How to Safely Remove a Hornet/Wasp Nest
The worst thing that can happen to you when trying to get rid of wasp and hornet nests is getting attacked and stung several times. The stings alone can be life-threatening, which means you have to be extra careful and prevent getting stung. There are various things that you should consider to successfully and safely remove wasp nests.
1. Identify the type of wasps that you are dealing with
This will help you determine the ideal way of getting rid of the insects as well as the nests. It is one way of choosing the right way to deal with the nests and the insects. There can be a bald-faced hornet, paper wasp, or bumblebee outside your home.
If you don’t want to kill the insects, you can consider relocating the nest instead. However, this will still require proper knowledge to avoid getting stung.
2. Get a can of insecticide meant for killing wasps, hornets and bees
Simply spraying any insecticide won’t guarantee to kill the pests. However, it will be different if you take time and look for an insecticide that is specifically made for killing bees, hornets, and wasps.
3. Remove the nest at the right time
It is ideal that you get rid of the nest at night. This is the time when the insects are dormant, less aggressive, or asleep.
Though it may seem impossible to not use any light, as it is dark, it is advisable that you don’t bring a flashlight. You don’t want to disturb them, so just put a light nearby. This way, you can still see the nest without alerting them.
4. Make sure you wear protective clothing
Even if you are moving the nest at night, there is no guarantee that you won’t wake up the wasps in the nest. This means that there is a chance that you will still get stung even when you try to knock the nest at night.
Wear clothes that are thick and can protect you from head to toe. Make sure that there is no opening left where they can accidentally get in. Wear a beekeeper veil to protect your face.
5. Before starting, clear the area where you are about to work
When you get rid of the nest, you will have to move away from the area as soon as possible. However, this is not possible if there are a lot of things blocking your way.
Before you start, make sure that you clear the area. Remove all the items that may block your way or cause an accident when you’re trying to move away. Plan a clear exit to avoid getting stung.
6. Never attempt to use a ladder when reaching a nest
Don’t attempt to reach a nest using a ladder. If the wasps swarm over you, there is a high chance that you’ll fall and get hurt.
Only consider removing those that you can reach. If it is too high, you should contact a professional to do the removal process.
7. Before using the pesticide, make sure that your pets and children are not in the area
It is important that you keep your children and pets away from the area during the procedure. Make sure that after spraying, they will not go near the area. Such insecticides are poisonous to small children and pets.
When you see dead wasps, pick them up and throw them away. This way, your pets and even wildlife will not eat the wasps exposed to the insecticide.
8. Look for the entrance of hanging nests
Keep a safe distance away from the nest and look for the entrance hole. Spray the insecticide directly into the hole. See to it that the nest is well saturated with the insecticide.
9. Move away immediately
Make sure that you move away fast right after you spray the nest. Leave it alone for a day or two before checking it and repeating the process. Repeat the same process only at night until you no longer see any insects flying around the nest.
10. Cut down the nest and throw it away
Dispose of the nest properly by cutting it down and putting it in a plastic bag. Follow this step once you guarantee that all signs of life and activities ceased.
These steps may seem simple, but you have to be extra careful when doing the entire procedure. If you think you can’t do all the steps because there are a lot of wasps living in the nest, let an exterminator handle it.
Other Alternatives for Removing Hornet, Wasp and Bee Nests
Aside from using pesticides to get rid of a wasp, hornet, or bee nest, there are various alternatives you can try. It is a good idea that you resort to the use of safer options. Some of these are the following:
1. Use soapy water to drench the nest and kill wasps, hornets, or bees.
Approach the nest slowly and spray it with water and dish soap mixture. The soap will clog the breathing pores of the insects and have the same effect as a chemical insecticide.
Since they are drenched, it will be hard for them to fly. You can either spray the mixture on hanging nests or pour it on underground nests. Repeat this process as often as needed.
2. Get insecticide dust
If you find out that there are underground nests, you can apply the dust on the entrance holes. Don’t cover the holes and let the insects go in and out of the hole. This will coat their wings and legs and they will die in a day or two.
Make sure that you use thick clothing to avoid wasp stings. This is an effective method if the insects you’re dealing with are building their nest underground.
3. Get rid of your wasp problem by using smoke
Another option is to build a small fire right under the nest. The smoke will slowly rise and go inside. This will suffocate the insects and force them to leave the nest.
Make sure that you leave it for a few hours until the nest is completely empty. This is only advisable for hanging nests such as those on a tree branch.
A good old way of removing a nest is by submerging it in water. Just put a bucket of water underneath the nest and place a cloth bag that is enough to cover it. Secure the top carefully and tightly. Once done, knock it down from the branch.
It should fall directly to the water. Just place a stone that is heavy enough to submerge the entire bag in the water-filled bucket. Leave it overnight. This is enough time to drown the insects.
This process requires you to be very close to the nest. Make sure that you are well prepared to face most of the insects. Also, you shouldn’t be clumsy in doing this process to make sure that the nest enters the cloth bag and will drop to the water.
These alternatives are safer around pets and children. All it takes is patience since most of them require repeated application. With these, you can deal with the bees, hornets, and wasps without using chemicals.
When is the Right Time to Get Rid of the Nests?
Know when these insects are most active. This is an important factor to consider if you want to get successful results. It is important for you to understand the life cycle of bees, hornets, and wasps. This will let you know when to effectively kill them.
- Spring is when queens look for a place to construct their brooding nest and lay their eggs. Workers will then hatch and come out of their cells. As the nest grows, the workers will protect the queen and continue laying eggs.
- The colony will continue growing throughout spring and summer. Late August is the peak of the colony’s growth and every nest will have more or less two thousand wasps.
- By the end of summer, the last batch of wasps is It is the batch where the next queens and males are born. This is the time when the entire colony is more protective and aggressive towards any threats.
The ideal time for destroying nests is when the colony is just starting. This is the time when the colony is still small and less aggressive.
The most crucial part of killing the insects in the early stage of the colony is being able to kill the queen. Once you kill the queen, you will no longer have to worry about new nests being constructed throughout the year.
However, you can just leave the nest and insects alone when you are not able to find the nest before winter comes. The entire colony will die eventually because of the freezing temperature. All that is left for you to do is dispose of the nest and apply some repellent to prevent new wasps from nesting on the same spot.