Potter wasp in October

It is the end of October and the garden is changing into its autumn colours although the weather is mild and many of the plants are late in flowering.

This wasp is working late into the season too.

On the ninth of October this little potter wasp was making probably its last nest on our house wall. I always marvel at the perfect little pot she builds. It is not far from the birds’ water bath so she has plenty of water to make her “clay”, mixing soil and saliva with her mandibles.

I think she is Delta unguiculatum or Eumenes unguiculatum, whichever nomenclature is current. She will lay her egg on the top of her pot and will then bring in a paralysed caterpillar to become the nourishment of the growing larva.

Watch this short video to see her engrossed in her work.

These wasps are not aggressive and have never caused us any problems. In fact, she is a good natural pest control for the garden.

When all is finished it will be covered by more special mortar, to cover one or more little pots. Her offspring will stay inside, metamorphosing into the adult during the cold winter but she will never see them fly. Her work is finished, she will never see them fly because she will not survive the winter.

The offspring will, hopefully, join the flowers in the garden next spring.

16 thoughts on “Potter wasp in October

  1. Malcolm Gillham

    What a beautiful little beast. The pot entrance is a real work of art – if it wasn’t for seeing the wasp, one might think that a little pot had been mortared into the wall by the builders.

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    1. Thank you for that. It looks a close relative of my wasp and I was interested that the Heath Potter Wasp often has two broods. This might be the case of mine too. He seems a great source of information with excellent videos so I have subscribed to his YouTube site. Amelia

      Like

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