The wasp is found in all the countries in the world, on every continent with the exception of the polar regions. There are around 75,000 recognized species of wasp worldwide that grow to around 2/3 inch long.
The wasp is most commonly known for its poisonous sting, that if a human is stung can often swell into a painful lump that takes a few days to soothe. Some people are allergic to wasp stings meaning the wasp sting can be fatal.
Not all wasps can sting though but those that can often die once they have used their sting has it is joined onto their rear end of often becomes dislodged. When a wasp dies it releases a smell (called a pheromone) which warns the other wasps of danger and that it needs help.
Like many other insect species, the wasp is social insect and many wasps, as many as 10,000, inhabit just one nest. The queen wasp is the only breeding female and she builds the nest from a papery substance that is made up of chewed wood and plants. Typically, the wasp only lives for 12 - 22 days.
Wasps are omnivorous animals and therefore eat a mixture of plants and other animals. As with bees, the wasp prefers the sweeter plants and primarily eats nectar, fruits and honey. Wasps also eat insects and even large caterpillars.
Despite their bright colours to deter predators, wasps are eaten by a number of different animals around the world including birds, amphibians, reptiles and various species of mammal.
The queen wasp lays her eggs inside the nest which hatch in a number of days. When the wasp larvae hatch they are cared for by the other wasps in the nest and begin to hunt for food to bring back to the nest. Wasps are known to travel nearly half a kilometre away from the nest in search of food.