There are many different flying insects that are often called “bees” and ” wasps”. Each of these insects has different behaviours, diets, and functions. Some of these pests are a protected species do to their beneficial behaviours in nature. In these instances it may be appropriate to call a bee keeper or your local health department for more information.
Common Name: Honey Bee
Scientific Name: Apis mellifera
Colour: variable but usually a shade of brown, black, or brown and yellow.
Physical Characteristics or Attributes: honeybees have dense here on the primal time and sparrows here on their abdomen. Often the abdomen appears banded. There are several different types of honeybees that are somewhat distinguishable by colour and size but they can inter breed.
Geographic Range: Honeybees are found in both the New World and the old world. Generally commercialised European honeybees in North America but the Africanised honeybee has also been introduced to these locations.
Habitat: hives are usually located in hollow trees, while voids, or some other sheltered area.
Diet: these bees sustain themselves mostly off of pollen and nectar.
Social Structure: honeybees are social insects. In the colony there are queens, males, and workers (non-reproductive females)
Life Span and Chronological Development: Queens lay eggs which hatch through four days later as larvae. These large they are fed by the worker bees and go through several instar stages before pupating. Future queens and drones (males) require a bigger cells to grow in and are much larger than the rest of the colony. Only one queen is usually present but if the new Queen ages or dies, or if the colony becomes too large then the workers use differential feeding to develop a Queen from the larva. These queens will leave their own colony with drones (they will meet with several) before forming a new colony. This is called swarming and is seen when swarms of bees fly together as they look for a new nest location. Queens live between 3 to 5 years, drones died before the winter and workers lived generally for a few months. A typical colony consists of between 20,000 to 90,000 individuals.
Interesting or Typical Behaviours: honeybees communicate with other bees and the highs using densities to show locations, distance, and direction. Honeybees also communicate with sound, Queen pheromone and alarm pheromone. These bees are considered to be beneficial insects. They do pose some risk to humans as they sting. This sting is fatal to the bee and each bee can only sting once. Honeybees staying defensively meaning only when they or their nest are threatened.
Evidence of Infestation: infestations can be seen in swarming behaviour and in the locating of an already established nest.
Service Types: honeybees are beneficial insects and therefore are a beekeeper must be contacted for removal of nests.
DIY Products: none
Common Name: Baldfaced hornet
Scientific Name: Dolichovespula maculata
Colour: black with white markings
Physical Characteristics or Attributes: there are 3/4 inches long with front wings folded lengthwise when the insect is at rest.
Habitat: nests are usually in trees but may also be attached to the sides of structures.
Diet: Baldfaced Hornets feed generally on nextar, honey dew, fruit juices, and other insects.
Social Structure: These are social insects. A colony consists of a Queen, workers (usually 200 to 400), immature eggs, larva, and pupae, and males.
Life Span and Chronological Development: the eggs are laid by the Queen in a release spring and are fed and hatched by the workers. When the eggs hatch larva emerges and goes through several stages before pupating. In late summer mating occurs and reproductive females (new Queens) hide to survive the winter. The colony does not survive the winter.
Interesting or Typical Behaviours: They construct pear-shaped grayish brown closed paper nests. These tests can be up to 3 feet long. The entrance is generally at the bottom of the nest. These Hornets are specifically aggressive and their sting can be very painful.
Evidence of Infestation: The main evidence is usually a visible inverted parent shaped in close nest often attached to the home.
Service Types: Nest Removal, Home Protection Plan
DIY Products: KONK Wasp Foam
Common Name: Paper Wasps, Umbrella Wasps, Jack Spaniard
Scientific Name: Polistes (there are 22 species in North America and 300 species worldwide)
Colour: Paper wasps vary in colour depending on the species some are brown with yellow markings and some are reddish brown.
Physical Characteristics or Attributes: They answer .7 to 1.0 inches long. They have narrow waists and black wings that fold lengthwise when the wasp is at rest.
Geographic Range: Paper wasps are found worldwide and contained on most continents except Arctic regions.
Habitat: wasps are found in gardens especially those with flowers. They prefer to nest in eaves or other protected areas.
Diet: generally they feed on nectar and other insects.
Social Structure: paper wasps live in colonies containing workers, Queens, and males.
Life Span and Chronological Development: the Queen lays eggs between’s early spring and late summer. Eggs will hatch into grub like lava which undergo several stages before pupating. Worker ants will feed the young and defend the nest. Mating occurs in the fall and results in new Queens hiding in protected habitats until spring when they will begin building a nest. New Queens are the only survivors of the nest, the rest of the colony dies in the winter.
Interesting or Typical Behaviours: They gather fibres from dead wood and play it stands and use them to construct water resistant nests made of grey and brown of paper in material held together by their saliva. These nest can be found sheltered areas such as eaves of a house, branches of a tree, open pipes. Unlike Yellowjackets and Hornets, paper wasps only attack defensively meaning when they or their nests are threatened. Stings from paper wasps can be painful and can result in anaphylactic reactions in some people. Wasps can sting repeatedly as their stinger does not break off when they sting. Additionally only female wasps can sting as the stinger is not present in males.
Evidence of Infestation: paper wasps are usually identified by viewing wasps going in and out of holes or by finding a visible nest.
Service Types: exterior, home protection plan (Spray, Foam, and/or Dust treatments available)
DIY Products: KONK Wasp Spray, KONK Wasp Foam
A. A professional will look for entry points around the perimeter. There could be a nest in your walls. Check for gaps around plumbing hose bibs, dryer vents or other possible gaps in your exterior walls.
A. They could be hornets which can be dangerous if provoked.
A. They may have a nest in the soffit or they may be gathering wood to make their paper nest.
A. You could try filling the hole with sand but they may find another exit or create one. Ground wasp nests can be difficult to eliminate because the actual nest may be some distance from the entry hole. Aerosol sprays can not reach the nest. A residual insecticide dust available to licensed professionals is a better choice.
A. Most insecticide sprays available to the general public have little residual effect. A tiny amount of dust injected into the carpenter bee tunnels should kill the larvae.
A. Wasps do not go back to an old nest next year. Plug up the hole in the winter.