While the yellow and black markings may scare some people away from the paper wasp, they are actually relatively low on the scale of harmful damages to homes and humans. Unless an individual has an allergy toward the yellow jacket sting. Commonly known as the mascot of Georgia Tech, the yellow jacket and the paper wasp are regularly seen in the South.
Are Paper Wasps and Yellow Jackets Dangerous?
The easiest answer is: sometimes. They can be found throughout the Southeast and are most active in the warmer months. Often paper wasps are only dangerous to humans because we have invaded their nest area. Yellow jackets, however, can inflict severe pain on individuals and many people are highly allergic to their sting.
Paper wasps and yellow jackets are usually found in the eves of doorways, attics, and other small discreet corner locations. Paper wasps will only strike if they believe their territory is being harmed. While its best to keep the nests cleared from your home, especially if you have small children or pets, they don't usually cause danger, but rather they are a nuisance.
What Damages Are Caused by Paper Wasps?
Often paper wasps will scrap wood from homes and other structures to build their nest. In the most extreme cases, they have been known to eat through drywall to seek warmth and refuge. Most paper wasps, excluding the young queens, die off in the colder winter months. According to Clemson University's Life Science Department, the queens in paper wasp colonies only survive winter because of nesting in small crevices and under tree logs. Once the cooler temperatures are over several remaining queens will start a new colony with each other. Crazy huh?!
How To Prevent Paper Wasps
While completely preventing yellow jackets or paper wasps is difficult, removing their nesting areas and hiding spots is an easy task. The first step is to give Knox Pest Control a call for a home inspection. A highly trained technician can give your home a once over and locate any areas of concern.
Next, if you are unsure of whether the wasp nest is active or one left behind do not touch. Let the professionals help!
Lastly, keep pets and small children away from yellow jackets and paper wasps and their nests. Trimming back shrubs and plants surrounding your home can also prevent further nesting spots and reduce your risk of finding paper wasp and yellow jackets outside your home.
Contact us to learn more and schedule your home inspection today.