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Wasps / Bees

Wasps tend to be yellow with black stripes or black. They have long slender bodies and make exposed paper cone nests, usually under eves or in light fixtures out of the way of the weather. They can be seen foraging for food on warm summer days and generally will not sting unless provoked or if the nest is threatened. When they do sting, it can be multiple times without causing damage to their bodies.


Yellow jackets are shorter and wider than wasps. They are similar in color to wasps with the yellow and black stripes. They are much more aggressive when provoked but generally will not sting unless attacked or the nest is threatened. They form the more traditional closed paper nests which can grow to the size of a basketball toward the end of the summer. They may also nest in the ground or in wall voids and hollow trees. If the nest is disturbed, they will aggressively attack. Before cutting grass or clearing brush, take a minute to observe any activity with yellow jackets darting in and out of an area where a nest is present.


Hornets are the largest of the stinging insects found in this area. Mostly black, with yellow markings, the Bald-faced Hornet will create paper cone closed nests in trees, bushes and under eves. These nests can grow to over 3ft tall. They can be very aggressive if the nest is threatened.


Cicada Killers are large yellow and black insects that dig singular nests in the ground. It is common to find up to a dozen nests in one area. By mid-summer, lawns can be dotted with these nests. Their damage is limited to digging up lawns, leaving small piles of dirt next to their holes. They are aggressive and will fly close to anyone walking near their nests. However, they do not sting. As the name implies, they eat cicadas. They can be seen dragging cicadas back to their burrows.


Bees come in many varieties. Bumble bees are the most common bee to our area. They are furry, with black and yellow coloration. They nest in wall voids, under leaf piles or in hollow trees. Honey bees are crucial to the environment and must not be disturbed. If a nest absolutely has to be removed, we should be called to remove the nest and move it to a safe place where it can continue to thrive. NPWC can assess what kind of bee is causing the nuisance and the best way to solve problem.

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