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 Common paper wasp (Polistes exclamans)

Common paper wasp | Polistes exclamans photo
Common paper wasp (Polistes exclamans exclamans)
Photograph by Jerry A. Payne, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

Common paper wasp | Polistes exclamans photo
Common paper wasp (Polistes exclamans exclamans)
Photograph by Forest & Kim Starr, Starr Environmental, Bugwood.org. Some rights reserved.  (view image details)

Then Common paper wasp is a fairly brightly colored reddish brown wasp with black and yellow markings. The abdomen is mainly reddish brown with narrow yellow and black bands. Females have a mainly reddish thorax, and males have a mainly black thorax. The antennae have red, black and yellow bands. The nest is made of wood fibre and is usually built near settled areas and is located in a tree or building structure. Common paper wasp s are not aggressive, but will sting f the nest is disturbed or approach to closely.

about 20mm

found in a range of habitats including around human habitation

The Common paper wasp preys on caterpillars to feed its larvae. Adult wasps feed on nectar and fruit sugar.

The nest has a single layer of open hexagonal cells. A single queen wasp lays all the eggs, with an egg laid in each cell of the nest. The eggs eventually hatch into larvae which are fed on chewed insect food by the adults, until they are ready to pupate. Satellite nest are common where a female leaves the nest to build a new nest a few metres away from the original nest. this gives the colony better ability to survive predators and parasites that may otherwise wipe out the colony.

Polistes exclamans is found in the southern two thirds of the United States roughly south of a line from California to New Jersey. It is also found in northern Mexico.

Common Name:Common paper wasp

Relatives in same Genus
  Red Paper Wasp (P. annularis)
  Paper wasp (P. apachus)
  Golden paper wasp (P. aurifer)
  Red Wasp (P. carolina)
  European Paper Wasp (P. dominula)
  Northern paper wasp (P. fuscatus)
  Paper wasp (P. metricus)
  Red-brown paper wasp (P. olivaceus)

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