What do wasps look like?
There are many species of wasps; three of the most commonly found wasps in Maine include: the yellow jacket, paper wasp, and hornet.
Adult worker yellow jackets grow to be between 3/8th and 5/8th of an inch in length; queens are larger. They have a black and yellow body that usually forms a band-like pattern. They have six legs, antennae, and their wings are folded lengthwise along their body when they are at rest.
Adult paper wasps are 5/8 to ¾ of an inch in length. They are brown and, depending on the specific species, may have yellow or red markings. They have antennae, a pinched waist, and 6 long thin legs.
The bald-faced hornet is the most common hornet in Maine. Adult workers grow up to ¾ of an inch in length. Queens are ¾ of an inch or larger in size. They are mostly black and have a unique white pattern that covers their face.
Where do wasps nest?
Most social wasps like the ones listed above build their nest above the ground. Typically found in bushes, trees, under roof eaves, in attic spaces, and behind wall voids, wasps are attracted to properties that provide easy access to food, water, and shelter.
Are wasps dangerous?
If wasps build nest in your home or near an entrance or exit of your home, they can be dangerous to you, your family, and your pets. Wasps will defend their nest and themselves by inflicting a painful sting if they feel threatened. The venom from a wasp is strong enough to cause a severe allergic reaction that requires immediate medical attention in some people.
Despite the dangers, wasps are beneficial to the environment. They reduce the number of nuisance insects and pollinate flowers and crops. If a wasp nest is not located near or in your home, it is best to leave it be.
If wasps have built a nest in or near your home the best way to control them is through the help of a professional wasp control expert. Attempting to remove a nest on your own has the potential to be dangerous and ineffective. At Pine State Pest Solutions, we have the tools, safety equipment and knowledge to control wasps. Contact us today to find out more about our stinging insect solutions.
Wasp prevention tips
Since you really can’t stop wasps from foraging on your property, you should focus your prevention efforts on making your home a fortress that they cannot penetrate. Sealing gaps and openings, repairing holes in soffits, and addressing other areas where these stinging insects may access is the best course of action.
In late summer and early fall when their numbers have increased dramatically, stinging insects will start to looking for food sources that could include sugary sodas, fruits and other staples at a BBQ or picnic. To prevent your outdoor activities from being disrupted, we recommend keeping food covered and to throw away empty soda cans and pick up trash right away.