Remember back in 2020 when we were just getting used to the COVID-19 lockdown and then all of a sudden we were introduced to the Murder Hornets?

I think we can all admit, that was a little terrifying. The name alone had me planning a second lockdown.

After their first appearance in the US, on the west coast, we didn't really hear much more about Murder Hornets, also known as Asian giant hornets. Thank goodness. In the summer of 2021, we were more on edge waiting for a wave of cicadas to take over.

Having said that, many people in the Hudson Valley and New York State believe they have seen murder hornets recently. Well, the Department of Environmental Conservation is here to calm your nerves.

You have not seen a murder hornet buzzing around the Hudson Valley. The DEC said in a social media post:

That big yellow-and-black insect you found is probably not a “murder hornet”, AKA, Asian giant hornet. Asian giant hornets are a potential invasive species in the Western United States, but they have not been found in New York and are unlikely to make their way here any time soon.

What you might have seen are the Eastern cicada killer and the European hornet.

The DEC says cicada killers are usually no harm to humans, unless they are handled roughly. European hornets usually live in colonies of 300+ others and are aggressively protective of their hive.

Check out the photos below to see the difference between Murder Hornets, Cicada Killers and European Hornets.

After examining the above photos, if you believe you have actually seen an Asian giant hornet(murder hornet) the DEC asks that you "review identification material" on their website. After, if you still think you have come across a murder hornet, they ask you to email photos and the location of your sighting to Plants@agriculture.ny.gov.

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