Our friends Jill and Piero have a place about 5,000 feet up in the Sierra, in Calaveras County. The western yellow jacket, known taxonomically as Vespula pensylvanica and popularly as the Sierra meat bee, is their constant companion during the summer. The prevalence of these wasps has given rise to a variety of home-made solutions to keep them at bay (including some very low-tech ones). To deal with his crop, Piero has bought some traps that use some kind of chemical attractant. The wasps find their way in but can’t find their way out, and they die. When we were up there over Labor Day weekend, the traps had just been emptied into a white five-gallon bucket; there were enough of them that they covered the bottom of the bucket maybe an inch deep. That’s a lot of insects.
2 Replies to “Bucket of Meat Bees”
Okay–that is definitely better than the Lake Pymatuning carp photos. Creepy but kind of beautiful, that image would make a great painting, say 6×8 feet. Could I get a large format print of that picture?
John, I was thinking the same thing–it really would be compelling in some large-format treatment. I will see about getting a print made and will be glad to send you one.