Wasp vs. Bee Portland OR
As a pest control company in the Portland, Oregon area, we get a lot of calls for wasp, bee, rodent, and ant control during the summer. We often ask our customers if they are dealing with wasps or bees, and most of the time, they have no idea. Allow us to perform a pest inspection to determine if you have wasps or bees on your property. It is essential to know the difference because honey bees are protected, and we only exterminate them if they pose a threat to humans. Honey bee populations have been dying off at an alarming rate, and nobody knows why. Since they are beneficial for the environment, we never want to exterminate them unless we have to. First, you should know that a “wasp” is a broad category. Yellowjackets, hornets, and paper wasps are all considered “wasps.” When we talk about bees, we are referring to honey bees and bumblebees primarily. Wasps are more aggressive than bees and pose a higher risk for stinging people. Wasp nests can be in trees, under eaves, and even underground depending on the species. Let’s go over some characteristics of bees and wasps below:
- Their plump, hairy bodies can quickly identify bees.
- They are responsible for pollinating about 80% of fruit trees, vegetable plants, and ornamental flowers.
- On their back legs, they have what is called a “pollen basket.”
- Bees feed on nectar and sweets.
- They can only sting one time and then die.
- Slender bodies with a shiny appearance.
- Back legs hang down when they fly.
- Types of wasps include hornets, yellow jackets, and paper wasps.
- Can sting multiple times.
- Feed on other insects during the warmer months and sweets as winter approaches.
- Nests can be found in the ground, in trees, on eaves of homes, etc.
Hornets are a subset of the wasp species but are bigger than their relatives. Because they are bigger, their sting has more venom and is, therefore, more potent and dangerous. Hornets are often found eating over-ripened fruits and will occasionally attract and kill other insects like honeybees. These pests will actively defend their nest and attack anyone that comes near it. Additionally, killing a hornet will release a pheromone that attracts the other hornets to attack.
Yellowjackets will abandon their nest in the fall, but in the weeks leading up to that time, they can be mean, attacking people and pets that dare to come into their area. If you have a nest in an area of high traffic, it really should be addressed, but if it is not bothering anyone, you can leave it alone, and they will eventually go away on their own.
Bee Removal in Portland OR
In a lot of ways, wasps and bees can be helpful to your home and garden. Bees will pollinate and make your yard look beautiful, and wasps can eat many plant destroying insects around your home. As a Portland pest control company, we are not interested in a short term gain at the cost of a long term loss. We want to have honey bees around a long time. If you are having a situation with honey bees and need some advice, we would happily take your call. We can get you connected with a local beekeeper or help you identify what kind of bee you might have. Either way, we are here to help.
Honeybees play a massive part in making our gardens look beautiful. If you paid attention at all in science class, you already know that bees pollinate flowers. What you may or may not know is that honey bees are dying at an alarming rate. They are calling it “colony collapse disorder,” and nobody knows why it is happening and why our honey bees are dying.
We do everything that we can to make sure that we do not lower the population of honey bees in our area. We get calls all the time for us to kill what people call yellow jackets, wasps, or hornets, only to find that they have honey bees. Our policy is never to exterminate a honey bee nest unless it is posing a real threat to humans. For example, if a nest was above a doorway in a school and kids were getting stung. Since about 3% of the population is fatally allergic to bee stings, this would give us reason to exterminate the nest. However, even in these circumstances, we would always suggest calling a beekeeper first. Most of them in the Portland area will come and take a Honey Bee colony out for free.
Most wasp nests that you will see are from yellow jackets, hornets, and paper wasps. These insects construct their nests from a paper-like material made from chewed up wood mixed with their saliva that creates a sort of paper mache. To identify the type of nest, you will need to look at the location and how the nest was built.
Hornets will typically build their nests about 6ft above the ground; you will often find them in trees or the eaves of homes and buildings. Like bees and other related insects, they construct their hive of individual cells, which they arrange in a tiered design. The entire nest is covered in a paper-like envelope to protect the colony. If these nests are left undisturbed, they can grow to astonishing sizes. If you find a hornet nest on your property, do not attempt to knock it down or spray it with wasp killer. Any of these tactics could aggravate the hornets causing them to attack in defense.
Yellow Jackets Nests
Most often, yellow jackets build their nests underground in abandoned burrows or other hallowed out structures. They will occasionally make their nests above ground with a similar structure design to hornets. The exterior of the nest is a thick protective layer that protects a large number of tiered cells inside. These nests have a single entrance and, similar to hornet nests, can also grow to be rather large. When dealing with any wasp or yellow jacket nest, it is always best to contact a professional exterminator.