Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Subfamily Vespinae - Hornets and Yellowjackets

A contribution to the biology of North American Vespine wasps
By Carl D Duncan
Stanford Universuty Press, 1939
This is the first major work on the morphology and taxonomy of North American Vespine wasps. This book extensively studies the internal and external morphology of the western yellowjacket Vespula pensylvanica as well as provides a chapter on Vespine systematics and also provides subsequent chapters which extensivly review the biology and behavior of the Vespinae species from the Western United States. This book is an excellent read and threrefore highly reccomended.

Here is a link to a readable/downloadable copy of this work:

Monographie des guepes au Vespa
By Robert Du Buysson
Although outdated, This is one of the first monographs of the species of Vespinae of the world. This is a great historical piece for anyone wanting to see how much progress has been made in the field in the last Century.

Here is a link to a downloadable/readable copy:

Books on Vespinae
By Various

Vespine wasps of the World: Behaviour, ecology, & taxonomy of the Vespinae
By Michael E Archer
Siri Scientific Press, 2012

A Key To The World Species Of The Vespinae
By Micheal E Archer
College of Ripon and York U.K., 1989

Checklist of the species of the subfamily Vespinae (Insecta: Hymenoptera: Vespidae)
By Carpenter, James M., and Jun-ichi Kojima
Nat. Hist. Bulletin of Ibaraki Univ. 1:51-92, 1997
Indispensable taxonomic and distributional work for these wasps. Available for download as pdf at:

Reproductive plasticity in yellowjacket wasps: A polygynous, perennial colony of Vespula maculifrons
By Ross, Kenneth G., and P. Kirk Visscher
Psyche 90:179-191, 1983

Nesting Biology of the Yellowjacket, Vespula flavopilosa (Hymenoptera: Vespidae)
By MacDonald, J. F., R. W. Matthews, and R. S. Jacobson
Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 53:448-458, 1980