You just got stung and it hurts really badly! You saw the bee that stung you, but wait, was it actually a bee? It may have been a wasp. Now you’re confused. How do you know which one it was? What can you use to properly identify the culprit if it happens again?
Bees and wasps not only look different, but they have different behaviors and live different lifestyles. If you are aren’t sure which of these two insects gave you that painful sting, pay attention to the differences in looks and behavior to help with identification.
Identification by appearance
Bees range in color depending on the type of bee, and the region in which they are found. Most bees are normally black with yellow, orange, or brown stripes, or completely black in appearance. They are also very hairy and have thin opaque wings.
Like bees, there are many different species of wasps, but they all have similar characteristics. They are long and thin, have two pairs of wings, a pinched waist and vary in color from solid black to black and yellow. Their bodies are smooth and they have long dangling legs that help them when they searching for food.
Identification by behavior
Bees are considered pollinators. They feed on the nectar from flowers and they deposit the pollen that have stuck to them while flying from flower to flower. They are less aggressive when compared to wasps and they don’t usually seek other insects as prey. They are generally social but can attack when provoked.
Wasps are considered predators or parasites. Predatory wasps use their long legs to catch, kill and devour their prey; while parasitic wasps use the bodies of insects (ex. Caterpillars) as a place to lay their eggs. There are some species of wasps that also function as pollinators, but unlike bees who can only sing someone once, wasps can sting someone multiple times.
Another way to determine if you are surrounded by bees or wasps is their habitat. Wasps use chewed wood and saliva to make a grayish paper like substance as the outer layer and inner combs of their home. Bees on the other hand use the wax they secrete to construct the other layer and combs of their hive.
Wasps and bees are beneficial to the environment, however, if provoked, they can deliver painful stings. In large numbers, they become unsafe and can cause much damage to your home. Call the experts at Critter Control of Orlando at 407.295.7194 today for your free inspection and consultation. Let us help your rid your home of wasps or bees before they cause too much harm.