Wasps on the rise

Have you noticed an increase in wasps around your home? Even though it's common to see more wasps during this time of the year, homeowners in some areas are noticing an enormous spike in the local wasp population. The pests threaten the safety of some residents who are sensitive to stinging insects.

While exterminators in some areas used to receive several calls about wasps over the course of an entire summer, they're now getting up to five calls per day. The enormous population is most likely due to the mild winters many parts of the country experienced, combined with the drought currently sweeping through parts of the nation. The large wasp populations are expected to remain a problem until severe storms or the first frost of the season.

Recognizing a problem
If you've noticed an increase in the number of wasps around your home, you may have a pest control issue on your hands, so it's a good idea to make sure there isn't a nest or infestation nearby. Even if you don't fear the pests, young children and pets may annoy the insects and cause them to sting. This can cause a dangerous reaction in those allergic to wasp venom.

There are several different types of wasps that can cause problems for homeowners. Yellowjackets tend to be extremely territorial and may attack when disturbed. They sometimes build their nests in the ground, so they may be hard to detect. Filling cavities and holes upon discovery can ensure the wasps do not have a place to nest in your yard.

Hornets are extremely defensive and unpredictable wasps, and their presence can be dangerous. If you've noticed a large ball attached to your tree or home, you may have a hornet infestation.

Even though paper wasps are not as aggressive as yellowjackets and hornets, their presence can still be unpleasant. These wasps usually build papery nests under ledges, near doors or around windows. Their close proximity to entry points means they can easily gain access to the home.

When to call a professional
It's important to keep an eye on your wasp problem to note if it's worsening. Because these pests tend to become more aggressive as the season continues, a growing population may mean an even bigger threat to kids and pets. Eliminating a nest yourself can be dangerous, and homeowners who want to take care of a wasp problem themselves should be aware of the potential risks. If you see an increase in size or territorial behavior, the safest and most efficient option may be to contact a pest control expert.


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