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- updated 2024-01-16 -

Hornets are worthy of protection!

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It is 4:30 at the morning: A relatively small nest from a bird box will be introduced into this wooden hornet box (at this time of day it is still cool and dark and the animals behaves very calmly). With the box hung up, the hornets will be able to reach their full potential.
t is 4:30 at the morning: Into this built hornet box from wood, a still quite small hornet people from a bird box will move

Ready! The "hornet protection group" Münster accommodate the hornet nest in the larger box! The entrance holes are kept closed until the animals have calmed down after their removal stress. They will orient best with the light of the coming dawn. They have been given some honey to kick start them in their new home.
Ready! The "working group hornet protection" NABU Münster accommodated the hornet people completly in the larger box!

How to relocate Hornet- and Wasp nests - experience of Mr. Kevin Foster

Hornet nests can be relocated but it is quite tricky. The way I do it is to collect all the workers from the nest first with a net and transfer these to a jar made with a 'lobster pot' one way top. For hornets and Dolichovespula wasps I use a net as there are up to about 300 individuals in a nest which is ok. You can net up to about 50 at a time and feed these into a pot. Normally though there are much fewer workers as nests are best relocated early in the season with only a few workers present. For Vespula nests a modified 12V vacuum cleaner can be used which has a pot before the fan, like a pooter.

Then one can move the nest itself with the queen inside by carefully cutting its attachments and placing it in a box. I then put both the workers and the nest on ice for the journey. This stops the workers from flying around in the pots which usually kills them. At the new site the nest is suspeded on several length of flexible metal wire (they cannot chew through this) in a large bird box. The chilled workers are then readded with some honey to aid recovery and the nest box closed. As they come around they feed of the honey and will reorientate to their new site. If you do not chill them they often just fly straight out of the box and will never be seen again! One point of caution is not to chill the hornets too much as this will also kill them. Takes a little practice unfortunately!

This technique I have also applied for Vespula and Dolichovespula nests. Dolichovespula are by far the easiest being small and made of the most strong paper.

Best wishes

Special information for North America:
Bald-Faced-Hornets (Dolichovespula maculata, Linnaeus 1763)

Short introduction:

  • The occurence of the Bald-Faced-Hornet is limited to North America, where it is found transcontinentally. It lives along the west coast, across Canada. On the West coast, it is found from Alaska to southern California. It is also found in the Southwest of the United States and throughout the Eastern U.S. Bald Faced Hornets are common in the Southeastern United States (Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama...)

  • The Bald-Faced-Hornet is a large (>15 mm) black and ivory yellowjacket. Bald-Faced Hornets aren't hornets at all. It can be distinguished from other black and ivory vespines in this region by the lack of white markings of the first three gastral terga.




  • And not really a Yellowjacket, but pretty darn close, this wasp lives in wooded regions. The nests are constructed of a paper-like martial formed from chewed wood. This species constructs almost exclusively gray football-shaped  aerial-nests attached to trees and buildings (but they may exceed a basketball in diameter or even the nest may grow to be larger by the end of the summer). The nests are conspicuous and are sometimes near human structures. Many nests are discovered at the end of the summer, after protecting leaves fall from trees. It is often best to do nothing at this time except be aware of avoiding the nest and you could even mark out a caution zone so that others are not surprised. Occasionally, the wasps will build nests under roof overhangs, in attics, crawlspaces and wall voids, or under decks or porches. Foragers are present from June to October.

  • IMPORTANT: Bald-Faced-Hornets, like the European Hornets, are only aggressive when threatened! But the last thing you want to do is to disturb a nest of bald-faced hornets, considering there may be between 400 and 700 workers per colony. If you will disturb them too much, they vigorously defend their nest by stinging any nearby intruder.

  • Bald-Faced-Hornets take mostly live prey; they prefer to feed on flies and other insects

  • Common names are also "whitefaced hornet" or  "baldfaced yellowjacket")

More information and images about the Bald-Faced-Hornets? Follow this Link!

The information "Hornets: Gentle Giants!" was arranged by hobby hornet protectors and lays no claim to scientific completeness. We tried to create an outline easily understandable to the layman. It was aimed to clear up the myths and legends associated with hornets and present a brief overview of the most important parts of hornet life.

For the interested reader, special biological literature is required to offer a broader spectrum of knowledge!

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Special thanks!

  • to Mr. Kevin Foster for his participation in the translation of this website!


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Hymenoptera>Vespoidea>Vespidae>Vespa crabro>Hornisse>Hornet>Frelon>Hoornaar>Vespa grande>Abejorro>Calabrone
Hymenoptera>Vespoidea>Vespidae>Vespa crabro>Hornisse>Hornet>Frelon>Hoornaar>Vespa grande>Abejorro>Calabrone

Dieter Kosmeier

Hymenoptera>Vespoidea>Vespidae>Vespa crabro>Hornisse>Hornet>Frelon>Hoornaar>Vespa grande>Abejorro>Calabrone
Hymenoptera>Vespoidea>Vespidae>Vespa crabro>Hornisse>Hornet>Frelon>Hoornaar>Vespa grande>Abejorro>Calabrone


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