Unlike the useful honeybee, European wasps are pests. They are similar in size and appearance, though a honeybee usually looks hairy. The European wasp has a slender and smooth shape, with a bright yellow body and black triangle-shaped markings. They have yellow legs and two black antennae. Unlike a bee, a European wasp doesn’t die when it stings. Unfortunately it can repeatedly deliver a painful sting.
Their behaviour is different too. European wasps are much more aggressive than bees, and are attracted to food and drink, rather than pollen on flowers. They like to live around humans because of the ready supply of sweet food.
European wasps typically nest in the ground, but around 20% of nests are found above ground in sheltered locations like roofs or wall cavities. The nests look papery because they are made from chewed wood pulp. If you spot a nest that is made of mud, then it is not a European wasp nest.
Where did it come from?
The European wasp was accidentally introduced into Tasmania in 1959 and to mainland Australia in 1977. It has no natural predator and thrives in the year-round warmth. In its native Europe all but the queen are killed in freezing temperatures but, in much milder Australia, the whole nest can survive the winter.
European wasp removal.
As the European wasp is a pest, it is eradicated using a powerful insecticide that is sprayed onto the nest.
How to discourage wasps
European wasps love living around humans because of the ready supply of food. If you notice wasps around, take the following actions to discourage them.