Friday 27 May 2016

Hornets Attack Victor Mature!

Photography has been a frustrating habit this week. Nothing has stayed in range of my camera for very long, and the shots I'm getting have been pretty low quality. The birds are hiding in the canopy, the bees are too mobile, and the butterflies seem to have disappeared.

Today has been a case in point. I'm keen to photograph swifts, but when I go out to find them they are high level rather than screeching at low altitude as they fly into their nests, and a big flock of long tailed tits in the Old Oak Wood today, but I couldn't get any kind of clear view among the leaves.

Early and tree bumblebee workers are now out and about, saddlebags full of pollen, but they ended up being just as hard to photograph as the fast moving hairy foots that have now sadly disappeared for the year by the looks of things.

And the most gutting thing? Walking through the orchard in the park, and thinking "Gosh, that was a bloody big wasp" that's just flown by. Walking a bit further, a flash of red and yellow whipped over my right shoulder and settled on a tree trunk.

It was a hornet, large as my index finger, and the first I've ever seen in Newark. When it flew, its wings made a loud, low "thrum" and it was obviously chewing wood for nest purposes. Magnficent beast! But of course, as soon as I deployed my camera, it flew up and around the tree trunk.

"Git!" I said, as I did to every other bird or insect that refused to pose for me. I was left to take photographs of the many coloured wallflowers in the fort shaped flowerbed by the cafe. Even the bees there were elusive, not to mention the fantastically fast winged silver y moth that also made a rapid visit.

Still, colours though!


All text and images copyright CreamCrackeredNature 27.05.16. "Hornets Attack Victor Mature" was a name that REM used for a secret show once upon a time.


  1. I understand your frustration all too well,
    nice stationery flowers.

  2. Hornets really are impressive beasts aren't they. Gorgeous colours in your far more obliging flowers though!

  3. Love the pictures of the flowers, they are so colourful.

    All the best Jan

  4. Thank you all, the interest in snapping a hornet tempered by knowledge the sting hurts like buggery. Oh well, that's why I have a superzoom camera. X1000 ought to do the trick.

  5. Lovely colourful flowers! I've been told that setbacks build character. Better luck next time!

  6. Yes, but you the flowers, lovely shots Simon.

  7. Beautiful colours in the flowers here Simon, very pretty! And I feel you on the bug-photography front - I've always struggled to get good shots of wasps in flight and some bees too, though they seem to be easier to snap, but I hope you get your shot soon! - Tasha

  8. Silver ys are tricksy things to photograph at the best of times :-). Loved all the flower shots.

  9. Thank you everyone, I just keep practicing.

  10. Hornets are fascinating. I wrote about them a couple of years ago. We had a next in the shed and I watched the hornets make their way in and out. They were clumsy at night; bumping into me as I passed. When the nest was at the end of its life in autumn and the hornets had dies and the females had hibernated, I took the nest and sliced it in two on the bandsaw. It's amazing inside. If you're interested, you can see the pics here:

    Hopefully you will catch a picture of one next time!

    The Thrifty Magpies Nest