It would be easy to lump every buzzing, yellow, stinging insect into the same category. But when it comes to the differences between bees, wasps and hornets, there's more than meets the eye. Keep reading to learn about what separates friendly pollinators from not-so-friendly pests.
Characteristics of bees
In general, bees are small, fuzzy and have black stripes on a yellow body. According to the University of Minnesota, male bumblebees have 13 antennal segments and seven abdominal segments while females have 12 antennal segments and six abdominal segments. There are many different species of common bees, each with a unique striping pattern. Some will have uniform stripes, while others only have one. Honey bees are only capable of stinging a human once - they aren't able to extract the stinger from human skin. The damage this causes to the bee's structure usually results in death. However, honeybees will rarely sting humans unless provoked. In fact, their stingers are generally reserved for other bees.
Bees are an important part of the ecosystem because they help to pollinate plants. Without them, many plants wouldn't bloom, and that could lead to widespread crop failure. In fact, many large-scale farmers will hire beekeepers to bring colonies to their crops for pollination. However, bees are very susceptible to broad spectrum pesticide use, which means farmers should be very careful about when and how they spray their crops with chemical insecticides. Environmental destruction is also harmful for wild bees and can lead to Colony Collapse Disorder, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Characteristics of wasps
Wasps can be difficult to classify as a whole group, because there are many different species with unique habits. That said, there are a few general characteristics by which to identify wasps. For instance, wasps are less hairy than bees and often have longer wings. Unlike bees, they are either predators or parasites to other insects. They do not produce honey and have very little impact on pollination, according to Colorado State University.
One of the most common North American varieties of wasps is the yellowjacket. They produce a paper nest, which is often hidden in another structure. In nature, they may take over a hollow tree or other animal nest. In suburban environments they could build a nest in a building or around outdoor furniture or in the ground. Large wasp infestations typically require the intervention of a professional pest control service. Their stings can be quite painful and they are easily provoked by sudden movements.
Characteristics of hornets
True hornets are not found in North America, but there is a variety of wasp that is commonly known as the bald-faced hornet. These differ from other types of wasps in that they produce their nests out in the open, such as hanging from a tree branch. According to the University of Idaho, their nests can often reach the size of a soccer ball. Bald-faced hornets are black with white markings on their heads and thoraxe.
You probably already know that most people are repulsed by the simple sight of cockroaches. If you are personally dealing with a cockroach infestation, the feelings of disgust are probably even more intense. Unfortunately, the cold winter weather tends to be one of the reasons this pest ends up in your home in the first place, according to Any Pest. While you may know that you don't want to share your home with cockroaches this winter, there are a number of interesting facts about this pest that you've probably never heard.
Because of the high amount of traffic and the versatility of the facilities, pests are naturally attracted to long-term care institutions. Many nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and other care facilities include on-site kitchens and cafeterias as well as private rooms and common spaces. All of these places are susceptible to attracting pests because of the presence of food, water and viable habitats.
During the summer months, some people love to go camping with family and friends. Yet this fun trip can be ruined with a few unwanted visitors, most notably different types of bugs. Crawling spiders, hungry mosquitoes and buzzing flies can become annoying quickly. How can you avoid these pests when you're outdoors? Consider these tips to keep bugs out of your campsite.
Carpenter ants can chew through the strongest studs and stringers in a house as they hollow the wooden beams out for nesting. The resulting damage can weaken the home's structural support and require expensive repairs. Professional pest control workers can remove a colony of ants, but the best practice for homeowners is to learn the best ways to keep out an ant colony and prevent the problem before it begins.
As the weather cools, you'll probably see fewer pests than you did during the warmer months, but that doesn't mean they're all gone just yet. Some insects can actually come out in full force during the autumn, while others might seek refuge in your warm home. Here are some key tips to keep in mind as fall gets underway:
As the middle of summer approaches, you need to be vigilant about keeping your garden free of pests. Many insects breed during the summertime, which means they're on the lookout for great places to lay their eggs. For many bugs, that means near a source of food. In fact, some species of insects will lay their eggs inside budding vegetables and fruit so their larvae have something to eat as soon as they hatch. That's why you have to keep harmful bugs out without damaging the bugs that could help you, such as bumble bees.