News June 2024

MijnTuinlab follows up Asian hornet spring traps

Municipalities and provinces have been distributing spring traps since last year in the fight against the Asian hornet. In spring, queens of the Asian hornet actively search for a good location to build an embryo nest (see photo). The method is very popular everywhere. The idea is that by trapping away queens, there will eventually be fewer summer nests.

These spring traps are meant to be as selective as possible. Insects larger than the Asian hornet, such as the European hornet, will hopefully not get into them. Smaller insects can leave the trap through the grid. The liquid in the trap is shielded from insects by the use of a sponge, preventing other insects from drowning and giving them time to find the exit.

To check the selectivity of these traps in Flanders, the MijnTuinlab project 'Asian hornet's spring trap' was set up. Volunteers can register and report catches (including bycatch) via the platform. A selection of these volunteers will also collect the bycatch so that it can later be identified by species.

Initial data already show that these traps are not 100% selective because the lure has a general attraction to a wide range of insects. The efficiency of this method has also not yet been proven.

lenteval (links) en primair nest (rechts)

There are already more than 1,000 participants and so spring traps are scattered across Flanders (see map), although this picture certainly shows gaps. The data show that when checked daily, the trap is mostly empty (65%). In total, more than 1,400 queens of Asian hornet were already captured. This happened mainly in Roeselare, Waregem, Knokke-Heist and Kuurne. We also recorded more than 30,000 additional catches. These were mainly live insects that were released again. Daily monitoring of these spring traps is therefore very important.

Verspreiding Aziatische hoornaar in Vlaanderen

Jasmijn Hillaert, Wietse Chanet, Tim Adriaens

>> Do you also have an Asian hornet spring trap in your garden or is your trap not yet on the map above? Register via MijnTuinlab. This project will run until the end of June 2024.

>> More information abot the Asian hornet can be found on Vespawatch and the Asian hornet pages of ANB (in Dutch)


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