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Polistes smithii Saussure

(Life: Kingdom: Metazoa (animals); Phylum: Arthropoda; Class: Hexapoda; Order: Hymenoptera; Superfamily: Vespoidea; Family: Vespidae; Subfamily: Polistinae; Genus: Polistes)

Polistes smithii Saussure, 1853. Holotype Type Locality: Senegal.


Female from Diep River, Cape Town.

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Male from Diep River, Cape Town.

 

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Nest with mostly females (single darker male in the middle) from Diep River, Cape Town.


Female from Heidelberg Gauteng.


Distribution

Congo, Mozambique, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania (including Zanzibar), Zambia, Zimbabwe.

Biology

Social, constructing communal paper nests comprising a single comb with downward pointing cells. Larvae are fed on chewed-up, soft-bodied insects such as caterpillars. See Polistinae Paper wasp home page for more details.

Reference

Bequaert, J.C. 1918. A revision of the Vespidae of the Belgian Congo based on the collection of the American Museum Congo Expedition: with a list of Ethiopian diplopterous wasps. Bulletin of the AMNH 39: 1-384.

Credits

Photographs Simon van Noort (Iziko Museums of South Africa).


Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)

 

Citation: van Noort, S. 2023. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the Afrotropical region. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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