Woman dies in Asturias from an Asian wasp sting

A 77-year-old woman has died in Asturias after being stung by an Asian wasp

A 77-year-old woman died on Thursday, August 12, in the small Asturian municipality of Pravia after being stung by what health sources reportedly confirmed was one of the invasive species of Vespa Velutina – the Asian wasp, or yellow-legged hornet.

The woman was working on the family farm in Riberas when she got stung, and her relatives immediately took her to the Pravia Health Center, in Asturias, where medics tried to treat her after she suffered a bad reaction to the bite, but they were unable to do anything to help her, and she was pronounced dead by the health workers just two hours after the initial sting had occurred.

This type of death from a wasp sting is not normal according to experts, and although humans have been attacked previously after disturbing hornets, the species is not aggressive. The last recorded death of this kind in Spain was that of a man in Galicia in 2017.

The species is native to Southeast Asia, and originally appeared in Europe in France, Spain, and Portugal, but was only confirmed as existing in Spain since 2010, by the Beekeepers’ Association of the Basque Country, and the Neiker entomology institute in Irun, after breeding colonies were found.

Being an invasive predator, they are reportedly of great concern to the bee numbers, as the Asian wasp is known for its love of preying on honey bees, typically building its nest above a beehive in order to be close to its main supply of food, waiting for the foraging honey bees to return to their hive, before swooping on them, as reported by 20minutos.es.


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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]