German wasp

Vespula germanica

''Vespula germanica'' is a species of wasp found in much of the Northern Hemisphere, native to Europe, Northern Africa, and temperate Asia. It has spread and become well-established in many other places, including North America, South America , Australia, and New Zealand.
Vespula germanica I find wasps very photogenic. I love the yellow contrast against the black and those dark mysterious eyes. This one was doing something on a snail shell, maybe feeding itself? Fall,Geotagged,German wasp,Portugal,Vespula germânica,macro,wasp

Appearance

The German wasp is about 13 mm long, has a mass of 74.1 ± 9.6 mg, and has typical wasp colours of black and yellow. It is very similar to the common wasp , but unlike the common wasp, has three tiny black dots on the clypeus. To further complicate the issue this only applies to workers. It is best practice to first work out if your wasp is a worker, queen or drone before separating it into vulgaris vs germanica. German wasps also have black dots on their abdomens, while the common wasp's analogous markings are fused with the black rings above them, forming a different pattern. However, the identification of a wasp as ''V. vulgaris'' may be difficult because the normally unbroken black mark on its clypeus can sometimes appear broken, making it look extremely similar to ''V. germanica''.
Vespula germanica, Heesch, Netherlands Found dead and dusty on the garden floor by Henriette. Together with Vespula vulgaris, this species is likely responsible for people's "proxy" fear to anything in a black/yellow jacket, including harmless hover-flies, bees and bumblebees.

Note the cool comma-shaped eyes. Another interesting detail are the 3 black spots above the jaws, these are an identification key to distinguish it from the very similar Vespula vulgaris:
http://www.ahw.me/img/vespula-germanica-vulgaris-kaken1b.html Extreme Macro,Extreme Macro Portraits,German wasp,Vespula germanica,WeMacro

Distribution

''V. germanica'' originated in Europe, Asia, and North Africa and can now be found in sections of every continent but Antarctica. It has established populations in North America, South America, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia. German yellowjackets are known to be especially successful and destructive invaders of new territories. These wasps are polyphagous predators which feed on native arthropods, and because they are able to outdo many other animals for food, they have caused considerable harm to the indigenous wildlife of areas which they have invaded. For a given year, ''V. germanica'' disperses at distances of no more than 1000 m, so that their rapid dispersal is likely to be aided by accidental human transport of hibernating queens. This normally leads to a bottleneck effect during the establishment of new populations, which explains the significant genetic differentiation often found among geographically distant populations.

The nest is made from chewed plant fibres, mixed with saliva. The majority of nests are found in the soil below ground. A significant portion of nests are found in artificial structures such as attics, and a small portion are found above ground.
Vespula germanica- German Wasp on a leaf in nature.Macro photo Vespula germanica (European wasp, German wasp, or German yellowjacket) Macro photo Bulgaria,Geotagged,German wasp,Vespula germanica,allergic,animal,beautiful,black,bug,close,closeup,dangerous,eye,fly,germanica,green,head,health,insect,isolated

Status

The species is considered a pest in most areas outside its native range, although its long residency in North America means it is not treated with any level of urgency there, unlike in areas such as South America, where the introduction is more recent and the impacts more dramatic.

Along with the closely related common wasp and two species of ''Polistes'', the German wasp is considered a pest in New Zealand. It was probably introduced in the late 19th century, but did not appear in large numbers until around 1940. Wasp numbers reach their greatest densities in beech forest of the South Island, due to the abundant honeydew produced by the beech-scale insect there. It has a serious effect on forest ecology, as less honeydew remains available for native birds. However, German wasps were quickly succeeded in much of the South Island and its beech forests by the common wasp introduced in the 1970s.
The companion Today, I had some company at the office - maybe someone to talk to would have been nice...
It's a German wasp, you can tell it by the characteristic three black dots on the head! Geotagged,Germany,Macro,Vespula germanica,insect

Behavior

''Vespula germanica'' queens are typically polyandrous. The queens mate with a moderate number of males, usually between one and seven, with no optimal number of mates. In addition, mating events are independent of each other, which discredits the hypothesis that queens terminate mating behavior after mating with a male that possesses an optimal set of attributes.

''V. germanica'' workers are unable to mate and so incapable of producing diploid offspring. In some nests, however, the workers produce male offspring. Worker reproduction has been documented in other ''Vespula'' wasp colonies, but usually only after the death of the queen. However, workers of ''V. germanica'' have been found reproducing in the presence of a queen.''Vespula germanica'' workers are known to be opportunistic predators and scavengers. They are efficient at hunting for small, live food sources and at collecting from large stationary sources. It is believed that the flexibility in ''V. germanicas foraging behavior is a key factor in their ability to rapidly colonize new areas in a variety of ecological environments. As scavengers, ''V. germanica'' are forced to make numerous trips between the location of the food source and the nest, where the larvae are kept and fed. This calls for ''V. germanica'' foragers to be adept at relocating earlier food sources.
big wasp  German wasp,Vespula germanica

Habitat

''V. germanica'' originated in Europe, Asia, and North Africa and can now be found in sections of every continent but Antarctica. It has established populations in North America, South America, South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia. German yellowjackets are known to be especially successful and destructive invaders of new territories. These wasps are polyphagous predators which feed on native arthropods, and because they are able to outdo many other animals for food, they have caused considerable harm to the indigenous wildlife of areas which they have invaded. For a given year, ''V. germanica'' disperses at distances of no more than 1000 m, so that their rapid dispersal is likely to be aided by accidental human transport of hibernating queens. This normally leads to a bottleneck effect during the establishment of new populations, which explains the significant genetic differentiation often found among geographically distant populations.

The nest is made from chewed plant fibres, mixed with saliva. The majority of nests are found in the soil below ground. A significant portion of nests are found in artificial structures such as attics, and a small portion are found above ground.
European wasp (Vespula germanica) These wasps are a bio disaster in the southern parts of Australia.
First discovered in Tasmania ib 1959 and then on the mainland in all southern states by 1978.
The number and variety of endemic species they prey upon is frightening. Luckily the Australian climate seems to limit their migration northwards with areas becoming cleared of wasps during prolonged hot dry spells.
Also ignorant people often kill local species of flower wasps (Typhiidae;Thynninae) because they look slightly similar. Australia,Fall,Geotagged,German wasp,Vespula germanica

Food

''V. germanica'' wasps have a diverse diet. They are known to eat carrion, live arthropods , fruit, honeydew, and processed human food and garbage. They are opportunistic scavengers and hunters able to obtain food from a variety of different sources. For example, many ''Vespula'' species have been observed feeding on dead honey bees found outside the beehive entrance in the late summer. This flexibility in diet is beneficial, as ''V. germanica'' must often compete for resources with native biota in areas it invades.

References:

Some text fragments are auto parsed from Wikipedia.

Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionArthropoda
ClassInsecta
OrderHymenoptera
FamilyVespidae
GenusVespula
SpeciesV. germanica