Calgary

The Buzz Buzz


                

What a Wasp Wants

Have you have noticed an increase in the numbers of wasps, hornets and yellowjackets pestering your outdoor activities near the end of summer?

During late summer, as their colonies reach peak populations, wasps become more hostile to threats and more competitive about food. Buzz Boss is here to help!

The good news is that wasps, hornets and yellow jackets are an important and beneficial part of our ecosystem. They are voracious hunters, eating millions of other pesky insects each year. They are also pollinators, helping their bee cousins to keep our world green.

The bad news is that wasps, hornets and yellow jackets want sweet liquids and savory meats and are not picky about where their food comes from. They don’t mind if it is a juicy caterpillar or your succulent steak, a flowers nectar or your sugary soda. They are also very comfortable building their nests near or even inside human structures. When threatened, they can sting multiple times because their stingers do not have barbs like a bee stinger. Generally, people find stings quite painful, but 5% of people will have an allergic reaction ranging from swelling and hives to anaphylactic shock and even death. To make matters worse, when wasps sting, they release pheromones that draw other wasps to the scene.

More good news: There are several simple things you can do to keep the sting away.

  1. Sanitize: Keep food covered or in containers until you are ready to eat it, and make sure scraps are not left behind after you have finished. Keep litter and drink cans or bottles in receptacles with tight fitting lids.
  2. Stay Zen: This is understandably counterintuitive, but remaining calm and moving slowly when wasps, hornets and yellowjackets are around will make you seem like less of a threat. If you leave them alone, they will usually leave you alone.
  3. Remove Nests: Nests can be found in holes in the ground, on tree branches or structures, and occasionally built right inside your home. Using an insecticidal foam can often do the trick. Be sure to do your treatment late in the evening or early in the morning when they will be less active and aggressive. Buzz Boss has your back here, so don’t risk a sting. With our Wasp Attack you can sit back and allow one of our technicians get rid of the nest for you.
  4. Hang Baited Traps: There is a great selection of these that can be hung in your yard to bring the numbers down. Placement is key, so be careful not to put the traps too close to areas where you don’t want wasps. Here again, Buzz Boss has you covered. Our Wasp Shield includes 3 baited wasp traps and 1 decoy nest, installed by our trained technicians!
  5. Prep: It is wise to have a few items on hand in case of stings, such as cold packs, bandages, calamine lotion, ibuprofen and antihistamines. It is also a good idea to have a an EpiPen if you have a history of allergic reactions to stings. Allergic reactions can be fatal, so don’t take chances. If you are having a reaction use the EpiPen and call 911!
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