Posts Tagged: European paper wasps
They didn't get the memo. A sign on a recycling bin near the Mann Laboratory at the University of California, Davis, clearly reads "Bottles and Cans...
A sign on a UC Davis recycling bin clearly says "Bottles and Cans Only." It says nothing about wasps. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Close-up of the European paper wasps building their nest beneath the overhanging lid of a recycling bin. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
European paper wasps even built a nest in a donation box in the Reiman Gardens, Iowa State University. "These ladies had expensive taste," quipped associate professor Amy Toth, who reseachers European paper wasps. (Photo by Amy Merritt, Reiman Gardens)
"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe."--John Muir, My First Summer in the Sierra Muir...
Three's company! Three juvenile Cooper's hawks, as identified by Andrew Engilis, Jr. curator of the UC Davis Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology,cooling off in an urban birdbath in Vacaville. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A Gulf Fritillary gets ready to lay an egg. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Gulf Fritillary caterpillars defoliating the passionflower vine. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
San Francisco Chronicle.
"The European paper wasp, which is about the same size (as the yellow jacket) but more slender, has built up to enormous numbers in some communities," said Lynn Kimsey, professor in the Department of Entomology at UC Davis. "They have been making their way out of the Sacramento area for the past 20 years."
Kimsey said the wasps have moved outward from Sacramento along river beds and water ways into the Sierra Nevada and along the delta toward San Francisco. In August, 345 wasp nests were removed in South Lake Tahoe.
European paper wasps dine on caterpillars, aphids and honeybees, but switch to mostly carbohydrates in the late summer for energy, said Andrew Sutherland, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in the Bay Area.
Vernard Lewis, UCCE specialist in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management at UC Berkeley, also contributed to the story.
"Where I normally eat my lunch is one of the biggest yellow jacket nests I've seen in years," Lewis said. "It's not just here. I'm getting reports from the Berkeley campus and from Richmond, Antioch and Rodeo. Something is up. It's not just yellow jackets. It's other pests, too, like cockroaches. It's the most I've seen in at least 10 or 15 years."
Fimrite added a link in his article to the UC Statewide IPM Program Pest Note on Yellowjackets and other social wasps.
Yellow jackets, like the one above, are often confused with European paper wasps. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)
If you've been lying awake at night wondering how European paper wasps select their mates--or if you're just naturally curious--you'll want to attend...
European paper wasp (Polistes dominulus). (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)