Physical Characteristics

The German yellowjacket is around 1/2 inch long, and its black-and-yellow striped motif looks quite similar to that of a common yellowjacket, except for the three black dots on its face, in addition to black dots among the stripes on its abdomen.

Carpenter Ant

German Yellowjacket


The German wasp, like the yellowjacket (V. vulgaris) and western yellowjacket (V. pensylvanica) will build its nest low to the ground, often in a rodent burrow, or inside ceilings or wall voids; however, it tends to be more urbanized than the yellowjacket or western yellowjacket, and probably is what you’re seeing if you’re encountering wasps in or around your home.


If you can, avoid them, and avoid disturbing their nests. German yellowjackets feed on flies, mosquitoes, caterpillars and other pests, so they can be beneficial. There are aerosolized pesticides you can buy, but using them, especially without knowing the dangers, can be quite risky. Measures you can take: Improve sanitation by putting food in sealed containers, and by locating garbage cans or receptacles away from where you live; keep in mind that these insects need water, too. If the yellowjacket activity is heavy, call your Clark Pest Control technician, who has the know-how to handle any wasp infestation so you won’t have to worry.