Tuesday, 09 April 2019 12:54

How to Locate a Wasp Nest?

hoverfly pictureDo you see a lot of wasps flying around but cannot identify the nest location?

If you see a lot of wasps around your garden, especially around ivy or on tree leaves, the first thing you should make sure of is that they are not "Hoverflies", a very common insect in all Dublin areas (see picture). 

Hover flies look a lot like wasps, but they have a distinctive flattened abdomen. They are smaller than wasps and can fly perfectly "on the spot" without moving forward or backwards (unlike wasps). They do not sting or bite so you should pay no attention to them.

If you see wasps congregating around an area of your house (usually the roof or an air vent), it does not necessarily mean there is a wasp nest inside. There are two case scenarios which can give you the answer:

Scenario One: 

Wasps are flying in and out constantly through an aperture(s). This means there is a wasp nest hidden in the wall or eaves of your house. Such activity is illustrated in the video below.

Scenario Two:

You leave in a house that is identical to your neighbours, in an estate for instance. Wasps gather around an aperture(s), but they move more randomly around the area, often without focus, occasionally going in and out, but mostly flying around the area. This is a very common situation in Dublin, where many identical housing estates have been built in the last 50 years.

What happens in this situation is that some worker wasps get confused while returning to their nest and pick the wrong house! (see picture below)

housing estates similar houses examples

If you suspect this situation, you should walk up and down your street (4 or 5 houses each way) until you find the "scenario 1" above. You should then advise your neighbour to have the nest treated as there is nothing you can do to your house that will solve the wasp nest problem.

Professional Help

DIY Wasp nest removal can represent a health and safety risk for you, your family, and your neighbours. The Wasp Specialist technicians are experts in wasp nest removal in all Dublin areas. Regardless of the location and the size of the wasp nest, we can remove it safely. Our wasp nest treatments are also fully guaranteed!

Call The Wasp Specialist: (01) 452 3680

Email Us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

or fill out the Online Form

How do wasps build their nests?

Wasps nests are made of a paper paste built with a mixture of wood fragments and saliva. The wood is collected by the wasps from neighboring garden sheds, logs, fences, etc., and the fibre is extracted from the wasp powerful mandibles. The resulting soft wood pulp is then shaped and added to the nest.

wasp nest in golf bag


Do wasps die out in the winter time?

In Ireland all worker wasps die off in winter, generally from the beginning of December. Nevertheless towards the end of the season the nest produces several queen wasps that survive the winter by hibernating. The hibernation takes place inside the old nest or nearby in a sheltered location. The following April/May surviving queen wasps wake up from hibernation and start building up new nests.

Do wasps come back to their nest each year?

No. New queen wasps never reuse an existing nest. They build a brand new nest in spring, but it is common to have this new nest adjacent to an old one (in Dublin we regularly find up to 6 wasp nests in a single attic). If an old nest fills a gap in the eaves or a cavity wall, it may be a good strategy to leave it so there is no room for a new nest the following years.

For how long do wasps live for? 

Worker wasps, which are sterile females, live for 12 to 22 days. Fertile males (or drones) live for a few more days. Finally, queen wasps have a lifespan of approx. 12 months. 

Do wasps have a queen?

Every wasp nest has a queen which lay eggs. Worker wasps (females) may also lay eggs but they are not fertile and only produce male wasps. After the first group of adults has emerged, they assume the building of the nest and also care for the larvae and fetch food for the colony.

What do wasps eat?

Wasps feed from a wide assortment of insects, both adults and larvae. The social wasps found in Ireland are omnivorous, sustaining on dead insects but also on fallen fruits and nectar.

How many wasps are in a nest?

Wasp nests in Ireland contain between 3000 and 6000 wasps for the largest nests. What limits the expansion of the nest is not the cold weather killing the wasps but the scarcity of food as winter begins.

What plants repel wasps and hornets?

Some plants such as eucalyptus, citronella, mint and wormwood are natural repellent to wasps. Try to introduce these beautiful plants in your garden and they will deter the wasps away.


             Pink Eucaliptus

Do wasps and hornets sting?

Contrary to honey bees, hornets and wasps can sting several times and do not die after stinging. So if you get stung make sure you leave the area rapidly. Humans are more sensitive to hornet stings than wasps stings because their venom contains more acetylcholine. Despite their bad publicity, wasps provide very important ecological services, which include predation and parasitism of other insects and larvae.

Do wasps help with pollination?

Wasps look like honey bees but are not covered with fluffy hairs. Thus, pollen does not adhere as well to their bodies when moving from flower to flower and they are far less efficient at pollinating.

How big is the queen wasp?

Some species of queen wasps can achieve lengths of more than 1.5 inches, but in Ireland common wasps are much smaller. Adult workers measure 12 to 17mm and the queen is slightly bigger (around 20mm).

queen wasp resting the wasp specialist dublin

Queen German wasp resting

Honeybee / Bumblebee / Wasp / Hoverfly illustrations


honeybee vs bumblebee wasp hoverfly carpenter bee paper wasp


Professional Help

For professional help and advice on getting rid of Wasp & Hornet Nests please contact us today: 

Call The Wasp Specialist: (01) 452 3680

Email Us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

or fill out the Online Form