How To Get Rid Of Wasps

Wasps can be aggressive – especially the social varieties. Solitary wasps are generally not dangerous and are actually productive garden additions in much the same ways as bees. A wasp sting, unlike a bee's, can be repeated because they have no barb. Usually the stings are painful. However, if you are allergic to wasps, then, like bees, one sting can be dangerous, and multiple stings, even two or three can be fatal.

What is a Wasp?

Wasps come in two main types: social and solitary. The solitary wasp is usually relatively docile, lives alone, and like bees, pollinates the plants in your garden. The relatively docile paper wasp can build some amazing structures.

Social wasps are different. They live in colonies in nests; sometimes built right on your porch or deck. Wasps make nests out of mud, wood, and paper. Hives can be found attached to the sides of your porch railings, behind your shutters, underground, or tucked into the eaves of your house. Social wasps are ferocious in guarding this structure. Some wasps like the large black and white variant may be bald-faced hornets and are very aggressive when disturbed.

Eliminating Wasps and Their Nests

If you have decided that your wasp problem is too big to ignore, it's time to get rid of them. You may have heard many ideas about how to get rid of wasps, and much of it may well put you in danger. Wasps should be approached carefully and with knowledge and preparation. There are some new organic methods for getting rid of wasps, but currently the most effective methods are with chemical use.

Consider Nest Type

Choose a wasp control product based on the type of nest you have. For underground nests you will need a foam-based product. For nests that are elevated you will need a projectile spray that creates a stream roughly 15-20 feet – which gives you ample time to spray and escape. Raid and Ortho are two well-known brands that manufacture both types of wasp sprays.

Prepare for Battle

Wear protective clothing: long sleeves, pants, goggles and gloves. Clear the pathway you will run between your spray location and your location of cover. Spray the nest in the evening, when most wasps are likely to be inside. You may need to repeat this process two or maybe even three evenings in a row. When you are sure the wasps are dead or have abandoned their nest (you'll stop seeing wasp traffic), you can knock down the nest if it's elevated. If it's underground, fill it with dirt and gravel.

Call in the Professionals

If you have a large wasp problem, or you are (rightfully) intimidated by wasp presence, you can always hand the job over to professionals. They can help you identify the kind of insect you have and determine the proper measures for removal. Professional help is especially recommended when the wasp nest is difficult to reach and when wasp traffic to and from the nest is heavy. Know when to ask for help and avoid unnecessary attacks.

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