Wasp Specialist

Monday, 02 May 2016 07:54

How to Locate a Wasp Nest?

Do 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. 

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. 
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 is 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. Wasp gather around an aperture(s), but they move more randomly around the area, without focus, occasionally going in and out, but mostly flying around the area. This is a very common situation in Dublin, where many 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. The Wasp Specialist technicians are experts in wasp nest removal. Regardless of the location and the size of the wasp nest, we can remove it safely. Our wasp nest treatments are also fully guaranteed!

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Monday, 02 May 2016 07:54

How to remove a wasp nest?

It is now the end of April and queen wasps are waking up from their winter hibernation.

In a few weeks, small wasp nests will appear (see picture) in any area around houses such as a garden shed, attics, eaves, trees, wall cavities and even under the ground.

Is it safe to remove a wasp nest?

First of all, you should not go near a wasp nest unless you are completely sure that you are not allergic to wasp stings. An anaphylactic reaction is life threatening even with medical help.

If the wasp nest is small enough and easy to reach, you may be able to treat it with a spray, after making sure you wear some protection for your face, hands and ankles.

Wasps are very protective of their nest and approaching a wasp nest can be incredibly dangerous if the wasps suspect they are being attacked.

You should also treat the wasp nest as early as possible in the season before it gets too big, with thousands of wasps inside.

Once the nest has been treated, you can remove it after a few days, being careful as some wasps may be still inside it and not completely dead.

If the wasp nest is in a difficult to reach location or in a confined space, e.g. inside an attic or wall or underground level, you should not take a chance and get professional help. If wasps get alerted of your approach, they will fight in swarms, and each of them can sting multiple times.

Professional Help

DIY Wasp nest removal can represent a health and safety risk. The Wasp Specialist technicians are experts in wasp nest removal. 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 Us: (01) 452 3680

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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

Wasp Nest in a 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.

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).

Professional Help

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

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