Recent swarm of bee's in lilac bush

Asked September 9, 2019, 8:27 AM EDT

A large number of bee's (examples shown in the attached photo) have recently appeared in a lilac bush adjacent to our patio. We have never seen these before. My daughter has a bee allergy and I'm concerned about potential bee stings. Can you please identify the bee's and advise if they present any extraordinary risks such as aggressiveness, etc? Additionally, any suggestions on how to control? thanks,

Harford County Maryland european hornets insect or spider id

2 Responses

These are European hornets. They are common in Maryland. This time of year they strip the bark off some shrubs and trees. Lilacs and birch trees are favorites. They are not particularity aggressive and only sting if they feel threatened. To control them you would have to find the nest which isn't easy. They will die out after a frost. It is best to have your daughter avoid this area. They are attracted to outdoor lights so if there is one that shines near this area turn it off in the evening.
Please see the following information from our website.
https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/european-hornets

Deb

Deb,

Thank you very, very much for your prompt reply - greatly appreciated. I checked and the lilac bark has been seriously damaged and there is moderate branch damage that will get pruned out after the 1st frost.

Thanks again for your help,

Gregg