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There may be hundreds of species of wasps, hornets and bees found around the world. Only a few of these are seen as real pests here in the UK, and some of them do not sting. Some species, like the Honey Bee, are actually a valuable part of our ecosystem. If you suspect you have a Honey Bee swarm visit the British Bee Keepers Association find a swarm collector site, to contact a bee keeper local to you.
Understanding the habits, lifecycle and appearance of wasps, hornets and bees can help to identify the best form of wasp control for your home or business. See our list below of common species in the UK.
(Family: Vespidae, e.g. Vespula Vulgaris & Vespula germanica)
These are the two most commonly found wasp species in the UK and the ones responsible for causing painful wasp stings.
Once indoors, they prefer to build nests in sheltered locations with easy access to the outside, such as lofts, garages and wall cavities. Outside they may nest in old rodent burrows, hollow trees and bushes.
Honey bees are the species kept by Bee Keepers.
If you have a problem with honey bees, contact a local Bee Keeper or Environmental Health Department as they will be able to arrange for the swarm to be relocated.
As their name implies, Solitary bees live alone but nest near each other in villages in suitable nesting sites.
These bees are known as masonry or mortar bees because they like to nest in crevices or holes in masonry. They prefer to stay near walls that receive sunshine for much of the day.
Mason bees use naturally occurring holes in bricks or mortar joints (especially mortar with a high lime or sand content).
Bumble bees are often confused with honey bees.