Monday, March 4, 2013

The "Girl Scout" Wasp!

Alexander Graham Bell once said," Before anything else, Preparation is the key to success." The Bembix Sand Wasp is a living illustration of this quotation. There are many preparations this wasp must take in order to ensure the survival of its offspring, since its life expectancy is only 3-4 months.

I prefer to munch on nectar, rather than humans!
This half inch Sand Wasp has the name Bembix , which in Greek means "buzzing insect". Its sounds range from humming , while peacefully eating , to roaring when in danger. Located primarily in North America, Ewe will find Sand Wasps mostly in sand dunes. Here is where they begin preparing a nest for their young.

Can EWE dig it? I go down deeper to avoid the HEAT!
Sand Wasps are avid diggers, equipped with stiff hairs on their
forelegs, that serve them well in excavating tunnels. Nests are built with the egg's safety being a primary concern. Preparation involves digging a system of elaborate cells & chambers that help increase the chance of survival. 

The sand dunes are a dangerous place! I must be Prepared!
Preparations for food must also be carefully engineered. Sand wasps prepare by hunting a host of flies to feed the larva. They must be aggressive in attacking all sizes of flies ,which is actually an aid to local sun bathers. Their paralyzing venom & powerful mandibles, help ensure that the expedition is a success! A larva is capable of eating over 40 flies in 5-days! That's a lot of hunting & digging!
Flies Beware! I'm one mean "killing" machine!
The last preparation that the Sand Wasp must make is that of a sentinel. It must guard the discovery of it's nest from the dreaded Tachina fly . The Tachina Fly desires to lay its eggs in the food of the Sand Wasp's nest. It can only do this while the Sand Wasp is dragging in another fly for the larva. Ewe can see the dilemma that the Sand Wasp faces because of the speed of the Tachina Fly. If the Tachina Fly is successful, its babies will eat the food supply & the young of the Sand Wasp.

Sand Wasps don't like me at all!
Sheep do not prepare ahead of time for many events. They rely on the "Master" planning of the Shepherd to fill out their calendars!

Ewe don't think I do the "Preparations & Planning" , do Ewe?
It's comforting to know that the Good Shepherd has laid out a path & a plan for Ewer day! Enjoy all the scenery along the way.

"You have made known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in your presence." Ps.16:11

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