Residential Pest Control / Commercial Pest Control
Service to Dallas / Ft. Worth
TPCL # 13842
Bee & Wasp Control
Buzz Kill Pest Control knows that wasps and bees are not only a nuisance but can be a danger around your home or office. There are several types of bees and wasps that we deal with in the Dallas Fort Worth area and many of them are aggressive in nature and often sting as a way to protect their colonies, that is why it is important to use a professional pest management company when dealing with these types of flying insects.
Buzz Kill Pest Control will use the latest in technology and treatment options to rid your property of the initial infestation, and can provide an ongoing service to help protect you from future infestations of wasps or bees. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment for a FREE ESTIMATE.
Cicada Killer, Sphecius speciosus (Drury)
Description: These wasps reach up to 1-½ inch in length. Except for a rusty red head and thorax, they are overall black or rusty in color, with yellow band markings on the abdominal segments. They have russet colored wings.
Habitat, Food Source(s): Mouthparts are for chewing. Cicada killers nest in sandy areas; digging burrows about 6 inches deep before turning and extending another 6 or more inches. Tunnels may be branched and end in one or more globular cells. Females are solitary, each provisioning their own nests even though they appear to be nesting in a common area. Cicada killers are active during July and August, coinciding with the appearance of cicadas, which they attack, sting and paralyze. They then fly, glide or drag the cicadas back to their nests, provisioning the cells in their burrows. Larvae feed only on cicadas, and the adult will feed on flower nectar.
Stings and Concerns: One of the largest wasps encountered; although females are capable of stinging, they are rarely aggressive towards man or animals; males are incapable of stinging, but can be more aggressive; large numbers of females nesting in localized areas such as sandy embankments can be a nuisance and cause concern because of their large size, low flight and nesting activities; nest entrances are often accompanied by a pile of soil excavated from the burrow that may disturb turfgrass.
Mud daubers, Chalybion, Sceliphron and other genera
Description: Adult mud daubers are 3/4 to 1 inch long wasps, varying in color by species from dull black to black with bright yellow markings to iridescent blue-black. The best identifying feature is the longer, narrow "waist" (petiole - the section between the thorax and abdomen).
Habitat, Food Source(s), Damage: Mud daubers (Sphecidae) build small nests of mud under overhangs like eaves of buildings. The pipe organ mud dauber, Trypoxylon politum (Say) mud nests of long parallel tubes and provision their nests with spiders. The black and yellow mud dauber, Sceliphron caementarium (Drury), constructs a globular nest containing one cell to several cells, also provisioned with paralyzed spiders. Adults are commonly seen in wet spots, balls of mud for building their nests. The iridescent blue mud dauber, Chalybion californicum (Saussure), takes over nests of the black and yellow mud dauber. It provisions its nest mostly with black widow spiders.
Stings and Concerns: Mud daubers (Sphecidae) and potter or mason wasps (Eumeninae) are solitary wasp species; although capable of stinging, they are rarely aggressive. Mud dauber nests can be a nuisance in garages, under eaves and in other buildings.
Bumble bee, Bombus sp.
Description: Bumble bees are easily recognized, being large (3/4 inch long) with black and yellow or orangish hair patterns on their abdomens. Queens and workers have pollen baskets on their hind legs. Bumble bees can be distinguished from carpenter bees because of the presence of orangeish or yellow hair patterns on the upper surface of the abdomen on the honey bee. Some members of bumble bees (Subfamily Bombinae) in the genus, Psithyrus, are parasites of bumble bees, feeding on larvae.
Habitat, Food Source(s), Damage: Nesting sites include clumps of dry grass, old bird nests, abandoned rodent burrows, old mattresses, car cushions or even in or under old abandoned buildings. Most colonies contain a few hundred bees although thriving colonies can contain up to 2,000 bees. Nests may be up to 12 inches in diameter and may have several entrances. Foraging worker bees use long tongues to pollinate clovers and other flowers, collecting pollen and nectar that they bring back to the hive to feed to the colony. Honey is stored in the nest. Foraging activities occur only during the daylight hours.
Stings and Concerns: Important pollinators; females are capable of stinging. They can be aggressive around nesting sites but they are rarely aggressive during foraging activities; occasionally a problem when their nest is located next to a building or walkway.
Paper wasp, Polistes sp.
Description: Paper wasps are 3/4 to 1 inch long, slender, narrow-waisted wasps with smoky black wings that are folded lengthwise when at rest. Body coloration varies with species: Polistes exclamans is brown with yellow markings on the head, thorax and bands on the abdomen; Polistes carolina is overall reddish-brown.
Paper wasps should not be confused with yellowjackets (Vespula squamosa Drury) and baldfaced hornets (Dolichovespa maculata (Linnaeus)). Paper wasp nests are open and cells are not covered with a cap (in an envelope).
Habitat, Food Source(s), Damage: Mouthparts are for chewing. Nests are built from wood fiber collected from posts and occasionally from live plant stems, causing some plant damage. This fiber is chewed and formed into a single paper-like comb of hexagonal cells. Nests are oriented downward and are suspended by a single filament. Mature nests contain up to 200 cells. Paper wasps prey on insects such as caterpillars, flies and beetle larvae which they feed to larvae. They actively forage during the day and all colony members rest on the nest at night.
Wasps can be found on flowers, particularly from goldenrod in late fall. Paper wasp nests can be dislodged from eaves using sprays of high pressure water from a good distance, taking precautions not to allow wasps to attack nearby people or pets. Wasps will eventually abandon the nest.
Stings and Concerns: Nests commonly occur around the home underneath eaves, in or on structures and plants; wasps attack when the nest is disturbed and each can sting repeatedly; stings typically cause localized pain and swelling, but in sensitive individuals or when many stings occur (as with most arthropod stings) whole body (systemic) effects can occur including allergic reactions that may result in death; males are incapable of stinging because the stinger on the females is a modified egg-laying structure (ovipositor) and it is not present in males; wasps feed on insects, including caterpillar pests, and thus are considered to be beneficial insects by many gardeners.
Southern yellowjacket, Vespula squamosa (Drury)
Description: Workers are about 1/2 inch long, with clear wings. The body is black with yellow characteristic markings on the head, thorax and abdomen. The body is not hairy.
Other common Texas "wasps" include: the eastern yellowjacket, Vespula maculifrons (Buysson) (generally found in eastern Texas), paper wasps (such as Polistes carolina), hornets (such as the baldfaced hornet, Dolichovespula maculata), the cicada killer wasp (Sphecius speciosus), and mud daubers (such as Chalybion californicus).
Habitat, Food Source(s), Damage: Mouthparts are for chewing. Colonies, constructed out of chewed vegetable fiber that forms paper carton, occur in disturbed habitats such as yards and roadsides. Nests are most often underground, but occasionally are found in wall voids and indoors. In Texas, some colonies can survive for several years and continue to grow. Colonies in Texas and other southern states have been reported that are 6 ft across. In exposed and underground sites, nests are spherical and consists of a number of round combs, attached one below another, and surrounded by a many-layered outer cover. Worker wasps leave the nest and seek protein sources such as live insects and animal carcasses, foraging around picnic tables, garbage cans and other locations. They do not make nor store honey.
Stings and Concerns: Venomous, stinging social insect, that is abundant in urban areas; when nests are disturbed, defending worker wasps can inflict multiple stings; foraging worker wasps may be a nuisance at picnics and other outdoor events.
*Information provided by the Texas Cooperative Extension, Texas A&M University Systems
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Fort worth: 817-812-BUZZ (2899)
Dallas: 214-295-OUCH (8789)
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