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Stinging Insect Identification & Prevention

What are stinging insects?

Stinging insects use a stinger extending from their hind end to sting to either defend themselves or paralyze their insect prey. Stinging insects have wings but vary in appearance depending on their species.

The two most common stinging insects in our area are bald-faced hornets and yellow jackets.

Bald-faced hornets are large with black bodies. Their faces are mainly white.

Yellow jackets are a wasp species, and like other wasps, they have a hairless body and a defined waist. Yellow jackets have yellow and black striped patterns, and their long wings fold laterally against the body when at rest.

a wasp on a nest

Are stinging insects dangerous?

When a stinging insect stings, they inject venom. People allergic to their venom can experience symptoms like swelling at the sting site, swelling of limbs, intense, fiery pain, and some will experience difficulty breathing.

Unfortunately, stinging insects and people are most active outside at the same time of the year. When stinging insects are sharing your outdoor space, they put you and your family in harm's way every time you do simple things like taking out the trash, gardening or eating outside.

Why do I have a stinging insect problem?

In the fall, most wasp and hornet colonies die off; the queens are the only members of a colony that survive. In the spring, the queen will emerge from her overwintering spot to find a place to build a nest and create a new colony.

Unfortunately, our Maryland yards more often than not provide them with everything they need, including shelter, food, and water sources. Since stinging insects are outdoor pests, it is difficult to stop them from flying into our yards. Regular pest control services are the best way to find and remove a stinging insect nest before the colony becomes too large and puts you, your family, or your pets in significant danger.

Where will I find stinging insects?

Yellow jackets are ground nesters and place their nests under shrubs, porch steps, at the base of trees, or in the abandoned nests of small animals. Unfortunately, they also like to build their nests in wall voids of homes and other structures.

Many wasps and bald-faced hornets will build their nests up off the ground, placing them under overhangs, on tree branches, under roof eaves, and in the corners of windows or doors. They can also create their nests behind window shutters, siding, and around light fixtures.

How do I get rid of stinging insects?

Stinging insects are not pests you want to tango with; sharing your outdoor spaces with yellow jackets, bald-faced hornets, wasps, and other stinging insects is never a good idea. At Absolute Home and Pest Solutions, we want to help you safely remove stinging insects from your property and provide you with regular services that can prevent future issues with these dangerous pests.

With over 20 years of experience, we know that pest control doesn't have a one-size-fits-all solution, which is why we customize pest control plans for each of our customers! If you are concerned about stinging insects on your property in the Gaithersburg area, give us a call today; we are ready to assist you and remove these unwanted dangerous pests.

How can I prevent stinging insects in the future?

Use the following suggestion to help keep stinging insects from taking over your Maryland property:

  • Stop stinging insects from feeding on sweet liquids and proteins found in trash cans by always keeping lids on them.
  • Avoid attracting stinging insects to eating areas by keeping lids on drink containers and covering food. Bring leftover food into the house immediately after you finish eating.
  • Remove flowering vegetation from walkways, steps, and your home's entrances to help stop stinging insects from gathering in high-traffic areas.
  • Keep caps on chimneys, places mesh covers over vents, and seal openings in your home's exterior walls to keep stinging insects from finding their way into your home to nest.

For homeowners looking for the best protection against stinging insects and other common household pests, Absolute Home and Pest Solutions has all of your pest control answers! Call today to schedule an appointment or to learn more about our commercial pest control services.

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