Wasps

European Wasp

wasp

To European wasp is easily identifiable by.

  • Its black and yellow body.
  • Its yellow legs.
  • Triangular markings on the abdomen

European wasp nest

nest

While the European wasp is the same size as the bee (10-15mm),it is less hairy and folds it wings back at rest. Queen European wasp have identical markings and colouring, except large and can get up to 20mm.

Food sauces that they are attracted to

A European wasp is scavengers and is attracted to sweet foods and meat. This is why they are commonly are nuisance at outdoor eating venues and barbeques.

Do not aggravate a European wasp

Unlike bee a European wasp can sting multiple times. When left alone European wasp is not aggressive to humans and animals.

But if disturbed the wasp release a chemical which triggers the wasps to defend the nest.

Australia paper wasp

wasp 2

Paper wasps are a social wasp consisting of small colonies of 12-20 individuals.

Adult wasps feed on nectar and make ‘paper’ nests by mixing saliva and wood fibres and often found around and under eaves , pergolas or in vegetation.

Nests are a nursery where larvae are kept one to each cell.

The larvae are fed on chewed-up caterpillars caught by the adults.

The cells are then capped and the larvae pupate. Most paper wasps die in autumn or winter, while some hibernate to start new nests next season.

 larvae new nest Series   

Paper wasps are found across mainland southern Australia including:

Paper wasps will often attack if they are disturbed or feel threatened.

  • southern Queensland
  • New South Wales
  • the Australian Capital Territory
  • Victoria
  • South Australia
  • Southern Western Australia.

Polistes humilis are a native wasp species, but other paper wasp species are introduced.

Mud Wasp

wasp3 wasp4

Mud dauber is large, solitary wasp. The female collect mud and use it to construct nests or brood chambers, which can often be see attached to buildings or under the eaves of the house. They are bottle shaped with a tunnel entrance, and look just like tiny version of martin or swallow nests. When the work is complete, the female mud dauber wasp captures and paralyses insects and spiders which she places inside the chamber. She lays her eggs, and then seals the entrance to the nest. When the wasp larvae hatch they feed on the insects, and later emerge as adults wasps to start the cycle all over again. There’s no need to worry about being stung by mud daubers-unlike social wasps they are not aggressive, and unlikely to sting as long as you don’t touch them.

Mud nest

mud nest mud nest 2

To locate the nest

First you need to establish the direction the wasps are flying in from. To do this, place a food source out ie: meat or pet food in a visible location. Once the wasp has collected the food. It will fly in the direct line to the nest. A wasp may be scavenging for food up to 500m from the nest. Keep relocating the food sources in the direction of the nest.

Nest are located where shelter is available. The most common location for nests is under ground and nest will be evident by a stream of wasps entering and leaving a hole in the ground. Nests are also found in retaining walls. Hollows of trees and wall cavities. The nest are made of grey paper Mache type material. Nest made of mud are not European wasp.

First aid

Here are some tips on stings from wasp or bee.

  • Remove any stingers immediately. Some experts recommend scraping out the stinger with a credit card.
  • Applying ice to the site may provide some mild relief. Apply ice for 20 minutes once every hour as needed. Wrap the ice in a towel or keep a cloth between the ice and skin to keep from freezing the skin.
  • Taking an antihistamine such as diphenhydramine (Benadryl) or a nonsedating one such as loratadine (Claritin) will help with itching.
  • Take ibuprofen (Motrin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain relief as needed.
  • Wash the sting site with soap and water and place an antibiotic ointment on the site.
  • If it’s been more than 10 years since your last tetanus booster, get a booster within the next few days.
  • Most insect stings require no additional medical care.
  • If you are allergic seek medical help straight away.

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