After completion of the study of Stinging Insects, the trainee should be able to:
Identify common urban stinging insect pests.
Describe the life cycles of yellowjackets, paper wasps, mud daubers,
honeybees, and carpenter bees.
Given an urban stinging insect problem, describe integrated pest
management procedures to suppress it.
with frightened or, at best, fearful clients is an
The insects most beneficial to humans are found
important skill technicians must develop.
in the large insect order Hymenoptera. Not only are
Nests of stinging pests are usually the target for
the bees and many of their relatives pollinators of
control. Understanding nesting and the make-up of the
flowering plants, including fruits and vegetables, but
colony is essential.
thousands of species of small wasps are parasites of
other arthropods including pest insects. Without these
NESTS AND COLONIES
parasites that limit the growth of insect populations,
pests would overtake most crops.
Yellowjackets, hornets and paper wasps are all in
The urban pests of the order Hymenoptera are the
the same insect family, Vespidae. The common Paper
stinging insects. Although the first image to come to
wasp with its umbrella shaped nest or single comb best
mind implies danger to humans, these yellowjackets,
demonstrates the basic building pattern of a colony.
hornets, and wasps sometimes serve our interest: They
feed their young largely on flies and caterpillars.
Many of these stinging insects are social. They
live in colonies with a caste system or a division of
labor and overlapping generations -- all offspring of
one individual reproductive. Some of these colonies
persist for many years (ants, honey bees) and others,
like stinging wasps, start anew each year.
WASPS, Y E L L O W J A C K E T S , A N D
In parts of the United States, particularly in the
eastern states, yellowjackets, wasps, hornets and bees
are all called bees by the general public. Of course the
general public is principally focused on one attribute
these insects have in common -- their stingers.
Knowledge of the behavior of these pests is
essential to their management; effective communication
Module Two, Chapter 2, Pg 1