Vespa crabro Linnaeus, 1758

Bass, Amber, Needham, Karen & Bennett, Andrew M. R., 2022, First record of Vespa crabro Linnaeus (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) in western North America with a review of recorded species of Vespa Linnaeus in Canada, Zootaxa 5154 (3), pp. 305-318 : 307

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Vespa crabro Linnaeus


Vespa crabro Linnaeus

Figs 1–2 View FIGURE 1 View FIGURE 2

The specimen collected on Mayne Island ( Fig. 2 View FIGURE 2 ) was identified morphologically by the authors as the Japanese colour form of Vespa crabro , formerly Vespa crabro flavofasciata Cameron (following the taxon concepts of Archer 1992) which is native to Japan, Korea, and eastern Russia ( Archer 1992). A 658 base pair (bp) sequence of the specimen (GenBank Accession OL702713 View Materials ) was 100% identical to 14 sequences of V. crabro from South Korea: GenBank Accessions MN716838 View Materials MN716841 View Materials and MN609218 View Materials MN609227 View Materials (see Discussion for details of these sequences), with an E-value of 0.0 and a bit score of 1214.

Material examined: CANADA: 1 ♀, British Columbia, Mayne Island, Horton Bay , 48°49’29.16”N, 123°14’41.46”W,, E. Roth, SEM-UBC HYM-14585, ( SEM) ( Fig. 2 View FIGURE 2 ) GoogleMaps ; 1 ♀, Ontario, Thwartway Island , 44°17’37.50”N, 76°9’0.45”W, 23.x.1976, R GoogleMaps . A. Turner, CNC1754075 View Materials , DNA voucher AB088 ( CNC); JAPAN: 1 ♀, Hokkaido, Onuma , 41°58’55.45”N 140°40’13.94”E, 23–24.vii.1966, A. Mutuura, CNC1754076 View Materials GoogleMaps , DNA voucher AB163 ( CNC); SOUTH KOREA: 1 ♀, Desong-dong, Chipom , 26.v.1952, F.C. R . Chalke , CNC1754077 View Materials ( CNC) ; USA: 1 ♀, Maryland, Calvert Co., Port Republic , 38°30’3.15”N 76°31’44.44”W, 12–15.x.1991. D.M. Wood, CNC1754074 View Materials GoogleMaps , DNA voucher AB087 ( CNC); 1 ♀, North Carolina, Pitt Co., Stokes vic., 17.ix.1984, R . S. Jacobson ( CNC) ( Fig. 1 View FIGURE 1 ) .

Distribution: Vespa crabro is widespread across the Palaearctic region, introduced and established in the eastern Nearctic and adventive in the northwest Nearctic (current study).

Diagnosis: Vespa crabro can be distinguished from other Vespa species collected in Canada by having a combination of the following characters: 1) length of gena less than 1.6× length of eye at midheight in lateral view ( Figs 1B View FIGURE 1 , 2B View FIGURE 2 ); 2) pretegular carina complete, extending the height of the pronotal lobe ( Fig. 1D View FIGURE 1 ); 3) female clypeus with punctures clearly defined, contiguous or nearly so ( Figs 1C View FIGURE 1 , 2C View FIGURE 2 ); 4) male metasomal sternites 6–7 with posterior margins straight or only shallowly indented medially. The Japanese form of V. crabro differs from the west European form in that the posterior yellow fasciae on terga 2 to 6 are generally narrow, especially on tergum 2, and sublateral black spots, if present, are not prominently projecting into the yellow fasciae ( Fig. 2B View FIGURE 2 ) (west European colour form with larger proportion of terga 2 to 6 yellow, and with sublateral black spots generally prominently projecting into yellow fasciae, at least on terga 3 to 5) ( Fig. 1B View FIGURE 1 ). Females of the Japanese form are generally darker than the European form in the ocellar area, as well as the scutellum; however, darkening of these regions does occur in some North American specimens of the European form.


Departamento de Geologia, Universidad de Chile


Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids, and Nematodes