Vespa albida SLADEN 1918; Vespa arctica FRIESE 1919; Vespa borealis ZETTERSTEDT 1838; Vespa britannica LEACH 1814; Vespa marginata KIRBY 1837; Dolichovespula zetterstedti BLÜTHGEN 1937
This is one of the three British ‘long-cheeked’ social wasps. Identification keys and details of biology are given in Archer (1996), Else (1994), Edwards (1980) and Spradbery (1973).
Widely distributed throughout Britain and Ireland including Orkney and Shetland (Fair Isle).
Overseas, occurs across most of northern Europe and Asia where it may be found as far north as 70°N. However, it is rare in southern Europe, where it tends to be an alpine species (in the Pyrenees, for example).