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Originally published October 2, 2013 at 6:14 AM | Page modified October 3, 2013 at 3:47 PM

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Hornet attack death toll in China reaches 41

The death toll from a rare spate of hornet attacks in central China has reached 41 people, local authorities said Wednesday.

The Associated Press

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BEIJING —

The death toll from a rare spate of hornet attacks in central China has reached 41 people, local authorities said Wednesday.

The Shaanxi provincial government said in a statement that the attacks had plagued not only the city of Ankang, where 19 died as reported by the official Xinhua News Agency, but had killed 22 others in two adjacent cities in the province's south.

All told, more than 1,600 people have been injured, and 37 of them are in critical or serious condition in hospitals, the provincial government said.

It said it has mobilized a special medic team and trained more medical personnel to treat victims, and an Ankang official told Xinhua that firefighters have been removing hornet nests.

The provincial government said hornets are most aggressive in behavior when they mate and migrate in September and October. Local officials have also said drier and warmer weather this year has contributed to the ferocity of attacks.

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