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How to Get Rid of Yellow Jacket Nest

You may be overwhelmed and want to know how to get rid of yellow jacket nest, knowing that they are aggressive creatures. If you think they are mild and timid like honey bees or wasps, then you haven’t known the real nature of yellow jacket. And before you do something aggressive or even harmful (to the environment, your property, or yourself), it is better to understand them thoroughly so you won’t make any silly mistakes.


What Is Yellow Jacket?

Often known as yellow jacket wasp, they are basically insects – included in wasp family. They have the distinctive and signature physical appearance of yellow and black thorax and head. They can create infestation issue in no time. Once you spot them in your garden, then be ready for a huge (and complex) infestation issue.

The first thing to do in knowing how to get rid of yellow jacket nest is to make sure that what you have is yellow jacket, not the honey bee. They share almost similar appearance and look, so it is only natural if people often mistake them. For a starter, honey bees are bigger with hair on their abdominal area. The stingers of the yellow jackets are smoother, meaning that they can sting repeatedly. Honey bees only sting once. The sting itself isn’t dangerous, but the effect can be. For people with allergies, the sting can result in dangerous effects.

Yellow jackets have wider diet when compared to honey bees – as they prefer flowers nectar and sugary foods. But they can also eat leftover picnic food, meat, and even garbage. Because of these diets, yellow jackets are often attracted to human population and habitation. What we throw away and consume are their food source.

Yellow Jacket
Yellow Jacket


When you spot their nest, especially within the early form or stage, it’s better to remove it quickly and safely as fast as you can. Yellow jackets are aggressive to those rattling their nest, and the workers will immediately swarm and sting the intruders. So, when you see a yellow jacket nest in the wall or on the tree, find out the most effective way to get rid of it. Keep in mind that this insect-like to have multiple colonies when they infest into a property or residence.

They like dark and secluded areas within a construction – usually within the house’s foundation or walls. It will make their nests difficult to see or spot. They also like building their nests under debris or underground within secluded areas. They make sure that their homes are protected from intrusion and elements.


Their common hiding places include:

  • Tree base
  • Areas under the house’s porches or steps
  • Rot and old logs
  • Holes or cracks in the pavement or ground


The underground nest is pretty fragile because it can be disturbed by footsteps vibrations, bouncing balls, and also power mowers. Read Also: How to Get Rid of Earwigs


Dealing with Yellow Jacket Sting – and Its Treatment

Keep in mind that their stings are pretty painful. A single creature can sting you several times, which makes it more dreadful. If you have been stung before and you have developed allergic reactions  (usually related to intense swelling, hives, or difficulty in breathing), you need to consult your doctor. You can also use the EpiPen, which can be easily carried around. People who are aware of their condition related to bee stings usually have an EpiPen ready.


Yellow Jacket Sting
Yellow Jacket Sting


But if you don’t have such symptoms, then you can do the following things:

  • Wash it. Use soapy water to wash the affected site. This action will remove the venom
  • Apply cold compress. You simply need to apply the cold compress (like an ice pack or frozen bean bag or even cold washcloth) to the affected spot.
  • Take Antihistamines. You can take this to avoid mild reactions or swelling
  • Notify the people around you. You want them to watch and observe you, especially if you develop hives or difficulty in breathing
  • Get medical help. If things get worse, you need to get medical help as soon as possible.


What if you are outdoor (having a picnic, for instance) and there is a swarm of yellow jackets around you? The first thing that you need to do is to remain calm. Remember, they are aggressive when they feel that their home is being attacked. Gather all of your belongings (still in calm manner but quickly) and then go indoors. Make sure that you don’t let them go inside with you. Watch where they are going after they are done eating, then you can determine the possible location of their nest. You can check for it later after the sun has set because dusk is the time when they aren’t active. It increases your chances to inspect their nest and existence without being harmed.


How to Get Rid of Yellow Jacket Nest

How to Get Rid of Yellow Jacket Nest
How to Get Rid of Yellow Jacket Nest


  • Bug Spray

You can always use a bug spray to get rid of the insects. You may want to choose products containing active ingredients like diazinon, tetramethrin, acephate, and carbaryl. Make sure you find a safe place where you can shelter yourself from both the spray and also the yellow jackets. Take a good distance and then blast the spray off at the nest. The area must be cleared out from people and pets until the spray has dried out. Be prepared that the sprays will harm and damage the plants. Some products are claimed to be non-toxic but there is always risk with it. So, always clear out the areas.


Consider the possibility of you being surrounded by the insects and would be probably stung by the insects. That’s why you need to come up with a solid strategy, such as finding a safe place to hide. Always wear protective gear and clothes, consisting of masks, hats, long sleeves, and anything that can cover the face and skin.


  • Mint Oil

How to get rid of yellow jackets naturally? You can always use the mint oil. It is harmful to wasps. Mix the mint oil with hot water and have it inside a spray bottle. You want to spray the nest after the sun has set. The spray should mist enough so it can cover the entire nest – as well as the loose insect. Make sure that you do it within a safe distance.


  • Water and Soap Mix

You can mix water and peppermint castile soap. If you don’t have this kind of soap, using the regular liquid laundry detergent or liquid dish soap. This mixture is efficient for underground nest. Pour the mix directly with either a hose having a spray attachment or a watering can with long nozzle. Pour boiling water to the hole right away after you pour the mix. Leave the premise right away.


  • Insecticidal Dust

There is also a product consisting of such a dust, generally consisting active ingredients of carbaryl or chlorpyrifos. Put a cup on a stick (it should be 3 feet to 4 feet in length) and tape it. Put the dust inside it. You should seek the entrance hole and beam it (with your flashlight). Stand back (as far as you can) and tip it over so the dust will be pouring into the hole. You may want use a window screen to cover the hole. Use a rock to hold the screen securely. Leave the area right away. This treatment is considered efficient because the yellow jackets will take the dust deeper into their nests.


  • Hire a Pro

This should be the last resort if all of your attempts don’t work. Hiring a professional pest control service may cost you extra, but it is worth the spending. Make sure that you hire a licensed and certified service with service guarantee so you can gain the best benefits.


Several Considerations

yellow jacket nest in ground
yellow jacket nest in ground


There are several considerations that you need to make when you want to deal with how to get rid of yellow jacket nest.

  • If you are allergic to the sting, DON’T do the removal on your own. Have someone else do it for you
  • Always wear protective clothing or gear, even when you do it at night. You don’t want the risk of being stung or whatsoever
  • When you are using the insecticidal dust, one time may not be enough. The treatment requires at least several treatments (generally around two or three) and it also takes time to efficiently work
  • If you are using the dust and you secure the hole with a window screen, be extra careful when you have the second or the third treatment. Make sure that you are fully covered from the bottom up, and develop a safety strategy in case they decide to attack you and swarm you up
  • Check your local state public health agencies. Some of them may offer free service for vector and mosquito control – meaning that they can help you remove the nests without costing you anything.


Preventive Actions

If you don’t want the yellow jackets to come to your property and build nests, there are several preventive measurements that you can do.

  • You need to fill animal burrows or holes with dirt. Make sure to fil it up.
  • If there is any other structure in your property, check for its condition. You should repair holes (especially on the exterior walls). Make sure all windows and vents are equipped with tight-fitting screens without the slightest small or cracks. Seal all the existing cracks, holes, or crevices. You don’t want them to even enter your house and build a nest there!
  • Make sure that your trash bin has a lid and it should be tight-fitting. Don’t forget to apply yellow jacket repellent on the inside and also outside surface
  • You can use a plastic sheet and tape to seal the chimney flu temporarily, especially when it is not being used.
  • Cut the yellow jackets from their food source. It means that you shouldn’t leave any leftover food outside and make sure that all of your garbage is put in a tight-lid bin.
  • Regularly check your property for any sign of nest – and its early existence.

If you are able to do these things, you won’t even have to learn about how to get rid of yellow jacket nest.

Those are some possible methods and treatments to deal with the yellow jackets. They may be a handful, but if you know how to get rid of yellow jacket nest effectively, you should be able to overcome it.

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