Detection of Asian paper wasp in Southern Tasmania
Asian paper wasp (Polistes chinensis), and other Polistes species are Unwanted Quarantine Pests declared under the Tasmanian Plant Quarantine Act 1997. Asian paper wasp is native to Eastern Asia, including parts of Japan and China. It has been introduced to New Zealand, where it is widespread on the North Island. Within Australia, it is known to occur in NSW and the ACT. In areas where it is established, it can become a considerable public nuisance and have potential environmental impacts.
A nest of Asian paper wasp was detected in Autumn 2019 in a suburban garden at Geilston Bay, near Hobart. The nest was treated with an insecticide and removed by a pest controller organised by Biosecurity Tasmania. Biosecurity Tasmania officers completed an inspection of the area with no further detections. Biosecurity Tasmania request that members of the public report any suspected Asian paper wasp nests as detailed below.
What to do if you think you have seen Asian paper wasp
If you think you may have seen Asian paper wasp please contact Biosecurity Tasmania
To report by email: Please include “Suspect Asian paper wasp nest” in the subject heading, a sighting address in the body of the email, attach a clear photo of the nest/wasps and email to email@example.com
To report by phone: Please call Biosecurity Tasmania on 6165 3777
WARNING: Asian paper wasps sting. Do not disturb nests or provoke wasps in any way. In particular, do not approach nests of the similar looking European wasp (which are usually larger, without exposed cells and often hidden underground or other concealed areas) or areas with high European wasp activity as disturbance may provoke wasps to attack and multiple stings can be life threatening.
Asian Paper wasps are about 1.5-2.5 cm long, yellow and black in colour with orange antennae. They appear similar to European wasps but have a higher proportion of black, a lower proportion of yellow and a thinner abdomen. Asian paper wasp nests have exposed cells.
Asian paper wasp
Photo: NRE Tas
Asian paper wasp nest
Photo: Canberra Nature Map