Wonder of nature on display in N.S. church window
Published Thursday, September 13, 2018 10:56PM ADT
Last Updated Friday, September 14, 2018 8:29AM ADT
They've been holding services at Saint Paul's Presbyterian Church in Merigomish, N.S. since 1789.
What happened recently at the church may not be a miracle, but it was an unexpected surprise.
“This week we noticed it for some reason,” said co-caretaker George Wright. “It seemed to just appear, although it had been there, we just didn't see it, of course.”
It's a huge hornet's nest, which is still under construction on one of the church's back windows.
The nest is about a foot-and-a-half long, and a foot wide.
Drawing back a curtain inside the church reveals the inner workings of the nest outside the window.
It creates a fascinating show -- a hive of activity, if you will.
“They're busy looking after their eggs and, if you tap on the glass, you can get a little reaction from them,” said co-caretaker Fraser King. “It stirs them up a little bit. They're busy in there.”
Wright says that in the last three weeks the hornets have built on two full rings on the outside of the nest.
The congregation is aware of the hive, but so far, they don't seem to be too worried.
“They're not concerned about it because it's on the outside of the glass, not the inside,” Wright said. “We don't run around the back of the church much unless, like for Fraser and I, we have to mow.”
Randy Nauff, an entomologist at St. Francis Xavier University was shown pictures of the hive and thought it was an amazing display of nature.
“It may not be a once in a lifetime opportunity, but it's very rare that something like this, something so fascinating can be seen and be protected doing it,” Nauff said. “I mean, these animals will hurt you, if you disturb them.”
That's not the only concern on Wright's mind.
“They used to say if the nests, the bee nests and hornets nests are high, it's an indication there's going to be lots of snow. And I'm looking at that one, it's about 10 feet off the ground, so I'm worried for this winter."
Wright says he may wait until winter before getting rid of the nest. However, if hornets start showing up inside the church, then quicker action may be necessary.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Dan MacIntosh.