Summer is around the corner! The sun is out and it’s finally the time for family outdoor activities. However, you should also beware of the summer dangers. Pests such as wasps and bees can pose a danger to you and your children. Here’s some practical advice to avoid wasps and bees to make your home a safe place for an outdoor party.
Although there are hundreds of species of wasps, hornets and bees found around the world, only a few of these are found in Ireland. And some of them do not sting.
Wasp and bees can become a serious nuisance if you plan to enjoy the outdoors. Understanding their habits, lifecycle and appearance can help to identify the best form of pest control for your home or business.
Wasps are most active in the warm summer months. In Ireland, the Common and German Wasp cause the most annoyance. With their distinctive yellow and black body, they can be confused with hornets, although hornets are not as common in this country. Wasps can also be confused with bees. However, bees vary in colour from golden brown to almost black and are furrier than wasps. A wasp sting can be particularly painful. Only female wasps have a sting, and they will use it repeatedly if they feel under threat.
If you are experiencing high numbers of wasps in your home or garden there is likely to be a wasp nest nearby, either on your property, in your garden or very close by.A mature nest in summer can contain thousands of wasps.
For out more about “signs of wasp nests” here.
Why are wasps so dangerous?
Wasps are generally not aggressive unless they or their nests are threatened. However, they are far from harmless! Their sting is very painful and can even be fatal because it produces a deadly anaphylactic reaction in some people who have allergies. If you experience anaphylactic shock from a wasp sting, you should immediately seek medical help. Because wasps often build their nest close to human dwellings, they can pose a threat to the health of children who might be unaware of the lurking danger.
Find out more tips to prevent wasp here.
Removing a wasp nest
Removing a wasp nest can be very dangerous. Wasps inside the nest will feel threatened and often become aggressive. This could cause them to sting you and others as they defend their nest and young. To get rid of wasps you do ‘not’ need to remove the nest, but you do need to treat it and the nesting wasps.
Find out more about removing a wasp nest here
There are about 20,000 different species of bees in the world. Bees live in colonies that contain the queen bee, the worker bees and the drones. There are many different types of bee including bumble bees, mason bees, honey bees, and solitary bees. Honey bees tend to live in large “families” and are found all over the world. The honey bee is the only social insect whose colony can survive many years.
Why are they dangerous?
A honey bee can sting a person or predator using its stinger. Honey bees usually sting as a form of defence, protecting themselves or their colony. Their stings are quite painful and even life threatening to a small percentage of people who are allergic to the venom. The amount of pain a person suffers depends on the amount of poison from the sting. Even when the pain subsides, victims may still have a rash. Honey bee stings can have serious consequences for people who are allergic to them. The venom has been known to cause sickness, dizziness or even death.
Because honey bee colonies can be extremely large and removal can be very messy, only a pest management professional or experienced beekeeper can safely remove a honey bee nest.
Spring/Summer pest prevention guide
Some of the common garden pests can also infest your home as well. Learn how to prevent the common spring and summer pests from both your home and garden!