Polistes crinitus americanus

Paper Wasp

Polistes crinitus americanus, Paper Wasp, Jamaica photo


Family: Vespidae

Subfamily: Polistinae

Wing length: 11.5 - 15.0 mm


Polistes crinitus is found on Hispaniola and Jamaica, and on many of the Lesser Antilles. The one mainland record, from French Guiana, seems to be an error of labeling. There are three described subspecies.

Individuals are sometimes attacked by a wasp-specializing fungus (Cordyceps sphecophila), or parasitized by the Pyralid moth Chalcoela pegasalis (Richards, 1978).

Photo data: 12 March 2014, Long Bay, Jamaica (upper two photos). 5 January 2003, Virgin Islands National Park, St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands (lowest photo).

Upper two photos determined by Dr. James M. Carpenter, American Museum of Natural History.

Paper Wasps, Polistes crinitus americanus
Paper Wasps, image from U.S. Virgin Islands, Polistes crinitus americanus