The 38-year-old self-taught wildlife expert (real name: Nathaniel Peterson) has been big on YouTube for years, mostly for his videos in which he allows himself to be bitten or stung by various critters, almost always resulting with him in excruciating pain. Lately, he's gotten more attention than usual for a video he released in 2018, in which he was stung by an Asian giant hornet, colloquially known as a "murder hornet."
This particular brand of bug has been in the news for a few days. As reported last week by The Inquisitr, the animal has now arrived in the United States, bringing with it fears that it can decimate entire honeybee colonies, as well as potentially kill humans.
The bug can grow up to two inches long, and its stinger is so sturdy and so sharp that it can puncture beekeepers' protective suits. Its venom is believed to have killed 41 people in a Chinese province. Those who live to tell about its sting describe it as akin to having hot metal injected into the skin.
Back in 2018, Peterson found out for himself. Be warned: the video below contains content that may be disturbing to some viewers.Though he's been getting attention lately for his murder hornet video, Peterson has made a career out of being stung, bitten, and bedeviled by this or that. Fire ants, tarantula hawks, bloodworms, and just about everything else have all done their thing to Peterson, who allows himself to be a human guinea pig for the sake of educating his viewers.
"The thing that drives me is certainly being able to educate people. I don't enjoy pain, I enjoy educating people. They're learning a lot about these creatures. In the end, they're learning that these animals are not out to get you," he said.
Peterson points out that he and his team take safety precautions before he undergoes his experiments, including having an epinephrine pen at the ready in case he has an allergic reaction.
Even though he's become something of a household name of late, Peterson says that his days of getting stung are probably over. He's written a book, The King of Sting, and he's moved on in his career from being a test subject for painful injections to a more traditional wildlife expert, doing TV (rather than YouTube) for Animal Planet.
"You can only get stung by so many things," he said.