The wasps in my area changed rather suddenly. I am used to the yellow and black wasps which have lived in my area of Southern Ontario all my life. Last month I saw my first black wasp while on my balcony. And since then all the wasps that I have seen have been black. They have taken over in my area.
I looked them up. After all it is 2020 and these wasps are bigger than the old wasps. Their sting is supposed to be more painful but causes less swelling. But mostly they are named sphex pensylvanicus because they have come from our southern neighbours in Pennsylvania. I hadn’t heard anyone say “Don’t go to Pennsylvania because the wasps are huge and can kill you.” So I now presume they can be lived with.
These great black wasps I would like to call Amish Wasps. I have three reasons for this. The first reason is that they are dressed in black all the time. A bit obvious perhaps but sometimes I’m not that much of an original thinker.
The second reason that I would like to call them Amish wasps is that they have immigrated from Pennsylvania. This follows the path of the Amish people who were originally offered lands in Pennsylvania to practice their religion in peace. They have pushed out into Ohio and Ontario and other places just like the great black wasps. Besides, as a group, Amish and Mennonites are known as the Pennsylvania Dutch. So the Amish sometimes have Pennsylvania in their name just like the wasp.
The third reason for wanting to call them the Amish wasp is the punniest. Just last month when I first spotted one, I said to myself, ‘something is Amish (amiss) here’.
And to the poor yellow and black wasps that have been losing territory to the Amish wasp, something indeed is Amish here.