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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Jackson County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    84

    Default Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    IMG_2116.jpg IMG_2117.jpg IMG_2127.jpg IMG_2152.jpg

    DH and I have never seen these before this year. Saw the first one about a month ago and now we're seeing them all over the yard.

    They fly somewhat slowly and usually close to the ground. I have watched them buzzing around the house at about waist high. I've not seen one land even after watching for quite some time.

    They're about half the size of the European (locally called Japanese) hornet. They have an orange abdomen, an orangey yellow middle, and a distinctly patterned yellow and black head.

    Would be great to know if they have any good purpose or are just a pest.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Vestavia Hills, AL
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Looks like a Southern Yellow Jacket Queen.

    See if you think this picture is close. http://bugguide.net/node/view/52433

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Aberdeen, Idaho
    Posts
    1,133

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    How about a clear wing moth? swat one down and post a better picture.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Marshall county, AL
    Posts
    3,055

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Like Dave, I think it' a moth.

    If you had not said in your descrition that it was half the size of a European Hornet, I was going to go with European Hornet.
    The more I learn about bees, the less I know.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Jonestown, Colunbia County,PA
    Posts
    39

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    It looks more like a hornet or wasp. The clear wing moth is more of a yellow like a bumblebee. Also a lot more hair on the moth.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Jackson County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    PH_Bee nailed it.

    So glad I asked for help. Will be declaring war on them now.

    We had killed one but I didn't get a photo. It looked just like the ones in photos of Southern Yellow Jacket queens.

    I also looked at clear wing moth photos. We did see some of those here in the past few weeks.

    Thank you all for responding.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Vestavia Hills, Al. USA
    Posts
    238

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Southern Yellowjacket Queen - Vespula squamosa - Female
    Gloster, Gloster Arboretum, Amite County, Mississippi, USA
    May 13, 2006
    Size: body length 19.3 mm
    that thing is bigger the 19.3 mm isn't it?
    I have them in a hole next to a creek and they are almost 2 inches long.
    I've seen it fly out but never seen it bother anything/anyone.
    Started April Fools Day 2017. 2 colonies, The plan, to be TF and foundationless.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    154

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Most positive that's a Southern Yellow jacket foundress

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    King County, Washington
    Posts
    154

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Quote Originally Posted by PH_Bee View Post
    Looks like a Southern Yellow Jacket Queen.

    See if you think this picture is close. http://bugguide.net/node/view/52433
    Spot on

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Jackson County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    84

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    rbees, Yes I'm sure of it.

    R_V, The ones I'm seeing look to be about 1". But very well could be 19.3mm or about 3/4". If you think they really could be the Southern Yellow Jacket queens, please research them before you let them live on your property. They're no bother now, but from what I understand, by late summer, they will be.

    I've been killing at least one almost everyday but more have been able to get away. They must have been signaled about me by the dying ones because now as soon as I get near, they zoom away. I'm now killing them with wasp-hornet spray that shoots 20ft.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Byron, Il, USA
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Looks like a fly to me. Catch one and count the wings. 2 wings is a fly. 4 wings is a wasp or bee.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Vestavia Hills, Al. USA
    Posts
    238

    Default Re: Please Help ID This Flying Insect

    Quote Originally Posted by sandmtn View Post
    rbees, Yes I'm sure of it.

    R_V, The ones I'm seeing look to be about 1". But very well could be 19.3mm or about 3/4". If you think they really could be the Southern Yellow Jacket queens, please research them before you let them live on your property. They're no bother now, but from what I understand, by late summer, they will be.

    I've been killing at least one almost everyday but more have been able to get away. They must have been signaled about me by the dying ones because now as soon as I get near, they zoom away. I'm now killing them with wasp-hornet spray that shoots 20ft.
    The "things" I have are at least 2 inches long so I guess they're something else. and there's only the one or maybe two of them.
    I haven't seen a yellow jacket in my yard for years.
    Started April Fools Day 2017. 2 colonies, The plan, to be TF and foundationless.

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