MURDER hornets have invaded the US, as first nest was found in Washington State using tiny trackers on the deadly insects.
The Asian giant hornets were first spotted in Washington late last year – and now a team will work to destroy the nest of the deadly species on Saturday.
Epidemiologists with the Washington State Department of Agriculture said they spent weeks "trapping and searching" for the deadly insects.
The nest of the insects – which are predators to honeybees and other insects – was found on a property Blaine, Washington, the state's Department of Agriculture said in a statement.
The deadly pests were nesting in a tree – with "dozens of the hornets" coming in and out of it, WSDA said.
Scientists caught two live hornets using a trap on Wednesday, and another two on Thursday.
As the researchers were able to put trackers on three of the deadly creatures, they found the nest on Thursday.
Now, scientists will try to destroy the nest – as the creatures are deadly predators to honeybees, other insects, and potentially humans.
Since the creatures first were spotted in the US in Washington in December last year, scientists have been working to track the insects and find their nests.
"Using a network of traps, some set by WSDA staff and hundreds more placed by citizen scientists and other cooperators throughout the state, the entomologists have been diligently tracking sightings of the Asian giant hornet in an ongoing effort to find nests to eliminate them," WSDA said in a statement.
Scientists have warned that if the species is not eradicated in the US, it could be detrimental to bee populations.
Washington State University entomologist David Crowder warned that if action is not taken, the species could spread "rapidly" across the country.
The insects are around two inches long – the largest species of hornet.
Asian murder hornets can kill humans with a single sting.
In Japan, the hornet's native country, the insects kill around 50 people each year.
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