paper wasp


: a vespid wasp (especially genus Polistes) that builds a nest of papery material

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Paper Wasps Similar to mud daubers, paper wasps have a brownish color, although some may be found with red stripes. Rebecca Straus, Good Housekeeping, 28 Mar. 2023 The resident's report included a photograph of the hornet attacking a paper wasp nest in a rural area east of the town of Blaine, about two miles from where state workers eradicated the first Asian giant hornet nest in the United States last October. CBS News, 13 Aug. 2021 Take it from Blaschki: A paper wasp sting hurts. René A. Guzman,, 1 Sep. 2020 To be fair, a queen paper wasp (Polistes chinensis antennalis) is a single mom with a lot on her plate. Elizabeth Preston, Discover Magazine, 10 Apr. 2015 Sho Furuichi and Eiiti Kasuya, of Japan's Kyushu University, studied 47 paper wasp nests in the wild to find out more about how queens defend their young. Elizabeth Preston, Discover Magazine, 10 Apr. 2015 The team of researchers tested the nests of six different species of the paper wasp found in Vietnam, France and French Guiana under UV light 360 and 400 nanometers in wavelength. Corryn Wetzel, Smithsonian Magazine, 27 Aug. 2021 The hornet was found attacking a paper wasp nest in a rural town east of Blaine, Washington—only two miles away from where the first live nest in the United States was eradicated in fall 2020. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 17 Aug. 2021 The Asian giant hornet, first spotted in the U.S. in 2019, preys on insects, including honeybees — a small group can destroy a honeybee hive in hours, officials say — but this hornet was attacking paper wasp nests. NBC News, 13 Aug. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'paper wasp.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1853, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of paper wasp was in 1853

Dictionary Entries Near paper wasp

Cite this Entry

“Paper wasp.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition

paper wasp

: a wasp that builds a nest out of papery material

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