What is this insect?

Asked June 17, 2015, 9:47 AM EDT

I had a colony of bees or wasps nesting under the cushion of a wicker loveseat on my porch, and I'm having trouble identifying them. They built a honeycomb-type hive like bees (see attached photos), but do not look like bees. They are the size of a honeybee or a touch smaller, but are smooth like a wasp and colored like a yellow jacket, with a much quieter "buzz" than a bee. Note also, that they were much less aggressive than a typical yellow jacket. I've attached several pictures. We have eradicated the infestation, but I'm still curious about what they actually are. Any thoughts?

Cabell County West Virginia yellow jackets insect identification

1 Response

These are yellow jackets. They are void dwellers and will move into outdoor furniture occasionally.

Yellow jackets aren't usually as aggressive early in the season, perhaps that explains their behavior.