With thousands of members in a nest, yellow jackets live together in colonies. Where drones AKA the males do not possess a stinger, the females do have a stinger and will sting repeatedly. Their diet consists of insects in addition to nectar and pollen. The yellow jackets are bee-sized wasps and have a yellow banding around the abdomen along with black with yellow markings on the front of the head with a face that is primarily yellow with dark eyes. When rested, the front wings are folded lengthwise and the antennae are fairly large. The yellow jacket wasps are sometimes mistaken for bees and hornets due to their size, shape and coloratio,n and though their resemblance to wasps is uncanny, they have a much bigger head. With this in mind, we at A-Tex Pest Management would like to elaborate on the fundamentals concerning yellow jackets.
Where Do Yellow Jackets Nest & What Do They Eat for Food?
Because they are highly attracted to meats and sweets, they are frequent party crashes to picnics at the park and BBQs in the yard. Though found all over the world, yellow jackets are highly concentrated in the southeastern United States. They will mainly feed on other insects, such as bees and flies, but will also include fruits, carrion, as well as the nectar of flowers in their diet. Within a mile of a nest is their hunting grounds and where they tend to forage. To support the colony, the queen, drones and workers all have their specific tasks. The workers perform of an array of tasks to operate and maintain the nest, the male drones are ready to fertilize a receptive queen, where they queen will lay hundreds of eggs.
How Serious is a Yellow Jacket Sting?
Since their primary objective is to protect the wasp nest and queen, anyone within a few feet on approach will aggressively be attacked by the yellow jacket wasps. Yellow jackets will then inject a venomous fluid under the skin of the victim they sting. Their stingers are smooth to make them capable of delivering repeated stings that are very painful. Getting stung by a contaminated yellow jacket stinger can cause infections or blood poisoning. Besides the pain and possible allergic reactions, a yellow jacket sting can develop into other severe medical conditions.
Where Do Yellow Jackets Build Nests?
Mixed with saliva, the yellow jacket queen collects wood fibers and chewed fibers to make her nest in the spring. Resembling paper-looking materials, the single queen, called the foundress will build the initial nest. Within the construction of the nest, there are multiple layers of paper cells that look like the honeybee’s comb. In old burrows underground is where Yellow Jackets will build their nest but they also utilize wood piles, dense vegetation (like Italian cypress and ivy), utility vaults, and other enclosed spaces.
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Since yellow jacket wasps are fairly dangerous as they deliver multiple and painful stings, there venom can cause ranging allergic reactions. To optimize safety and maximize efficiency, it is in your better interest to hire a professional to remove the yellow jacket’s nest from your property. With the expertise and training of the specialists at A-Tex Pest Management, you can count on us to ensure the yellow jackets are efficiently removed.