Vespa ducalis Smith, 1852
Vespa ducalis is one of the biggest among all local wasps around Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong and even Sibiria, and grows to only slightly smaller than Vespa mandarinia. It is active for only an extremely short time (May to September in most years) and generally has small colonies -its colonies are the smallest in the genus Vespa. It's only found in rural, unpolluted areas though, and it's really a beautiful creature. But sometimes called "Orange Faced Devil".
Body length: Queen about 37 mm, worker 24-32 mm
Locally (Hong Kong, not Taiwan and Japan) there is also Vespa soror common - this hornet is sometimes confused with Vespa ducalis. But it is more bigger - the second largest hornet after Vespa mandarinia - and the species Vespa soror has a long life cyclefro March/ April to January.
Special thanks to: Hsu, Ching-hung
Next page: Vespa dybowskii