Wasp Nest

How to get rid of Wasps

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How to get rid of wasps

With warmer days and longer nights as we enjoy those lazy summer afternoons, this also brings rise to an annoying summer time pest: wasps. 

But batting, whacking and swatting that annoying wasp can make things worse.  When an individual social wasp is disturbed or feels threatened, they release a distress signal as a pheromone to alert their colony.This alerts the other worker wasps that their nest may be under threat. The wasps will appear as a mass to defend the nest when threatened, and to some this gathering can be mistaken for a 'swarm' similar to that produced by honey bees.  It is recommended not to try get rid of a wasps yourself as it can be dangerous, as wasps will become aggressive when defending their nest.

It is always easier to prevent a problem before it happens, rather than to wait for wasps to invade your home or garden. Quite often a Queen will return to the same area where a nest was built previously, simply because it's the most suitable place, however she will construct a new nest rather than re-use an old one. If you have had problems with wasp nests in the past, check your property early in key spots to catch the nest construction early.

Wasp Prevention Tips

Early treatment of a wasp nest will help to keep you and your family safe from painful stings.

Making changes to your behaviour and how you handle food and drink outdoors can also help to deter this stinging pest.

  • Check for nests - Check your home and garden in early spring for nests, early on they will be walnut or golf ball in size - early small nests have fewer wasps and are easier to treat quickly. Look for nests in lofts, garages, sheds, cavity walls or under eaves.

  • Secure bins - Ensure outside bins have tightly fitting lids. Keep bins at a distance from doors and windows so wasps are not attracted to the contents.

  • Keep windows and doors shut - To prevent wasps entering inside your home.

  • Keep safe - If you have spotted a nest, make sure you keep children and pets away from the area.

  • What you wear - Wearing bright colours or floral patterns will attract wasps as you may look like a flower and they may become curious looking for nectar.

  • Avoid Perfumes - Wasps are more attracted to sweeter smells towards the end of summer. Reduce the amount of strong scents and perfumes.

  • Remove food sources - Wasps are attracted to protein foods at the end of spring and beginning of summer, so remove any food left outside including pet food. Towards the end of summer, wasps begin to become attracted by sweet smelling foods. Wasps imprint food sources therefore will continue to search within the same area after food has been removed.

  • Birdhouses - Line the under roof of the birdhouse with aluminium foil or rub the under roof with regular soap (one application of this will last the entire wasp season)

  • Herbs - Wasps do not like aromatic scents; specifically spearmint, thyme, and eucalyptus. Planting these outside can help repels pest wasps.

Using DIY products

If you already have a problem with wasps, there are some DIY products available, including wasp repellents, which may offer some relief.

  • Wait until late evening or night time, when worker and scout wasps have returned to the nest.
  • Always wear protective clothing, goggles, gloves and a dust mask when dealing with a wasps nest, however small it may be.
  • Use a DIY spray specifically designed for treating wasp nests, such as Rentokil wasp nest destroyer foam.
  • Carefully read and follow the instructions on the spray can, ensuring you do not stand directly under the nest.
  • Once sprayed, leave the nest for a minimum of 24 hours before careful removal – a wasp nest can be very fragile.
  • Seal the nest in two thick plastic bags (double bagged) and dispose of it in an outside rubbish bin with a secure lid.

A wasp nest should not be removed directly after being professionally treated with insecticide. It can take several days for foraging worker wasps to return to the nest.

As wasps return and enter the nest they will also be contaminated by the treatment and die off, thus ensuring the whole colony is effectively treated.

You should never try to treat a nest on your own, especially if you think you are allergic to insect stings.

Preventing Wasp Problems

Although high numbers of wasps in your home or garden almost certainly means there is a nest nearby, removing a wasp nest may not always be a possible solution.If the nest is not on your property, you will have very limited control on what you can do to remove it.Nests located in confined, hard-to-reach areas (such as cavity walls) will also be more difficult to treat.   Need a professional solution? A mature wasp nest only found in late summer will almost certainly require professional treatment due to the high risk of wasp stings. By this stage, a nest may contain thousands of individual wasps.
  • At Rentokil, we offer a complete wasp control solution.
  • Our British Pest Control Association (BPCA) certified technicians have the expertise to identify the specific species.
  • All technicians have special protective gear to keep safe during treatment.
  • All treatments are customised to ensure effective control of the wasp nest, based on its location.
  • We offer expert advice to help prevent another problem in the future.
Peace of mind, we can return to remove the nest from your property, only after a minimum of 48 hours to allow complete treatment of the whole wasp colony (this extra visit will incur an additional charge). But removing the nest may not be possible if it's within a cavity wall or similar enclosed location.
For peace of mind and to be completely safe from stings, it is safer to let a professional Rentokil technician treat the nest for you:
  • Guaranteed, safe wasp nest treatment within 2 working days.
  • BPCA certified local technicians require just one 30 - 45 minute visit to effectively treat a nest.
  • 24/7 Online purchase of wasp treatment available between April & September.

Use biocides safely. Always read the label and product information before use.