For a while there, we were convinced that we’d discovered the next great plague of 2020 after the novel coronavirus. We were told that the Asian Murder Hornets had arrived in North America and they were going to finish wiping out the honeybees and potentially a number of us as well. But was it all just a bunch of hype designed to generate hilarious memes on social media? That’s the opinion of at least some entomologists. These alleged “bug experts” are telling the Washington Examiner that the insects aren’t really murderous and they’re “just another type of hornet.” While they may pose a threat to the honeybees, they really aren’t any more dangerous to people than other stinging insects.

Insect experts say the buzz around a bug dubbed the “murder hornet” is being overhyped.

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to kill tens of thousands of people in the United States, a new viral story began to emerge about an invasive stinging insect called the “murder hornet,” but experts are saying not to be overly concerned.

Bug experts told the Associated Press that while the Asian giant hornet could pose a threat to honeybees, those in the U.S. shouldn’t worry that the large two-inch hornet will kill them.

“They are not ‘murder hornets.’ They are just hornets,” said Chris Looney, a Washington Agriculture Department entomologist.

Am I the only one being left feeling a little disappointed? With the rest of the disasters crashing down around our ears on a daily basis, it seems like we need some new modern plagues to fill up the news cycle every month or so and the Murder Hornets looked like they would fill the bill perfectly.

But the evidence of this great invasion does seem to be lacking, at least thus far. According to these entomologists, after two dead hornets were found in Washington state in December, not one more has been found in the United States in 2020. A single nest was discovered in Canada this year, but it was destroyed. So was that it? Did we wipe them out immediately, the way we totally failed to wipe out the novel coronavirus?

For the record, I’m not an entomologist, but that sounds awfully unlikely. If you find one nest out in the wild, how likely is it that it would be the only nest on the continent? You only need to miss one queen buzzing around in the meadows and before you know it they’re numbering in the billions. But if they showed up during the winter, maybe that’s not true. According to one entomology site, nearly all of the hornets in northern regions die every winter. The recently mated queens find a place hibernate, generally under a piece of bark or something, while the rest of the hive dies off. Then the queen emerges in the spring and starts a new hive.

So if the Murder Hornets showed up in the Pacific Northwest in November or December, unless they had a fertile queen with them, they may all have simply died. (Of course, that doesn’t explain the one nest in Canada.) We may have gotten lucky if that’s the case.

So if it’s not going to be the Murder Hornets, what is the next 2020 disaster heading our way? My money is still on Volcano Lightning, probably from the Yellowstone supervolcano. For those who are curious, Volcano Lightning is a real thing. Here’s a video of it in action.

So… yeah. Either Volcano Lightning or a comet hitting us. But as I pointed out on Twitter this weekend, they need to arrive in the correct order or everything is just going to collapse into chaos.