Wasps give us a hard time. They are everywhere during the summer months and are quite dangerous to boot! A wasp sting is a highly unpleasant ordeal and an experience that neither you nor your family or friends want to experience. In fact, a wasp sting is something that you will certainly want to avoid at all costs. Follow these steps to effectively get rid of wasp nests and be very careful in the process. That’s how you get rid of a wasp nest.
1. Find out what type of wasp colony made the nest.
The type of wasp is important. There are three main types that the general public encounters in North America and they act differently from creating the nest to aggression. Hornets tend to build nests in fairly exposed areas compared to other wasps. You can find their nests in hollow logs, for example.
Paper wasps make umbrella hives in isolated areas and place them under edges to avoid exposure to the elements. The variety of roles is not particularly aggressive, although it defends the nest by biting it. Remember that bees die after implementing a single sting, but wasps can continue to harass you after they sting it once.
On the other hand, Yellow Jacket wasps build nests that look like ‘papier-mache’ designs that you can see in a third-grade classroom. Please know the difference before you start hitting one; you don’t want to make a child cry any more than you want angry wasps to invade you!
2. Find out how to access the nest from the ground.
You don’t want to climb a ladder or a building to reach a nest. Climbing will leave you exposed because you need at least one hand to hold something; the heights will also leave you immobile and therefore unable to escape if the wasps start to notice you.
Find something to bring down the nest eventually – but not yet – from soil safety. Fallen tree branches tend to work well, but broom handles also work well. Throwing rocks at the nest is not recommended, especially if you have a questionable goal or if there are other people, animals, or windows nearby.
3. Destroy the nest early in the year.
Wasps reproduce in the spring and summer months. You don’t want to deal with more wasps, so destroy the nest before more yellow-streaked stings leave it. Wasps don’t live long, thankfully. A new queen and colony is born every year, which means you can catch her in a vulnerable position while most of her members die, but before the new batch is born.
Wasps also die naturally from cold temperatures. They simply cannot operate in the cold, so they hide in the nest during the winter to wait until new wasps can be produced in time to harvest pollen for hot weather. Detaching the nest from its suspended place and crushing it into pieces will leave the few living wasps exposed to the cold. You may not have the option of waiting for winter, but always remember this as the most reliable way to eliminate wasps.
4. Destroy the nest at night.
Wasps live in the hive at night for the same reason they do in winter: they cannot operate in cold temperatures. The nights can still be incredibly hot in June and July, but the wasps won’t collect pollen at night. They will still meet at one point, even if they can still fight back. Whatever you do in the nest, do it at night.
Watch out for flashlights! Some wasps can detect the light source and can follow it. Use an amber light source, if you have one. Alternatively, you can wait until late morning to exterminate the wasps before they leave the nest and as long as there is a source of natural light present. Plan an exit strategy anyway. You really don’t want to be caught by a swarm of rabid wasps in the dark.
5. Use pesticides to get the job done.
Do it at night too! Approach the nest carefully and spray on its entrances, preferably from the bottom, for 15 seconds. Do not make sudden movements or loud noises when leaving the nest, unless the wasps notice, of course!
Let it sit overnight and make sure it is still full of activity the next morning. Repeat the process for several nights, if they are not all dead, and never forget to wear gloves and goggles. Putting pesticide in your eyes or hands can be as bad as a wasp sting; therefore, handle the material with care.
6. Use insecticidal dust or plenty of soapy water for nests on the floor.
Some wasps create nests on the ground, which means that you can cover it with some lethal substance. Insecticidal dust is the most advisable course of action in this scenario, but soapy water can do wonders on a budget as well.
Make sure that the dust covers all the hive entrances and openings or just throw enough dust into the hive to bury it. Alternatively, pouring large amounts of soapy water into the nest’s openings will kill the wasps and cover their wings with oily water – oil-based soap, FYI – to prevent them from flying.
7. Smoke the nest to keep them away.
Wasps hate smoke as much as people. You can smoke the nest and bring it down while it is evacuated, so that the wasps have nowhere to go when the cold of the night claims their fragile lives. Killing them all in one place at night is still the best way to eliminate the inhabitants of a nest, but this is a viable alternative.
8. Drown the nest with a bucket of water.
How do you do this while the nest is high? Tie a cloth bag around the nest to prevent wasps from flying and then attach a bucket of water to the same edge or branch on which the nest hangs. They will drown without an escape route.
That’s how to get rid of a wasp nest quickly! Find out what kind of wasp is bothering you, reach out to you from the ground, trap them at night and exterminate the nest earlier in the year! Call an exterminator if all else fails. Do the process safely, whatever you choose.