Kate Scarborough Takes Us Inside a Wasp Nest


A Wasp Builds a Nest by Kate Scarborough and Martin Camm (Firefly Books, Ltd. 2016) is a masterpiece almost amazing as a paper wasp nest itself. If you don’t know how amazing and intricate a paper wasp nest is, you need to read this book. Its pages build along with the description and illustrations of how each layer of cells is constructed, making it easy to understand what is going on inside. There are close-up illustrations of the cells and larvae, and informative text to explain what is happening.

That’s all pretty magical, but what struck me the most is the layered concept of the seasons in the description of all this nest building. I already knew that wasps build new nests every year, but I was still overcome with awe. Why? Once I saw what’s happening inside and understood the detail of the nest construction, all the work involved, and the cooperation among the wasps – with all this occurring between March or April and September – and ending in the death of the original queen, well, awestruck is the only way to describe how I felt.

This is not just a book for insect or nature lovers. It’s a book for everyone, because a daily dose of awe-inspiring nature is sure to enthuse, and hopefully motivate a reader to care for the world around him or her.

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