10 Important Difference between Wasp and Hornet with Table

what is the Difference between Wasp and Hornet?

Most of us tend to use hornet and wasp interchangeably. The wing creatures of hidden physical appearance that are similar. In a real sense, these two creatures are quite different.

The core difference between wasp and hornet is that wasps are typically smaller than hornets. Are a wasp and hornet the same thing? Find out more from the lesson.

Difference between Wasp and Hornet

What Is a Wasp?

Wasp is a carnivorous insect that sting to kill. These wing creatures can sting more than once but only if you disturb them from their nest.

The insects lay eggs and they have a narrow waist as well as the hairless body. They come in different colors of black to metallic green and blue.

These insects can either be social or solitary. Social was tended to live in colonies with a female wasp as a leader.

The wasp feed on nectar, other insects and food waste. They practice parasitic or predation mode of nutrition.

What Is a Hornet?

A hornet is a large wasp due to the bigger body size. Research shows that there are over 20 species of hornet in the world. The yellow jacket body color is what makes it stand apart from the wasp.

The nest of the hornet is mainly found on trees and shrubs. They are quite aggressive and produce louder buzz. They have larger colonies headed by a queen.

Hornets are typically used to eliminate insects from the yard and they also feed on plant nectar. The survival of the hornet cycle depends on the life of the queen during the cold season.

Comparison Chart: Wasp Vs Hornet

Basic Terms Wasp Hornet
Body Size Have microscopic body size of about 1 inch Have a larger body size of about 1.5 inches
Nest Either build aerial or ground nests Build larger aerial nest with paper-like material
Body-color Come in different types of color Come in black with white, brownish or reddish stripes
Diet Feed on insects and nectar Feed mainly on nectar
Behavior Stingy repeatedly Tend to be quite aggressive
Habitat Twigs, branches of trees and shrubs Trees, barns, hollow walls of the house, and attics
Significance Pollination as they scavenge for food Suitable as pest control due to predation nature
Eggs Lay eggs in the body of the other organism Lay eggs in the nest
Types Spider wasp, digger wasp, velvet ants, yellowjackets. Asian giant hornet, Japanese hornet, European hornet.
Social or solitary Either social or solitary Social

Core Differences between Wasp and Hornet In Point Form

  1. Hornets are very aggressive and sting tends to be fatal while wasps are less aggressive and sting multiple targets.
  2. Hornets are quite larger than wasps which are quite smaller
  3. Hornets are social wing creatures while wasps can either be social or solitary
  4. Wasps lay eggs in the body of the other organisms while hornets lay eggs in their nest
  5. Hornets are suitable for pest control while wasps for pollination
  6. Wasps live on twigs, branches of trees and shrubs while hornets on hollow walls of house, barns, and trees
  7. Wasps feed on nectar and other insects while hornets feed on insects
  8. Wasps come in different colors while hornets are black with a white, brownish and reddish color
  9. Wasps can build an aerial or ground nest while hornet builds a larger nest with paper-like materials.
  10. Hornets produce louder buzz while wasps produce less sound-like buzz

Read More: Difference between Shark and Dolphin

Comparison Video


The core difference between wasp and hornet is body size. Hornets are known to be larger than a wasp. Hornets are social insects while wasps are either social or solitary insects.

Read More: Difference between Flying Ants and Termites 


Leave a Comment