Sunday, 15 May 2011


Over the last week, we have been treated to an evolving spectacle. Whilst pruning a shrub, we uncovered a largeish wasps nest. Although we had left the branch on which it hung intact, we had inadvertently rendered it prey to the elements, and overnight winds resulted in the bottom half of it detaching, and hanging loose. This meant that the internal workings of the nest were visible, including the larvae and  architecture of wasp-made paper that makes up the nest:

 Although the wasps were clearly distressed, they got on with the job of protecting their larvae, and rebuilding their protection. The bottom half of the nest completely detached but by the end of that day, they had got the first layer back in place, giving basic cover.  They have now built up several layers in addition such that the nest is nearly back to its original size. Although they are an insect that is not always easy to love, their industriousness, care for their young and curious beauty of their nest have given me a new-found respect for them this week.

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