Common wasps are insects that don’t like interacting with people but they can sting you if provoked. Wasp stings tend to be quite painful for everyone and worse, life-threatening to people with allergies. If you have confirmed or you suspect that there is a wasp problem in your Dublin home, there are several basic things you need to know about these nasty flying insects, together with tips on how to naturally get rid of wasps, how to check for wasp infestations, and more.
Appearance of Wasps
To clear things up, common wasps (vespula vulgaris) are not bees with bodies that are usually longer and more slender. They often feed on other insects like spiders, caterpillars, flies, and nectar. Wasps have two wings, six legs, an exoskeleton, two antennae on the head, and a body divided to three primary parts namely the head, abdomen, and thorax.
Unlike bees, female wasps can sting repeatedly because their stinger has tiny barbs that don’t stick into the skin. The stinger of a female wasp can be found at the lower body’s tip that also acts as a reproductive organ where the eggs are laid. On the other hand, male wasps cannot sting.
How Do Wasps Find Their Way in Your Yard or Home?
There are three primary elements that can make wasps attracted to build their nest in your yard or home and these include the following:
- Plantlife and nectar-filled and sweet flowers
- Ideal spots for nesting like soffits, gutters, and eaves that provide protection
- Sources of food like pet food bowls, garbage bags, outdoor eating spots with sticky spills or crumbs, or an abundance of spiders or insects
Aside from the fact that their sting can be painful, wasps can also be a fatal risk to someone allergic to the injected venom. Usually, symptoms of a wasp sting can include localized pain, itching, swelling, and mild site at the location of the sting.
Checking for Wasps in Your House
If you see a significant number of wasps that fly around your yard or home, there is a big possibility that there is a wasp nest somewhere in your property. If you want to locate a wasp nest, try observing a wasp from a distance to see the direction it flies. Another method you can do is leave out some food like canned tuna or pet food that will lure the insects before you cautiously follow them back to their nest.
Pay extra attention to holes where they might be crawling from. You might be able to spot a visible nest attached to trees, plants, bushes, under eaves or windowsills, or under siding and other overhangs along your house and even your dog’s kennel.
Once you noticed wasps inside your house, you might want to observe them closely to know their points of entry and exit in your home and the possible location of their nest. Check your home for torn screens, cracks around door and window frames, and unsealed vents for any sign that these insects might already be getting in and out of your home without you knowing it.
How Long Does a Wasp Infestation Last?
Wasps tend to establish a brand new colony every spring. With the mild weather in Dublin, this can start as early as the beginning of April. It is also very rare for them to use their old nest again. This means that on average, it is safe to expect that wasp infestations can last for not more than one year. It is also common for wasp colonies to build a new nest beside an existing nest. This is the reason why you need to eliminate these insects together with their nests right after your see and confirmed an infestation.
Steps to Follow to Getting Rid of Wasps
If a wasp colony has decided to take up residence in your backyard or home, you might be wondering how you can immediately get rid of these stinging insects. The steps listed below will teach you how you can kill wasps with the use of homemade wasp killer and how you can create a DIY wasp trap to get rid of them once and for all.
- Wear the right safety materials and appropriate clothing.
Before you even attempt to approach a wasp nest, make sure you cover yourself up in a long-sleeved top, long pants, gloves, closed-toe shoes, and goggles or glasses for eye protection.
- Use a powerful vacuum on your carpets, floors, mattress, and furniture if wasps found their way from their nest to the inside your home.
You can use the vacuum’s crevice tool attachment for going over any cracks or tight spaces because these are the areas where wasps often hide. A vacuum with disposable bags can be used so you can simply discard the bag in the outdoor garbage can right after you use it. You will also need to temporarily plug the access hole(s) wasps are using to get in.
Eliminate the wasp infestation.
You can try to use any or all of the methods below for treating a wasp infestation.
- Nest drenching
Use an insecticide specifically made for wasps to completely and heavily saturate the nest with it. Depending on the accessibility of the nest, you can use a spray with a long nozzle or a handheld spray. Be careful of wasps as they fly out of their nest and spray each when they emerge. If you are that you already killed off, destroy the nest right away.
- Nest dusting
It is a method that makes use of dust or powder version of wasp insecticide for covering the nest and eventually killing off the wasp colony. This method doesn’t have the same level of effectiveness as nest drenching although this option is safer because you just need to drop the powder over the wasp nest and simply walk away. However, take note that this will require reapplication and it may take weeks before you can kill off the entire colony.
- DIY wasp tray
If you are not keen on the idea of using insecticides, you can create a homemade wasp trap on your own. Get a 2-litre soda bottle and cut around the bottle’s neck right under the tape. Put the bait at the bottle’s bottom that can include something sweet like honey or jam or a protein like a luncheon meat. Add a small amount of vinegar to your bait to ensure that bees don’t get attracted to your trap. Lastly, unscrew and remove the bottle cap before you flip the upper portion of the bottle upside down so you can tuck this into the bottle’s bottom part.
Natural Ways to Get Rid of Wasps
There are a lot of home remedies you can try to eliminate wasps with the use of all-natural ingredients. There are many chemical-free methods to keep wasps away and prevent them from going back such as putting herbs with strong smells, e.g. eucalyptus, citronella, thyme, or spearmint near your windows, on the patio, and around the backyard.
You can even formulate a wasp-repelling spray with the use of essential oils with one teaspoon each of clove oil, geranium essential oil, and lemongrass oil and six cups of water. Mix the ingredients in a clean spray bottle and thoroughly spray this on the nest at night, which is a time when wasps tend to be less active. You can repeat the procedure until the wasps leave their nest for good.
If you want a natural way of killing wasps instead of merely sending them off, prepare a spray mixing a cup of water and 3 tablespoons of lemon extract. Saturate the wasp nest with this solution at night or you can also directly spray this on the wasp while wearing your protective clothing.
When to Contact Pest Control Experts for Wasp Treatment
There are times when a wasp nest might be located in hard to reach areas like a tall tree, on the roof, or inside the cavity of your floorboards or wall. If it is impossible for you to access the nest or you already tried the do it yourself options mentioned above, your best move is to contact The Wasp Specialist in Dublin and let them deal with the wasp infestation.
In case you or a member of your family has an allergy to wasps, it is also important to call a professional who can deal with your problem at the soonest time possible. Never attempt getting close to the wasps if you have an allergy to their sting.
Ways to Keep Wasps Out of Your Dublin Home
After the successful removal of wasp infestation, you can do the following to keep these insects out of your home for good:
- Reduce potential sources of food by covering trash with a lid, regularly cleaning up crumbs or spills, and avoiding food and pet food left unattended for a long time.
- Seal off exposed points of entry, specifically in your attic, basement, and roofing and around door and window frames.
- Avoid the use of perfumes and heavily scented candles and sprays inside the house since these can attract these nectar-loving pests.
- If there are smaller roofed items in your backyard like birdhouses and dog kennels, use aluminium for covering below the roof’s exposed part.
Call The Wasp Specialist in Dublin: (01) 452 3680
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