It’s easy to confuse bees and yellow jackets. At a quick glance, they look very much alike, but knowing how to tell the two species apart can be useful when determining if you have an infestation on your property. If a bee is buzzing around your garden, odds are that it is just pollinating, but if you frequently find wasps when you go in your backyard, then there is probably a nest nearby that needs to be removed. Let’s take a look at these two species and the differences between them.
There are two main differences in appearance between bees and yellow jackets. First, yellow jackets have a slender, elongated body with a small waist, while bees are more stocky, with a wide waist. Second, bees are covered in fuzz, which is needed to collect pollen, while yellow jackets are not fuzzy at all.
Yellow jackets are generally more aggressive than bees. Because they feed on sugar and protein, they will often come into contact with humans, and they are particularly aggressive when someone approaches their nests. Bees on the other hand tend to keep to themselves, and their main outdoor activity is pollination and the collection of flower nectar. They are also defensive of their colonies, but they are not as aggressive as the yellow jackets when doing so.
Yellow jackets are known to sting without provocation, and they are able to sting multiple times. They may also bite the victim in order to hold on while stinging. Honey bees are only able to sting once, after which they die, so they are much more conservative with their aggression.
When it comes to nests, the yellow jackets will build theirs out of paper fibers, and the nests will usually be located above ground, in trees, bushes, in wall voids or under eaves. Bees will use wax to build their hives, and wild hives will be built inside trees, or in the worst case scenario, in the wall voids of a building. Domesticated bees will live in man-made hive-boxes.
Bees will rarely infest a property. When their hives are located in or near human settlements, they will usually be in the hive-boxes of beekeepers, so there is not much in terms of control that needs to be done. Yellow jackets on the other hand are known to infest properties on a regular basis, and they need to be removed by a pest control professional. Contact us today if you have a yellow jacket infestation, and we will get rid of it for you.