Polistes annularis, Red Paper Wasp


Old Timer
Dec 10, 2008
I caught this one, and another slightly larger one, by just cupping the entire nest with a 32oz insect cup. Then I slid a sharp knife between the cup and the wood and cut the nest loose and let it fall to the bottom of the cup (the wasps were already off the nest and clambering around the cup at this point). The I put the lid on the cup and flipped it upside down (lid on bottom) and waited for the wasps to climb up the sides. Once the did I snagged the nest and glued it in place and waited for the hotglue to dry. Once it was I added the wasps. Pretty simple.

What I want to know is how to catch a larger, more established nest...I went out last night with that in mind. Found a P. annularis nest with 9 wasps and around 100 cells, but as soon as I shone my light on them several started buzzing angrily...So I left them be :D


Jul 27, 2010
For some reason, my video in post #20 isn't showing up... :? OH well. check out the vids through the link if you're interested. :D

Flamesbane, Collecting larger nests can be tricky. I once collected a Polistes exclamans nest with over 50 workers... that was a chore, but here's how I did it:

I put a long handled net with an extra long bag over the nest. Pulling fast and evenly, I broke the nest off and let it fall into the bag. Then I inverted the net. Wasps naturally want to fly upwards, so I let them crawl into the top of the net. Then I reached under the net and quickly grabbed the nest. Then I slid a container around the wasps, and put the lid on. The container was See-Through so when I saw all of the wasps were in the container and not on the net, I slid a thick piece of cardboard under the lid between the net and container on the inside. Then I lifted the lid and placed it on top of the cardboard. As I slid the cardboard out, I lowered the lid quickly into place. thus the wasps were all captured! I then went through the simple setup process, but with a much larger than normal tank, due to colony size. When that was done, I refrigerated the container for about 5-10 minuits, until the wasps were cold and slow moving. I then reversed the process I had used earlier to put the cardboard back in place of the lid. then I inverted the container, cardboard and all. Then I set the cardboard over the lid to the Kritter Keeper that was the tank, and pulled the cardboard away. the wasps, sensing their nest, went into the tank, and when they were all in there, I closed the lid and Presto! there was my largest captured colony!:D

Hope this helps!