Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Long live the Wood Wasp

Well the wasp reign of terror is at an end - the clear skies and cooler nights of the last couple of weeks have done their work and silenced the roaming worker wasps that had been plaguing our garden. However it's not all tragedy for buzzing types...

A couple of days ago I was down the road in Berrio Bridge, stood with a friend of mine discussing how yet another passing car had managed to smash a hole into the side of the 500 year old tudor bridge that spans the Lynher at that point, when a huge insect flew out for under the disturbed granite blocks and buzzed menacingly around our heads. It was very large, much bigger than a hornet, with vivid orange wings, abdomen and legs. It landed right next to me on the bridge and it's inch long ovipositor (egg laying gadget) was there for all to see. No doubting whatsoever, this was a Giant Wood Wasp (Urocerus gigas) or Horntail -a dramatic looking guy who would scare the life out of you as soon as look at you, but in reality is totally harmless. Doesn't even have a sting. In fact he's not even a wasp but actually a variety of sawfly.

But still, he looks good. What do you reckon? Click here

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