By Chris King •
Published: 19 Sep 2023 • 16:57
Image of an Asian wasp.
Credit: Eduardo Dzophoto/Shutterstock.com
SEVEN people suffered minor injuries and another 26 were treated after a wasp attack in the Portuguese region of Alentejo on Monday, September 18.
Those affected were part of a group of students from the University of Évora, as revealed to the Lusa agency by a source from the Central Alentejo Sub-regional Emergency and Civil Protection Command.
The incident occurred at around 11:24 pm while they were in the Jardim dos Colegiais district of the city’s historic centre.
Commenting on the attack, Joaquim Piteira, the commander of Évora’s Municipal Civil Protection Service said: ‘They stepped on a common wasp’s nest, in a hole, and were stung’.
He explained that the students were assisted on the scene by a doctor from a VMER emergency and resuscitation medical vehicle. Seven of them were subsequently transferred to the city hospital, as reported by sicnoticias.pt this Tuesday, September 19.
Appliances from the Évora Fire Department were deployed to the location, along with members of the National Institute of Medical Emergency (INEM), the PSP, and the Municipal Civil Protection Service. A total of 27 operational personnel were dispatched, supported by 12 vehicles, including a VMER.
Joaquim Piteira described the insects that carried out the attack as ‘common wasps’. However, there is a growing problem in Portugal with a reported increase in the presence of Asian wasps across the country.
According to the Institute for Nature and Forest Conservation (ICNF) already admits that eradicating this invasive species is an impossible mission. Two people died in August after being stung by Asian hornets reported sicnoticias.pt.
Data from the ICNF show that since 2011, 88 thousand nests have been destroyed across the territory, with more than 2,000 identified.
Asian wasps are known predators of the honey bee so they obviously present a huge danger to the beekeeping community. This species of wasp was recently reported to have been sighted in Odemira, a town and municipality in the Beja District, very close to the border with the Algarve.
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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.
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