Here are some facts about wasps, we hope you will find them as fascinating as we do, and we hope they may save you, and your local wasp colonies, from some unfortunate encounters.
Most wasps are female, male wasps are only used for one thing (!) and then they die, straight afterwards
Only female wasps can sting and female wasps do all the work
Male wasps (drones) are slow and sluggish and like to take naps – they lie in empty cells with their tails sticking out
Drones occasionally help to feed the larvae, and do a fair job in tidying and cleaning the house/nest
Wasps only sting humans as a defence mechanism
The worst thing to do is to swat at a wasp – 1. See above
The worst thing to do is to swat at a wasp – 2. When a wasp is swatted it emits a panic signal that will attract other wasps to see what is going on
You can’t run faster than a wasp can fly
Wasps are attracted by bright colours although they can’t see red so that is a good colour to wear in the garden
They also like sweet smells so don’t wear perfume
They also need salt, so use antiperspirant, guys
Wasps can recognise kith and kin both visually and by smell
There are 20,000 species of wasp in the World but in the UK we primarily have 2 – the German Wasp and the Common Wasp
Our wasps are social wasps – they build colonies with social order and specific roles (the Queen, workers, drones, defenders)
Wasps are fantastic architects – the nests are complex structures that typically are home to many thousands of inhabitants
Nests can be aerial or burrowed into the ground
Wasps never re-use a nest
In late summer their nests are overcrowded and up to 10 degrees hotter than outside – this is one reason they can be a bit bad tempered in August
Wasps communicate with each other by emitting pheromones – in this way they can tell their compatriots where food is or alert the nest to intruders
Wasps do play a role in our eco system – they cross-pollinate flowers and plants and they kill aphids and caterpillars
Wasps don’t generally bother us humans until late summer – until then they are too busy foraging for building materials and food for the colony
They will fly for up to 1,000 yards to forage for food and building materials
In late summer their work is done, and their taste changes from protein to sweet stuff – overindulgence on ripe fruit can lead to it fermenting inside them with a resultant hangover and bad attitude
Wasp colonies die off almost completely as winter draws on – a handful of fertilised female wasps leave the nest to find somewhere warm and dry and quite to hibernate over winter, these are next year’s Queens
Queens are larger and more beautiful than the other wasps, more brightly coloured and with different marking
The Queens will come out of hibernation early April, they will build the first few cells of the new nest and lay their eggs
When these eggs hatch the new wasps will take over the construction of the nest and will bring food back for the eggs the Queen continues to lay, then those eggs hatch and so the colony grows. And grows. And grows.
The largest nest found in recent years was in a pub attic in Southampton, it was the size of a large armchair and contained up to half a million wasps. The beer garden was a bit risky to have a drink in.
Waspinator utilises wasps’ territorial nature to frighten them away, it is the only natural wasp repellent and uses nature to defeat nature and the only wasp deterrent that does not hurt wasps in any way.