Yellow jackets do NOT die after stinging.
Unlike the honey bee that loses its stinger and dies after stinging, the same yellow jacket can sting multiple times.
How Do Yellow Jackets Die?
Yellow jackets do not overwinter, surviving only one season. Only the new queens survive the winter. The new queen will mate with a male and fall to the ground to find suitable protection to live for the winter. The male will mate and then quickly die. The original queen and the remaining worker bees will begin to die slowly as the temperatures decrease.
Lifecycle Begins Anew
After the winter, the lone inseminated queen will build a nest in which to lay her eggs that will hatch into worker bees. The population can grow to several hundred worker bees within a few months time. During this time, new queens and males are hatched beginning the cycle all over again.
“The Backyard Bug Brigade – WASPS (Yellow Jackets) .” Environment and Conservation. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 Jan. 2012. http://www.env.gov.nl.ca/env/env/final/bugs/wasps.html
“Yellow Jackets : Extension : Clemson University : South Carolina.” Clemson University. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Jan. 2012.