Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Asian wasp causes havoc in N. Portugal

The University of Tras-os-Montes and Alto Douro (UTAD) have alerted the public Monday to destroy the Asian wasp which is causing havoc through northern Portugal and poses a health concern.

The Asian wasps recently has been captured and identified in Vila Real and is believed to have reached Europe through the port of Bordeaux in 2004 killing local bees.

"In the course of the university's apiary work, a graduate captured two wasps and later confirmed that they were Asian wasps, a queen and worker," said wasp expert Paulo Russo Almeida, adding, "There is no doubt about the presence of this species in Vila Real and in other places in the north of the country."

The Civil Protection agency is organizing informational forums in order to instruct the public on how to destroy the bees should anyone come in contact with the foreign wasps.

"Given the destructive affect that this species has on the hives of our honeybees, and the danger they can pose to public health, the best course of action is to provide training on combat strategies," said Almeida.

The killer wasps were first found in Portugal in 2011, and however, efforts to stop the spread of the destructive wasps were unsuccessful.

Researchers hope that public awareness will help put a stop to the Asian wasp epidemic in Portugal.

Researchers at UTAD reported the district of Viana do Castelo has the highest numbers of wasp nests, registering 619 nests in the last two years.

The Asian wasp originally comes from Southeast Asia.

Researchers expect the invasion of the foreign wasps will continue its track throughout much of Europe. 

  Xinhua -china.org.cn

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