Polistes chinensis

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Polistes chinensis
Polistes chinensis antennalis (cropped).jpg
Polistes chinensis antennalis
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Vespidae
Subfamily: Polistinae
Tribe: Polistini
Genus: Polistes
Species: P. chinensis
Binomial name
Polistes chinensis
(Fabricius, 1793)

Polistes chinensis is a polistine vespid wasp in the cosmopolitan genus Polistes, and is commonly known as the Asian, Chinese or Japanese paper wasp. It is found in East Asia (in particular China and Japan). The subspecies Polistes chinensis antennalis is an invasive species in New Zealand,[1] having arrived by 1979.[2] It has established itself on both the North Island and the northern South Island of New Zealand, and competes with native species for food[3] so is of concern regarding conservation.

It is a predator, feeding on invertebrates, especially caterpillars.[4] In this species queens destroy up to 70% of worker-laid eggs, and are aided by workers in a process known as worker policing.[5]


  1. ^ Crowe, A. (2002). Which New Zealand Insect? Auckland, N.Z.: Penguin. ISBN 0-14-100636-6.
  2. ^ Asian Paper Wasp, Biosecurity New Zealand. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
  3. ^ Toft, Richard J.; Harris, Richard J. (2004). "Can trapping control Asian paper wasp (Polistes chinensis antennalis) populations?". New Zealand Journal of Ecology 28 (2): 279–282. 
  4. ^ Clapperton, B.K. (1999). "Abundance of wasps and prey consumption of paper wasps (Hymenoptera, Vespidae: Polistinae) in Northland, New Zealand.". New Zealand Journal of Ecology 23: 11–19. 
  5. ^ Saigo, T.; Tsucchida, K. (2004). "Queen and worker policing in monogynous and monandrous colonies of a primitively eusocial wasp". Proceedings of the Royal Society B. 271 (Suppl.): S509–S512.