7th June 2015

Hornet: I always wondered if I’d be able to see the difference between Hornets, the UK’s largest social wasps, and other wasps when I saw one. I needn’t have worried- in the woods and nearby here these huge, non-aggressive wasps are not only much bigger, they are a very different colour (tan-chestnut instead of black, with a different shaped head. Like other wasps, the Queen mates and then hibernates, emerging in spring to start the nest and lay eggs. These hatch as non-fertile females which complete the nest (a papery nest in hollow trees, chimneys and wall-cavities), and forage for food. The Queen then lays eggs which will hatch into larvae that emerge as fertile females and males. Hornets eat mostly insects, spiders and tree sap. Before hibernation the Queen stocks up on nectar. Hornets are fairly common in the south. Conditions: A glorious sunny day. Temperature: Max 16- Min 8c.IMG_9453IMG_9456IMG_9619

Hornet

Hornet

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