Agriculture officials report two Asian giant hornet sightings, one captured in Whatcom County

Asian giant hornet captured in Whatcom County on Aug.19. Photo credit: Washington State Dept. of Agriculture.

One dead Asian giant hornet has been captured in a trap near Birch Bay, and another was spotted by local diners at a nearby restaurant, according to the Washington State Department of Agriculture.

WSDA and USDA set traps where the first insect, an unmated queen Asian giant hornet was found in Birch Bay. On August 19, WSDA found a hornet trap set by a local beekeeper, and a dead worker Asian giant hornet found inside.

Agriculture officials say a worker hornet is slightly smaller, comparative to the 1.5-2 inches of a typical Asian giant hornet.

Officials say the other hornet spotted was spotted flying over diners sitting outside at a Birch Bay Dr. restaurant, who reported the sighting to WSDA. That hornet was not captured. 

Researchers have since set up more traps where the Aug. 19 hornet was found where they intend to catch live Asian giant hornets.

WSDA Pest Program continues to work with the University of Washington to test out radio tags to track live hornets back to their nests. The first trials ran in the Spring, but researchers have yet to capture any potential queen hornets.

The first male Asian giant hornet was captured Aug. 13 in Custer, WA by WSDA. Experimental traps are set near where previous Asian giant hornets have been captured and confirmed previous hive attacks from last year.

As of July, about 600 traps to catch invasive Asian giant hornets were placed in Northwestern Washington’s Whatcom County by WSDA, more than doubling the number already set out by citizens.

Officials are asking anyone who sees any hornets to report them to the WSDA  via email at or call the Asian giant hornet hotline at 1-800-443-6684.