4 Most Common Wasps in the PNW

Wasps are definitely a nuisance in the Pacific Northwest during the summer. Here are the common types of wasps in this area that you can watch out for.




What they are: Yellowjackets are the most common seen species out of the four of these. They are extremely defensive when provoked and will climb into people’s clothing. They are a fearless species. Be very careful dealing with them.


What they look like: This wasp species is about a half inch long and has jagged stripes of black and yellow on its abdomen. Its thorax and head are covered in yellow spots and bars. Their waist is short and narrow, and their abdomen ends in a sharp point.


Paper Wasps

Paper Wasp

What they are: Native paper wasps are a lot less aggressive than yellowjackets. They don’t normally sting humans unless their nests are located next to places where humans are active. However, European paper wasps are a little more aggressive. Typically, they won’t attack unless the human is really close to them.


What they look like: Paper wasps have long legs and slender waists. They are usually about one inch long. Depending on if it is a native or paper wasp, they can be colored differently. Native paper wasps are brown with patches of yellow and red. However, European paper wasps have yellow and black markings and look a lot like yellowjackets.


Mud Daubers

Black and yellow Mud Dauber

What they are: Mud daubers are the nicest out of the wasp bunch. They rarely sting and do not defend their nests. Their nests are mud tube nests that usually rest under bridges, on walls, in eaves or attics.


What they look like: Mud daubers are usually one single color either metallic blue or black. However, sometimes they can have black bodies with yellow markings. They have weird waists that are super thin.


Baldfaced Hornet

Baldfaced Hornet

What they are: Baldfaced hornets are like less aggressive yellowjackets. Their nests can be close to human activity; however, they are usually in places that are closed off and hard to find. They aren’t usually a nuisance.


What they look like: Baldfaced hornets are usually three quarters of an inch in length. They have black and ivory markings on their bodies.





If you are seeing wasps’ nests or wasps near your home, contact Insight Pest Solutions for the best pest control Seattle has to offer.

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