Wasps: How to Deal With an Infestation

Wasps can be a real nuisance when you’re trying to make the most of the summer sun, always finding a way to disturb your BBQ. When you consider that a single colony averages about 5,000 individuals, it’s easy to understand why they seem to be everywhere during wasp season, even if you don’t have a nest on your property. If they do nest somewhere they’re not welcome, their aggressive nature can completely restrict you accessing that part of your home. Thus, it’s important to know how to deal with a wasp infestation in the right way.

What do Wasps Look Like? 

Although there are 9,000 species of wasp in the UK, the most common are the German Wasp and Common Wasp. They have smooth, shiny, black and yellow patterned bodies, narrow waists and four wings. Despite their distinct differences, they are often mistaken for the far more passive bee, an endangered species in the UK. Both to protect yourself and bee numbers, it is important to understand the differences between wasps and bees, so they are correctly identified.

What are the Signs of a Wasp Infestation?

Although you are bound to see wasps in spring through to late summer regardless, a large number in a single area is a tell-tale sign that a nest is nearby. If you want to locate it, you can carefully follow female worker wasps back to the nest. Wasps create architecturally impressive nests – made from a papier-mache like material of chewed up wood and saliva – occupied by an average of 5,000 individuals. They prefer to make these nests in dark, dry spaces. This is why infestations can often occur in wall cavities, roofs, sheds and garages.

Are Wasps Dangerous?

To most of us a wasp sting will only be painful, but to certain people it could prove fatal. People with allergies could suffer a dangerous anaphylactic reaction to a wasp sting, so you can never be too careful. Unlike bees, a single wasp can sting multiple times and will emit a pheromone to attract other colony members if they feel threatened, meaning the threat they pose is much higher.

How do I get rid of Wasps?

There are a number of measures you can take to limit the possibility of an infestation occurring in the first place. Regularly check areas you suspect they’d prefer to nest, such as your loft, garage or shed. Cover any small holes with insect mesh and light up dark areas of your home. Standard fly screens provide an ideal alternative to keeping your windows closed during the hot summer months when wasp numbers are at their highest. If all this fails, treating a nest yourself is not recommended as the territorial nature of wasps will likely drive them to defend their nest and Queen – call the professionals instead. A professional pest control service can efficiently treat a nest with the correct insecticides and protective equipment.

If these unwanted guests have made their way into your home, get them to buzz off by calling 020 8430 4133.

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