How to Eliminate Yellow Jackets around Your Home

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sivuch2777-120813-timo5Yellow jackets are social wasps, and belong to the same group of wasps as hornets. Some species of yellow jackets build papery aerial nests, while others build paper nests in the ground, usually in rodent burrows. Ground dwelling species can also nest in concealed areas, such as wall voids. Wasp colonies usually cause problems in late summer, when there are many people out and about. There are fewer people running around during the cold or wet days. So, how do you deal with yellow jackets during summer?

Locate them first

The most effective way of dealing with yellow jackets is by locating and treating their colony directly. They usually nest in shrubs, piles of rocks, logs, abandoned rodent holes, and other protected sites whose entry holes have earth around them. To find their hiding place, check the trees, branches, and wires, for aerial nests, as well as caves and windows. You can spot the nest opening by observing the movement of wasps.

Treat the Colony

  • The treatment should be administered in the evening or at night when all the wasps are in their nests.
  • Approach the nest entrance carefully, since there may be some yellow jackets guarding the colony.
  • If it is too dark to see, use a flashlight covered with red cellophane. (Research shows that yellow jackets do not see red light).
  • For underground colonies, treat the nest with a liquid or dust insecticide and seal the entrance with a rock or shovel of dust. Dust insecticide is preferred because wasps attempting to escape the colony will track the dust and contaminate the colony members. You may need to re-treat after several days.
  • For nests in wall spaces, apply the dust formulation at the entrance of the structure, but do not seal it. This is because the wasps may try to enter the building via other openings.
  • For aerial nests, apply liquid or aerosol jet insecticide sprays after dark and knock down the nest.

Before treating the nest, make sure you have protective clothing, like coveralls, boots, heavy rubber gloves, and a beekeeper’s hat and veil to avoid injuries. For more tips on how to care for your home, or cleaning services The Maids of Scottsdale in Phoenix, AZ, are always available.

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