16 AUGUST 1930, Page 15


A Cheshire garden in a not unpopulous neighbourhood has been visited this month by a badger with a particular nose for wasps' nests. It has destroyed and devoured just half—two out of four—of the nests so far discovered. The badger's method has some drawbacks, for it leaves a number of hungry wasps at large ; but if the searching of the badgers is as thorough as this, they must greatly reduce the tale of wasps in a neighbourhood. In my own garden wasps, for the first time in my experience, have preferred the roof (of a dog kennel) to the ground. Bees, of course, are par- ticularly fond of a roof, with an especial preference for church roofs. In my records is one account of a swami improving (?) the shining hour, in the most literal Dr. Watts vein, by building in a Church clock ! It is astonishing how faithful they will remain to a favoured spot. During this week I visited a house well known to me a generation ago, and mentioned the trouble we had then experienced with bees in a sloping roof over a bay window. The owner took me outside and there, in the very place, a strong swarm were going in and out of a hole under tiles that clearly showed how many attempts had been made to mortar them out. I suppose this persistence—since bees are not long- lived—is due to the smell of honey clinging about the place. In the same parish they have been at least as faithful to a particular hollow in an old elm tree.