Paper wasps, hornets and yellow jackets are a potential health threat to people in Omaha, Bellevue, Nebraska and the Midwest. Hundreds of people in the United States die each year from allergic reactions to the venom of these insects.
Wasps, hornets and yellowjackets are more dangerous and unpredictable than honey bees and should be treated with respect; nests should be eliminated with care and in a specific pest control manner.
- Paper Wasps
Paper wasps, hornets and yellow jackets construct nests of a paper-like material which is a mixture of finely chewed wood fragments and salivary secretions of the wasps. Paper wasps typically build their umbrella-shaped nests under eaves and ledges. These wasps are not as aggressive as yellow jackets or hornets, and can be eliminated rather easily with a wasp and hornet spray sold at most grocery and hardware stores. These formulations have an added advantage in that they often spray as far as 20 feet.
Hornets are far more difficult and dangerous to control than paper wasps. The nests resemble a large, inverted tear-drop shaped ball which typically is attached to a tree, bush or side of a building. Hornet nests may contain thousands of wasps which are extremely aggressive when disturbed. The nests are often located out of reach and removal is best accomplished by a professional pest control firm.
Following treatment, wait at least a day before removing the nest to ensure that all of the wasps are killed. If hornets continue to be observed, the application may need to be repeated. Experienced pest control operators will sometimes remove a hornet nest which is attached to a branch by slipping a plastic garbage bag over the intact nest and clipping it at the point of attachment.
- Yellow jackets
Yellow jackets are another dangerous wasp encountered around homes and buildings. Nests are often located underground in an old rodent burrow, beneath a landscape timber, or in a rock wall or wall of a building. If the nest can be located, it can usually be eliminated by carefully applying a wasp spray insecticide into the nest opening.
Sevin or Ficam dust is also very effective provided a hand duster or similar type applicator is used to dispense several puffs of the insecticide dust in to the nest opening. Approach the nest slowly and do not shine the beam of the flashlight directly into the nest entrance as this may startle the wasps; instead, cast the beam to the side to illuminate the nest indirectly and place the light on the ground rather than in your hand.
Similar to hornets, yellow jackets are extremely aggressive when the nest is disturbed. It may be prudent to call Omaha Pest Control, particularly when access to the nest is difficult.