When we take the back roads from our home to Hamilton, Ontario, we pass a large round house. A fairly new home, it is built of brick and has interesting windows and a balcony. Our daughters like to look at it, and we imagine what it would be like to furnish the rooms. Most of us live in square or rectangular buildings with corners and straight walls for our traditional furniture.
This is the peak season for annoying wasps, especially if you try to eat your lunch outdoors. When I was watching the Great Egrets last week, I came across a large Bald-faced hornet nest. This insect is not really a hornet, but belongs to the wasp family.
They make paper by chewing wood and spreading the pulp and saliva mix with their mandibles and feet. The results are beautiful in my opinion. I have never been stung by a wasp or bee and do not have an aversion to them from a reasonable distance. I watched as the wasps moved in and out of the nest, which is generally used for only one season.
In the spring I noticed a number of nests in the trees belonging to birds and squirrels. I was hoping to see the residents, but once the leaves came out in May, I could no longer find them. This nest was large and my guess is that it belonged to a Baltimore Oriole. There were plenty of these birds in this area.
I watched the Cliff Swallows frequently this summer. They left the bridge near the hospital a few weeks ago and their nests will hopefully be inhabited next year by the builders. I never saw the birds making the little mud ball bricks at the river's edge, but have seen a wonderful picture of nest construction preparation. Winter storms are unlikely to damage these well protected homes.
Round homes are common in some cultures. The tepee, igloo or round, thatched huts found in many parts of Africa are a few examples of circular dwellings inhabited by man. If I had to choose a round home, I would choose to live in a....