Alabama is home to a variety of dangerous animals, from venomous snakes to alligators and black bears. However, some of the most dangerous animals in Alabama are those that can fly.
In this article, we will explore the top 4 most dangerous flying animals in Alabama. These animals can be aggressive and pose a serious threat to humans, so it’s important to be aware of their presence and take precautions when necessary. Read on to discover which flying animals you should be on the lookout for in Alabama.
Top 4 Most Dangerous Flying Animals In Alabama
German yellowjacket, European wasp or German wasp (lat. Vespula germanica)
The German yellowjacket, also known as the European wasp or German wasp (Vespula germanica), is one of the most dangerous flying animals in Alabama.
This species first appeared in Ohio in 1975 and has since become the dominant species over the eastern yellowjacket. It is bold, aggressive, and can sting repeatedly and painfully.
The German yellowjacket is often confused with Polistes dominula, an invasive species in the United States, due to their very similar pattern.
In the southeastern United States, where southern yellowjacket (Vespula squamosa) nests may persist through the winter, colony sizes of this species may reach 100,000 adult wasps.
The German yellowjacket prefers to construct its nests inside building walls, making them especially tricky to remove. If you notice a German yellowjacket problem forming near your property, it’s important to contact your local wasp removal experts.
Bald-faced hornet (lat. Dolichovespula maculata)
The bald-faced hornet (Dolichovespula maculata) is another dangerous flying animal found in Alabama. Despite its name, the bald-faced hornet is not a true hornet, but rather a species of yellowjacket wasp.
It is known by many colloquial names, including bald-faced aerial yellowjacket, bald-faced wasp, white-faced hornet, and blackjacket.
The bald-faced hornet is easily recognized by its striking black-and-white coloring, with white markings on its face, thorax, legs, and abdomen. It builds its nests in bushes and trees, and sometimes on the outside of buildings, producing the characteristic football-shaped, grey papery nests.
The bald-faced hornet is found in most of the 48 contiguous states, throughout Canada and in Alaska, and is the most common of the species in Dolichovespula in Pennsylvania.
If you encounter a bald-faced hornet, it’s important to stay calm and avoid swatting at it, as this can provoke an attack.
Paper wasp (lat. Polistes spp.)
The paper wasp (Polistes spp.) is a type of social wasp that is commonly found in Alabama. This cosmopolitan genus is the most familiar of the polistine wasps and is the most common type of paper wasp in North America.
Paper wasps are semi-social insects that form small colonies containing three castes: workers, queens, and males. The fertilized queens, which look similar to workers, overwinter in protected habitats and emerge in the spring to start new colonies.
Paper wasps are typically brown with yellow markings, and their nests are made of a papery material that is created by chewing wood fibers and mixing them with saliva.
These nests are often found hanging from eaves, tree branches, or other protected areas. While paper wasps are generally not aggressive, they will defend their nests if they feel threatened, and their stings can be painful and cause an allergic reaction in some people.
Yellow jacket (lat. Vespula spp.)
Yellow jackets (Vespula spp.) are a group of social wasps that are commonly found in Alabama. There are several species of yellow jackets in North America, including the eastern yellow jacket (Vespula maculifrons), southern yellow jacket (Vespula squamosa), and German yellow jacket (Vespula germanica).
Yellow jackets are known for their distinctive black and yellow striped pattern, and their nests are typically made of a papery material that is created by chewing wood fibers and mixing them with saliva.
Yellow jackets are social insects that live in colonies of hundreds to thousands of individuals, and they are known to aggressively defend their nests from threats. Their stings can be painful and cause an allergic reaction in some people.
If you encounter a yellow jacket nest, it’s important to stay calm and avoid swatting at the wasps, as this can provoke an attack.
1. What should I do if I encounter a bald-faced hornet?
If you encounter a bald-faced hornet, it’s important to stay calm and avoid swatting at it, as this can provoke an attack. Try to move away from the area slowly and quietly.
2. How can I tell if I have a yellow jacket nest on my property?
Yellow jacket nests are typically made of a papery material that is created by chewing wood fibers and mixing them with saliva. They are often found hanging from eaves, tree branches, or other protected areas. If you see a lot of yellow jackets flying around a particular area, there may be a nest nearby.
3. Are paper wasps dangerous?
While paper wasps are generally not aggressive, they will defend their nests if they feel threatened, and their stings can be painful and cause an allergic reaction in some people. It’s best to avoid disturbing paper wasp nests if possible.
4. What should I do if I get stung by a German yellowjacket?
If you get stung by a German yellowjacket, it’s important to remove the stinger as quickly as possible and wash the area with soap and water. Applying a cold compress can help reduce swelling and pain. If you experience symptoms of an allergic reaction, such as difficulty breathing or swelling of the face or throat, seek medical attention immediately.
5. How can I prevent flying insect stings?
To prevent flying insect stings, it’s important to avoid wearing brightly colored clothing or strong perfumes, which can attract insects. When spending time outdoors, wear long sleeves and pants, and use insect repellent. Be careful when eating or drinking outdoors, as sweet foods and drinks can attract insects. Finally, be aware of your surroundings and avoid disturbing nests or swarms of flying insects.