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5702 Views 8 Replies Last post: May 12, 2010 10:55 PM by CrimsonBeetle RSS
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Apr 12, 2010 5:19 PM

Hornet mum

A telephone enquirer found this wasp nest in his shed. He was a little concerned for his welfare when the nest becomes larger and more active later in the year.

 

The wasp is in fact the largest social wasp found in the UK, the Hornet, Vespa crabro. She is tending her embryo nest, which she has built from wood pulp entirely by herself. You can see the brood cells which already contain the first cohort of workers. She will be feeding these with macerated insect prey for a few more weeks yet. When they have fully developed into adult worker hornets they will continue to build this nest as she remains within it and continues to lay more eggs.

 

Although the Hornet has always been found throughout much of the UK it is being seen more frequently in towns and cities. Our changing climate is likely to be reason for the recent success of this species; early springs and mild winters extending the length of their operational season.

 

Despite their formidable appearance hornets tend to be less aggressive than our other species of social wasp; their sting is also said to be no more severe. Though I have not experienced this first hand.

 

wasp-nest.jpg

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    Re: Hornet mum
    They are huge! bet they give a nasty sting!
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        Re: Hornet mum
        Still i wouldn't want to get stung by it!
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          Apr 24, 2010 6:43 PM (in response to jack999)
          Re: Hornet mum
          Hornets are not particularly aggressive as long as they are treated with respect, I rescued a queen hornet that had been stunned by a car about ten years ago and placed her on a fence to recover and watched her for about half an hour before she flew off. I have come accross hornets since and certainly have found them to be less bad tempered than their smaller relatives.
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          Apr 26, 2010 4:58 PM (in response to jack999)
          Re: Hornet mum
          My Dad got stung by one once when we were in France, he was throwing up a cushion trying to kill it and one time when he threw it up the Hornet can down behind the cushion so dad could not see and stung him on the nose ouch!! That proves not to mess with them.....
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            Apr 30, 2010 11:09 PM (in response to Lionessandcub)
            Re: Hornet mum

            Yes. Why would you want to kill it in the first place? There are enough other methods of getting it out of a room.

             

            Most animals will start to defend themselves when being attacked, no matter whether they are a cute bunny, a dog or an insect. That's not an indication on their aggressiveness or whether they pose a danger to humans.

             

            In Germany and Austria they are actually protected.

             

            I've been close to hornets and hornets' nests (in treestumps) several times to have a look and take photos. They usually didn't even show any interest (though I know they might get defensive close to the nest), whereas field wasps, for example, will start going into defensive positions straight away and watch what you are up to and might even attack when you pass close by (as happened to my husband).

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              May 11, 2010 11:01 AM (in response to redrobin)
              Re: Hornet mum
              I did not want to kill it my dad did I would not won't to kill on but then I was young so I don't think I bothered to protest
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    Re: Hornet mum
    that nest is a beautiful construction.
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