When you see a marabunta nest, what do you do? Some people might run, scream, hide, duck, cover their faces, or freeze. One thing you should never do is try to make friends with them. These wasps are busy at work and do not want to be disturbed. Any sign of interruption and they will gang up on you with full force.
One marabunta sting may feel like a tiny pinch but these creatures attack as a swarm. One hundred stings from these soldiers will surely put you down, especially if you are allergic to the venom. Also, you will end up with a hideous bump on your face, ear, neck, or back.
Home of the marabunta
In Trinidad and Tobago, a marabunta nest can be found in almost every tree. You can find the paper wasps living in the trees of parks, promenades, school yards, and people’s back yards. They are very bold-faced wasps too. You can stone the nest until it falls tonight and it will be back up in the morning. If you check on them, they seem to remember you being the destroyer of their home the night before. They will attack you as you approach.
Marabunta – your friend not foe
If left alone, these wasps are actually helping you out. Yes, the marabunta is known as the fire ants or any wasp with a venomous sting but they are not pests. They actually keep pests away from your plants and trees. You know those creepy crawly bugs called asphids that feed by sucking the sap from your lovely plants? Well the marabunta uses them to feed larvae. They also kill blight and caterpillars. So, when you see a marabunta nest, give them a break. The nest is full of young ones that would continue the cycle of protecting your back yard.
December 2016 www.sweettntmagazine.com
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