Friday, 18 November 2016

The Asian Hornet and Nest.

A few months ago, our foreman told us that there was an Asian hornet's nest in a disused hut on the farm. I can't say that I was surprised, as I had seen a number of unwelcome hornets in the garden. They were mainly attracted to the variegated ivy growing near the pond which gave me the opportunity to take the following shots, and of course we went to see the nest, and I took some photos at a safe distance. I'm sorry to say that they had to be "dealt with" by professionals, and the garden is not only safer, but a lot tidier now. I'm glad to be back, and will do my best to visit you all as soon as possible.


The Asian Hornet
 

The Asian hornet is an invasive species which  slaughter about 50 bees a day to feed their larvae...
 

They pose a tremendous threat to honey bees and other pollinators.
 

It is slightly smaller than the European hornet, but it makes a very loud buzzing noise which drew my attention to it in the first place.

 

They hover near the honey bees hive and pluck them out of the air on their return to their hive. They first remove the wings and legs, then roll them up into ball, which they then carry to their own nest to feed their larvae.
 

The Asian hornet is a day-flying species, which unlike the European hornet, ceases activity at dusk.
 

Mostly dark brown in appearance with the wide orange band on the forth segment, and yellow legs.
 

The nest is suspended, spherical or oval in shape, and can be as large as 1 metre in height, and 80 cm in diameter, I would say that the one in the shed was 60cm x 60cm.
 

It is built by making paper mâché made from chewed tree and plant material, and when finished the hive population  reaches about 6,000 insects. It was situated near enough to our foreman's house to cause him concern.
 

Unlike the European hornet, where the entrance to the nest is at the bottom of the nest, the entrances are at the sides, I tried to get closer shots of the entrance, but as the hornets were in constant movement they came out all blurry.
 

A couple of photos of sections of the nest.
 


 
I will be linking up with Eileen at Saturday's Critters later in the week, and if you would like to see more critters, just click on the link. SATURDAY'S CRITTERS My thanks to Eileen for hosting her fun meme.

43 comments:

Sandra said...

incredible shots of this amazing hornet nest and its residents, but I am glad they are gone for your safety.

Gayle - venturesinphotos said...

Sharp macros and the pattern on the nest is artistic.

Nick Morgan said...

Hi Sonjia,
Good to have you back!!
It is a shame to have to destroy any creature, but you are quite right to deal with these. As humans mess up the planet by introducing animals, plants and diseases to areas that they would not naturally reach, we have a duty to try to prevent them spreading and causing harm to the natural inhabitants. I am sure the local bee populations will be very grateful.
Nick

Phil Slade said...

Hi Sonija. I was interested to hear of your Fieldfare sighting. I imagine that is quite a good bird to see so far south. Good work.

I think you were braver than you let on in photographiong those hornets. I really don't trust common wasps, especially since I have seen the damge done to my wife on the two occasions she has been stung.

John Simlett said...

The nest is a work of art. Lovely photography with a really informative narrative. Much appreciated - thank you.

Christine said...

Scary creatures with a morbid appetite for bees! Your photos are amazing and show their markings so well.
Their nest is ingeniously made and thank you for sharing the details with us!
Best wishes!

TexWisGirl said...

dark, colorful insect, hard at work.

Linda said...

What gorgeous photos of this nest and the hornets!!! Amazing architects, they are! Thank you so much for sharing, I have never seen anything so fascinating and lovely in a bee-related nest!

Michelle said...

Wow! Your photos of this nest are just wonderful.

Lowcarb team member said...

Wow, you've got some great photo's here, and they show it so clearly.

All the best Jan

susan said...

fantastic shots

LEN said...

Very brave of you to get so close to produce such wonderful shots.

Stephanie said...

Oh no! I will not want this creature in my garden! Good photos btw :)

jandi said...

Fascinating images... They certainly cause a lot of harm... I'm glad they are gone from your property.

Rajesh said...

Amazing series of images.

eileeninmd said...

Hello, amazing shots of the wasps and nests. You are brave to get close. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend!

Giga said...

A little afraid of these insects, and especially their bites. That's why I admire you, that you did the photos. Regards.

Jeanne said...

Pretty amazing shots and glad that they did not see you as an opportunity for lunch. Thanks for sharing these

Magia da Inês said...


Fotografias impressionantes!!!
Bom fim de semana com tudo de bom!!!
Beijinhos.
♫♪ه° ·.

Bob Bushell said...

Sonija, you are a brave person, ah, yes, it is a killer. Brilliant photos, so close.

Gunn said...

SUPERB!
Gosh, YOU OPENED MY EYES by a posting like this.

Small City Scenes said...

Wow that was very interesting. I do not know if we have Asian Hornets here but am going to check on it. We are in a farming area and there are many pollinator hives about.
MB

carol l mckenna said...

Very creative and professional nature shots! ~ thanks,

Wishing you a gentle weekend ~ ^_^

Debbie said...

ooooh goodness - you are much braver than i. your images are superb the details are stunning...and the details in the nest, wow!!!

nice to see you today, have a wonderful weekend!!!

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

I remember seeing a video on youtube of them hovering outside a honeybee hive. The honeybees tried to attack and defend their home, but they had no chance against the hornets.

Nice pics, btw!
~

Sami Niilola said...

Hi. Nest is a great-looking. The photos are stunning. Greetings.

matti juhani niilola said...

Hi. Awesome hornet and nest. Greetings.

Teresa said...

Muy buenas fotografías, estas son peligrosas. Besos.

Wendy said...

As a beekeeper on the look out for the Asian hornet, I've found your wonderful photos fascinating. They're so clear. I'm hoping that the recent hornets in the UK have been destroyed now, I don't suppose we'll know until the spring. I'm glad yours have gone now for your sake and for the sake of your local bees.

Tom said...

Nasty!

NatureFootstep said...

beautiful images but I am glad they "were dealt with". Hornets are bad news.

hmuxo said...

Amazing photography Sonjia! Enjoy the rest of the weekend!!!!!!!

Nancy Chan said...

The Asian hornet is a very dangerous predator. To have a nest that size near your home is cause for concern. The nest has nice design. You are so brave to go near to take those snapshots.

orchid Miyako said...

Dearest Sonija; Hi, my friend and welcome back♪  
OMG, I'm happy to read that you are safer, and tidier with the help from the professionals☆☆☆
The Asian hornets in your picture were taken really beautiful but sure look SCARY! Day-flying species, are they and BIG nest ゚(*_*)゚
I hope you were safe as a photographer, and take care if the scary predators are a bit regular visitors.

I DO hope the wonderful and safe coming new week♡♡♡
Sending Lots of Love and Hugs from Japan to my Dear friend in Portugal, xoxo Miyako*




HOOTIN ANNI said...

Well, my first comment I attempted to leave for you had an error message, so I'm trying again.

Tho creepy looking, I truly enjoyed reading about these and viewing your fantastic photos. You're brave.

Russell Jenkins said...

Amazing pictures. You are very brave to take such pictures. The hornets in Japan make the news. I intend to stay well away. Stay safe.

Mildred said...

First of all, thank you for sharing this information and the photos. I had not heard of these hornets but I am thankful they are gone now and you all are safer.
Also, I want to thank you for your kind comment on my blog today. How fun that you have mountain laurel, also, and our properties share a common name! I enjoy your blog very much. Even though I will not be posting I will still be visiting. Have a lovely week.

Mosura said...

Great shots. The nest is quite a work of art.

Stuart Price said...

Check out the TV show 'Black Mirror' and then you'd get really worried about the hornets!

Lon Anderson said...

Those are great photo takes; I love how you capture such great detail!

I'd like to welcome you to my blog, just click on my name and you'll be taken there.

Helma said...

Gosh !!!!!!!!! I would recommend this sting animals also want to have in my garden at least not such a big litter. They seem like great wasps and there are also many. You have beautiful pictures can make the nest. That this stitch animals had to be treated is understandable.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Wow! You were able to take some amazing photos of both the hornets and their nest! I'm glad you did not get stung!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I hope they don't come back! The hornets we have here have a terribly painful sting. And once I had one chase me and sting me several times. EEEE! Good pics though! Hugs, Diane

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