When the beehives of French beekeeper Denis Jaffré were destroyed five years ago by Asian hornets, he swore to fight back and find a solution.
The invasive species has no natural predators in Europe since they originate in Southeast Asia. Their arrival in Europe was accidental. They landed by way of a cargo shipment and have been decimating European bees since around 2004.
Jaffré thought about a solution day and night, until he finally came up with a trap to stop the invasive species. There is one highly important feature: the trap does not harm bees.
The trap lures the hornets with sugary bait by using a funnel. There are tiny holes so any bees that get inside can easily escape through these holes, but they are too small for the large hornet to get out, so it is trapped.
Three years ago, beekeeper Jaffré won an inventor’s prize for this invention, according to Reuters. Six employees and some 3D printers are now manufacturing these traps. They are flooded with orders.
This 2:00-minute video by Reuters shows the beekeeper and his clever invention:
Jaffré hopes that European governments will get involved so the spread of these predatory species can be stopped, and bees will have some protection against this nightmare species that can wipe out an entire beehive within hours.
Considering the importance of honeybees to pollination and agriculture, for feeding people, it is hard to imagine why European governments are not all over this proven invention already.
Please note that the species of Asian hornets in France is not the same species known as ‘Asian giant hornets’ and ‘murder hornets’ that are found in other places like Washington state in the USA and British Columbia, Canada.
We have blogged many times in the past few years about the cruel death that Asian hornets inflict on honeybees in various places around the world, like this post from 2019 about Asian hornets in the UK.