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European wasp white bg.jpg
German wasp (Vespula germanica)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Vespidae
Subfamily: Vespinae
Genus: Vespula

23 species

Vespula is a small genus of social wasps, widely distributed in the Northern Hemisphere. Along with members of their sister genus Dolichovespula, they are collectively known by the common name yellowjackets (or yellow jackets) in North America. The Vespula genus has a higher male paternity compared to Dolichovespula norwegica wasps.[1]Vespula species have a shorter oculomalar space (shown in the figure below right) and a more pronounced tendency to nest underground than Dolichovespula.

Notable species[edit]

Illustration showing oculomalar space


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Foster, K.R.; Francis, L.W.; Ratnieks, N.G.; Peter, A.T. (2001). "Colony kin structure and male production in Dolichovespsula wasp". Molecular Ecology. 10: 1003–1010. doi:10.1046/j.1365-294x.2001.01228.x. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Vespula, BugGuide
  3. ^ Vespula alascensis, BugGuide