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Hornets in Japan

Vespa crabro flavofasciata


Text generated by Thomas Rickinger
There is another geographic color form of the European Hornet in Japan. Vespa crabro flavofasciata Cameron, 1903 inhabits the japanese mainlands (Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu). It is through most of its range not uncommon, but less dominant than the sympatric species Vespa simillima.

In Japanese, Vespa crabro is called "the hornet that has yellow and black marks of wave on the stomach". Vespa crabro is smaller than Vespa mandarinia, the largest hornet in Japan, and from Vespa crabro's head to tail size is about 21-30mm.

An almost entirely yellow head, black scutellum and unusual broad black stripes on the gaster characterize this color form in color pattern.

Vespa crabro flavofasciata is a semi-specialized predator. It preys on various insects, but preferably on medium to large-sized cicadas. In some years more than 95% of its prey consists of cicadas.

Vespa crabro flavofasciata, Foto: Kazuyoshi Ide
 Picture taken by: Kazuyoshi Ide, Moth Nature Laboratory, Japan
 

Picture's data:

Place: Hankoyama Park in Koshi Town, Kikuchi County, Kumamoto, JAPAN
Date: June 29 2003
Camera: Nikon new FM2
Lens: Tamron 90mm F2.8 Macro + 2x Teleplus f11 1/250 synchronized Speedlight
Film: Kodak GOLD 100
Film Scanner: Canon CanoScan 2700F


Vespa crabro flavofasciata, Foto: Hiroki Kataoka
 Picture taken by: Hiroki Kataoka, Japan

 


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