I live in Buckinghamshire; this afternoon a large flying insect came through our window - facing a small wood.  It had a yellow  quite widestriped body similar to a wasp but 2-3 times larger with reddish brown legs & long antenna. I don't like killing anything so caught it in a glass and released it in the wood. Half an hour later I returned to the room and found it (or another) crawling around the fireplace.  - Can you give me any info, as last summer my partner was bitten in the night by something and  had an allergic  reaction which ended in hospital. 
Thank you
Diana Salmon

Hi Diana,

My first thought if it was similar to what we might think of as a common wasp (normally Vespula vulgaris or Vespula germanica) but much larger then you may have a nest of hornets (Vespa crabro) nearby. They can bite and sting, and it is certainly possible to be allergic to the stings, although it is hardly known for attacking people in their sleep!

However, this is just an educated guess and it is almost impossible to identify insects from a verbal
description alone. Do try and get a photo to post if you spot another one and we can hopefully do better.

Have a look at this post and see if this is what you've been finding!

http://www.askabiologist.org.uk/answers … hp?id=4439

At this time of year we often get questions about large black and yellow critters, could well be the giant horntail...

See previous posts like this: http://www.askabiologist.org.uk/answers/viewtopic.php?id=1677%3f%3f
and let us know if it is close or, if different, why!