Dealing With a Red Wasp Infestation
No one likes dealing with the annoyance of an insect infestation of any kind. However, a wasp infestation can be especially daunting to deal with, as wasps come along with challenges and dangers that you don’t have to worry about in regards to other pests. The red wasp is one of the leading types of wasps that you’ll be seeing if you find yourself facing a wasp infestation of any type.
The red wasp is a particular type of paper wasp. Like other paper wasps, red wasps build papery, umbrella-esque nests that are made up of honeycomb-like cells. Each nest houses a single queen wasp whose job it is to lay eggs for the rest of the colony and a number of female wasp workers. Male wasps are born later on in the breeding season for mating purposes. Although the majority of the wasps die off each season, the queen typically remains hidden inside the nest over the winter in order to start a new colony come spring.
The red wasp builds its nest in areas that provide plenty of protection from the elements in order to preserve the health and integrity of the colony. This is exactly why wasp infestations can be such a big problem for humans. A human home’s eaves, overhangs, light fixtures, and various nooks provide the environment the red wasp needs in order to survive.
Red wasps definitely can defend themselves. Try to get into a wasp nest or catch it and you will find out! This is especially true with the red ones, because they are what I call “community” wasps that create huge, round nests and organize themselves into huge families.
If you google “red wasp”, chances are you probably know how the nests usually look: like a big textured ball or a hemisphere. The material for their construction is usually a dry wood. The wasp bites off a piece of wood and thoroughly chews it with its surprisingly strong jaws, mixing it up with its saliva. The creation process resembles mixing of cement with water. When the material is ready the mother wasp creates a single brood cell and connects it to a tree, a wall or a substrate and continues to build more cells, interconnecting them in a hexagonal pattern. When the nest is ready and the material is dried down it looks like a super thin paper.
After the nest is ready the female wasp lays the egg in each brood cell and starts feeding them when they hatch. The baby wasp, larvae, is being fed through a progressive provisioning. The mother wasp thoroughly chews the flesh of the insects that she brings and feeds it to each larva. Part of larva ration is also honey. Nutrition factor plays a huge role in what kind of wasp the larva turns up to be – either it would be another working wasp or could become another “foundress”. Male wasps are usually born to just help females reproduce and then die. When the working wasps grow up they immediately join their mother in construction work that she has started and also help her provide for the new generation of larva. The nest is getting bigger and if conditions allow the wasps surrounds it with several layers of sturdy walls.
If you take the old wasp nest and look at it you will see how much of its structure actually resembles a carton that you can separate in many different layers of celluloid. Some of the red wasps do not build their nest initially but rather take over the other nest that is already built by a different family. It is quite a remarkably violent attempt and usually looks like a war. In many other cases the foundress would choose a different way to build – find a close relative nest and build one right next to it. In some instances instead of building a new adjacent nest the red wasp will just join a relative nest under the foundress subordination. They start working as supporting units at that point.
The red wasp usually start building the nest as early as April and after the initial build it takes about two months for the first worker generation to appear. They start to expand on the nest build and provide food and support for brood. It is very interesting that after the first generation emerges the mother red wasp drives the initial females who helped her build the nest out of it and they have to either build a new one late in the season or take over some other one.
How to Get Rid of Wasps
If you’re facing an existing wasp’s nest, it’s important to note that the best time to deal with it would be at night, as the female worker wasps tend to be away during the day, only returning home in the evenings. Nighttime is also when the aggression level of the red wasp is at its lowest, reducing your chances of being stung or attacked.
One of the most popular and effective methods as far as how to get rid of wasps is to treat the nest with an aerosol insect killer made especially for treating a wasp infestation. These wasp killer aerosols are fast-acting and capable of shooting tough insecticide poisons up to 20 feet away, allowing you to keep a safe distance while you deal with the issue at hand.
Wait until you’re sure all the wasps are dead and then be sure to remove the nest from the location. Otherwise, you run the risk of having other wasps simply move right in to replace the ones you just killed. Always use caution during nest removal just in case one or two of the wasps are still alive.
How to Prevent Red Wasp Infestation
You’ll also want to make sure you take wasp control steps to ensure the wasps don’t come back. Wasps are drawn to food left out in open containers and in trash bins. Avoid leaving food containers open out of doors in spring and summer when wasps are out and about. Also be sure to keep garbage cans tightly sealed at all times. Try to seal off openings to your home and garage to the best of your ability as well. Just a few simple measures like these can make a huge difference when it comes to dealing with wasps for sure.