Wasp expert???

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by DDD, Jan 12, 2008.

  1. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    There always is an "expert" around here so...does anyone know anything about wasps? We had a white mailbox where the post fit
    over a stake of wood that had a flat surface where the actual box
    was attached. Somebody (husband??) hit the mailbox with the car so it
    was a little tilted and nobody could ever get it completely straight. Meanwhile.....wasps would fly around the box. We used
    wasp spray (distance spray can) and saturated the whole thing.
    Not. I called the exterminators. Not. Called again. Not.
    Meanwhile the box began to rust so I ordered a new one.

    New post does NOT use wood insert. Handyman dug deep hole (no
    sign of bugs), poured concrete for metal support post. Installed
    whole thing including a nifty looking plate on top of the box that has "glow in the dark" numbers. :smile:

    Guess what. This is the 2nd day and husband tells me "I opened the box for the mail and there were five or six wasps there!"

    The old stake/box is about four feet away as the trash truck is due this week. The old and the new are white. The new one is
    installed where the old one is. What to hay??

    How do I get permanently rid of the wasps? Help. DDD
  2. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    What sort of wasps are they/ We have native wasps of various kinds - mostly paper wasps, that build a nest out of wood pulp that the wasps chew to paper. We also have the much nastier, introduced European wasp. Eradication methods are very different.

    For paper wasps, you need to see exactly where their nest is. it's usually no bigger than an orange (often smaller than a passionfruit) and on the outside of a building, hanging from the eaves, tucked up against a wall, well above ground height. European wasps build bigger nests often underground.

    For a paper wasp - make a note of where the nest is. Make sure it's paper, and not a mud nest. Then after dark, when all the wasps are tucked up in their little waspy beds and sound asleep, you make a taper out of a sheet of newspaper (a LONG taper) and tiptoe out to the nest. Light the taper, then use it to light the wasps' nest. Being paper, it should burn readily and catch every single wasp.

    For other kids of wasps - get expert help.

  3. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    Didn't the exterminator give you a guarantee? I'd call him and make him come back and take care of it until it was fixed.
  4. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Here's what I found:


    I googled: get rid of wasps

    I'm wondering if the nest is underground and was never located?

    I couldn't do anymore research than that. I feel like I have things crawling on me now....bzzzzzz.....
  5. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Just be careful around the darn things.

    I had one lil bugger make his way up my pant leg once. OMG! It must have stung me six times before I finally could kill it! :surprise:

    I'll take bee stings anyday. Wasp stings burn like a fire you can't put out. OUCH! :stalker:
  6. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    They say a piece of fabric softener in our pockets will deter wasps on the golf course. Maybe a piece in the mailbox would keep them out of there until you can find the nest.

  7. tiredmommy

    tiredmommy Site Moderator

    We used a hanging trap made by Off, I think. It attracts the wasps/hornets and they can't get out. Nothing else worked.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I'm going to send difficult child out to the mailbox with some Bounce. Bless
    his heart.....he'll find that exciting AND he can run like the wind! The "hanging OFF thingy" will be sought this afternoon.
    Maybe I'll hang it off the post support.

    Marguerite, your burn 'em suggestion brought back a funny memory
    from my first marraige. My then husband and I were in our mid 20's,
    lived in Virginia and spotted a wasp nest. He decided to burn
    it at dusk when the bugs would be sleeping. He torched it and
    THEN discovered that our hose was not long enough to flood out
    the fire. :rofl: It was like a Laurel and Hardy sketch with
    neighbors running with their hoses and buckets etc. No harm. No
    foul. The house (a rental) was none the worse for wear. Phew!

    I'm not sure about underground nests as the handyman must have
    gone down at least 3 to 4 feet. I "think" that somehwere I read
    that the color (or non-color, lol) white attracks wasps.

    Thanks, guys. We have the niftiest looking mailbox on the street
    and even the postman doesn't want to get near it. I'll give you
    an update in a day or two. DDD
  9. mom_in_training

    mom_in_training New Member

    Just a thought but do you have a service called vector control within your county? Its a county run program that our tax dollars pay for. My neighbor (No more, Moved) worked for vector control in the county that I am in and he used to go to check out and rid of bee hives when homeowners or anybody called it in to report it. He also flagged squirrels for ticks and would trap them and put flea and tick powder on them and would draw blood to check for the plague.
  10. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Nope. We sure don't. Matter of fact we don't even have an agency that removes alligators from residential neighborhoods!
    Can you believe that?????? Sometimes (due to the real estate
    development mostly) full-sized gators show up in peoples front
    lawns. The 911 people advise people to stay inside their homes.
    The police usually respond to verify the report. THEN??? Then
    they start calling volunteer gator hunters to come catch the gator and take it away. Eventually...someone shows up! DDD
  11. mom_in_training

    mom_in_training New Member

    Geeze, That is scarey :nonono: You would think with the killer bee issues spreading across the nation that every state would have some kind of plan in place. The killer bee thing has been an ongoing saga for years. The same for some communities that have experienced the plague with ground squirrels and other lil varments.
  12. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    We may look like California...but we ain't no California! :rofl:
    There is a heck of alot of "old South" "do it yerself" thinkin'
    'round here. DDD
  13. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    DDD - the guy only dug for where the mailbox post goes, right? The nest may not be right there, but in the general vicinity. I suggest watching - from a distance - to see if you can determine where they are coming/going. Maybe at night when they're heading to bed or in the early morning before they come out.

    I haven't heard about the dryer sheets for wasps. We'll have to use it. We've used it to keep mosquito's at bay. Works well for that, too.

    And again - feel things crawling on me. A bit phobic, ya think?
  14. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    DDD, the mailman was the first thing I thought of ... s/he won't want to deliver the mail, so you'll have to do something about this.

    I agree with-Marg, you have to figure out what kind of wasps they are. I've never been stung by one and we've got them over our door. Every yr we remove their home and every yr they rebuild. We also had ground wasps at our old house, and I left them alone because I hoped they would fertilize my garden (I'm a very lazy gardener!) One thing I do b4 working in the garden is take a
    bunch of Vit. B complex. It comes out through the pores of your skin, and bugs and insects don't like it and will stay away from you.

    We have fig trees and I know our bigger wasps live off of those. Wasps' bodies are long and thin so they can squeeze inside the stem and fruit, unlike bees, which pick up pollen on their hair.

    We lost a lot of trees during Hurricane Isabel, and the landscaper refused to remove a tree blocking the boat path because it was filled with-wasps' nests. I found a neighborhood beekeeper to check it out for me because I know there are certain types of bees and wasps that are very valuable. Turned out I had a K-mart Blue Light Special Wasp and he told me to nuke 'em. :smile: I poured chemicals on them at night. The concept of a wasp sting didn't bother me as much as the boatload of chemicals I was dumping. Argh.

    Best of luck.
  15. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Does vitamin B complex come in liquid form??? Maybe I could buy
    some and saturate the ground around the mailbox. :smile:

    When it comes to kids I am not woosey. When it comes to business
    I am not woosey. When it comes to wildlife, dental work and
    claustrophobic environments...I am a WOOSE!

    I don't want to get up close and figure out which kind they
    are. They fly. They like my mailbox area. I want them to go
    bye bye.

    on the other hand, there is a really clever "home remedy" that pops up many
    times on the internet. IF I had a 2 liter bottle of soda I would
    do it. You chop off the bottle at the taper line. You turn the
    tapered pour area upside down into the bottle. You poke holes in
    the bottle so the aroma entices the wasps. You fill the bottle
    half full of grape soda or some sweet smelling fruity soda. You
    place it on your property about 10-20 feet from the wasps. They
    try to reach the sweet liquid, fall in, drown. YEAH, team!!

    Sounds like a winner to me...if only we drank sweet fruity soda
    from 2 liter bottles! :smile: :rofl: Cutty just is going to
    hack it! :smile:

    To quote my dear friend Scarlett. "Tomorrow is another day." DDD
  16. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    I would guess that what you have is possibly one of three things - you didn't say what color they were. But I'm guessing possibly yellow and black, or a reddish brown with yellow markings.

    It's not unusual for any wasp to build a subterranian nest because in florida the ground is sand - and many animals dig burrows which can become awesome safe havens for nurseries.

    Look around the areas - there is a nest close by and they are actually attracted to shades of white and black (no win on painting the beautiful new mailbox)

    My guess would be that they have found an old gopher tortise hole or are up high in a tree. There are also wasps called saw wasps that have little round mounds of sand - that most people think are ants or ant-killers. They are actually Saw wasps. Reddish in color. Then there is Polistes or Paper wasps - very nasty disposition and will build honey comb type nests. You could also be dealing with Vespula or Yellow jackets - they are meat eaters - that's why you see them hanging around trash cans and are the #1 predator of a picnic - the meat smell drives them mad. It's true they like fruity things but throw a couple of chicken thighs out by the mail box if you want to get a good look at them.

    The fact that they are building or trying to build a nest in your mailbox does NOT necessarily mean they are in the post or in the ground. They may be a nomadic group looking for a covered sight to build their nest/nursery.

    If you see paper like combs with larve in them - more than likely they are Paperwasps - if you see what looks like a clump of mud then they can be either yellowjackets or muddaubers - but it's been so dry lately my money is on the Polistes or Vespula.

    To rid yourself of them You are going to need to get some Hot shot wasp spray and coat NOT ONLY the outside of that mail box but the inside as well. And do not disturb, but reapply the spray often. Be careful - as there are always workers that will come to the aid of the nest and they will come after the attacker.

    You can call the Florida Extension office - should be in your phone book. And I'm all for the poster that talked about Africanized honey bees making their way up into the US. However - when Africanized honey bees make their stand - you can see them by the 1,000s and they don't leave - they are so aggressive that even driving by them, or a dog barking 2 houses away could motivate them to attack. Their nests are enormous.

    The best thing to do would be to leave the mail box alone, spray it, set traps for the workers (all female) and let the situation calm down before using the mail box again. The traps I'm talking about are sold at Ace Hardware, come with bait, and can be hung on short shepherds crooks a short distance from the mail box. It is doubtful that you will kill the hive - because the hive will grow wherever their queen is - and she's not likely to be in the mail box. They would keep her hidden. So you are basically attacking the workers and stopping them from building a new nursery, not killing them all off. UNLESS you can SEE a huge hive and a swarm and at that point - I'd call a specialist to bag it.

    Keep in mind that motion from say a weed eater can aggravate them and smells like perfume can draw them. Scent of Cedar is right about the Bounce - they don't like the smell much.

    I have a tremendous specimen of a Cicada killer - they are like wasps on steroids and just HUGE but I'd bet you have the ones I mentioned. Oh and if it isn't and they are the little black ones that flit their wings alot - they are not so ill tempered, but once you make them mad they stay mad.

    Whoda thunk my bug knowledge would have ever helped someone here? lol zzzzzzt zzzzzt (i know not funnY)
  17. Scent of Cedar II

    Scent of Cedar II New Member

    <div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: DDD</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Nope. We sure don't. Matter of fact we don't even have an agency that removes alligators from residential neighborhoods!
    Can you believe that?????? Sometimes (due to the real estate
    development mostly) full-sized gators show up in peoples front
    lawns. The 911 people advise people to stay inside their homes.
    The police usually respond to verify the report. THEN??? Then
    they start calling volunteer gator hunters to come catch the gator and take it away. Eventually...someone shows up! DDD </div></div>



  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'd rather have wasps than alligators any day!