If you swat the stinging insect, it could be dangerous that paper wasps may call other colony members using alarm pheromones or chemical messages. It will result in a group attack.

Summer is when we encounter a lot of bees, wasps, and other flying insects. It is the best time for pests to reproduce and grow. Paper wasps are no different. They are social insects that live in colonies. In North America alone, there are more than 300 species of paper wasps. This number increases up to 1,100 worldwide.

Now the question arises, should we be scared of paper wasps? Are these paper wasps dangerous?

Before you get panicked by the flying insect with yellow markings you have seen in the garden or yard, let us start the discussion.

What do paper wasps look like?

Paper wasps generally have slender bodies with yellow markings. They have black wings. These social wasps are about 3/4th to 1 inch in length. The queen wasp is a little bigger. Paper wasps have a stinger at the rear end, like other bees and wasps of Illinois. Their color may vary from species to species.

The body structure of a paper wasp

Where do paper wasps nest?

Paper wasps, often known as umbrella wasps in North America, make their nest close to human shelters. You may often find a nest in areas like the eaves, cracks, and crevices of homes, branches of a tree, the end of an open pipe, or on an old clothesline. They collect fibers from dead wood and plant stems that they chew with saliva to turn into a paper-like product. They use this material to build the nest with grey or brown materials that look like paper.

What does paper wasp feed?

Adult paper wasps, like other wasp species, feed on nectar. Hence, they play an important role in pollination. The larvae feed on other insects. The workers collect various insects and caterpillars and serve the larvae in the colony. This way, they keep good control of other insects on your property.

The life cycle of paper wasps

The life cycle of a paper wasp colony lasts one season a year. It starts in early spring when the queens select a place for nesting. When they find a safe place to build nests, it starts building and laying eggs for the first generation of wasps. When these larvae grow from these eggs, they become the workers who further extend the nest and collect food. Multiple queens may help each other build the nest, but by late summer, there is only one queen in the nest.

The colony keeps growing in this manner until winter arrives. Paper wasps, like other wasps, can not live in cold winters. The colony produces males and new queens by late summer and fall. After that, they abandon the nest and fly away. The males and worker wasps die due to cold weather. However, the queen looks for a safe place and hibernates throughout the winter. After overwintering, the queen starts the nest in the spring and lays eggs. This cycle takes place every year.

What does the presence of paper wasp nests indicate?

If you have found a paper wasp nest on your property, often it is because food is abundant for them. Their presence is a good signal for your garden. On the other hand, it indicates the presence of other pests on your property. It is because paper wasp larvae survive, eating other insects such as caterpillars. So, it is time to consult a pest control service professional for a 360-degree solution.

Paper wasp's presence indicates the presence of other pests around

Do paper wasps sting?

Paper wasps have a stinger at the rear. However, unlike other stinging wasps, they are not aggressive. However, if you threaten their nests, paper wasps will sting to defend their nests. They attack in a group, and it can be a painful experience.

Do paper wasps leave a stinger?

Like the majority of wasp species, this stinging insect also does not leave the stinger. That is why paper wasps sting several times, which increases the pain intensity of a sting that can cause dangerous conditions.

What attracts paper wasps?

Paper wasps are attracted to flowers, sweet smells, and other elements that resemble their food. Therefore, to avoid these stinging insects, do not wear flower-patterned clothes, and do not use sweet-smelling perfumes.

Are paper wasp stings dangerous?

Paper wasps stings can be dangerous depending on the intensity of the attack. People who are allergic to wasp venom are at very high risk and should take proper precautions.

Paper wasp sting on a human shoulder can be dangerous

How bad are paper wasps stings?

If you stay away from their nests, paper wasps will not attack you. It is very unlikely that it will attack you while forging or food. The only danger is when they feel their nest is in danger. Any activity around paper wasp nests can threaten the nests resulting in an attack.

A paper wasp sting is generally painful. However, if you have an allergy to wasp venoms, it may give you mild to severe allergic reactions. A group attack may be fatal and require immediate medical support.

How long do paper wasp stings last?

A paper wasp sting lasts 2 to 7 days. The time may vary from person to person depending on their body response. A severe attack may last relatively longer.

What do you do when paper wasps sting you?

If you threatened a wasp accidentally while it was foraging for food, it may sting you. In such a situation, do not panic or swat the wasp. If you swat the stinging insect, it could be dangerous that paper wasps may call other colony members using alarm pheromones or chemical messages. It will result in a group attack.

If it stung you, stay calm and get the wasp off your skin without causing any harm. And then, get far away from that place to avoid any possibility of a group attack.

Are paper wasps and hornets the same?

Paper wasps and hornets both make their nest out of the grey or brown color papery pulp. Though these stinging species share many similarities, there are differences as well. Their similarities often bring confusion to many, but both of them are considered to be different wasps.

The difference between paper wasps and hornets

One big difference is that paper wasps build their nest much higher from the ground, while many species of hornets build their nests underground.

Should I consider coexisting with paper wasps?

Yes, you can consider coexisting with paper wasp nests on your property. There is no direct threat from paper wasps as they are not invasive. Also, they are not aggressive wasps. They will cause no harm to you most of the time. It can be a complete peaceful coexistence without any mutual threat.

Nevertheless, it should be taken under consideration only when there are no children and wasp venom allergic people at home. Otherwise, control the pest by taking the required measures.

Are wasps, paper wasps, or yellow jackets good for anything?

Wasps, paper wasps, and yellow jackets play a crucial role in the ecosystem. They help your garden to bloom, help the crops in pollination. They also control a variety of pest insects in and around your home. Hence they are considered beneficial to people.

Should I kill a paper wasp nest?

Did you see any paper wasps flying in and around your home? If yes, look for the possible places they may build a nest in your property. One should check the eaves of their homes, branches of trees, ends of open pipes, and other possible locations. If you find their nest in a place that has low human activity, you can stay worry-free. Avoid getting close to them, and let them control other pest populations on your property.

However, if any paper wasp nests are in a busy place, it is advised to have them cleared. Knowing how to get rid of paper wasps can bring good. If anyone in your home is allergic to wasp venom, do not delay much in removing the paper wasps nest from your property to avoid any dangerous circumstances. Take the help of professional service providers for safety purposes.

How to prevent paper wasp nests on my property?

Prevent paper wasps building nests on your property would be easier than removing a fully grown nest. The easiest way to do so is to take a 360-degree investigation into your property. Do it in the spring season of the year. Check in the eaves, cracks, and crevices properly. And if at a very early stage, you find a nest, you can get rid of the paper wasp nest by yourself. Take a long shaft or broom and wipe out the nest. It will discourage the queen and will force her to select a different location for nesting.

A long broom to wipe out the nest of wasp that brings dangerous sting.

How do I prevent paper wasps from entering my home?

Unsealed vents, torn screens, window cracks, and open dampers may serve as an entrance for paper wasps inside your home. To stop this unwanted guest, repair the cracks and seal pack your home.

How do I get rid of paper wasps nests?

If the nest is very close to your home, or anyone in your family is allergic to wasp venoms, treat the nest before any accident occurs. If the nest is at an early stage, you can do it yourself with proper safety measures. However, if the nest is grown in size and number of wasps, you should take the help of professional wasp exterminators.

Should I use wasp spray on the paper wasp nest?

One should avoid using chemical pesticides for any pests. It should be the last resort to control wasp infestation. Likewise, just like how to get rid of cicada killers, always try to get rid of pest infestation by other methods instead of going for wasp sprays. It is way easier to treat the paper wasp nest with pest control experts.

An all-rights reserved company, A.N.T. PEST CONTROL NEW LENOX, can keep away these unwanted guests from your property at ease. It will also take care of other pests on your property, like yellow jackets, ants, carpet beetles, any insects, and more, for your safety and convenience.

Contact Us

1200 S Cedar Rd #2D/E
New Lenox, IL 60451


Email Us

to top