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Hornets: Dolichovespula Maculata (bald-faced hornet) and Dolichovespula Arenaria  (yellow hornet also known as aerial yellow jacket) Both make the large globe-like nest.


These are bald-faced hornet workers on their nest. They do not have any yellow markings like the yellow hornet or yellow jackets do.
Yellow Hornet  (aerial yellow jacket)  In May and early June the yellow hornet (also known as the aerial yellow jacket) start their nests. These are the round globe-like nests found on eaves, in trees and in bushes. This species is the earliest of the hornets and yellow jackets with most of their nests depleted and over by August in the Puget Sound region. They normally nest out in the open but will nest in soffits, walls and even bird houses. They feed their larvae a diet that consists of live bugs they catch.  The yellow hornet and bald-faced hornet will spray venom. I have had them on the mask of the veil and had them flutter their wings spraying me in the eyes with venom. They are very aggressive in defending their nest.
Here is a yellow hornet nest with the workers seen  
on the
nest. When the nest is still growing workers will be seen adding paper to the nest outer shell.
This is the inside of the nest above after the insects were removed. Here you can see the layers of combs they have built. In the combs are developing hornets. The open cells will have eggs and larva in them. The cells with the white caps have hornets in the pupae stage of developement.
Yellow hornet nest in a bird house. Once the house is full they paper the outside of the house.  We see 20 or more nests in birdhouses every year.      


This nest of yellow hornets is built on the top board of a fence.

This picture is the entrance hole to the nest above. The yellow hornets will stand gaurd at the entrance to the nest ready to attack if they feel thier nest is threatened.

Bald-faced hornet:  Bald-faced hornets start their nests in late May thru July and will stay active until Sept.-Oct. They have an exposed nest often found on eaves, in trees and in bushes. They do not nest in the ground and I have never seen one in a soffit or in a bird house. They can have very large nests equaling the size of a 5 gallon bucket. They are very aggressive defenders of their nests and surrounding areas.  They also collect live bugs for feeding their young in the larva stage.
Bald-faced hornet nest on an eve.
This is a bald-faced hornet nest in a tree.
Some birds will eat the larva and pupa from the combs that are left out from nests that were collected. This is a male western tanager that has found a free meal. The stellar jay and crows will also go for these combs.

 
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