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October 29, 2012

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City high-rise residents stir up a hornet's nest

A HUGE hornet's nest, hanging under the external unit of an air conditioner of a local high-rise, has become center of attraction and a matter of concern for residents.

A passer-by discovered the nest, took a photo and uploaded it online at 11:14am yesterday.

The nest, much bigger than a standard basketball, is attached to the bottom of the external unit of an air-conditioner on the sixth floor of the high-rise on Zhijiang Road M. in Zhabei District.

"I passed by the building and saw the hornet's nest by accident," said the netizen, who declined to be identified.

"There were many hornets flying around the nest and some were climbing on the windows," he told Shanghai Daily yesterday.

Residents said the hornet's nest has been around for a while and has steadily grown bigger. They feared that the nest might be a breeding ground for young hornets as it was wrapped with mud and adult hornets were flying around as if protecting the nest.

Worried residents on the sixth, seventh and eighth floor had asked police and firefighters to remove the nest. They were told to wait until winter when hornets usually enter hibernation and become less resistant.

Hornet's nests have become a rather common sight in Shanghai in recent years. In June, a resident reported a hornet's nest of about 30-centimeter diameter on a pedestrian tree along Pudong Road S. near Yuntai Road.

Experts said the increasing number of hornets may be related to the increasing greenery in the city.

Yin Haisheng, director of the Shanghai Entomological Museum, said the expanding greenery provides rich food for hornets which feed on insects and fruit juice. Yin said the best season to remove hornet's nest is winter and the best time is at night or on rainy days.


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