[R] Family of social Hymenoptera; colonies annual in cool climates, fertilized females (queeens) being the sole individuals to overwinter, males and workers having perished.
Most Vespidae (wasps and hornets) construct a nest made of "wasp-paper" or soil particles. They feed their larvae upon other insects, portions of which they have previously masticate. The role of wasps and hornets as predators is extremely beneficial.
The Vespidae also feed on meat, nectar and ripe fruits. The (Vespula germanica) is, in this respect, an important pest.
HYPPZ on line: Species (scientific names), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.