21 April 2010

What's that Wasp?

I've taken some shots of queen wasps that have been in the garden the last couple of days. I know nothing of wasps and didn't realise how many types there were until reading around earlier on. It seems ideally you need many different viewing angles for identification purposes. However, I've had a look in an old collins guide and the plates suggest maybe that the top 2 pics show Red Wasp Vespula rufa?
The 2 shots below look like Tree Wasp Vespula sylvestris?

I haven't taken into consideration any pattern variation with other species here so I could be way out. If so, please accept my apologies in advance and feel free to put me on the right track. The guide I have been using was reprinted in 1984, so if you can recommend a modern day field guide, covering this area, I would love to know?

1 comment:

Barry Stewart said...

Hi Mark
As you're probably aware now, one of the best angles to view is head on. Can't lay my hands on my BW key, but suspect it's either Vespula vulgaris or germanica. V.rufa usually shows more red on it than your insect shows, but when I do find my key I may hange my mind! In the meantime try and get a head-on shot...