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Charlotte NC 28203

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There are 4,000 kinds of wasps in the United States. Typically, Wasps are most active during the day and usually return to their nests at dusk. Most wasps live less than one year and some only live for a few months. Queens sometimes live for several years.

Common home remedies for stings include coating the sting site with a meat tenderizer/water solution rinse, baking soda paste or even rubbing the site with an aluminum based deodorant!


European Hornets

European HornetEuropean hornets are much larger than other wasps. Unlike most other stinging insects, European hornets will fly at night.

Queens are the only females to reproduce. Most other hornets are female workers who build the hive, gather food, feed the young, and protect the colony. There are few males (also called drones) in the hive. Since their job is to mate with the queen, males typically die soon after mating.

Their diet consists mainly of large insects such grasshoppers, flies, bees, and yellow jackets. They also eat tree sap, fruit and honeydew. And, unlike other species of hornet, the European hornet will hunt in groups.

Nests are typically built in hollow trees, but they are often found in barns, sheds, attics, and hollow areas of house walls. Unlike its cousins the yellow jacket and the bald-faced hornets, European hornets rarely build nests that are free hanging or in unprotected areas, such as tree limbs. They use decaying wood fiber to build a shell around their nest as protection. As winter approaches, the worker bees die off and the Queen will leave the existing nest and find an empty log or other sheltered spot to spend the winter.

European hornets can do a great deal of damage to trees and shrubs, because they strip the bark to get to the sap. They also use the bark fiber to build their nests. They have smooth stingers, so they can sting over and over again. Their stings also carry venom that makes the stings hurt, itch or swell for about 24 hours. A European hornet sting has the same risk of allergic reactions from as with other wasp stings.

• Do not leave sweet drinks or meats out in the open.
• Call a pest management professional if you find hornets around your house.


Paper Wasps

WaspPaper wasps receive their name from the paper-like nest they build. These nests can be found under the eaves of houses, under branches of trees and shrubs, under decks or inside pipes.

Paper wasps do not have a caste system with a sterile worker class. There is one dominant female, which lays eggs, and the others tend to the young. The dominant female is usually the nest initiator.

This species of wasps is variable in color. They can be brown, black, orange or yellow. In addition, their bodies may or may not have stripes.

Yellow Jackets

Yellow Jacket Yellow jackets eat spiders and insects. They will also feed on human food, especially meats and sweets. Unlike bees, wasps do not make honey or store food.

Yellow jackets like to be where humans live. They usually build their nests underground, around garbage and in cool, dark spaces. They also build nests in trees, shrubs and in holes in walls. Most yellow jacket colonies only remain active for one year. Then the queen flies off to start a new colony. The remaining bees die in the fall and the nest is abandoned. Look for yellow jacket nests during the day, because you can see them flying in and out, but destroy nests at night, when they are dormant and all there.

Wasps help farmers by eating pests that can destroy crops. They are dangerous because they can sting multiple times, injecting venom into the host. For most people a yellow jacket sting just causes a welt and temporary pain, but their sting can cause allergic reactions to people sensitive to this venom.

• Do not leave sweet drinks or meats out in the open.
• Call a pest management professional if you find yellow jackets around your house.