Monday, December 18, 2006

Photo Friday- Ambushed

A honey bee ambushed by a European hornet [Vespa crabro].

Hornets are very large wasps which hunt other insects such as flies , small wasps and bees.
They have a very bad reputation for agression and dangerous poison in their stings - but this seems to be wildly over exaggerated -unless people directly threaten them or their nests, they leave humans alone.

Hornets have been agressively exterminated in many areas due to fear but Germany is now protecting hornets by law and its illegal now to kill an individual hornet or destroy a hornet nest - risking a fine of up to 50,000 Euros [65000$]

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Jeope said...

Wow. Creepy! It's strange to think this is a life-and-death struggle, right under your nose/lens.

n.b. said...

Wow, what a great capture! Poor little honeybee...but that is Mother Nature for you.

mrsnesbitt said...

Came by your blog, as you do!
Saying hello from North Yorkshire!
We love France and tour on our motorbike, so you never know we may well meet you one day!

Atyllah said...

Wow! Amazing photo - brave of you to get that close!

Robert (moved UK -> France) said...

Hornets are not very aggressive. However, they are feared in part because their stings are much worse than an ordinary wasp (or bee). A few wasp stings won't do any real damage (unless one is allergic to them) but a few hornet stings can make one fairly ill.