We are all very aware of the wasps that buzz around us during the summer time. Black and yellow, a small waist and a bad temper. However, there are in fact various different species that live in London and the rest of the UK. Some are social wasps, creating large nests and living as a colony. However, the majority of wasps are solitary, living in small crevices, insect burrows or small nests they build for themselves and their offspring. So what species are found in the UK?
Common and German Wasps
Common and German wasps are the most common species in the UK and will be the ones that torment you the most throughout the warmer months. They build their nests in sheds, garages and loft spaces, or in old animal burrows, trees and bushes.
Whilst feeding their young, they will prey on other insects, turning to sweeter food as the season moves on, the young wasps grow into adults and the temperatures drop, leaving a shortage of food.
The common wasp is 15-20mm long, has an anchor shape on its face and has no black spots on its back. The German wasp that can be smaller in size at 12-20mm, has three black spots on its face and several on its abdomen. Both nest in colonies that can be made up of 10,000+ wasps.
The Tree Wasp
The tree wasp is aggressive in nature and gets it name from the fact it builds its nest in trees, as well as hedges and shrubs. Living in much smaller colonies of one hundred or so, the wasps enter and leave the nest through a whole located in the bottom of the nest.
The tree wasp is easily identifiable by the key features, including a black dot in the middle of the face, antennae with a yellow base, pale hairs along the thorax along with two yellow dots.
The Median Wasp
The median wasp is a nasty one –nastier than others! One of the main features includes a prominent sting that has been recorded to reach up to 3mm long. What’s more, it doesn’t sting like other wasps. It adds extra punch by flying straight up into the air to get a good look at you, before descending at speed to administer its painful sting!
Almost all black in colour with very fine yellow or red strips, another recognisable point is its orange legs. Creating graphite colour nest in hedges, they can take people by surprise and attack in an instant.
The Saxon Wasp
Similar to the median wasp in appearance apart from a distinctive black line down its face and dark hairs covering its body. It is fortunately not similar in temperament. A much less aggressive wasp, its nest is generally the size of a grapefruit, containing 1000-1500 wasps. The saxon wasp sometimes chooses more unusual locations for its nests, such as hanging from guttering. However, their small size along with being easily spotted means they are often easily treated.
London Wasp Control
Top Dog Pest Control provides rapid response London wasp control, throughout the city. With experienced and knowledgeable technicians operating in every borough, we can have someone with you in no time at all.
Once found, wasp nests should never be left untreated, as they will quickly grow in size, posing a higher risk to you and those around you.
This article was written by Dean Mannion, Senior Pest Control Technician for Top Dog Pest Control. Top Dog Pest Control provides London wasp control services.