Wasps play a critical role in our environment. They not only pollinate flowers but they also prey on other pests including caterpillars, flies, and aphids. However, wasps can inflict very painful stings — and not just once but several times. So whether you have small children or you’re allergic to wasp stings, there are some steps you can take to help keep wasps away.
What Attracts Wasps?
Many people think wasps are only attracted to sugary foods, but that’s only partially true. It actually depends on the season.
In the spring, a queen will emerge out of hibernation. She’ll find a nest location and begin laying her eggs. When the colony grows, the wasps will need a lot of protein so, in the spring, they’re typically attracted to eggs, pet food, meat, peanut butter and other sources of protein.
Then toward the end of summer, once a wasp colony has reached its max, waps will be more attracted to sugar sources like ice cream, candy, and soda to help maintain the queen wasp and the worker wasps.
Wasps are more difficult to eliminate than other pests. When a wasp stings you or is squished, it will release pheromones that alerts other wasps of the danger, causing more to attack. So the best way to solve a wasp problem is by preventing it from occurring in the first place. Below are some ways you can help keep wasps away from your property.
- Keep your outdoor garbage cans and recycling cans tightly sealed
- Don’t keep pet food out for long periods of time
- Seal cracks that may serve as entry points including in your siding, foundation, and under eaves
- Cover your chimney opening with wire mesh
- Remove water sources
- Harvest any fruit you have
Additionally, if you’re going to be outdoors for a while, you may want to:
- Avoid wearing perfume and other scented products
- Wear light-colored clothing
- Bathe and wear clean clothes (sweat can sometimes anger wasps)
If you see a wasp near you, don’t panic and begin to swat at it, you’ll only anger the wasp. Instead, stay still.
We hope these tips and information help keep your property wasp-free this spring and summer and if you already have an active nest, you’ll want to contact a professional. They’ll be able to eliminate the problem and help prevent it from coming back.