The Violet Fern

A Colorful Tale of a Garden in the Making

Calling All Buzz Enthusiasts


I enjoy a good beer like anyone else, but the kind of buzz I am inquiring about is of the bee, wasp, or hornet kind. My Dad just sent me this photo of a nest under construction in his yard. The location is Central New York zone 5. Do any of you know who and what might be constructing this beautiful sculpture-like hive? The buzzers in question are refacing a wren house (yellow), approximately 3-4 feet off the ground mounted on a log base. This is a small wooded “island” in a suburban yard. Should he be concerned? Can we all live in peace? Your expertise is needed and welcome!

photo 1


Author: Kathy Sturr

Cultivating art, growing soul, and creating plant-based food in the beautiful 1000 Islands, New York and Cedar Key, Old Florida.

12 thoughts on “Calling All Buzz Enthusiasts

  1. some sort of paper wasp?

  2. I have no idea, but it’s an impressive renovation job!

  3. Looks like a bald-faced hornet nest to me! Tell him to be very careful around it – they get quite aggressive. The colony only lasts for the one year, though, so if he can tough it out this summer, it will die over the winter.

    • I tend to agree with you Cynthia – bald-faced hornet (which I read is really a type of yellow jacket and not a hornet). He is going to let it be – it will be interesting if a wren uses the box next year!

      • The reason I agree is because my Dad said they look like ants crawling all around the hive and I read this is a characteristic of the bald-faced hornet.

  4. Hi : ). I just happened to be reading up on house wrens the other night and read someone’s observations on a relationship between wrens and wasps – that house wrens were known to inhabit abandoned wasp nests and vice versa.

  5. Whatever is building it, that really is an incredible hive!

  6. Agree it is some sort of wasp nest…looks like paper wasp so give it a wide berth

  7. Because in my latest post July Observations: the Dogwood Saw Down, I learned that paper wasps are also called “umbrella wasps for the shape of their uncovered combs frequently suspended beneath the eaves of houses” (Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America), I am further inclined to say this is the nest of a hornet.

  8. I have no idea, but what a beauty!I have seen smaller versions of those, but I would not be able to identiful it for sure….pretty though!

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