Only if disturbed are the bald faced hornets truly a threat, although at first glance, they appear rather intimidating. Similar to yellow jackets, these fellows are not afraid to sting if necessary but prefer remaining afar.

Many movies have depicted the bald faced hornets as being dangerous because of their appearance. For instance, there was a scene during a John Wayne movie in which a bald faced hornets nest was tossed into a train car.

However, in reality, the bald faced hornets will rarely sting repeatedly. They only do this if they feel extremely threatened.

Black and White Bees, Wasps and Hornets Identification

White and Black bald faced hornet

Identification of a bald faced hornet starts with their coloring. They are black and white wasps, and the queen is around 3/4 inches (18-20 mm). The workers are slightly smaller, at 1/2 to 5/8 inches long (12-15 mm). Their body shape is long and wasp-like, with six legs, and they have two large antennae. Due to the size of a bald faced hornet, they appear conspicuous, often mistaken for bees because of their coloring.

Male bald faced hornets, once adults, will leave the nest in search of food resources and a mate. The young fertilized queens go in search of a hibernation area to overwinter until spring. As the winter approaches, the males, the original queen, and the workers die off. A bald faced hornet nest can never be reused. Thus, newly fertilized queens must build nests in the spring to start over.

Bald faced hornets are a species of rather large wasps, almost all black. Their thorax, face, and abdomen tip have ivory or white markings with translucent dark brown wings. There are white bands that form a pattern of lines along the hornet's abdomen.

What does a Bald faced hornet nest look like?

The shape of a bald-faced hornet nest is what these insects are known for, but are bald-faced hornets dangerous? They create large, paper aerial nests in the shape of a ball. Bald faced hornets construct these nest during the spring to raise young hornets in. Often, these paper nests are up to three feet in height.

Typically, you will find bald faced hornet nests high on tree branches or in the tree limbs. They are completely enclosed, dissimilar to other stinging insects which build open cone structures.

Hornet nests are made from material that is paper-like, designed from wood fiber made of chewed fibers mixed with saliva.

How is a bald faced hornet nests built?

Similar to that of a honeybee's comb, the bald faced hornets nest is built by layering paper cells. There are three to four layers of paper-like tiers forming the combs on the outside shell. These combs of the nest are created with chewed wood fibers mixed with saliva. The opening is at the nest's bottom, allowing hornets to fly inside and out of it. Every year, the hornets build a new nest.

Queen bald faced hornets construct an inner nest using layers of cells similar to paper, appearing like a bee's honeycomb.

Wasps vs. Hornets vs. Bees

Wasps vs. Hornets vs. Bees

Yellow jackets are more closely related to bald faced hornets than hornets. Insects are driven by mating rituals, changes in the environment, and diet. Thus, they basically go wherever they want to.

Bald faced hornets are lonely wasps that construct chambers made of mud. They paralyze insects like spiders, caterpillars,s and other arthropods to be put into these mud chambers to serve as food for wasp larvae.

It begins with a queen

Bald faced hornet lives all descend from a single queen. She will hibernate during the winter peacefully in a place that is protected. When spring arrives, she comes out and lays eggs for the entire colony.

In late summer, the male black and white wasp comes out of the unfertilized eggs to impregnant young females in preparate for the new season.

The Pseudodynerus quadisectus is a beautiful wasp and can be found within the eastern United States during middle to late summer. It will often visit nector producing flowers like the goldenrods, white snakeroots, and mountain mints.

Black and White Digger Wasp (Bicyrtes quadrifasciatus)

If you noticed a black and white wasp before, it could have been a bald faced hornet. The Bicyrtes quadrifasciatus or Black and White Digger Wasp, grows to almost 3/4 of an inch in length. It provides to live in areas with sandy soil and urban places where it can be alone.

The female white faced hornet creates a small nest in the ground. She attacks tiny insects, preserving them for food her larvae can eat. Larger wasps enjoy the nectar of the various flowering plants.

The Genus Dolichovespula Hornet

This is another white faced hornet species found mostly in North America. It is not a true hornet though, but actually a yellow jacket, also called the spruce wasp.

The genus Dolichovespula will construct its nest in trees, bushes, and occasionally on the side of a building. Their nest are grey, papery, and in the shape of a football.

You can find these bald faced hornets throughout the contiguous United States and Washington D.C. area.

What do white faced hornets eat, and where do they live?

Black and white wasps are found in most regions of the United States. Primarily, bald faced hornets live in most regions of North America and Canada. They are also found residing in the Rocky Mountains and other parts of the western U.S. Most often, the bald faced wasp is found in the southeastern United States and the western coastal regions. D. Maculata have also been discovered in the vegetation of forested or urban areas.

The bald faced hornets are solitary wasps. They construct chambers of mud used for stuffing their paralyzed victims into. The queen will then place an egg into each chamber. The hatching larva eats on the prey that has been placed inside, laying eggs in each chamber. When they are fully developed, the larvae emerge as an adult by chewing through the chamber.

What do white faced hornets look like?

There are several names the bald faced hornet is called. They are referred to as white faced hornets, or a white tailed hornet. It is also called a bull wasp, black jacket, or yellow jacket. It is often discovered in Southern Canada and all over North America and is a big social wasps that is a black and white color.

What do white faced hornets look like

Although these wasps are not what you describe as true hornets, they do come from the wasp lineage and are black and white yellow jackets. Their name refers to the black and white markings on its body and head.

Bald-Faced Hornets Are Very Aggressive

The white faced hornet is known to reside in large colonies. They construct aerial nests that can sometimes be as large as basketballs.

Unfertilized eggs produce drones, which are always male and cannot sting. However, a female hornet, when guarding her colony, will sting repeatedly.

To anything or person who threatens a bald faced hornet, they respond rather aggressively. Other stinging insects only attack when they feel threatened themselves. However, these wasps attack when their nest or space is violated.

It's worth noting that the majority of wasps depend on insects for food, just like dangerous bald faced hornets. Bees, on the other hand, depend on pollen and nectar for food. The adult wasps also eat nectar and even tree sap.

The Sting Of A Bald-Faced Hornet Is Wicked

The sting of a wasp with black and white coloring can produce a particularly painful result. People with allergies to stinging insects can even have an allergic reaction to its venom that is life threatening.

Unlike other insect stings, the bald faced hornet stings over and over again because of their smooth stingers. A bald faced hornet sting has a powerful venom, causing the sting to swell, itch, and hurt for approximately twenty-four hours. Bald faced hornet stings to people with allergies are at risk of allergic reaction. People are at the same risk of allergic reactions from bald-faced hornet stings as with other insect stings.

Are Bald Faced Hornets Dangerous?

Since bald-faced hornets' stingers are smooth, they can sting multiple times. Some humans have severe allergic reactions to the venom of the bald-faced hornet, which can be fatal. Bald faced hornets sting is dangerous and poses the greatest threat because it might cause an allergic reaction or an infection.

Bald-Faced Hornets Prefer Live Prey

While bees depend on pollen and nectar, most wasps eat live insects and prey. For this reason, the bald faced hornet is thought of as a beneficial insect. Acting as a method of pest control to lower the population of yellow jackets and other unwanted insects. They also aid in pollinating flowers and flowering plants as they look for sources of nectar.

Bald-Faced Hornets Love To Eat Bees

Bald-Faced Hornets Love To Eat Bees

Besides other insects, bald faced hornets love eating bees. They are unable to pollinate as bees do because of a smooth body that won't allow pollen to stick to it. In a single minute, a bald faced hornet can kill about 40 bees. Not a good statistic to our black and yellow pollinating friend.

DIY Ways to Get Rid of Wasps or Hornets

If you have a sensitivity to wasp and bee stings, avoid getting near their nest. DIY pest control is not the best option, and you should call a professional. However, if you have no allergies or concerns medically, you can eradicate an entire colony yourself. Buy some spray at the hardware store made for killing hornets. Spray the opening of nests at night when wasps are less active.

Hornets Are Considered A Delicacy In Japan

In Japan, hornets are dehydrated in a jar, or fried in a pan, or steamed. They are served with rice as hebo-gohan. Sometimes, the Japanese will skewer the adult hornets (often nearly two inches in length), including the stinger. This makes a delicious, light, crunchy appetizer for the natives.

Bald-Faced Hornets Love Light and Trash Receptacles

Light attracts bald faced hornets, and to get them to disappear, simply turn out the lights. These pests also love foraging through trash cans. Therefore, ensure to cover all garbage containers.

Signs of a Bald-faced Hornet Infestation

Signs of a Bald-faced Hornet Infestation

If you think you have a bald faced hornet invasion, look around for a nest. Typically, you will find a nest hanging over the ground of on the side of your house. In addition, you might notice worker hornets as they fly to and from the nest.

How do you prevent a white-faced hornet infestation?

To prevent an infestation of white faced hornets ensure your trash can has a lid that locks. Keep all bushes trimmed away from the side of your home. Bald faced hornets love using trees as a place to build their nest. Also, clean away any meat or other food scraps following an outdoor cookout.

Call the Professionals to Get Rid of Hornets, Wasps, and Bees

If you have noticed the signs of hornet nests in your yard, it is time to call a professional pest control company. A.N.T. Pest Control knows how to get rid of bald faced hornets and other stinging insects with black bodies and white stripes. Call us today at 815-215-7211. We are the experts in getting rid of stinging insects!

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