Friday 19 August 2011

German wasp hunting a garden spider

Garden spiders have been quite obvious in the garden for a few weeks now, sitting in the middle of their webs waiting for flying insects to get entangled in their sticky threads. Garden spiders are preyed upon by other animals, including wasps - which later in the year, when garden spiders are larger and more powerful, will eat them in return. This German Wasp (Vespula germanica) caught a middle size garden spider, I saw it fly with it and settle on a drain pipe to subdue it. If the wasp stung the spider I do not know, but its abdomen was curled underneath. After giving the spider a good chew and positioning it under its legs, the wasp flew away. Wasps hunt -and scavenge, famously at picnics -  to feed their larvae.
The wasp with its prey just before flying away
A large garden spider with a wasp prey in October 2008

UPDATE 24/08/11: corrected the title, which said common wasp.

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