They are found all over North America.
They nest near orchards, fields and on the edge of forests. Their nests are often under the eaves of buildings, in a rock wall or rock pile or underground near a fruit tree or garden.
They are less than an inch long with a smooth black and yellow-banded body. They have dark antennae and 2 pairs of wings.
They sting badly when bothered. They can sting over and over. They will attack beehives for their honey.
They eat other insects, plant nectar, fruit, and food left out by humans.
The female mates in late summer and then hibernates for the winter. The rest of the colony dies out. Then in the spring, she builds a nest on a building, in a rock wall or underground and lays her eggs.
Species: V. vulgaris
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