Over the past week hubby and I have been watching this wasp build a nest on the house right next to the front door.
It is called a pipe organ mud dauber wasp. While this variety does not make actual looking pipe organ nests, it does make these cylindrical pipe shaped tubes in which it lays one egg. A tube is built next to each other as well as a row on top of the existing egg lair.
We watched the wasp travel long distances to find muddy areas from which to take the mud to build the nest. No wonder it took over a week to build.
|Look closely to see the spider|
Before each tube is capped the wasp selects a spider, which it paralyzes with a sting, and then places the spider or three in each tube. When the egg hatches there is a meal waiting for the young larva. Then at some point the larva builds a pupa in which it will metamorphose into the wasp.
While it is totally fascinating, it turns out the life cycle of the wasp from egg to larva to wasp takes one year. Unfortunately we are really not prepared to leave the nest over a year by the front door. The mature wasp it not aggressive and rarely stings humans; despite this I believe the nest will still have to go.