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Wasps are an everyday part of nature. It is impossible to go for a walk without seeing at least one of these painful-looking insects buzzing about. One species that is common in our area is the yellow jacket. This sleek-looking wasp is thought by many to be extremely dangerous. Regardless of what your perception of this pest is, we are here today to answer some questions you might have. Here is what you need to know about yellow jackets in Houston and the threat they pose to local residents.

a yellow jacket wasp on a plant leaf

How Aggressive Are Yellow Jackets?

There are many misconceptions about yellow jackets, the biggest being that they are the most aggressive species of wasp. This is not entirely true. Yellow jackets are just like any other wasp. If they feel threatened or if they think their queen is in danger, they will become defensive. Beyond this, yellow jackets are docile creatures that go out of their way to avoid trouble.

Where Yellow Jackets Build Their Nests

Yellow jackets are unique in that they build their nests attached to trees and buildings as well as underground. Underground nests are often camouflaged and can be difficult to spot and identify. This is especially concerning seeing that it doesn’t take too much weight for one of these subterranean nests to be crushed and an aggravated swarm to occur.

The Danger Of Wasp Stings

All wasp stings are dangerous to a degree but they are rarely life-threatening. The only time a sting from a wasp is life-threatening is when the individual is allergic to insect venom or has been stung several dozen times. Being an infant or an elderly person also increases the chances of more serious injury related to wasp stings. As for which species of wasp is the most dangerous, they all pose the same threat, some stings just hurt more than others.

Schmidt Pain Index

In 1983 a study was published by a man named Dr. Justin Schmidt that cataloged the pain index of different stinging creatures. In this study, he rated fire ants at a 1.0 out of 4.0, yellow jackets at a 2.0, and paper wasps at a 3.0. This, of course, is rated from a single sting. Pain levels increase the more times an individual is stung.

Prevention Tips For Yellow Jackets

The best solution to yellow jackets is to make your property as unattractive to them as possible. This is done in a variety of ways. To help make things simple for you, here are some places our experts recommend you start:

  • Inspect your property for hanging nests once a week. Knock down any you find IF they are smaller than a golf ball and have no active members home.

  • After outdoor gatherings, clean up left-over food and beverages.

  • During outdoor gatherings, keep foods and drinks covered or in sealed containers.

  • Avoid feeding your pets outdoor or clean out their bowls after every meal.

  • Consider removing flowers and budding plants from your property.

What To Do About Yellow Jacket Nests On Your Property

One thing we do not recommend is trying to handle a medium to large wasp nest on your own. This is dangerous and could end with you in the hospital. To avoid this, consider hiring the experts at All Safe Pest & Termite. Our Houston pest control services are affordable, quick, and guaranteed to solve any problems you have with yellow jackets. Contact our team today to learn more about our wasp control service or to schedule your Houston property for an emergency service visit. We will send a technician your way ASAP.

Tags: wasp control | wasp prevention | yellow jacket dangers |

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