Wildlife North America . com
North American Animals - mamals, birds, reptiles, insects
Aerial yellowjacket (Dolichovespula arenaria)
Aerial yellowjacket (male), taken in Bas-Saint-Laurent, Quebec, Canada
Photograph by Gilles Gonthier from Canada. Some rights reserved. (view image details)
AERIAL YELLOWJACKET FACTSDescription
The Aerial yellowjacket is one of the most common yellowjacket wasps in North America. It is a black and yellow wasp with long curved antennae. The head and abdomen are mainly black with some yellow markings; the abdomen is black with narrow yellow bands. The antennae are black and the legs are yellow. The wasps are social and form colonies with a well developed caste system like honey bees. The colony is housed in a papery nest, usually situated above the ground attached to plants or man made structures, and made from wood and saliva. The female hibernates in winter and starts a new colony in spring. These wasps are a pest as they damage fruit crops, and can inflict a painful sting to people.
about 2cm long
found in various habitats including urban
adult wasps feed on nectar and fruit. The worker ants catch small insects and pulp them for feeding to the larvae.
The queen wasp lays her eggs in the nest where they hatch into grub-like larvae. The larvae grow within the nest until they pupate, and after some time, emerge as adult wasps.
Dolichovespula arenaria is found throughout the United States and Canada as far north as the arctic.
Relatives in same Genus
Baldfaced hornet (D. maculata)