Identifying Hornet & Yellow Jacket Nests and Removing Them

yellow jacket beeHornets are wasps and are closely related to yellow jackets. There are about twenty different species of hornets and most of them live in tropical Asia. However, hornets are also found in Europe, Africa, and North America. They are commonly found on trees and are considered a tree-nesting wasps. They grow ¾ inch long and are recognized because of their color pattern. Their head, thorax, abdomen, and antenna are black and white and their wings smoky.

What Do Hornets Nests Look Like?

The hornet’s nest is a captivating masterpiece as they can construct large, football-shaped nests that are made from wood that they strip from fence panels, garden sheds, and the like. Hornets nest are shaped like an inverted teardrop with tiny hole at the bottom. They are interwoven with branches and twigs, which makes the nest stronger and will not be destroyed by weather. The nest itself is made of hexagonal cells or cellular structures where her young ones will develop. For large nests, the walls may be two inches thick that makes a perfect protection from cold and heat.

How Do They Make Their Nest?

It starts with a single hornet, which is the queen. Her construction will begin during spring after she comes out from winter hibernation. She will need a suitable support that will consist of a window shutter, a tree branch, or a root for subterranean nests, and the pulp of the queen for support. Once the cellulose fibers dry, they will become a strong paper buttress that will start the creation of her nest.

Once she finds a perfect spot for a nest she will lay one egg within a cell and make her way out, constructing a comb. Queens dominate hornet hives since they are the only ones who can reproduce. The hornets that the queen reproduce are asexual female workers that perform important community duties.

After the first eggs turn into larvae, then become female adult hornets, they will take the responsibilities of nest building, gathering food, protecting the colony, and brood tending. The queen is still essential since she will still create queens and a few males. The male hornets only responsibility is to mate with queens. Once mating is done, the male will die, then  these fertilized queens will soon find a perfect place to hide for the winter. The rest of the colony together with the old queen will die also in the winter and their nest abandoned.

Nest Removal

Hornets are social insects, which means that they go together and live together in the same place. They are always protecting their hives from dangers. Once they sense any threats to their nest, they will attack any animals and humans who goes near their hive. The worse part with this attack is that they attack in hundreds. These insects are very sensitive, which makes anything unfamiliar to them as a threat to their safety. So, if you find hornet nests in your backyard, better remove them immediately especially if you have children who loves to play outside. Hornet nest removal can be a bit tricky especially if the nests are large enough, which makes the insects more dangerous. If you are allergic to wasp or bee stings, or if you do not have the right equipment to do the removal, do not attempt to get rid of the hornets’ nest yourself – call a professional instead.

Simple Steps to Removal

Have the following materials before starting the removal:

  • Prepare an insecticide or any poison that can eliminate hornets
  • Hedge clipper
  • Gloves to protect the hands
  • Goggles to protect the eyes
  • Protective suit with thick fiber to protect yourself from possible attack
  • Plastic bags or sacks

1. Wear your protective clothing before starting the removal

2. Wait until the sun sets down since hornets are lazy when the temperature is low

3. Place the sack directly below the nest or hive. Open it wide to catch the nest. It would be better if you have a partner who can help you seal the sack immediately it drops.

4. If the nest is hanging on a branch, cut the branch with the use of a hedge clippers to destroy it to fall into the sack.

5. If the hive is secured to your gutter or roof, your only choice is to break and destroy the hive. Make sure that there is smoke from where you stand so that they will not be able to see you, thus lessening the chances of attack, plus they will have a difficult time breathing.

Stop Them from Building

The first stages of their nest development may go unnoticed because they are mostly on trees where leaves are covering them, and it may be a bit late to recognize that they are there. The only time we may know that there is a hornet nest near our home is when the hive has grown big. The same goes with gutters and roofs. Keep in mind that hornets have habitual instincts. Those who have survived the winter may soon come back to their old  location and start building again although they will not go back to their old nest. Better change your environment by simply cutting the trees or repainting the house, which could somehow help in stopping them from nesting.

Let Horizon Pest Control help remove Hornet & Yellow Jacket Nests from your home. Click New Jersey Pest Control for more information.