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Comanche Paper Wasp

Polistes comanchus

Polistes comanchus at Kermes scales photo © by Mike Plagens

Feeding on honey dew from Kermes Scales at Pinal Peak, Gila Co., Arizona, USA. 29 July. 2011.

Vespidae -- Hornet and Paper Wasp Family

Different insects species have different nutritional requirements which are based in large part on their survival behaviors. Paper wasps engage in several demanding activities: Constructing paper nests from chewed up wood, feeding and caring for their young, and ranging far and wide hunting for insect prey to bring back to the nest-home. These activities increase the need for food energy to fuel muscle movement. Thus paper wasps are very keen to find sources of sugar, the currency of energy in biology. The wasp at left is taking secretions of honey dew from scale insects. But they will also find sugary sap oozing from injured trees and in the nectar wells of blooming flowers.

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 26 Dec. 2016.