Wasps are one of the most universally disliked stinging insects. Like bee stings, wasp stings can provoke fatal allergic reactions in people who are sensitive. Some wasps are aggressive and have the ability to sting multiple times, making the presence of a wasp nest a nuisance at best, and a potential hazard at worst.
How to Identify a Wasp Nest
Wasp nests look different depending on what type of wasp created the nest.
- Paper wasps build nests that look like a handle-less umbrella.
- Baldfaced hornets build comb nests that appear to be covered in a paper-like shell
- Mud daubers build nests out of clay or mud plastered on walls or in corners of roof or porch overhangs.
- Yellowjackets also build paper-covered nests, often in the ground.
Apart from mud daubers, wasp nests are made from wood that has been chewed, giving them their thin, paper-like appearance.
Sizes of Wasp Nests
Wasp nests can range in size from very small to quite large. Mud daubers tend to build smaller nests, while nests of aerial yellowjackets can be a foot or more in circumference and length. However, all nests start out small. The yellowjacket queen begins to build the nest in spring at which time it is generally the size of a ping-pong ball.
Very large wasp nests can hold tens of thousands of wasps, most of which die off in the fall. In the Northeast, nests are not re-used but new nests can be built near old abandoned nests the following spring. Some wasps will even build large nests inside structures in wall voids or attics
Be Cautious Around Nests of Any Kind
It’s important to use caution any time you are around a wasp nest. Some wasps, such as mud daubers, are quite docile but most wasps will become agitated if they perceive a threat to the nest
If you find a wasp nest on your property, your first instinct is likely to be to remove it. However, this is not advisable, especially in cases of more aggressive types of wasps such as yellowjackets. Multiple stings can send even a healthy person to the hospital. Wasp attacks can be more dangerous or even deadly for children, elderly individuals, and those with allergies to stinging insects.
When to Contact a Professional
Any time you spot a wasp nest, it’s critical that you reach out to a professional for removal services. A professional exterminator can use safe methods to secure a wasp nest and remove it from your home or yard without provoking an attack.
At Colonial Pest, we can help you manage a wasp infestation in or around your home safely and effectively. We’ll identify the type of wasp nest and utilize proven techniques to eliminate the threat to you and your family. Contact us today for a free quote.