Currently viewing the category: "Paper Wasps"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Two different bugs
Location: Upstate SC
May 28, 2014 5:10 am
We went on a little hike in a nearby wetlands area and along our way we found two interesting bugs. One of them looks like a kind of wasp to me, the other one is completely new to me! I’m curious what they are, especially the one with the long stinger for a nose? Thanks for helping out!
Signature: Joyce H.

Paper Wasp

Paper Wasp

Dear Joyce,
We have already written back that you submitted images of a Bee Fly and a Paper Wasp.  We are posting your image of the Paper Wasp in the genus
Polistes.  It appears it might be chewing on that weathered wood to make paper pulp for the construction of its nest.  Paper Wasps make nests of chewed wood pulp, creating chambers for raising young.  The nest has a queen and the colony survives for a single season.  Based on its coloring and markings and its resemblance to this image on BugGuide, this might be a Northern Paper Waps, Polistes fuscatus, which despite its common name, ranges as far south as Florida.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is she eating?
Location: Andover, NJ
May 27, 2014 12:27 pm
I was trying to get some shots of this paper wasp when I realized that it (she?) was eating or carrying something. I wasn’t able to get enough magnification in the image to determine what was in the wasps mouth, although it does look a little like a grub. The wasp eventually got tired of me taking pictures and took off with whatever it was still in its jaws. I’d be very interested in what was going on here.
Thank you!
Signature: Deborah

Paper Wasp with Prey

Paper Wasp with Prey

Hi Deborah,
It would be very difficult to identify the prey in your images conclusively, however, we can make an educated guess.  Paper Wasps in the genus
Polistes take nectar for nourishment, however, the workers do capture insects to feed to the developing larvae in the nest.  Caterpillars are a favored prey of Paper Wasps, and when they are captured, the caterpillars are often skinned and rolled into a ball for easy transportation back to the nest.  We feel strongly that the prey in your images is a Caterpillar.

Paper Wasp with Prey

Paper Wasp with Prey

Thank you!  What a fascinating thing to observe.  I thought it might be too early for them to be feeding larvae, but I guess it’s not.  Very cool.
Deborah Bifulco

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of wasp is this
Location: Pensacola, Florida
September 24, 2013 12:56 pm
I found a couple of wasps nests around an old building and noticed two types of wasps. One type looked normal but the other type had very long wings. What type of Wasp is this
Signature: Lanhill

Paper Wasps

Paper Wasps

Hi Lanhill,
These are Paper Wasps in the genus Polistes.  They are not considered dangerous, though we have been getting numerous reports of aggressive Red Wasps recently.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Wasp?
Location: Cerbat Mts. Arizona. Near Chloride.
September 22, 2013 8:38 pm
I took this picture Sept. 22, 2013 in the Cerbat Mts., near Chloride, Arizona. It was solitary and not very aggressive.
Signature: Walt Barnes

Paper Wasp

Paper Wasp

Hi Walt,
This appears to be a Paper Wasp in the genus
Polistes, and it is actually a social wasp.  We suspect this individual might be hunting for caterpillars or other insect prey on that oak tree so that it can return to the nest to feed the developing larvae.  It is difficult to be certain, but your individual appears to have markings similar to the Polistes comanchus pictured on BugGuide.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Hornworm being attacked by Paper Wasps
Location: Miami, FL, USA
April 4, 2013 4:04 pm
I saw a half dozen paper wasps attacking the head of a fairly large hornworm. Have you ever heard of this behavior? (I cannot imagine them carrying it off, it was 4 inches long).
Signature: Steve W.

Hornworm attacked by Paper Wasps

Hornworm attacked by Paper Wasps

Dear Steve,
This Tobacco Hornworm appears to be eating a tomato plant, and it has “oblique whitish lateral lines”, so we suspect it might be
Manduca sexta, the Carolina Sphinx.  See BugGuide for additional information.  The Paper Wasps are in the genus PolistesPaper Wasps will attack caterpillars and skin them, transporting the balled up flesh to the nest where it is fed to the developing larvae.  They do not intend to carry off this Tobacco Hornworm.  We suspect they will work as a crew and bite off sections of the Tobacco Hornworm to carry it off to the nest.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: flies, stings and lives in groups in Gambia
Location: Gambia
December 11, 2012 2:26 pm
Hi, I took this pic in an outside storeroom, in an area called Sanchaba, near Serekunda, Gambia West Africa today, 12/12/12. It flies, stings very bad and lives in a kind on honeycomb style nest in a dark and would be damp place.
Signature: ginger badjie

Paper Wasps

Hi Ginger,
Your photo lacks clarity, but these appear to be Paper Wasps.  Paper Wasps are generally not aggressive, but like other social wasps, they will defend their nest.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination