Wasps are People Too

wasp

There is a wasp nest in Max’s garden.  A quarter way up the slope they have buried bravely into the scorched and stoned soil.  I have watched as it has evolved over the weeks, the main entrance expanding, shingle strewn, workers ever vigilant,.

As of yet they have caused no mind to beast or person.  I’m no waspologist but as far as I can ascertain they are good guys in the garden.  The great misunderstood.  They get a lot of bad press and windmilling arms.  I don’t blame you, it is instilled into your very bones that they are the enemy, that they will sting out of malice alone.  I am happy to report that this is not true.  One less bad guy in the world. Result.

Early in the season the wasps harvest aphids and other sap sucking creatures to feed their demanding carnivorous babies.  These larvae in turn feed the adults sweet intoxicating nectar to keep them focused on the job.  The fretful young, once they have shrugged off their youthful ways and spun their way to pupa, leave the poor sugar addicted mummas to get their fix wherever they might find it – be it picnic, barbecue or your kitchen.  Understandable under the circumstances.

This afternoon several wasps were flitting around the tap whilst I was filling watering cans.  I noticed a couple of casualties in a shallow saucer nearby.  They were thirsty and their colleagues had drowned trying to satiate this thirst.  I filled a shallow bowl, with room enough to perch, and soon enough they came to drink.  A small gesture.

28 thoughts on “Wasps are People Too

  1. We have a ‘European wasp hotline’ here and we’re supposed to ring if we see wasps, but I can’t remember ever seeing one. I guess they must exist though, or there’d be no need for the hotline.

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  2. What a wonderful story about wasps, you make them sound almost cuddly! Unfortunately they ‘like’ me in a ‘bite’ me way, even if the rest of the family were indulging in lemonade and jam doughnuts – and I wasn’t – the wasps always homed in on me. It always caused much amusement at my antics to keep away from their attack.

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      • Yes, loads from mozzies and midges. I have recently been recommended Avon ‘Skin So Soft’ by two people which I am hoping will work. The last horsefly bite I received was THROUGH my shirt! I read an article recently that said that certain people emit chemicals through their skin which tell these little pests my blood group – which they prefer!!

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      • Yes I heard blood types are relevant, type O are supposed to be especially delicious. I am type A and they tend to leave me alone (cue swarm of angry mozzies heading in my direction). Good luck with the Avon stuff, I have heard good things about it too. And marmite!

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  3. I’ve been watching the wasps around my apple tree with interest. The shed has windows which face onto it, so it’s a great viewing platform. I think they are feeding on the insects which have got into the apples, but perhaps they are just feeding on the apples.

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  4. I hadn’t known wasps eat aphids.

    I’ve been stung by a wasp twice – both times under my arm. Raise it, lower it, wasp feels trapped – ow!

    But when it comes to picnics or wasps getting in the way in the house – jam jars and saucers work as offerings and lures. Hold a saucer with jam on in the house and the wasp will land on it and allow itself to be taken back outside while it feasts. Eating outside, a half glass of something tempting or a jar with ham – and the guest wasps pay attention to it instead of humans. Can become quite a focal point.

    Having said which, I would rather get rid of a wasp’s nest in a small garden and cover my arms when picking apples!

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  5. What do you do with the marmite? Eat it or smear it over exposed areas? If the latter I will try the ‘Skin so Soft’ first!

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