The crazy connection between murder hornets and dentistry

2020 10 26 21 37 7501 Giant Hornet Bees 400

Did you see the news over the weekend from Washington state regarding murder hornets (otherwise known as Asian giant hornets)? Yes, something that only 2020 could have brought us here in the U.S. (murder hornets, really?) made headlines over the weekend -- and had a dental connection as well.

In the town of Blaine, WA, which sits right on the border between the U.S. and Canada, crews destroyed the first known nest of murder hornets in the U.S. You can see the lengths the Washington State Department of Agriculture workers had to go through to protect themselves from the 2-inch-long insects that can deliver incredibly painful stings and shoot venom.

Eliminating the nest was a challenge, but so was finding it.

The state agriculture department had been trying for some time to devise a way to track a murder hornet back to its nest. Finally, it was able to track the insect -- thanks to dental floss. Researchers figured out a way to tie radio trackers to the murder hornets using dental floss, and the hornets took the floss and tracker right back to the nest.

So the next time your patients balk about flossing, remind them that it helps their oral health and can have some other pretty interesting uses as well. And that list can now include murder hornet tracking.

The comments and observations expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the opinions of, nor should they be construed as an endorsement or admonishment of any particular idea, vendor, or organization.

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