As the summer passes, the appearance of the wasps also diminishes. But does that also mean death for the animals? Or do they hibernate in hiding? This guide provides interesting facts about the lifespan of wasps.

Lifespan of different wasp species at a glance

  • Medium wasp: dies at the end of August
  • Common (common) wasp/German wasp: lives into October, sometimes even longer
  • Saxon wasp: dies in autumn
  • Hornets: die at the end of October
  • Gallic paper wasp: lives until autumn

Lifespan depending on the wasp species

In Germany alone there are several different wasp species that follow different lifestyles. For example, colonial and solitary wasps can be distinguished. Although the latter take care of their brood by bringing dead insects or caterpillars to eat, the hatched animals then go their own way for the rest of their lives. Whether it is a male or female wasp does not play a role in either the rhythm of life or the lifespan. As a rule, solitary wasps survive for more than a year.

The position in the wasp colony

Colonial wasps also exist. They form a state and cannot survive on their own. Depending on the sex, the insects take on one of three roles within the colony:

  • Workers (sterile females): live 12 to 22 days
  • Drones (male wasps): live up to 30 days
  • Queens (head of state, egg-laying animal): lives up to 1 year

Drones are only raised in late summer and only fulfill the task of mating with the queen. A few days later her life ends again. Toward the fall, the entire state disintegrates, as no new queen is born to the existing state. The workers also lack the task when there are no more larvae to look after. They gradually die after the death of their old leader.

However, new queens that result from mating with the drones survive the fall. However , they leave their nest and look for suitable winter quarters. In the spring they start a new colony.

Note: The fact that the queen has the highest life expectancy is important, since the entire colony could not exist without her presence.

environmental influences and other hazards

The rhythm of life of a wasp is largely based on the weather conditions. The animals are sensitive to temperature fluctuations. For example, early spring weather can wake a queen prematurely from hibernation. However, because there is not enough food available, the animal will starve in this case.

Young states in particular are at risk of falling victim to unnatural natural phenomena, as there is no good supply due to a lack of experience.

However, the greatest danger comes from humans. Most wasps die from pesticides or insect traps.

food supply

Compared to other animals, wasps only survive periods of starvation for a short time. If they don’t find any food after about three to five days, they die.

The shelter search

In search of suitable winter quarters, queens like to nest in heated apartments. The warm temperatures don’t let them fall into a state of hibernation, but they are not threatening because there is a rich supply of food in inhabited rooms. Normally, thanks to this supply, the insects could reach their full life expectancy. If it weren’t for people who hunt animals that they consider annoying. Often, human killing prevents a wasp from surviving the winter and thus shortens its lifespan.

Among other things, wasps like to nest in aviary or beehives. In the latter case, the chances of survival are not good either. A disturbed colony of bees will join forces to sting the wasp.

If a queen wasp of a species that survives the winter gets into a warm apartment, she can count herself lucky. Queens never hibernate in their own nest, as this offers little protection without the colony. Instead, they look for an alternative shelter. However, the supply of suitable roosts is scarce, so that the majority of the queens fall victim to the cold temperatures.

frequently asked Questions

As early as spring, the queen wasp begins to gather her entourage around her and prepare the nest building for the brood in summer. In most cases, however, those affected do not discover the burrow until the end of August, when there is a lot of activity due to the drone brood. At this point it is hardly necessary to remove the nest, since the animals soon fly out anyway and never come back. The remaining workers die after just a few weeks. In addition, it is forbidden to eradicate a wasp nest, since the insects are protected.

Bees lose their stingers when they sting and die from the loss. This is not the case with wasps. In contrast to that of the bee, its sting has no barbs, but a smooth structure. For this reason, it can slide back out of the skin unhindered. Wasps can sting a person multiple times.

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