Bee and Wasp Identity Chart - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

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Bee and Wasp Identity Chart

Because the Africanized honey bee, or so-called "killer" bee, now lives in parts of Texas, it is important to be able to distinguish among various similar insects. Bees are robust bodied, hairy insects with four wings. They usually are dark with some coloring such as yellow. Their hind legs are used to carry pollen. Bees feed on nectar and pollen from flowers.

Worker honey bees are about five-eighths of an inch long and are brown or black with yellow-striped abdomens. Africanized honey bees are slightly smaller than the regular honey bee, but the bees look so much alike that only lab analysis can tell them apart.

Wasps are slender with a thick waist. Their "skin" is generally smooth and somewhat shiny, often with sharply contrasting black and yellow patterns. Their hind legs are narrow.

Yellow jackets are marked with black and yellow. They prefer to nest in the ground but can be found in wall voids and similar places. Their bodies are wider than those of the wasps.

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