Category: Insect Other
Facts about Hornets, Hornets are the biggest insects in eusocial wasps. In fact it has been reported that some can grow up to the size of 2 1 /16 inches (5.5 cm). Hornets belong to the genus of Vespa and they are easily distinguished from others due to their vertex which has a large width and the gasters which is also large.
Hymenoptera means -membranous wings- insects have four transparent wings and the females typically have a sting. includes ants, bees, wasps, horntails, and sawflies."Sientific name for Hornet is Hymenoptera" and the "Scientific name for Wasp is Hymenoptera".
The most common hornets are the European hornets that are found in most parts of Europe. There are about 20 species of hornets. Most live in tropical Asia, However, they were introduced to North America in the 19th century accidentally and since then they are found there, especially in the same European latitudes. But they have never been seen in Western North America.
The life-cycle of the hornets is mostly determined by the queen. The nest is founded in the spring where the queen Hornet finds sheltered dark hallows tree trunks. There she builds her cell and arranges them in layers. These layers are referred to as combs. The cells are vertical and all closed at the top.
Than after the Queen Hornets lays the eggs in that cell where each cell hosts one egg. After 5-8 days the eggs hatch and in around two weeks the larvae undergo their five stages. All this time the mother queen takes the responsibility of feeding them with protein rich foods especially the insects. After that the larvae spin a silk cap over the cells opening and in another two weeks time they transform into adult Hornets. This process is known as metamorphosis. There after the adult Hornets gets their way out of the silk cap.
Now, after these processes the new generations of workers are found. These worker Hornets are females who take all the tasks that the queen has been doing. These include building nest, brooding and foraging. The only duties they don’t perform are that of laying eggs. This is strictly left to the queen Hornet.
The colony size starts to grow meaning the worker Hornets add more combs. The combs are well covered leaving and entrance. In late summer it is believed that the worker Hornets can grow up to 700. During this time the queen Hornet produces first reproductive individuals.
The eggs that are fertilized develop into female Hornets whereas the unfertilized ones develop into males. The males don’t participate in any activities around the nest. They normally leave the nest and mate in nuptial flights. Just after mating the Hornets die leaving the queens and workers who survive until late autumn. Over the winter only the fertilized queens survive.
Hornets stings to defend their hives and kill prey. Unlike other wasps that die after stinging, hornets don’t die because their stingers are not pulled out of their bodies. The Hornets can sting as many times as possible. Their stingers are also painful and can be fatal. But this depends entirely on the species.
The Hornets feed nectar and sugar rich plants. In fact most of the time they are found eating rotten sweet fruits, honey and sap of oak trees. The Hornets can also eat insects and they use their jaws to kill them. The Hornets can killing even the largest insects which include grasshoppers, mantises and locust due to their large size.