Footage has captured up close a horrifyingly massive 'grandaddy' of a hornets' nest, and the noise of the insects hitting the beekeeper's GoPro might be enough to give you nightmares.
A swarm of southern yellow jackets took over a garden shed in Patterson, Louisiana, making a nest of epic proportions. Beekeeper and exterminator Jules Verret filmed his removal of the nest, which took 45 minutes while the insects buzzed angrily around their nemesis and his camera.
While pulling apart the nest, Verret pointed out the queens of the nest, which appeared to be several nests joined together. Just five or six bites from these hornets would be enough to land anyone without protective clothing in hospital, he revealed in the YouTube video comments. Verret himself did not get stung once, although he usually does during similar operations.
After spraying the nasty hornet construction, Verret dismantled and laid out the nest on the grass, describing it in another video as "pretty big" - with a chuckle. He laid down next to the nest, showing it was more than double his body length.
Speaking to NOLA.com after posting the series of videos online, Verret said: "I do see them almost that big from time to time. But that one was really huge. An extreme amount."
He also described how bad yellow jacket stings can be, after a beekeeping friend was stung on his head and it "felt like getting hit in the head with a hammer". He added: "They're bad, terrible. There's nothing good about them, I don't think."
Hornets' nests are constructed using a paper-like material which the hornets make by chewing wood fibres and mixing it with their saliva. They are social insects and will aggressively defend their colony, and therefore nest, from any intruders.
See the "grandaddy of a hornets' nest", as Verret himself put it, in the videos below. See the footage on YouTube here.