BugFinder Insects by State Spiders Butterflies & Moths Bees, Ants, & Wasps Beetles All Bugs Videos (YouTube)

Macao Paper Wasp (Polistes olivaceus)

Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Macao Paper Wasp

Loading SVG image placeholder
Image Credit: Evan S., taken in VA
Full-sized image of the Macao-Paper-Wasp Thumbnail image of the Macao-Paper-Wasp

The highly social and large Macao Paper Wasp has been making big moves across the ocean.

Updated: 01/04/2022; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
Polistes olivaceus goes by a few common names in English. In Australia, it is referred to as the Macao Paper Wasp. In other regions, it is called the Yellow Paper Wasp. Because there are native paper wasps in North America that are also yellow, we defer to the Australian common name to reduce confusion for those who find scientific names difficult. This colorful paper wasp is bigger than most others in the Polistes genus. The mostly yellow body has yellow antennae and yellow legs that may have a blush of red by the 'hip' joint. The yellow thorax has three black lines on it that are boxed in at the bottom. A band of red separates this from another, smaller area with central black lines flanked by red patches. Just below the constricted waist is a patch of red; after that, abdominal banding begins. A thin black band is followed by a thick red band, and then alternating sets of curvy black lines and red bands. A dark line runs down the middle of the abdomen, crossing all of these bands.

Originally from Asia, this species has been found on the Cocos Islands of western Australia, in Hawaii, and may have traveled farther. It is an aggressive species that delivers a painful sting. This has led to efforts to eradicate, or at least contain, populations of this wasp in its non-native habitats. Wide berth should be given and it may be prudent to contact professional exterminators to remove nests. Gray nests are created using a pulpy mash of dead wood and stems mixed with saliva. The nests are huge, as are the congregations building and caring for them. Look for them nestled in branches of trees and shrubs. Do not engage with this species. If you suspect this non-native wasp is in your area, contact your county's extension agent. It may help confirm identification and track the spread of this wasp. ©InsectIdentification.org

Note: The above text is EXCLUSIVE to the site www.InsectIdentification.org. It is the product of hours of research and work made possible with the help of contributors, educators, and topic specialists. If you happen upon this text anywhere else on the internet or in print, please let us know at InsectIdentification AT gmail DOT com so that we may take appropriate action against the offender / offending site and continue to protect this original work.

General Characteristics

Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Flying insect icon
Spiny / Spiky insect icon
Insect stinger icon
Striped or banded insect icon

Taxonomic Hierarchy

Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Hymenoptera
        Family: Vespidae
View More
          Genus: Polistes
View More
            Species: olivaceus

Identifying Information

Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Polistes olivaceus
Other Name(s): Yellow Paper Wasp
Category: Bee, Ant, Wasp and Similar
Size (Adult; Length): 18mm to 24mm (0.70" to 0.94")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: yellow; red; black; orange
Descriptors: stinging; painful; aggressive; large; flying; nest; colorful; multi-colored; wasp; hornet; black red yellow stripes; group; hundreds; exotic; danger

Relative Size Comparison

Typical Size Between 18mm (0.7in) and 24mm (0.9in)
Lo: 18mm
Md: 21mm
Hi: 24mm

Territorial Map*

U.S., Canada, and Mexico
State of Alabama graphic
State of Arizona graphic
State of Arkansas graphic
State of California graphic
State of Colorado graphic
State of Delware graphic
State of Florida graphic
State of Georgia graphic
State of Idaho graphic
State of Illinois graphic
State of Indiana graphic
State of Iowa graphic
State of Kansas graphic
State of Kentucky graphic
State of Louisiana graphic
State of Maine graphic
State of Maryland graphic
State of Michigan graphic
State of Minnesota graphic
State of Mississippi graphic
State of Missouri graphic
State of Montana graphic
State of Nebraska graphic
State of Nevada graphic
State of New England graphic
State of New Jersey graphic
State of New Mexico graphic
State of New York graphic
State of North Carolina graphic
State of North Dakota graphic
State of Ohio graphic
State of Oklahoma graphic
State of Oregon graphic
State of Pennsylvania graphic
State of South Carolina graphic
State of South Dakota graphic
State of Tennessee graphic
State of Texas graphic
State of Utah graphic
State of Virginia graphic
State of Washington graphic
State of West Virginia graphic
State of Wisconsin graphic
State of Wyoming graphic
Canadian territory of Alberta graphic
Canadian territory of British Columbia graphic
Canadian territory of Manitoba graphic
Canadian territory of New Brunswick graphic
Canadian territory of Newfoundland and Labrador graphic
Canadian territory of Ontario graphic
Canadian territory of Quebec graphic
Canadian territory of Saskatchewan graphic
Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic
Prince Edward Is.  
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Macao Paper Wasp may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data is useful when attempting to see concentrations of particular species across the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some insects are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America. States/Territories shown above are a general indicator of areas inhabited by the Macao Paper Wasp. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.
Site Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy  |  Cookies  |  Sitemap
Beetle Identification Butterfly Identification Caterpillar Identification Spider ID Fungal Infections on Insects Nursery Web Spider Official State Insects Termite Basics Insect Molting Process Bugs of Tennessee House Centipede JoroSpider.org

2024 www.InsectIdentification.org • Content ©2006-2024 InsectIdentification.org • All Rights Reserved. The InsectIdentification.org logo, its written content, and watermarked photographs/imagery are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and is protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. Material presented throughout this website is for entertainment value and should not to be construed as usable for scientific research or medical advice (regarding bites, etc...).Please consult licensed, degreed professionals for such information. By submitting images to us (InsectIdentification.org) you acknowledge that you have read and understood our Site Disclaimer as it pertains to "User-Submitted Content". Images in JPG format are preferred with a minimum horizontal dimension of 1000px if possible. When emailing please include your location and the general estimated size of the specimen in question if possible. Please direct all inquiries and comments to insectidentification AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

©2024 www.InsectIdentification.org • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2006-2024 (18yrs)