Fig 1
DESCRIPTION: 15 - 22mm. Similar to the hornet but much smaller. The key identification features of this striking insect is the primarily darker than usual abdomen, large reddish areas on the thorax and yellow speeding marks also on the thorax. This however is a variable species with a variety of coloured specimens all found within one nest. BEHAVIOUR: A non aggressive wasp that is attracted to sweet foods. Has a preference for a well lit location for nest building. DISTRIBUTION: Mainly Southern England but spreading. HABITAT: Woodland, coastal and gardens. PERIOD: April to September.

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