Post-Peak Pest Control

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soulsurfersteph's picture
soulsurfersteph
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 16 2010
Posts: 204
Post-Peak Pest Control

This is my first spring in Austin and the apartment that I am renting has been inundated by wasps. They have been building little nests on people's balconies and on the landings next to the front door. (Great!) I have gotten some of those 25-foot spray nest killers, but also wanted to find some more "natural" remedies that did not involve chemicals. (Don't get me wrong, I have no problem using chemicals to kill nasty stinging flying things, but who knows if these will be available in the future.)

I talked to the pest control guy here and he said hot water and a little bit of dish soap will also kill wasps on contact - though I haven't tried this. Mostly, I am working on prevention.

I did some research on the Internet and found a few "home remedies" -

1. One is to take a brown paper lunch bag and fill it up with newspaper, tie the end and then hang it upside down so it looks like a hornet's nest. This supposedly works as a wasp scarecrow. So far, there have not been any new nests built on my deck or landing since I put these up but it hasn't even been a week so we'll see.

2. I am also trying a wasp repellant - a solution of water in a spray bottle with two tbps of cayenne pepper sauce and a few drops of dish soap. Sprayed this over the areas they were building.

3. Ivory soap has been used to coat the underside of the door frame where my front door is. A wasp was building a nest right on the frame of my neighbor's door. Supposedly they will not build on soap.

So far, so good, though they still fly around the deck a bit. There seems to be a large nest in the eaves on the apartment across from mine and I keep telling the apartment managers this needs to be removed, but they seem to be dragging their feet on it. You know what, I don't care if there's a nest as long as it's not on my side and the wasps stay away from me! But probably best if this is removed...

Any other suggestions?

JAG's picture
JAG
Status: Diamond Member (Offline)
Joined: Oct 26 2008
Posts: 2492
Wasps

Thanks for this post SSS.

I also live in Tejas and the wasp population has been going exponential this spring. Everyday I have to remove 4-5 wasps from the house. I was starting to think Bernanke was "printing wasps" with QE2, lol. 

Thanks for the info....I'll give it a shot.

Jeff

soulsurfersteph's picture
soulsurfersteph
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 16 2010
Posts: 204
wasps!

Lucky me, my first year in Texas and the wasps are going nuts! Greaaat! :-P That's one thing I do miss about Los Angeles...other than a few killer bees here and there and some roaches, there aren't a lot of bugs. 

BTW, you can buy fake nests commercially - there are two that I've found and they are pretty cheap:





You can also get this one, which is nicer looking but does not do well in the rain. (Some folks shellac it with spray-on acrylic sealer)





I did just put another homemade fake nest up inside by my screen door because for some reason today there are a few wasps hanging out in there. I am worried about them entering the apartment, though the seal is pretty good. I'm now realizing that I did not treat the inside door runners with the cayenne pepper spray.



It seems the fake nests do cut down on the new nest building but it doesn't totally keep the wasps from flying around. Maybe the commercial ones are better - I haven't tried them yet.



PS I have also heard that wasps don't like the smell of mint and so some people spray a mint solution around. I haven't tried this one yet, since I was trying the pepper spray out first.
soulsurfersteph's picture
soulsurfersteph
Status: Silver Member (Offline)
Joined: Jun 16 2010
Posts: 204
Well...

Hmm. While the fake nests seem to help elsewhere, putting up a fake nest inside a patio door doesn't help once the wasps want to be there. Maybe it's because the fake nest was behind glass and looks different to them. But this one wasp is sure persisent today!

So I took the faux nest down because it just seemed to rile the wasp up a bit as he were getting stuck between the screen and the glass door. Fortunately, they don't seem to be able to come inside.

But apparently those fake nests do not work if there is an existing nest - the wasps will still go back to their nest on instinct. So you have to remove all nests in the vicinity for the fake nests to work.

I'm thinking this one wasp started building a little nest for himself in the patio door frame earlier today and he just keeps coming back to it. He's been flying back and forth all afternoon.

Tonight I'll go outside and spray the whole door with the toxic jet spray. :-P

 

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