Currently viewing the category: "Hornets and Yellow Jackets"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: bug identification
Location: Barnsley, South Yorkshire, England
February 8, 2016 5:32 am
Please could you take a look at the attached picture of an insect which was in my friends house and identify it for her please? Apparent his is the second one she has had. It looks like some sort of bee to me but I’m not sure.
Signature: Nicola Bailey-Berry

Common Wasp

Common Wasp

Dear Nicola,
Today we learned that insects known as Yellow Jackets in North America are called Common Wasps in England.  We identified your Common Wasp,
Vespula vulgaris, thanks to the iSpot site where it states:  ” The common wasp usually forms large colonies below ground, but occasionally nests may be made in wall cavities, hollow trees and attics. Queens emerge from hibernation during the spring, and they search for a suitable location in which to start a new colony. She then begins to build the nest with chewed up wood pulp, which dries to make a papery substance. A few eggs are laid, which develop into non-reproductive workers. These workers eventually take over the care of the nest, and the queen’s life is then devoted solely to egg laying. At the end of autumn a number of eggs develop into new queens and males, which leave the nest and mate. The new queens seek out suitable places in which to hibernate, and the males and the old colony (including the old queen) die.”  We suspect the individual found by your friend is a hibernating queen that will soon begin to construct her own nest when the weather warms.  North American Yellow Jackets, and we suspect your Common Wasp as well, are not normally aggressive, though they will defend the nest by stinging any perceived or actual threats.  Getty Images has a nice image of a nest of Common Wasps.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Insect
Location: San antonio, tx
December 19, 2015 6:48 am
We found this colorful insect under a tarp. We did some research and think maybe a hornet but im not sure. I have never seen one like this before.
Signature: S. Mainka

Queen Southern Yellowjacket

Queen Southern Yellowjacket

Dear S. Mainka,
This sure looks like a Queen Southern Yellowjacket,
Vespula squamosa, based on this BugGuide image.  Since it is December and you found her under a tarp, we believe she was settling in for winter hibernation.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mystery Hornet?
Location: Souderton, Pennsylvanis
September 19, 2015 4:32 am
Hello, we killed this hornet (?) after it flew into our house. It was about 6 AM, on Sept 19. The weather was cool and foggy. We live in South Eastern Pennsylvania in a semi-rural area with lots of farms and trees. After we killed this one we saw another one outside the house buzzing around our porch light. The shape of the abdomen reminds me of a hornet, but it doesn’t match any picture that I could find of species typical for the area. Thanks so much for any help you can offer on this guy, and all of your efforts to educate people about the insects in their lives!!
Signature: Alison

European Hornet

European Hornet

Dear Alison,
This European Hornet is a non-native species introduced into North America during the nineteenth century.  European Hornets are not considered aggressive toward humans, and it is most likely that no threat was posed when it entered your home.  Creatures that inadvertently enter the home can be safely relocated outdoors by trapping them in an inverted glass with the opening covered by a post card.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Bald Faced Hornets
Location: Mill Bay, BC
September 1, 2015 5:24 pm
Thought you would like to see these pictures of bald faced hornets and their basketball sized nest on Vancouver Island. My friend was picking apples and this was about three feet away he said. I thought they were quite aggressive, but it is a cool day today so maybe he was lucky.
Signature: Sharon Jackson

Bald Faced Hornets Nest

Bald Faced Hornets Nest

Dear Sharon,
Bald Faced Hornets are not considered aggressive, but they will defend the nest by stinging, and multiple stings would be painful and could possibly trigger an allergic reaction in some people.

Bald Faced Hornets

Bald Faced Hornets

Thanks, Daniel. I guess the webpage I was reading was not as smart as you are! J
They sure are big buggers, though, aren’t they??
Sharon

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Ginormous Yellow Jacket/Wasp/Spawn of Satan
Location: Suburbs of Cleveland, OH; near the Cuyahoga Valley National Park
August 12, 2015 5:46 am
Dear Bugman,
I hope this message finds you well. Every Spring, I find a few of these monstrosities in my house, and they kinda creep me out. This year, as usual, they were buzzing around my windows, trying to escape into the outside world, where they can then eat children and small pets, but I’ve also found them outside my house this Summer. Recently, I found two engaged in a duel to the death on my driveway, then, last night, I heard what I thought was a helicopter landing in my front yard, but it turned out to be another one of these big sumbitches buzzing around my porch light. Finally, this morning, I saw what I assumed was a hummingbird, but it was actually another one of these big jerks, which landed briefly on my driveway, picked something up, then scurried off to a nearby oak tree. Any chance you can please tell me what they are, and whether or not I should just burn my house down to get rid of them? Alive, they are about 2″ long, but shrink to about an inch after an entire can of wasp/hornet spray has been deployed against them. Thanks for your help!
Signature: Kenneth F Mucha II

European Hornets:  Battling Queens

European Hornets: Battling Queens

Dear Kenneth,
These are European Hornets,
Vespa crabro, an Invasive Exotic species that according to BugGuide was introduced to eastern North America in the nineteenth century.  These are top of the food chain insect predators that are able to dispatch much larger native predators including Dragonflies.  According to BugGuide:  “Paper nest is built in hollow trees, or in human structures such as attics. Adults come to lights.”  We cannot recall any reports of people being stung by European Hornets, but we imagine they will defend the nest and we also imagine the sting could be quite painful.  We believe your images document battling Queen European Hornets, perhaps fighting over prime real estate for nest construction.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Large black wasp/bee?
Location: Ajax, Ontario, Canada
August 11, 2015 12:29 pm
Hey there, I seem to have quite a few of these rather large insects enjoying the flowers on the backyard.
Other than some white markings on either end, they are all black, about 1 to 1,1/4in long very solid body.
I have never seen anything like these before, so I’m not sure if they are yet another ‘import’ or I’ve just never really noticed them in the past?
Signature: Mr. Ashley Mills

Bald Faced Hornet

Bald Faced Hornet

Dear Mr. Ashley Mills,
Your images are of native social wasps known as Bald Faced Hornets.  In the spring, a mated Queen Bald Faced Hornet begins a new nest by chewing wood into pulp and constructing the nest from paper.  By the end of the season, the nest is quite large and populated by hundreds of worker Hornets.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination