Wasps, known scientifically as Vespula germanica, are narrow-waisted insects that belong to the order of Hymenoptera. This order also includes ants, bees, and sawflies. The most commonly known wasps, such as yellow jackets and hornets, live together in a nest with an egg-laying queen. Wasps are a diverse group, estimated at over a hundred thousand described species around the world. Like all insects, wasps have a hard exoskeleton which protects their three main body parts. Wasps mainly feed on nectar, but the majority of their time is taken up by foraging for food for their young. While the vast majority of wasps play no role in pollination, a few species can transport pollen to several plant species. Social wasps are considered pests when they become excessively common, or nest close to buildings. People are often stung in late summer when wasp colonies stop breeding new workers. Wasps nests made in or near houses, such as in roof spaces, can present a danger as the wasps may sting if people come too close to them. Stings are usually painful rather than dangerous, but in rare cases, people may suffer life-threatening anaphylactic shock.

Common Pests

We know about pests, you can too. Visit our Pest Library for more information n the habits and habitats of some of the most commons pests.

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