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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: dolichovespula is a sister genus of Vespula.[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

List of Species[edit]

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