paper wasps on their nest

Paper Wasps

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What do paper wasps look like?

Growing up to about an inch in length, paper wasps are often identified by their slender, elongated bodies that are less robust than other wasp species. Although color varies, these stinging insects often have a combination of black, brown, and yellow markings. Their transparent wings may have a smoky or brownish tint and their long legs dangle down as they fly. 

paper wasp nest and single wasp

When are paper wasps most active?

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How do paper wasps build their nests?

In order to build their nests, paper wasps chew wood fibers and then mix them with their saliva to create a paper-like/pulpy substance. They then fashion this material into umbrella-shaped nests. 

Where do paper wasps build nests?

Paper wasps construct their nests in protected areas such as in shrubs, on tree branches, on porch ceilings, under decks, joists, and railings, as well as under eaves and overhangs, attic rafters, and on window and door frames. 

Are paper wasps aggressive?

Although they are less aggressive than yellow jackets, paper wasps can be aggressive if their nests are threatened.

Can paper wasps sting?

They certainly can and will do so if they are threatened. What’s more, paper wasps have the ability to sting multiple times and their stings can be painful.

Are paper wasps dangerous?

Although most people will only experience pain, redness, and swelling at the sting site, there are individuals who are allergic to wasp stings and may experience more severe symptoms and even life-threatening reactions. 

Are paper wasps attracted to certain scents?

Paper wasps are attracted to sweet scents, especially in the late summer and early fall when their dietary needs change from protein-rich insects to sugary substances. 

What do paper wasps eat?

Depending on the life stage, paper wasps will feed on insects, nectar, honeydew, and ripe fruit. Of course, they may turn to sugary drinks and food that are available to them when their usual food sources become harder to find.

Are paper wasps beneficial?

Paper wasps can be beneficial when they feed on insects. They also assist in pollination. 

What should I do if I find a paper wasp near my home?

If you’ve found a paper wasp in, on, or near your home, we highly recommend avoiding that area and not disturbing the nest. Rather than attempt to dislodge the paper wasp nest on your own, contact a pest control company for help. 

How do I get rid of paper wasps?

For help getting rid of paper wasps that are nesting too close to your home or business, contact Harris Pest Control right away. Offering free pest inspections, our local team of pest control experts will identify the stinging insect, assess the severity of the problem, and with the proper equipment, eliminate the threat. If you’re a property owner in the Pee Dee or Grand Strand regions of South Carolina, you can count on our family owned and operated pest control company to eliminate your paper wasp problem! 

How can I prevent paper wasps from nesting on my property?

To prevent paper wasps from nesting around your home or building, you’ll need to make your property less attractive to these stinging insects. Here are a few prevention tips to deter these pests:

  • Seal all openings to keep paper wasps out
  • Replace damage siding
  • Trim trees, shrubs, and other vegetation around your home
  • Keep garbage cans sealed
  • Eliminate other food sources on your property
  • Keep doors shut 
  • Repair or replace torn window screens
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