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Eastern Yellowjacket (Vespula maculifrons)

Eastern yellowjackets are a subterranean species, making nests below the ground. They are found in urban, suburban and agricultural areas.

Geographic Region

Eastern yellowjackets are found from the Great Plains of North America, heading east.

Natural Habitat

Eastern yellowjacket colonies are often found in yards, golf courses, recreational areas and manmade structures.

Weather Conditions

Like other yellowjacket species, Eastern yellowjackets get established and thrive in hot, dry weather.


Eastern yellowjackets scavenge for human food, and therefore are considered “picnic pests”. They may be a stinging hazard if agitated while they are scavenging or if the nest is disturbed.

Unique Characteristics

Eastern yellowjackets can be differentiated from other yellowjacket species due to its smaller size and abdominal pattern. This species has black and yellow lines on the head, thorax and abdomen.