Summer time is wasp time, with two particular species likely to be a nuisance in the UK, the Common and the German Wasp. We offer safe, quick and convenient treatments that will get rid of your wasp problems quickly and safely.
For more information on wasps nests please see below.
The bright yellow and black striping of wasps is a warning pattern that has been mimicked by many insects to take advantage of the deterrent effect of appearing wasp like. These harmless mimics include hover-flies, day moths (such as the Ash Borer) and some beetles that visit flowers to feed on pollen and nectar.
The Common or Social Wasp (Vespula vulgaris) and the German Wasp (Vespula germanica) look very similar with three main body parts. These are the head, the thorax and the abdomen. The main distinguishing feature between them is a small marking on their face. Social wasps have a black anchor shaped marking, whilst German wasps have three black dots instead . As well as the very distinctive black and yellow stripes, these insects have two pairs of wings (the hind wings being smaller than the fore wings) and tend to be less hairy than bees. They have compound eyes which appear kidney shaped and their bodies are more pointed than bees, with a noticeable waist. It is only female wasps that have the long distinctive stinger, which they can use repeatedly unlike bees.
You must always take great care when dealing with wasps, as they have a potent sting and can attack in large numbers if disturbed or threatened.
A lone insect trapped indoors can be dealt with using a spray. However, if you are experiencing high numbers of wasps in your home or garden it is likely that there is a nest nearby. When queen wasps come out of hibernation they search for sheltered places with easy access to the outdoors to build their nests, often in domestic housing, making use of attics, wall cavities, roof spaces or under the eaves of buildings. A single wasp nest may contain thousands of insects at the height of summer which can attack if disturbed or provoked. If the location of a wasp nest is likely to put people at risk, then it should be treated immediately by a professional pest controller.
To locate the nest, watch the flight path of the returning wasps. As wasp numbers increase over the summer, it becomes easier to identify the routes they take to and from the nest. If the nest is near your home, keep nearby doors and windows closed. If you suspect the wasp nest is in the loft, you must take great care when entering the roof space as the insects may see this as an aggressive threat to their nest and young.
Wasps make their nests from chewed wood pulp and saliva, giving them unmistakable papery walls. A queen will start to build in the spring, beginning with a nest about the size of a walnut but as the first batch of workers hatch to take over nest building, the size of the nest increases rapidly. By summer a mature wasp nest can contain between 4,000 - 6,000 individual insects and typically can be 30 cm in width, although they can be much bigger depending on their location. Nests within wall or roof cavities may be restricted by the available space. Other sites for a nest can include lofts, garden sheds, trees, thick hedges, bird boxes, garages and out-buildings.
The risk from wasps is particularly high towards the end of summer – it is preferable to treat a nest earlier in the year before numbers increase and the wasps become more aggressive.
Do not attempt DIY wasp nest treatment if you suspect you are sensitive to stings, if the wasp nest is indoors or is difficult to access. Never attempt to treat a nest when on a ladder or from a raised height.
Wasps when agitated can be dangerous - if in any doubt, seek professional, expert help.
Rentokil Pest Control offers a professional wasp nest service to safely treat wasp problems within your home or garden. Our service is fast, safe, effective and affordable. If you would like further advice on wasps nests or to arrange a Rentokil technician to visit and treat a nest, call us free on 0800 218 2210.