- The Washington Times - Friday, September 27, 2013

A recent rash of deadly hornet attacks in China has left at least 28 dead and hundreds critically injured, as authorities warn citizens to stay away from woods and fields.

The Asian giant hornet is believed to be to blame, Livescience reported. It can grow to two inches in length and has a stinger that’s another quarter-inch long. The stinger injects victims with venom that contains neurotoxin.

The giant hornet feeds on bees and other large insects, and has been known to wipe out entire hives with thousands of bees in one feeding. The hornet kills the bee by biting off its head.

The hornets are also travelers, and can fly up to 62 miles daily, at speeds of 25 miles per hour.

Most of the deadly recent attacks in China have occurred in one province, Shaanxi, the South China Morning Post reported. One woman who survived an attack was hospitalized for about a month, in critical care for 200 stings, NBC said.

The Guardian reported a contributing factor that unseasonably warm weather has proven a breeding boon to the hornets