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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Dudley, Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    196

    Question Help me identify these wasps...

    My wife put out some watermellon rinds on the compost pile, and this afternoon saw a whole bunch of wasps on the rinds, eating the mellon. I googled some pictures of wasps, but couldn't find one which matches these:


    (click for bigger pictures)

    The common wasp pictures I saw on the internet had markings which were mostly yellow with a little black; these are mostly black with a little yellow. They come around the hive a little too (especially today when I had the hive open and was inspecting).

    Anyone know what these are?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,410

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    Look like yellow jackets to me.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Pigeon Falls, WI
    Posts
    2,529

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    They look like the common yellow jacket to me.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Covington, Ga, USA
    Posts
    1,549

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    yup...yj's
    "You laugh at me because I am different, but I laugh at you because you are all the same."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Alberta Canada
    Posts
    233

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    I agree with the others.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    nelsonville, ohio
    Posts
    383

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    no doubt about it yellow jackets for shure http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yellow_jacket

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Aberdeen, Idaho
    Posts
    512

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    If they were here in Idaho they would be Polestus wasps. They make flat open combs under almost anything including large leaves. A very large nest would be 4-6 inches across. They rarely make a tiered nest. The other YJ species all seem to have more yellow than black and make a covered nest. They are not very agressive and consume lots of insects when raising brood. In the late summer they move to sweet things and become a real nusiance at the hives.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Greenhill, Nova Scotia, Canada
    Posts
    281

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    they look like yj to me too. I don't know that i agree with the agressive part but i guess it depends on how much of a threat they see you as.
    ________________
    Scott Stackhouse

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Farmington, NM
    Posts
    736

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    Yep a Yellow Jacket....


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,541

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Burrup View Post
    If they were here in Idaho they would be Polestus wasps.
    Here, too. I see different size insects in the photo. Are there? Do the large ones look like those black wasps that fly about the eves of your house, or kind with a redish dot on their sides that nest under the outer covers of your hives? They fly with dangling legs, not short ones like YJs.

    There is a new introduced species of Polestus wasp, that has spread. The coloring mimicks Yellow Jackets. So you have to look close.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Dudley, Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    196

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    I grabbed the good camera and took some more pictures. Here are the yellowjackets on watermellon:



    I liked the picture of the head of the yellowjacket on the second picture above.

    I put some pollen patties on my hives, and left the paper cover out hoping the bees would get the pollen. But the yellowjackets seemed to like it better. I noticed something interesting in this picture:



    This picture looks like it has 2 different speecies. Note the different proportions in black and yellow stripes in the 2 insects. Also, the insect on the left has more yellow on her face compared to the insect on the right. This is fascinating to me - I've never paid attention like this.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Manassas, VA
    Posts
    108

    Default Re: Help me identify these wasps...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Burrup View Post
    They are not very agressive

    Here in va that is the most agressive bee we have. They will sting you for no reason! Ive been stung by these bees more often than any other bee including my honeybees.I promise you if you ever mow or step near there nest you will never forget what kind of bee a yellow jacket is.

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