Two types of Yellowjackets coming out of same ground nest hole in...

Asked September 16, 2019, 4:58 PM EDT

Two types of Yellowjackets coming out of same ground nest hole in East-Central Ohio I was trying to destroy a y'jacket nest at night about a week ago with a foaming insecticide and when they began to get out of the nest some larger bees started coming out also. When the first one came out I thought it was a queen but more of these larger bees started coming out, a lot of them. Ratio of large to small bees was approx. 1 to five. The large bees are quite a bit larger than the smaller bees and even look like a different type. I'd like to know what the larger bees are. I've got one of each (dead but in good shape) and can send some .jpg images if that would be helpful. Thank you, Joseph Buntin

Guernsey County Ohio

3 Responses

Thank you for contacting Ask An Expert!

Without pictures, what I think you are describing as large yellow jackets could be cicada killer wasps. They do burrow in the ground. Below are three fact sheets with great information. Send pictures if this is not the case.

Let us know if you have further questions.,,

Please refer to the .jpg images. Both these bee types came out of the same nest hole when I was trying to kill them. That seems very odd. Please refer back to original post copy.

Thank you,

Hello Joe--
Thank you for sending pictures. This is what I think is going on in your back yard.
In the fall, the aging queen dies and leaves behind several mated queens who then
leave the nest and overwinter close by. The social structure of the nest breaks down at this point. The yellowjackets have been busy since spring and there are several
generations in the same nest. The different sized yellowjackets could be either the
new queens leaving the nest, could be drones or they could be workers. The different
generations could also explain the size differences. All will die soon except for the
mated queens. Please refer the the fact sheet links at the top of the page for further
information. Again, thank you for contacting Ask An Expert.