What purpose do wasps serve? 4 reasons why wasps deserve to live!

It’s hard not to feel sorry for wasps sometimes. They have such a similar, friendlier counterpart: the bee, which makes an (almost) harmless insect like a wasp seem like a villain. However, I’d be lying if I didn’t question a wasp’s existence. They’re annoying, angry and ruin an afternoon drink, picnic or day at the swimming pool.
Unfortunately for all the wasp-haters out there, they do serve a purpose – and it isn’t to annoy us (that’s their hobby).

4 reasons…

why wasps deserve a place on Earth (unfortunately)


Image: Lawrence Livermore via flickr
Image: Lawrence Livermore via flickr


  •  It’s not my idea of a good meal but plenty of animals feed on wasps – even other wasps feed on wasps. Important note: When ordering in a restaurant, don’t forget to ask for a boiled wasp without the sting.
  • Bees seem to own the copyright on pollinators, or so we believe. Wasps are actually pollinators, albeit not the most proficient. Every little helps, as they say.
  • There are far more annoying, destructive bugs than wasps. Thankfully, crop destroyers like scale insects are eaten by wasps. Many a farmer would be quite happy to see a wasp patrol. Well, maybe happy is an exaggeration.
  • Wasps are tough. It might not be a legitimate reason for them to exist on planet Earth, but I think that any insect, plant or animal that has come against the man-made beast called progress and lived to tell the tale is worthy of existence.

So there you go four reasons why your wasp genocide should be left at home with your insecticide. They help keep the planet spinning so we can put up with an occasional sting or two. Let’s hope insects don’t start questioning our existence – we’ll have some problems then.

Answer by Matt Powell

Question from Jodine via Facebook

Article by Matthew Powell

August 21, 2013

Matt is a graduate from Oxford, who is interested in the universe and has spent many a night in the bar trying to explain space to disgruntled students. Besides being the meanest ukulele player to grace the English countryside, Matt spends his time reading, writing and walking. He’s also the intern…

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