There are over 100,000 species in this order. In North America, there are close to 18,000 species. The species in this order, except for worker ants, have two pairs of wings. Their fore and hind wings are hooked together with groups of tiny hooks called hamuli.
Like all insects, the species in this order have six legs, segmented bodies, and antennae. Except for the bees, all of the species in this order have chewing mouthparts. Bees have a long proboscis that they use to gather nectar. Wasp, ants, and bees also have an indentation, called a wasp-waist, between the first and second segments of their abdomen.
Many of the species in this order are known for their complex social structures. They live in groups and each member of the group has a specific role! Some members gather food, some breed, and some care for the young. Many of the species in this order are pollinators, and some species have stingers.