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15 Facts About Wasps

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Fact #1: Wasps Can Sting Multiple Times
While bees can only sting once as their stinger becomes stuck in their victim, wasps have smooth stingers and can sting multiple times. They do this to protect themselves from predators or when they feel threatened.

Fact #2: Wasps Are Pollinators Too
Just like bees, butterflies, and birds, wasps play an important role in pollinating plants. When they collect nectar from flowers, they transfer pollen between flowers, helping them reproduce.

Fact #3: Wasps Have Excellent Navigation Skills
Like honeybees, wasps use something called the “sun compass” to find their way back to their nest after foraging. They also remember the locations of food sources and can communicate these to other members of their colony.

Fact #4: Wasps Build Paper Nests
Unlike bees that build honeycombs, most wasp species construct their nests out of wood pulp mixed with saliva. These nests are often found in trees or hollow spaces within buildings.

Fact #5: Wasps Can Be Beneficial
Despite their fearsome reputation, wasps can actually be beneficial as they eat many pest insects, such as caterpillars and flies. In fact, some farmers even encourage wasp populations to help control harmful bugs.

Fact #6: Male Wasps Cannot Sting
Only female wasps have stingers, so while a male might try to defend himself or his territory, he won’t be able to inflict any harm with his mandibles or antennae.

Fact #7: Wasps Have Different Social Structures
Some wasp species live in large colonies with a single queen and many workers, similar to honeybees. Others are solitary, with each female building her own nest and caring for her offspring alone.

Fact #8: Wasps Are Good Flyers
With their streamlined bodies and four wings linked by a membrane, wasps are highly maneuverable fliers. They can fly backward, hover, or dart rapidly from flower to flower while gathering nectar and pollen.

Fact #9: Wasps Can Be Aggressive
While most insects avoid conflict when possible, some wasp species can be quite aggressive. Papernest wasps, for example, are known to fiercely defend their nests from intruders.

Fact #10: Some Wasps Eat Other Insects
Unlike honeybees and bumblebees that primarily feed on nectar, some wasp species hunt down other insects as food for themselves or their larvae. These predators can even catch butterflies in mid-air!

Fact #11: Wasps Have Different Sizes
From tiny parasitic wasps no bigger than a grain of rice to large cicada killer wasps that measure over 4 inches long, wasps come in all shapes and sizes.

Fact #12: Some Wasps Can Be Endangered
Like many other species, some types of wasps are threatened by habitat loss, pesticides, and climate change. Conservation efforts are needed to protect these important insects.

Fact #13: Wasps Mate In The Air
Male wasps usually mate with females just after emerging from their pupa stage. During this mating process, called “insemination,” the male transfers sperm directly into the female’s reproductive organs through a special appendage.

Fact #14: Wasps Can Be Interesting Pets
In certain countries like Japan and South Korea, people keep wasps as pets! They believe that having these insects around can help ward off evil spirits and bring good fortune.

Fact #15: Wasps Play A Role In Medicine
Certain species of parasitic wasps are being studied for their potential use in controlling pests that damage agricultural crops. Researchers are also exploring the possible medical applications of venom produced by some wasp species, including treatments for cancer and inflammation.

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