Tag Archives: Wasps

Yellow Jackets Pose Danger at Outdoor Events

Beware of yellow jackets. These yellow-and-brown-striped stinging insects may look like bees, but they are actually dangerous wasps whose aggressive behavior can ruin outdoor events. For reasons scientists have yet to understand, yellow jackets become increasingly aggressive as summer draws to a close. Often stinging without provocation, these wasps can pose a serious stinging danger to employees and customers during end-of-summer outdoor events.

Like other wasps, yellow jackets have straight stingers which means they can sting their victims multiple times. When agitated, they stream from their nests in large numbers, swarming around and attacking their victim. Multiple stings can be dangerous and may be fatal, even to people who are not allergic to yellow jacket stings.

Yellow jackets build their nests in some surprising places. Aerial nests that look like large gray footballs hanging from tree limbs are typical; but these wasps will also colonize abandoned animal burrows and build nests between evergreen boughs.

Their attraction to food scraps and sugary drinks brings yellow jackets into frequent contact with people during the summer months. They can usually be found buzzing around outdoor trash containers, picnic tables and barbeques or food courts at outdoor events.

Eliminating yellow jackets is a job for well-trained and experienced NYC and NJ pest control professionals. Don’t place yourself, your family, your customers or your employees at risk. Call Stern Environmental for safe wasp removal.

What Are Ground Bees?

Rather than a specific species, “ground bees” is actually a generic term that describes any bee or wasp species that builds its nest underground. A number of bee and wasp species colonize abandoned animal burrows, including bumble bees, sweat bees and yellow jackets, which are actually a type of wasp.

Most people notice the presence of ground bees when they see several bees hovering over an opening in their lawn or garden. Bees may also be seen flying into or out of a hole or crack in the ground. These stinging insects can post a serious hazard to unsuspecting adults, children and pets that stumble upon a nest while walking, working or playing outdoors. Even a small disturbance such as a rumbling lawn mower can send a swarm of angry ground bees rocketing out of an underground nest.

Disturbed bees often attack en masse; stinging their victims multiple times and posing a serious health threat even to people that are not allergic to their venom. Ground bees’ aggressive pursuit of their victims makes their removal critically important when they build their nests in New Jersey backyards or near the entrances to retail or commercial buildings.

Protect your family and your customers from ground bees. Call the bee and wasp removal and control experts at Stern Environmental.

Is It a Bee or a Wasp?

Many bees and wasps share similar coloring and markings which can make them difficult to tell apart. When residential and commercial clients call with bee complaints, NJ pest control experts use a number of identifiers to determine whether the offending insect is a bee or a wasp. Correctly identifying stinging pests is the first step to their elimination and can make a difference in the steps NYC pest control professionals take to control or exterminate an infestation of these potentially dangerous pests.

  • Bees are typically covered with tiny hairs and have thick bodies. Beneficial pollinators, most bees feed on plant nectar and collect pollen to feed their larvae.
  • Wasps are usually smooth bodied with ant-like, constricted waists. These predatory insects feed primarily on insects but will also eat plant nectar, fruit and carrion.
  • Most bees live in large social hives governed by a strict caste system that defines each insect’s role. A notable exception is the carpenter bee which is a solitary bee that lives in mated pairs.
  • Depending on their species, wasps may live in large social colonies or they may live a solitary existence.

Honey bees are a protected species that, by law, cannot be exterminated. When hives present a problem, bee keepers are called in to capture the bees and relocate the hive. Other bees and wasps can be exterminated when they pose a threat.

Beware of Yellow Jacket Wasps This Summer

Check out the video clip in today’s Facebook post of the massive (6-ft. X 8-ft.) yellow jacket hive found in Florida. It doesn’t take much imagination to figure out what would happen if you stumbled on such a large hive of angry yellow jackets. A type of wasp, yellow jackets have straight stingers which means they can sting multiple times. A swarm of these extremely aggressive stinging insects can kill even if you are not allergic to their venom. Yellow jackets are responsible for most of the life-threatening bee and wasp attacks in the U.S.

Luckily for us, New Jersey winters are too chilly for wasps to overwinter which limits the size of their hives. With the exception of the queen, wasps die when cold weather hits. In the spring, the queen emerges from her underground lair to populate a new colony.

Unlike bees which typically feed on nectar, wasps are predatory carnivores that feed primarily on other insects, but will also eat carrion, fruit and plant nectar. The most aggressive stinging insect in the New York City and northern New Jersey areas, yellow jackets become increasingly aggressive as the summer moves into fall, often attacking without provocation.

If you find a yellow jacket hive on your property, don’t put yourself at risk. Call the bee and wasp control experts at Stern Environmental.

Top 5 New Jersey Summer Pests Announced

Experts have been warning New Jersey residents to expect an inundation of cicadas and mosquitoes this summer, but that won’t be the end of our pest woes. Entomologists at the University of Delaware cooperative extension recently released a list of the top 5 insect pests for the mid-Atlantic states:

  1. Scale pests. Often overlooked because of their tiny size, parasitic scale insects suck the sap from landscape plants, killing their hosts.
  2. Wasps. Their painful stings earned wasps the No. 2 spot on this summer’s pest list. While only female wasps sting, their straight stingers allow these pests to sting repeatedly. Wasp stings are painful and can cause severe redness and swelling, as well as life-threatening allergic reactions.
  3. Bagworms. A perennial landscape pest, bag worms are recognizable the distinctive web-like nests they spin on tree limbs.
  4. Japanese beetles. Shiny green beetles with copper wings, these pests are deadly to roses, tress and 300 other plant species.
  5. Stink bugs. These shield-shaped insects cause untoward damage to agricultural and landscape plants and are a persistent nuisance in the fall when they creep inside to overwinter in New Jersey homes and commercial buildings.

When insects bother your home or business, seek the services of a licensed New York and New Jersey pest control professional.