Ankang, a municipality located in China's Shaanxi province, is living in justified fear of giant, killer hornets. Over the past three months, 41 people have been killed by the deadly Vespa mandarinia hornets, which are the size of a human thumb. Their stingers are 6mm long and they pack poison potent enough to eat through human tissue. According to the Guardian, a number of victims succumb to anaphylactic shock or kidney failure, so yes, there is good reason to be very afraid.
The number of hornet-related deaths has reached epidemic levels this year. The Vespa mandarinia typically reside underground or in tree stumps, so they aren't easy to locate. Though they only attack when threatened, the attacks are obviously vicious and often fatal. The increase in fatalities is being linked to climate changes, as warmer temperatures have allowed the hornets to live through the winter.
Sometimes, nature is not your friend.
[via the Guardian]