Wasp nest...

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Frosty, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. Frosty

    Frosty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have an enclosed back porch, and it has windows the whole way around. I was in there yesterday when I saw something that didn't look right. I went closer, and found that some yellow jackets had built a nest up against a window. It actually looks pretty cool... you can see inside where there are three tiers of comb with just enough space between for the wasps to crawl through and a bunch of little grubs. I'm debating what to do. I hate to kill them, they are beneficial. Just not sure of the wisdom of leaving them building a nest on the house. Usually if they are in an area where they won't hurt anything, I just mark the area and let the family know they are there so everybody can just stay away.
     
  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

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    I would be very concerned about having yellow jackets anywhere in my home. As a builder I have on several occasions had to repair walls that were damaged by them. On one house there was only a small hole on the outside through which the yellow jackets entered. One day when the homeowner was washing an interior wall her hand went through the wall allowing hundreds of wasps into the house. The yellow jackets had eaten through the drywall and the only thing that had kept them out had been the vinyl wall paper. She received numerous stings and was quite ill as a result.

    In another case I farmer that I knew received 20 to 30 stings over the course of the summer. One evening he had complained about how tired he was of plowing through underground yellow jacket nest and getting stung. That day he had received two more stings. The next morning his wife found that he had died in his sleep. The autopsy revealed that he had died from anaphylactic shock. He had never once receive enough stings to kill him but the toxins had built up in his system.
     
  3. Frosty

    Frosty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I do realize that they only need a small hole to gain entry, we had to get rid of a nest once that was up by the eaves on the house. This one is on the outside of a window on an enclosed back porch, and the door between the house and the porch is normally closed. The only way they would get into the porch would be if they chewed through the window frame. They still wouldn't be in the house, but they would be in the porch. I am really not sure if they would damage the house where they are?

    I am not allergic to bee stings, I don't swell up at all. I am allergic to deerfly bites though, and swell up like some people do from bees. I don't worry about it too much, I still drive even though I could be killed in an accident. Though I will admit that getting rid of some of the cars on the road does have some appeal... [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2011
  4. Saltysteele

    Saltysteele Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:it's not that the farmer kept having anaphylactic shock, the toxins had built up in his system after repeated exposure. enough of them sting you and you will die, regardless if your allergic to them or not.

    fella a couple miles away had a mule that was killed by a swarm of africanized honey bees that set up in an old barn he had. he barely made it out alive, as well; he managed to get far enough away that someone else was able to drag him completely away.

    i'm not allergic to bees, but i don't gamble with them, either

    yes, your chances are greater to be struck by a car, though. however, i've got enough upkeep around my house that i can't afford to let bees create more problems. i've got a house of windows to replace, can't afford the walls, too [​IMG]
     
  5. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

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    While I believe live and let live, when it comes to wasps and stinging insects I let them live out in the woods. Yellow Jacket wasps like to make HUGE nests. They have all kinds of in-law quarters, numerous nurseries located throught the nest, and are very protective of their nest. Unlike Honey Bees, Yellow Jacket wasps can sting multiple times, and are unsually cold-weather tolerant. Most bees or wasps die out during the cold months and only the queen will survive to start over in spring. However, the young Yellow Jacket workers will simply go dormant and wait for warmer weather to start working again.

    One thing I've learned about Yellow Jacket wasps is you have to worry about the ones you don't see.
     
  6. Frosty

    Frosty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Actually, the queen is the only one to survive with yellow jackets, too. That is why the nest starts out very small and grows throughout the summer. The queen starts the nest and lays eggs. As more eggs hatch and turn into workers, the nest grows. In the south the nests can get really huge, especially if there isn't freezing weather to kill them. Up here a huge nest is about basket ball sized. I do worry about stumbling on a nest in tall vegetation or in the trees while picking cherries. But as long as I know where they are and they aren't where they are likely to be a problem I try to leave them alone. I am just not sure if this one would turn into a problem.

    Funny story about yellow jackets... when I was very young, my brother (two years older than me) wanted to cut down a tree. The problem was, there was a nest on a branch in the tree, probably about 7 or 8 feet up. So my brother came up with the idea that he would tie long sticks on the handles of the pruning shears and cut the branch that the nest was on. Part two of the idea was to give his little sister (me) a garbage bag to hold open, ready to catch the nest and close the bag real quick. Fortunately (for me), the pruning shears started cutting the branch, then instead of going the whole way through, the sticks bent. The branch got pulled down so the nest was eye level with me and I took off running because the wasps were starting to come out and they were mad. We went up later and torched the nest. Now poor mom gets to hear the stories of what my brother got us into while we were growing up. And all of it was his fault, especially if I'm the one telling her the stories. [​IMG]
     
  7. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

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    In the South East the Yellow Jacket wasp can overwinter because of our warmer winters. Queens do die, but multiple Queens are produced by a single nest. They mate, eat to store energy for the winter, and leave the original nest. According the the entomology experts at Clemson University, Yellow Jacket Wasps will over winter in the nest in the South East. A new queen may remain in the original nest or take up occupancy next door. An adaptive behavior I find fascinating. UGA has studied these Wasps, too, as they have been known to kill cattle, horses, and dogs when disturbed.

    I feel sorry for the poor students who had to validate this behavior. Can you imaging having to study these aggressive wasps? Yikes!

    I had a horrible experience with a nest when I was a kid in Florida. A friend and I were riding our horses in the woods during Halloween. Her horse stumbled in 'hole' which turned out to be a Yellow Jacket nest. My friend jumped on my horse and we escaped. Unfortunately, her horse had to be euthanized. As a result, I keep stinging critters away from my house and barn.

    Here is a wasp watching me very closely. He wanted to sting me but my bug repellant kept him away.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Frosty

    Frosty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:In the south and south east, I am sure that they do overwinter. In the north they are usually killed by the first hard frost. Even our ground dwellers usually don't have a big nest so we don't have critters killed by them. That would be heart breaking, to have to euthanize a horse because of that. And probably a feeling of guilt, too. I could not imagine...
     
  9. call ducks

    call ducks silver appleyard addict

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    Buy a fake waspnest and hang it real close. Waps are teratoral and should move away
     
  10. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    If you allow them to survive, be cautious around the nest in the autumn. Early brood is primarily workers, but in late summer they start raising the reproductives. They become very protective at this point as this provides for the next generation. Ever notice how you can mow lawn all summer with no problems, then mowing the same lawn in Sept. you get attacked by yellow jackets? They are protecting the young reproductives. The young queens will mate, find a place to overwinter (they go into dormancy), and in the spring they emerge and look for a nest site-- the cycle goes on. For a while, it sounds as if they would be fun to observe.
     

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