow tree, next to a stream.
    Sat and watched them, kept still, actually saw them carrying prey into the nest.
    They didn’t even fly towards me, I was about 10 feet away.

    07 Sep 2022 08:53:00

  • Paul F:

    Having only seen a very few hornets in my 70+ years I have been visited by several every evening lately attracted to my outside light. Discovered today that they are feeding on ash tree sap in my garden, stripping the bark from parts of thin branches. Yesterday I found one being sucked dry by a medium sized false widow spider, trapped in it’s tangled web. Given the size of these things I was slightly surprised that it wasn’t able to break free. But then, false widow thread is very strong and the spiders aggressive. I wonder if stood much of a chance.

    10 Sep 2022 22:13:30

  • Paul F:

    Having only seen a very few hornets in my 70+ years I have been visited by several every evening lately attracted to my outside light. Discovered today that they are feeding on ash tree sap in my garden, stripping the bark from parts of thin branches. Yesterday I found one being sucked dry by a medium sized false widow spider, trapped in it’s tangled web. Given the size of these things I was slightly surprised that it wasn’t able to break free. But then, false widow thread is very strong and the spiders aggressive. I wonder if stood much of a chance. Should have said I’m in south Devon, near Kingsbridge.

    10 Sep 2022 22:15:00

  • Ivy:

    Just spotted one of these trapped inside the grate of our wood burner (not used since last Winter period 2021/22). On the large side approx 3.5-4cm in length. Hopefully not the 1st to emerge from a possible nest in our chimney, fingers crossed this is just a new queen looking for a hibernation site.

    01 Oct 2022 16:14:00

  • Bonnie Haynes:

    I find at least 3 of them each night in our bathroom! I presume there is a nest nearby as we live around woodlands. They are very docile, but my dog has been stung by one

    05 Oct 2022 04:05:00

  • Hazel:

    Hornets visited our garden pond here in Lincoln every day this summer.
    Today i was potting up spring bulbs using compost from an opened bag of compost which had been left leaning behind the greenhouse. I had been taking out handfuls when i uncovered a very large and very alive hornet. He ponderously lifted himself out of tbe compost and flew off.
    Sorry i had disturbed him and i wont be putting my hand inside a bag of compost again!

    10 Oct 2022 06:38:00

  • Val Neave:

    I live in North Gloucestershire. We have had several hornets inside the house on summer evenings. Tonight (14 October) and I presume because of the emild autumn evenings, we have had a dozen or so circling around our outside lights while we have been enjoying a glass of wine on the patio at 8 pm. Not aggressive at all so we will not be killing them in future encounters in our kitchen! We’ve not found their nest though.

    14 Oct 2022 20:09:00

  • Wayne F.:

    Non aggressive??? Tell that to my flashlight 🔦. Poor thing about had a battery attack. It was so scared it was making my hand shake. Wait… I may have had parts in the shaking. Very little though. The flashlight was definitely shook. This pterodactyl of the stinging kind crashed into it’s face and bounced of the lens like one of those paddle ball toys with the elastic cord. Before I could react, my poor flashlight leaped from my hand in an act of sheer desperation. Only to be pounced on again as it lay lifeless in the dirt. Good thing he fainted or that beast might have ate him alive.It was the scariest thing I, my flashlight ever went through. Very traumatic experience… For the flashlight that is..

    16 Oct 2022 01:38:00

  • Stephen Hill:

    Yesterday while walking over Stanton Moor near Bakewell I came across two European hornets. They were on the ground and appeared to be locked in a fight to the death. That is what it looked like anyway. They paid no attention to me as I took a photo.

    19 Oct 2022 07:48:00

  • Ryann:

    Wonderful post (very fun reading comments : ) This satisfied the need to I.D. this large hornet (thankfully Hubby knew what it is so that gave a head-start). How it got here – from there – I’m not sure: Cumberland, R.I. USA

    19 Oct 2022 15:27:00

  • Ian Green:

    Seen several stripping bark off an ash sappling in our previous driveway in North Essex. Have to say personally I have found protective honey bees wild and hived far more aggressive than Hornets, although I’ve never been close to a Hornets nest!!

    21 Oct 2022 21:17:00

  • Danny Vose:

    Just seem my first hornet after tidying trees in the garden, wow! Nearly had a heart attack, I’m thinking she must have been a Queen settled in for the winter, very docile. I made sure she went back where she came from no harm done. Hope she stays around 😊

    30 Oct 2022 17:34:00

  • Mrs C:

    We had one in our lounge last night in Southampton. Couldn’t believe the size of it. Was attracted to the light. Managed to capture it and set it free outside.

    31 Oct 2022 15:57:00

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