- Yellow jackets are characterized by the rapid, side to side flight
- Adult yellow jackets prefer to eat sugars such as fruit and nectar but will gather meat and insects for larvae who prefer protein
- Yellow jackets tend to nest underground but any cavity that it finds will do such as a tree hollow or attic
Yellow jackets are an especially aggressive wasp that is common in Alabama and the southeast United States. These wasps are capable of stinging multiple times and their venom is painful. Most colonies die out each winter with inseminated queens surviving the winter in order to start a new colony in the spring. During this short period colonies can grow to 5,000 workers with hives that are bigger than basketballs. However in southeastern states such as Alabama, colonies can survive multiple years and reach nest sizes that approach 100,000 wasps. Yellow jackets can be a very dangerous pest even to individuals without allergic reaction due to their aggressiveness, large numbers, and willingness to chase down attackers over great distances. Please consult with a pest control expert before approaching a yellow jacket nest.