Title

Ground Nesting in the Paper Wasp Polistes aurifer (Hymenoptera: Vespidae)

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2004

Version

Citation

Format

Other

Publication Title

Insectes Sociaux

Keywords

wasps, paper wasps, wasp breeding, wasp reproduction, wasp nesting, ground nesting, ground nests, genetics, insects, insect behavior, entomology

Subject Categories

Biology

Abstract

Polistes paper wasp species vary in their nest site selection, with some nesting in relatively exposed areas and others in protected cavities. Locating the nest sites of cavity dwelling species in natural habitat can prove difficult, and most behavioral studies on these species are therefore conducted using human-built structures. Since Hungerford and Williams (1912) and Rau (1929) noted the location of several P. fuscatus (Fabricius) nests in rodent burrows, there have been no published accounts of ground nesting Polistes species. I report the occurrence of a large, dense cluster of P. aurifer (Saussure) nests located within cracks in the dried soil of the Santa Monica Mountains of southern California, USA.

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