Skip to content


A hornet in Northern Utah - Rentokil

Having bees in your yards can be unsettling—it’s easy to be on edge about being stung. Thankfully, if you leave them alone, they will do the same to you. But can the same be said for wasps and hornets?

Wasps and hornets are both aggressive stinging insects capable of swarming people that threaten them in large numbers. But how can you tell the difference between wasp and hornet activity in your yard? Our technicians at Rentokil conduct hornet and wasp identification inspections and nest removal services that keep Northern Utah homeowners free of stinging insects all year.

The difference between wasps and hornets in Northern Utah - RentokilWasp vs. Hornet Identification

Hornets are actually a type of wasp, but they have some distinctive features that you can use to tell them apart:

  • Physical appearance: Hornets are usually larger and rounder than wasps. Instead of a stark black and yellow contrast like the common paper wasp, hornets tend to display mixtures of reddish-orange colors.
  • Tendencies: Hornets are much more social, coming from nests of over 100 other hornets at times. They are also less easily provoked than wasps, but when they sting, it can be much more painful.
  • Nesting: Wasp vs hornet nest appearance comes down to the amount of enclosure and the location. Hornets build an almost conical structure with an entrance at the bottom, usually hanging off a high structure. Wasp nests can vary widely in size and appearance and are often open with visible honeycomb-like walls.

Which Are More Dangerous, Wasps or Hornets?

Both of these insects are dangerous, but the danger comes in slightly different forms. Wasp vs hornet sting symptoms vary due to their venom makeup and their social habits. Hornet stings aren’t accompanied by many others as often as wasp stings are, but they are very painful due to their unique venom content. Wasp stings hurt, but not quite as bad. However, they are more likely to be defended by other wasps in their area, leading to multiple painful stings at once.

Wasp and Hornet Nest Removal

At Rentokil, we train our wasp control technicians to handle all kinds of wasps and hornets that we deal with in the region and efficiently remove their nests from trees, sheds, roofs, overhangs, and more. If you want to keep hornets and wasps away for good, contact us for a free quote!

Wasp vs Hornet: What’s the Difference? in Salt Lake County and Northern Utah

Serving Northern Utah and Southern Idaho since 1999

Salt Lake City | Ogden | Layton | Woods Cross | Park City | West Jordan | Sandy | Draper | Lehi | Orem | Provo

Logan | Hyrum | Smithfield | Hyde Park | Providence | Tremonton | Brigham City | Preston ID