Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Nasty.



I just happened to be looking up into the very top of our biggest Oak tree (The Royal Oak), when I spied this nasty looking nest.

It's a Hornet's nest, and is about the size of 3 footballs. I know it's still in use as I can see the big beasts buzzing around. With my binoculars I can even see the entrance hole where they go in and out.

So, what to do! Well the Hornets don't survive Winter, so probably best to leave well alone. I've known people set light to them, but this one is right at the top of the tree.

At some time during Winter the whole nest will drop down, so I'll try to take some close-ups later. For the moment, they're not troubling us, so I won't trouble them.

In case you're unaware, a couple of stings from these nasties (and you don't get some treatment pretty darned quick) it's 'goodnight'.



33 comments:

  1. https://youtu.be/2D-Udg99yT4 how to terminate hornets nest.

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    Replies
    1. Ha ha. Our nest is a bit too high up for that method. I have a feeling that our Hornets are a bit nastier too.

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  2. Even so a remarkable feat of tiny engineering!

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    Replies
    1. They are very beautiful objects. I believe there is even a market for perfect nests, but one needs to saw a bit of branch with them. No thanks!

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  3. Are the nest papery like wasps nests.

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    Replies
    1. Exactly the same but far bigger. And the beasts themselves look like GIANT Wasps; about 4 times the size.

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  4. Its a myth that hornet stings are any worse than a wasp unless you are prone to anaphylaxis. Admittedly they look scary because of their size.

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    Replies
    1. You may be right; but I enjoy perpetrating the myth.

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  5. Imagine, they have been hovering over you all Summer and you haven't known a thing about it.

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    Replies
    1. And Bunny's swing was right beneath it.

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  6. Bunny had a lucky escape although, it just goes to show that, if ignored, they get on with their life and leave us alone !! I always ignore bees, wasps and the like and they usually just buzz off !! XXXX

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    Replies
    1. Me too Jacqueline, and I always advise others to do the same.

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  7. We don't have hornets here but European wasps (or are they the same thing?). They were first recorded in Victoria (Australia) in 1977 and apparently, are here to stay. Thanks, Europe! They scare the bejesus out of me and because of our relatively mild winters, nests don't totally die off as they should. Their sting is incredibly painful and they sting over and over. Unlike the poor bee who has only one go at it.

    Around about now is when they become active and I saw my first for the year a couple of weeks ago. I keep a can of Mortein close by when I'm working in the garden and though a squirt doesn't kill 'em outright, it pisses them off enough that they fly away instead of attacking. I loathe them and they have changed the outdoor experience in Australia (at least around here) forever.

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    1. Wasps are the smaller cousins, I was stung by one this year on my finger which then swelled to twice its normal size. Nasty too.

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  8. Replies
    1. I wish I had a flame thrower.

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    2. Coincidentally I read in the local paper at lunch time today that a farmer near here was stung by a hornet which was in his trousers when he put them on. His life was saved at the local medical centre. He went back to thank the staff for saving his life. He was apparently minutes from death. So beware of what might be n your trousers.

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    3. Good god..... even nastier.

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  9. We had a few come into our house. We checked around and found they were coming in through the fireplace. The Retired Man found them and sprayed their hive with an insecticide. They got mad and some followed after him but he escaped. When he checked later none were swarming around and he removed three large nests from the area. Apparently, that had been their home for years.

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    1. I have a friend who had a huge Hornet nest actually in his chimney. It had been built during the summer months, so it was only when he lit the fire in autumn that he realised they were there. They were falling down into his fireplace and were all over the place; he had to leave the house for several days.

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  10. I feel the need to grab my Epi-pen just looking at that nest!

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    Replies
    1. It's quite a sight, isn't it.

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    2. My Epi-pen is for those pesky prawns (sigh - I love 'em, but they don't love me) but I'm glad I have one, just in case wasps (or hornets) are also not my friends.

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  11. I am looking forward to hearing it fell.

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    Replies
    1. They usually come down in bits after snow or strong rain and wind.

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  12. That is a remarkable tree house. It's good that you've seen it in time to be extra wary while awaiting frosty nights.

    When I am walking around in Central Park, I try ti remember to look up into the many trees, as autumn arrives and the leaves begin to change colors and drift down to the ground. All sorts of nests can appear.

    Do you know when the hornets would have begun constructing their dream house? I don't know much about hornets.

    Best wishes.

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    1. I think they begin to appear in early summer, but we don't normally encounter them until the grapes or figs are ripe in September.

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  13. All is not lost! Comforting article about the Asian hornet in France in Connexion yesterday:

    http://www.connexionfrance.com/news_articles.php?id=7346.

    Not sure if I believe it or not...

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    Replies
    1. We were all warned to be very cautious of the Asian Hornet invasion... Scaremongering I think.

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  14. Replies
    1. I tend to be the opposite, John. I just ignore them, and they ignore me.

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  15. Don't think I've ever seen a Hornet's nest, but I'll know what to look out for now. We were told that a liberal dousing of oven cleaner (from a spray can) will kill processionary caterpillars and their nests, so we wonder if the same applies to Hornet's nests? Not ecologically sound maybe, but desperate measures etc. A flame thrower sounds a bit drastic, Cro, think of the poor tree !

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    Replies
    1. Again, the caterpillar nests tend to be quite high up in the trees. I squash them when I see them marching, but otherwise I just try to avoid them. Our late Lab' Monty lost half of his tongue after chewing one.

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