Vespidae (social wasps)

 

Social wasps live in colonies with one fertile female (the queen), many infertile females (workers) and a few fertile males (drones).

Species: Vespula vulgaris

Common names: Common wasp, yellowjacket

Distribution: UK, Europe, Asia, America, Australia

Above: a common wasp's face, note the black 'anchor' shaped marking.

Above: note the four yellow markings at the rear of the thorax.

Common wasps can often be found feeding on rotting fruit. Above: two wasps fighting over a fallen apple.

 

Species: Vespula germanica

Common names: German wasp, yellowjacket

Distribution: UK, Europe, Asia, America, Australia

Above: the german wasp is very similar to the common wasp. The german wasp has three black dots instead of an anchor marking on its face.

 

Species: Vespula rufa

Common names: Red wasp

Distribution: UK, Europe

Above: the red wasp has only two yellow markings at the rear of its thorax and has reddish stripes on its abdomen.

 

Species: Dolichovespula media

Common names: Eurowasp, small hornet, median wasp, killer-wasp.

Distribution: UK, Europe, Asia, America, Australia

Above: Members of the genus Dolichovespula, have a gap between the bottom of the eye and the jaws.

 

 

 

Species: Dolichovespula sylvestris

Common names: Tree wasp

Distribution: UK, Europe, Asia, America, Australia

 

Species: Vespa crabro

Common names: Hornet, European hornet.

Distribution: UK, Europe, Asia, America, Australia

Above: Vespa crabro vexator

Above: Vespa crabro germana

 

Species: Dolichovespula maculata

Common names: Bald faced hornet

Distribution: North America

 

Species: Polistes gallicus

Common names: Paperwasp

Distribution: Europe, Asia.

 

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