The Hymenoptera are the most important venomous insects known to humans, and more fatalities result from stings by these insects than any other arthropod. There are three major subgroups or superfamilies of medical importance: (1) Apidae, including the honeybee and bumblebee, (2) Vespidae, including the yellow jackets, hornets, and wasps, and (3) Formicidae, or ants (Fig 188-1).
FIG. 188-1. Representative venomous hymenoptera. A. Hornet (Vespula maculata). B. Wasp (Chlorion ichneumerea). C. Yellow jacket (Vespula maculiforma). D. Honey bee (Apis mellifera). E. Fire ant (Solenopsis invicta). (Reproduced by permission of Merck, Sharp & Dohme, Division of Merck & Co., Inc.)
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