Social Wasp

Social Wasp

 

the general name for insects of the subfamilies Polybiinae, Polistinae, and Vespinae of the family Vespidae.

Polybiine wasps live mainly in Central and South America. Two genera are found in Africa, and there is one genus in South Asia. The wasps live in communities consisting of one or more fertile females and a large number of infertile females (workers). They build papery nests made of horizontal honeycombs with hexagonal cells that open below, in which the young develop. Like bees, they manufacture honey in their nests.

The subfamilies Polistinae and Vespinae are distributed on all continents. In the USSR they comprise about 25 species. The nests of Polistinae consist of one honeycomb and do not have a protective sheath; those of Vespinae consist of several honeycombs surrounded by a general protective sheath of several layers of paper. The wasps rear the larvae of killed insects.

The families of social wasps living in the temperate zone are annual; those dwelling in tropical regions are perennial. The wasps are usually beneficial, because they destroy many harmful insects. Some species, such as the European hornet (Vespa crab-ro), may interfere with beekeeping.

References in periodicals archive ?
Abstract: To characterize foraging activity of the social wasp Polybia emaciata nests were installed in three commercial monocultures (4 nests/culture) in the Colombian Caribbean Region.
The hornet is Britain's largest social wasp and is rarely aggressive as it will usually only attack if the colony is threatened.
Colony cycle of the social wasp Mischocyttarus consimilis Zikan (Hymenoptera, Vespidae).
The process of nest construction by a social wasp colony does not differ fundamentally from nest construction by a solitary wasp.
A rare but successful reproductive tactic in a social wasp (Hymenoptera: Vespidae): use of heterospecific nests.
Behavioral ecology of the social wasp, Mischocyttarus mexicanus.
Relative inclusive fitness in the social wasp Polistes metricus.
Mitigation of social wasp numbers and pest status can sometimes be achieved with poison baits (Chang 1988; Hanna et al.
Most larval descriptions of social wasp larvae were limited to last-instar larvae and to determining the number of larval instars (Giannotti & Silva 1993, Giannotti 1995).
For example, colonies of the social wasp, Polistes simillimus Zikan, 1951 (Hymenoptera, Vespidae) have been transferred to maize plantings to control Spodoptera frugiperda J.

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