The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.

Tag Archives: queen

A Queen sleeps in the woods

I woke her, ever so gently, and only for a moment…

and then I tucked her back into bed.

Although she rests now, this bald-faced hornet (Dolichovespula maculata)  has a big job ahead of her in the spring.  With a belly full of eggs fertilized last summer, the warmer weather will soon call her to rise and begin constructing a new wood-paper nest and to lay the eggs that will eventually become her first workers.  Her daughters will then take on the task of enlarging and defending the nest, collecting food and eventually, feeding the next brood of young.

There was something about the stillness of her, combined with her sheer bulk (she is a very large insect, nearly 30mm in length), that seemed both terrible and lovely, and somewhat awe-inspiring.  I was honoured to have been able to take a quiet moment to appreciate her beauty.

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