I’m still in California, and in the present heat-wave only good for staying indoors, reading stuff, and editing movie clips, like this one of the local hummers getting hot under the collar when an unwelcome, albeit suicidal, wasp pays a visit.
Wasps are aggressive and not above stinging a hummingbird (check out worldofhummingbirds.com) – hence the nervousness.
Incidentally, when I fished the wasp out, it wandered off a little crusty but still working. We’ve had others pull the same stunt since though, and it’s quite amazing how long they survive, virtually fully submerged in hummingbird syrup; I’m talking 36 hours or so. Presumably they have a tracheal breathing system like other insects, and can shut of their little breathing tubes if necessary; but this seems a long time to run on stored oxygen. Are they taking it from the water/sugar solution? Anyhow – something for another post.