All about wasps in NZ

Introduced stinging wasps

The most offensive stingers are four introduced species of social wasp in the Vespidae family. These are pests in urban, rural and natural ecosystems. The worst two are of European origin, the black-and-yellow German and common wasps (Vespula germanica and Vespula vulgaris respectively), which attack and sting to defend their huge nests. Both species, especially the common wasp, have invaded native forest – kauri forests in the north and beech forests in the south.

Effects on native ecosystems

These wasps eat vast numbers of native insects, in direct competition with insect-eating birds. They also feed heavily on beech forest honeydew, an important food for native insects and birds such as kākā and bellbirds. Their numbers are highest in late summer, and in some South Island beech forests their combined weight may exceed that of all the birds. They can make outdoor recreation unpleasant and hazardous.


VESPEX® Development

Some information on Vespex® development 

Vespex® being used at Abel Tasman

Vespex® being used in this wasp control operation at Abel Tasman National Park