Last month we took a call from a very distraught lady in St Albans who had unwittingly knocked down a wasp nest in her garage. The garage was used regularly but the wasp nest had gone unnoticed on the ceiling until she opened the door one day and knocked half of it to the ground.
Judging by the size of the wasp nest, we’d estimate that the queen had been building the nest for at least two to three months. And that meant a lot of wasps! Around 1,000 to 1,500 of them, in fact. Our customer had tried to sweep the nest away and unfortunately had been overcome by stinging wasps.
The average nest holds between 3,000 and 7,000 wasps in the peak of summer, so luckily the problem wasn’t as bad as it could have been. But we still deemed it a severe case as the customer had been stung, and we knew that wasps would be returning from hunting to a nest that was no longer there to feed the grubs.
One of our technicians was in the area, and within 20 minutes of the call he was with the customer. His priority was to treat the nest with a fast-acting insecticide. Once the threat from the nest had been neutralised, his next job was to deal with the return of the hunter wasps so he set up a wasp trap to attract the returning wasps. Before leaving, he checked the inside of the garage to ensure that none of the nest was still attached to the ceiling.
The happy customer promptly booked us to return in the spring to install a wasp trap so she wouldn’t have to deal with the problem again.
It was great to be able to deal with this issue so speedily. As soon as the call came in our office manager immediately prioritised the job and quickly found and diverted the closest technician. Twenty minutes later, he was with the customer and had the situation under control.
Don’t get stung by wasps
We always recommend people call a professional pest control company if they have wasps. Trying to remove a wasp nest can be dangerous when you’re dealing with thousands of angry wasps – and those wasps will be very angry if you start interfering with them. They will become aggressive and sting you as they defend themselves against attack.
If you do get stung by a wasp, clean the area thoroughly with soap and water then apply a cold flannel to the area for at least 10 minutes to help reduce swelling and pain. Raising the affected area may also help with swelling. Remember that a wasp sting can cause an allergic reaction in some people – so if you experience dizziness, difficulty breathing or have a swollen face or mouth call for an ambulance straight away.