Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Tree Hive

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Question
Active Hive
Active Hive  
I've read that you can often tell what kind of insect occupies a hive by the type of home they build. Do you know what type of insect this hive belongs to? It is active and looks to be some type of bee or wasp. I've had others tell me that the hive should be removed. Is this necessary or is it safe to just let it be?

Answer
Ron,

This is a wasp nest, specifically a social wasp in the family Vespidae or yellowjacket wasps (see http://www.livingwithbugs.com/yellowjacket_wasps.html for images). These nests can contain hundreds or even thousands of wasps which can become very aggressive if the nest is disturbed, even loud noises can "set-off" a nest. If the nest is near human activity it should probably be removed or destroyed. The nest will die off this winter but until then it can be a threat to anyone who might accidentally disturb it. If it is not near human activity, for example high off the ground, it could possibly be left alone.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis

Expertise

I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.

Experience

20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.

Publications
see www.livingwithbugs.com/resume.html

Education/Credentials
Ph.D. in Entomology

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