Bald-faced hornets (Dolichovespula maculata) are a common sight throughout North America. These large, black-and-white social wasps are known for their aggressive behavior and painful stings, making them a nuisance and a potential danger to humans. In this article, we will explore the identification, behavior, and control measures for bald-faced hornets. 


Bald-faced hornets are large black-and-white social wasps that belong to the Vespidae family. They are larger than honey bees, with workers measuring up to 0.8 inches long and queens measuring up to 1 inch long.


Bald-faced hornets are social insects, living in colonies that can range from a few dozen to several hundred individuals. They construct large, paper-like nests that can be found in trees, shrubs, or on buildings. The queen starts the colony in the spring by building a small nest and laying eggs. The workers hatch from these eggs and take over the construction and maintenance of the nest while the queen continues to lay eggs. Bald-faced hornets are known for their aggressive behavior and will readily defend their nests if they feel threatened. They can sting multiple times and their venom is more potent than that of a honey bee and with people that have allergies, they can trigger anaphylaxis.

Environmental Benefits

Bald-faced hornets also play an important role in the ecosystem. They are predators of other insects, including many that are considered pests, such as flies and caterpillars. By keeping these populations in check, bald-faced hornets help to maintain a healthy balance in the environment and also contribute to the pollination of plants, which is essential for the growth of many crops.


Bald-faced hornets can become a nuisance and a potential danger to humans, especially if their nest is located in a high-traffic area. If you suspect a bald-faced hornet nest on your property, it is best to call a professional pest control company to handle the removal. Attempting to remove the nest yourself can be dangerous and may result in injury. Our pest control company, Southern Pest Management, has the knowledge, equipment, and experience to safely remove the nest without causing harm to humans or the environment. 

Bald-faced hornets are a common sight throughout North America and while they have a place in this world, they can become a nuisance and a potential danger to humans. Proper identification, understanding their behavior, and calling a professional pest control company for removal are key in controlling bald-faced hornet infestations. Every hive that is left untreated will create multiple foundresses (queens) that will emerge next spring and can multiply your problems.  

Bald-Faced Hornets: Identification, Behavior, and Control
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