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Polistes versicolor (Olivier) (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) colonies are easily found in anthropic environments; however there is little information available on biological, ecological and behavioral interactions of this species under these environmental conditions. The objective of this work was to characterize the foundation pattern, the productivity, and the success of colonies of P. versicolor in anthropic environments. From August 2003 to December 2004, several colonies were studied in the municipal district of Juiz de Fora, Southeastern Brazil. It was possible to determine that before the beginning of nest construction the foundress accomplishes recognition flights in the selected area, and later begins the construction of the peduncle and the first cell. As soon as new cells are built, the hexagonal outlines appear and the peduncle is reinforced. Foundation of nests on gypsum plaster was significantly larger (p < 0.0001; χ2 test) in relation to the other types of substrate, revealing the synantropism of the species. On average, the P. versicolor nest presents 244.2 ± 89.5 (100–493) cells and a medium production of 171.67 ± 109.94 (37–660) adults. Cells that produced six individuals were verified. Usually, new colonies were founded by an association of females, responsible for the success of 51.5%. Although these results enlarge knowledge on the foundation pattern of P. versicolor in anthropic environments, other aspects of the foundation process require further investigation.