University of Maryland Extension

Baldfaced Hornets

bald faced hornet close up
Adult baldfaced hornet
Photo: Johnny N. Dell,

Baldfaced hornets are black and white yellowjackets, 5/8 to 3/4 of an inch long. They build the typical gray, paper, sphere-shaped "hornet nest". The nests may be built on shrubs at ground level to over 60 feet or higher in trees. Nests may also be attached to sheds, houses, or utility poles. The nests are annual and not reused the following season. Baldfaced hornets are beneficial because they feed on many pest insects.

bald-faced hornet nestManagement

If the nest is close to a walkway or where the hornets become a problem, control may be needed. Locate the entrance to the nest during the day. Control should be done at night when most of the hornets are in the nest. Do not shine a flashlight directly on the nest, as this may attract the hornets towards the light after being sprayed. Use a commercially available wasp and hornet spray directed at the entrance hole. Follow the label directions carefully.

Additional Resource

Bug of the Week Blog - Mike Raupp. Ph.D., Professor of Entomology, Extension Specialist, UMD

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