View Full Version : Wasps, crafty buzzers.

18th Apr 2014, 10:35
For a few nights now, we have been buzzed by a wasp in the bedroom at bedtime. The creature appears while the light is on and we are still awake, usually reading our books before sleep. We have been using the jam jar and post card trick to catch it and put it out through the bathroom window on the other side of the house. Once the lights are out it doesn't come back in.

This morning I saw the wasp come in through the small open window and go directly across the room to the bottom of the curtains on a non opening window. Then I spotted it, the starting of a wasp nest, already a little bigger than a golf ball. Fascinating.

I'm not sure what to do about it. I am not worried about being attacked or stung, it might be interesting to watch how it develops but the buzzing around the bedside lights is a nuisance. If it gets too big it might cause damage to the curtains, which incidentally only went back up last week after they were down for washing on the day a new floor was layed in the room.


18th Apr 2014, 10:42
Take it off and throw it out before it gets bigger. The little sods (actually, the little-but-very-clever engineers) start them all over the place here. Beautiful workmanship but the contents are a danger.

18th Apr 2014, 10:42
Trouble is, once there's an active nest the wasps will operate an exclusion zone for some distance around it, and attack all infringers.

I would arrange a decent funeral for that wasp (and any friends).

18th Apr 2014, 10:45
It appears we are all doomed...

Swarms of 'angry' killer hornets to invade Britain in September - AOL Travel UK (http://travel.aol.co.uk/2013/09/05/swarms-of-angry-killer-asian-hornets-heading-to-britain/)

Ok, ok they are hornets ...but still clearly we are in trouble because the Daily Wail carried this story as well...


Hotel Tango
18th Apr 2014, 10:46
What surprises me is that you have an active wasp in April! Generally I don't see the buggers until end June or early July.

18th Apr 2014, 10:55
Calling all resident JB entomologists...

Are hornets a specific type of wasp or a different genus all together?


Lon More
18th Apr 2014, 10:56
Buggers are active here too. There's a nest somewhere near the front door but haven't found it yet.
Had one, several years ago in the lawn. They'd started it in a mole tunnel so I poured half a pint of petrol in and set light to it. It burned like a blowtorch for almost an hour. Wasps returning to the nest flew straight into the flame.

Hornet or Wasp? (http://www.diffen.com/difference/Hornet_vs_Wasp), the differences

18th Apr 2014, 10:59
I am not worried about being attacked or stung

But if you inadvertently threaten one, perhaps because you didn't see it, you will get a sting - and they are quite painful. Use the fly-swatter.

18th Apr 2014, 11:02
I'm afraid that there is only one action to be taken when a solitary wasp (usually a queen) 'invades' human living space, and that is extermination.
Allowing a queen to survive will result in her establishing a nest, and that can be disastrous for the humans.

You are fortunate to have discovered the makings of the nest before she has laid her eggs.

Catch her and kill her before it's too late.

18th Apr 2014, 11:06
"What's the difference"

Thanks for that Lon, so the hornet is a kind of unter wasp with an über sting it seems!


18th Apr 2014, 11:07
This stuff ("protector natural aerosol") ...


Does a fantastic job on those ghastly wasps, plus its far more natural and healthy for human-beings (in relative terms, of course !) to be around than the chemical laden stuff you'll find in your average high-street shop.

Its water-based and made from Pyrethrins taken from Chrysanthemum cinerariifolium plants.

18th Apr 2014, 11:15
"Thems bastards Mrs Durrells"

As Spiro said of magpies... Might well be apt for those Asian hornets...

Look at the size of the nests they build... could be used as a prop in an alien film...!



18th Apr 2014, 11:36
The giant wasps will all return soon, to wipe out all your families, you wasp-murdering scum! :)

We have wasps. HUGE black and orange ones, about 50mm long (2" in the old money).
They don't bite humans - but they're excellent killers of spiders, grubs and worms that otherwise make a nuisance of themselves - or which ravage our vegies.

I love those wasps - and I love watching them roll up mud into little balls with their feet, and then watching them pat it into place to form perfect hemispheres.
I also love watching them place stunned bugs, worms and spiders in those nests and sealing them in. Long live the wasps!!

Here's one on our bird bath from last Summer. He got stuck inside the house and I had to remove him. He was recovering from near-exhaustion here.


18th Apr 2014, 11:39
Not yet the wasp season where I live, it's usually high summer when I keep my electric "zapper" to hand. And a rolled newspaper is most effective if the battery is flat. Wasps are unwelcome chez moi, and don't last long. Quite useless pests, in the same category as garden slugs.

Reading the link listing hornet/wasp differences, I was interested to see that hornet stings can be fatal to humans, I didn't know that. While I was working on a structural survey of remote microwave radio station masts in the bush of East Africa, we paid a local at each location to dig a deep hole for ground assessment purposes. At one site close to the Somali border, the fellow was badly stung by a large hornet, clattering along like a powerful model helicopter. He slumped down into the half-dug hole in obvious agony, so I rushed over to him with a little "Wasp-Eze" aerosol from my first aid kit. The look of relief on his sweaty face was a picture, as the "freezing" effect of the spray did its work, while my colleague splatted the hornet with the man's shovel. He survived, of course, and we were able to deposit him safely home to his rondavel hut, probably to tell the tall tale of his salvation by the "Mzungu's" magic. Dunno what we would have done if he had actually snuffed it ... :ooh:

18th Apr 2014, 11:49

Yes, well, I suppose if you live in the land of the stuff that kills you, you've got bigger and more important beasts to worry about than a 'mere wasp'. :cool:

For the rest of us they remain a pest !

18th Apr 2014, 12:39
The mason wasps that Onetrack talks of are fine - they don't worry humans and are quite fascinating to watch as they build. Just don't accidentally touch them.
Paper wasps (http://www.csiro.au/Outcomes/Environment/Biodiversity/Common-Paper-Wasps.aspx), are evil bastards from hell. They have a territorial zone. If you intrude into it, you will be hid by several red-hot needles that you won't see until too late.

There is only one way to treat them, and it involves WD40 and a cigarette lighter. You may have to replace your curtains afterwards.

18th Apr 2014, 13:27
A few years ago we were troubled by a few wasps buzzing around our bedroom window. The few suddenly turned into hundreds and I knew there would be a nest. I investigated the loft. I was met by a loud buzzing and a frightening number of angry wasps. I could see a nest the size of a large beach ball. Two applications of commercially available wasp killer foam spray didn't work as advertised. I had to get the council pest control man in. The nest is till there, it's at least as big as the one in the photo above.

I'd agree that getting rid early is the best idea.

18th Apr 2014, 13:41
commercially available wasp killer foam sprayA couple of years ago I detected a wasp nest in the roof of an outhouse - the wasps had begun foraging in the main house.

The nest was inaccessible, being between the tiles and the felting and the wasps were circling menacingly whenever I approached.
A can of foam spray (with instructions to apply at night when all the occupants were inside) worked wonders (for me, if not for the wasps) leaving enough for a second application the following evening (though wasp activity had ceased) and more for another occasion should the blighters repeat the activity.

When our house was re-roofed, a beach-ball-sized nest (long abandoned) was found hanging in the roof void.

18th Apr 2014, 14:05
Wasps emit a pheromone when they sting. Any other wasps from the same colony will come running pronto if you get stung in the zone of exclusion they will have set up around their nest.

cockney steve
18th Apr 2014, 14:20
Sueezy washing-up liquid bottle......rinse when empty (and get a "free" lot of washing-up:8) fill with petrol, squirt at nest at night.....DO NOT IGNITE IT....it's the fumes what kills 'em. 1/4 litre should be more than adequate.....cheap quick and readily available and soon evaporates.

18th Apr 2014, 14:30
I often get developing nests of European wasps around the external door and window frames. I found the sprays to be useless and they stink the inside of the house. Solution is to throw some boiling water on the nest (try not to get it on yourself!). Repeat the application but you will need an element of surprise the second time (try not to get it on yourself now that they have figured you out!). Then prod the nest off with a long stick and squash it with a hammer.

We also get these big mothers too, I call them B52s, but they tend to nest elsewhere and generally will leave you alone.

18th Apr 2014, 15:37
Dangerous game, golf......:eek:


18th Apr 2014, 17:09
Well, they always said golf was a good walk spoiled .... so I guess the hornets wanted to make sure they retained first place in the walk spoiling debate. :cool:

18th Apr 2014, 19:59
Looks like most folks here would prefer to eradicate wasps using whatever measures available to them. May your Gods nevertheless "bless you" for your almost total ignorance. Akin to how the Australian govt. in Perth and elsewhere in that country "controls" shark attacks. :ugh:

Luckily for most of us "human-beings", our own existences are not usually determined by folks such as yerselves. Otherwise, we'd all be speaking German as our "mother-tongue" in 2014. :rolleyes:

I'm ashamed, so should you be...?! :ok:

19th Apr 2014, 00:12
I take it you prefer the company of angry wasps to that of other humans.... Most people don't.

My wife is highly allergic to wasp stings and has in the past suffered anaphylactic shock on being stung. She's slightly better company than marauding wasps, so round these parts she gets priority.

19th Apr 2014, 01:36
.....(with instructions to apply at night when all the occupants were inside)......

Yes, that's a vital instruction, gets most of the Barstewards, too. If you destroy the home when the occupants are at work, they get all mean and nasty when they come home to find nowhere to go.

I find that insect spray stuns most of them sufficiently to allow the nest to be knocked off whatever it's attached to, then stamped on.

'trouble is .... finding the nest when a lot of foliage is present, climbing in and around and under a mass of bush is not recommended - they see you first.

19th Apr 2014, 02:31
Then of course there is a slightly competent rugby team...

London Wasps Official Site (http://www.wasps.co.uk/)

but enough of them when you can support ...

Ulster v Saracens - 05/04/14 (Heineken Cup Quarter-Final) - YouTube


19th Apr 2014, 03:18
Wasps also release a pheromone when they sting, which alerts other wasps to come in for the attack. Death is the best thing for them.

19th Apr 2014, 06:19
Many ways to deal with these ones,
Getting rid of them early is the best way before they get established.
I recently started framing more on my home.
Early April, still below freezing at night.
During the day they would get on the fresh 2x4s like they owned it.
Had a few stings then said enough.
Have been stung many times over the years but seems worse now.
Bigger whelps etc.
Longer times to heal.
In the evening they dont seem to be as aggressive.
Raid makes a flying insect spray, fog one, this will take them down silently if sprayed near the nest and allowed to slowly float there.
For the bad ones you can get spectracide, this is impressive range it sprays is 27 feet, if you miss its your ass ha ha
But even then if you hit them in flight will take them down quick.
had enough of them also.

19th Apr 2014, 08:05
in the bedroom at bedtime

I am not worried about being attacked or stung

Is it not a proven fact that members of the Vespidae family display extreme aggression towards objects in rapid rhythmic motion?

19th Apr 2014, 08:07
Yes, which is why flapping both arms around trying to get rid of them
gets them even more agitated :O

19th Apr 2014, 08:32
Until around three years ago I always had a "live and let live" attitude to wasps. That changed when I was up fitting some gutter guards, to stop moss and leaves from blocking the gutter. I did it early one morning, and after doing it spotted a few wasps hovering around a bit I'd just done. This gutter guard (the "Hedgehog" brush stuff) fits tight under the eaves overhang into the gutter, so effectively forms a barrier to anything trying to get in any small gaps under the eaves.

Like an idiot I moved the ladder over to where the wasps were, to try and see what was going on. It seems there was a nest in the loft somewhere, and they'd been flying in and out via a hole I'd just blocked.

Within seconds I was stung, and so beat a hasty retreat down the ladder, pursued by an angry swarm all clearly intent on stinging the living daylights out of me. Even running as fast as I could I couldn't get away from them, and those who'd landed on my just kept repeatedly stinging. I got in the shower fully clothed and sprayed the things away in the end, but ended up with over 30 stings, all the same. Thankfully I'm not allergic to them, so it just meant an uncomfortable few hours, but I can easily see how they could pose a serious threat.

The post script to this story is that I called in the local pest control chap to deal with the nest, as I could hear a lot of angry buzzing coming from the corner of the bedroom ceiling, presumably where the nest was in the loft. He turned up late in the afternoon and squirted in some stuff to kill the nest off, and told me I'd been pretty lucky. Apparently, if they find themselves blocked in, a nest of wasps will try and chew their way out. He'd seen a case where someone had used a can of expanding foam to seal up the entrance to a wasps next under the eaves of their house, and had been woken early the next morning to a bedroom full of angry wasps - they had chewed through the plasterboard ceiling to escape.

19th Apr 2014, 10:58
The foam spray that I used softened the nest material and soaked the inhabitants, rendering them incapable of flight.
The chemicals are D-Phenothrin and Tetramethrin.