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Nest of 400,000 wasps found in camper van

Posted on Monday, 10 November, 2014 | Comment icon 33 comments

The wasps had taken over the whole vehicle. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.5 Richard Bartz
Measuring 10ft across, the huge nest was discovered in California by Robert McDougal.
The Berkeley resident had been lifting the van with a forklift when swarms of aggressive yellow jackets started to stream out of the bottom of it. Paralyzed with fear, McDougal stayed motionless for over twenty minutes before attempting to flee.

When pest controller Eric McCool arrived on the scene he was astounded by the sheer scale of the infestation. A large percentage of the van's interior had been taken over by the wasps which were thought to number in the hundreds of thousands.

Unable to tackle the problem with pesticides, McCool opted to physically crawl inside the vehicle while wearing a beekeeper suit and attempt to remove the insects with a vacuum.

"I was virtually inside the nest," he said. "It was very hot, stuffy. It was like crawling through a bunch of cushions, and you could feel them buzzing against the bee suit."

McCool eventually ended up removing a total of 37 queens from the nest by hand.

Source: Tech Times | Comments (33)

Tags: Wasps, Nest

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #24 Posted by Raincoathermit on 11 November, 2014, 8:44
This seems to be happening a lot lately, the whole finding giant hives thing.
Comment icon #25 Posted by Myles on 11 November, 2014, 11:56
Considering that they spent sometime to removed them, I would like to believe they were relocated. I hope they were destroyed.
Comment icon #26 Posted by Ryu on 11 November, 2014, 12:25
I am not sure but was it one huge hive or many because I thought there was only one queen to a hive.
Comment icon #27 Posted by GrimmOne on 11 November, 2014, 23:12
I am not sure but was it one huge hive or many because I thought there was only one queen to a hive. Yeah same here
Comment icon #28 Posted by WikidlyInept on 11 November, 2014, 23:42
If the nest is rather large I've heard of more than one queen living within.
Comment icon #29 Posted by regeneratia on 22 November, 2014, 1:10
How did they count them?
Comment icon #30 Posted by Ryu on 22 November, 2014, 1:39
How did they count them? Umm..very carefully I wager.
Comment icon #31 Posted by seeder on 22 November, 2014, 14:12
How did they count them? They got them all to line up in single file, before they could exit the bus, and just did a headcount as they left. Same as you do with kids on a bus
Comment icon #32 Posted by danibear on 22 November, 2014, 14:22
They got them all to line up in single file, before they could exit the bus, and just did a headcount as they left. Same as you do with kids on a bus However they counted them, i wouldn't want to be the one that did it! 37 queens is an unreal amount in one nest.
Comment icon #33 Posted by on 24 November, 2014, 0:19
Well, time to burn the camper down...

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