Lesson 33: The behaviour of wasps

Good morning readers,

I must confess to you that I am not in the best mood right now. I am hot, tired and just generally cantankerous.

There are numerous factors contributing to my grumpiness including but not limited to:

The heat: it is 30°+ nearly every day and we don’t have a sea breeze
Work: I started back after a lovely 2 week holiday – not the best feeling ever
The fact that I spent a good part of my Saturday morning untangling two necklaces.
My blender broke.

The remains of a probably very delicious Pina Colada….

Most people would say “But Laura, it’s 30°C and sunny! Go out and enjoy the sunshine. Go chill by the river etc. that will make you feel better” and I have to reply with a loud “NO!”.

Why?

Wasps.

Ever since I can remember I have been deathly afraid of wasps. I would even be inclined to say that I have “Spheksophobia” which is a phobia of wasps. If I am sitting outside and one comes near, I will immediately vacate the area. I don’t tend to scream (much) but I will start rubbing my arms or clapping my hands as I have the feeling that they are then everywhere.

If a phobia becomes very severe, a person may organise their life around avoiding the thing that’s causing them anxiety. As well as restricting their day-to-day life, it can also cause a lot of distress.

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/phobias/

This describes me very well.
During the months of August and September I become a summer social recluse. I do not open any of the windows in my apartment (unless I have a bug cover) and I then also suffer from FOMO thinking of all the fun I could be having with friends at the river/BBQ/pub.

Since I am extremely afraid, I have decided to arm myself with the power of knowledge – specifically on their behaviour so that I can prepare myself for the inevtiable wasp war which is to come.

From March – July : A peaceful treaty with the wasps.

Wasps don’t just come out in Summer, they are generally around from around April.

Tip: If you see a large wasp buzzing around your abode in around April, this could be a queen sourcing out her news cribs for the summer. Be careful as there could be a nest near you in the future.

At this time I am not generally afraid, as the wasps have more important things to do than terrorise me. In fact I can live quite peacefully with the wasps during these spring months and actually enjoy my balcony.

During spring, wasps are just generally building their nests and producing offspring. You may often see a wasp land on a piece of wood and “eat” the wood. If you get really close you can actually hear this happening. This is the wasp gathering its materials for the nest.

August – September: Summer of hell

By the end of summer the queen has completed her wasp army. When there is such a large number of wasps, the food supply dwindles. The wasps crave sugary sweet foods and there are determined to get it.

What happens in August?
Picnics, BBQs and general outdoor activies filled with treats such as: cakes, ice cream and sodas. The wasps see this and think “ME WANT, ME NEED” and they will fight you for it.

Wasps are alcoholics
Ok well not exactly but when the food source has been completely reduced, then the wasps will look for other sources of sweet sweet sugar. This includes fallen fruit, which has started to ferment.
Even a little bit of alcohol is enough to send wasps into a stinging rage.

When the weather gets colder, the wasps will then start to die off (and actually eat each other…) while the new queens go and hibernate before starting the next empire.

I am fine walking around in summer, but I won’t remain stationary for a long period of time. I really am amazed at people who can sit at a picnic table and really enjoy a lovely summer lunch.

I feel sad too, as I wish I could experience this too.

If anyone has any possible solutions for me I am all ears!

On that note enjoy your sunny week,

Thanks for reading,

Laura xoxoxo

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