The European hornet, Vespa crabro, is a large heavy-bodeied wasp. It is brown in color with yellow and orange markings. The Bald-faced hornet, Vespula maculata , are big stout insects, three quarters of an inch long, black with whitish yellow markings on the head, thorax and abdomen.
Hornets generally prefer hollow trees as a nesting site. It will also accept man-makde cavities especially the outside walls of houses. Hornets feed on house flies, blow flies, harmful caterpillars, etc. Unlike honey bee larvae which are vegetarians, hornet larvae are meat eaters so mom and dad hornet are constantly searching for flies, caterpillars and such to keep those cute little tykes fed. The nests of this species are annual and only a small number of queens overwinter. The Eropean hornet is unusual in that it often flies at dusk and even into the early evening. for this reason it sometimes becomes a pest near outdoor lights and on windo swcreens. Their nests reswemble a large gray, coarsely texdteured football or a giant egg and constructed of a paper mache-like material. The nests may be found under eaves and hidden in shrubbery or on tree brqanches. An active neswt may contain over 200 adults. The nests are annual, used only once.