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'Drunk and irritable' wasps descend on the UK

By T.K. Randall
August 14, 2018 · Comment icon 16 comments

British wasps have been at the booze. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.5 Richard Bartz
Wasps in Britain have been getting drunk on fermented fruit and left-over pub cider, experts claim.
The insects resort to these foodstuffs when they can no longer feed on their conventional diet of flies and 'sugar-rich spit' from the queen's larvae - something that typically happens in mid to late August.

Fruit that has rotted and fermented makes for an ideal alternative, as does leftover cider in pub gardens. Sadly however, the insects can become rather agitated after ingesting alcohol.

"They are really aggressive at this time of year," said pest control expert Shane Jones. "And because of the cold winter, the wasp season started about six weeks earlier."
"Wasps have built absolutely massive nests and, now that all the larvae have grown up and the queen has stopped laying eggs, the colonies have a workforce with nothing to do - and nothing to eat. So they go down to the pub, obviously."

"Wasps can't handle their booze, so they get tanked-up and fighty - like lager louts."

Suffice to say, it would be best to keep a fair distance.

Source: AOL News | Comments (16)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #7 Posted by TripGun 6 years ago
A wasp's favorite sport is sting-pong....
Comment icon #8 Posted by Hammerclaw 6 years ago
In the Southeast U.S. the bane of Summer is a similar looking wasp called The Yellowjacket. It builds huge nests in tree hollows, walls and abandoned underground burrows. In temperament, a lot like fire ants with wings. http://www.drewmonkman.com/columns/the-stingers-of-summer-are-wasps-hornets-and-yellowjackets-ruining-your-outdoor-enjoyment/
Comment icon #9 Posted by Calibeliever 6 years ago
We have them in the PNW too. Nasty little things when they get worked up. Coincidentally, I also live part time in Texas where we have fire ants. I can confirm that neither of them are known for their calm response to threats. I'd rather be chased by a bear than look down and see the top of my sneakers covered with fire ants  (has happened, the welts can last for weeks).
Comment icon #10 Posted by Hammerclaw 6 years ago
Got stung on the eyelid by a 'jacket when I was ten. Next day Dad and Papaw torched the nest with a gallon of gas.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Hammerclaw 6 years ago
The queens hibernate come August. Social organization breaks down and the drones cease hunting insects to feed the larvae and freelance it feeding on sugary things where ever they find it and can spoil a picnic. 
Comment icon #12 Posted by Likely Guy 6 years ago
A neighbours girlfriend was out camping about a month ago and stepped on a ground nest and got stung multiple times on the neck. The others had no cell service where they were, no antihistamines and no epi-pen. By the time they got her to the hospital she had slipped into a coma and died about a week later.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Calibeliever 6 years ago
That is so terrible, I feel awful reading that  . If she was that allergic, it's a shame she wasn't better prepared to take care of herself. Every year there seems to be a story about someone going out into nature unprepared that ends tragically. Local news usually runs something about this every spring to remind people that it's the winderness' job to try and kill you and it will if given the chance. Don't turn your back on her. Sorry for your neighbor.
Comment icon #14 Posted by paperdyer 6 years ago
It's just not the Southeast.  The Northeast gets them as well.  The ones in the South seem a lot meaner though.
Comment icon #15 Posted by GlitterRose 6 years ago
Fire, flood, pestilence... I'm telling you... the end of the world.
Comment icon #16 Posted by Black Red Devil 6 years ago
When's the next "official" target day for doomsday?  We survived 2000, 2012 and I'm not sure how many others. The doomsday clock says we're 2 minutes away from midnight (midnight is intended as the time of the apocalypse).  


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