Ft. Lauderdale Stinging Pests: ID and Prevention
Summer is in full swing in Ft. Lauderdale and that should bring fun activities your way, such as relaxing outside on your patio or spending time with your kids in the backyard. Unfortunately, it can also bring summer pests! Most active in the summer are stinging pests, including yellow jackets, wasps, and hornets. There are several ways to prevent these pests from messing with your summer fun, so let’s break each one down!
On the larger side of the stinging pests, hornets have brown and yellow abdominal stripes on their bodies. Their nests are often built-in hollow trees, and the walls of houses and attics. They are attracted to light and can fly to your windows at night if they see a light on. They are relatively non-aggressive near the nest, but there is potential for a stinging hazard if threatened.
Prevent hornets by:
- Keeping garbage cans covered, as leftover food can attract hornets
- Maintaining the outside of your home, ensuring screens, window, and doors are all in good condition
- Avoiding the use of strong fragrances when outdoors
These pests will become aggressive if they feel threatened enough and are known to sting multiple times. Wasps are highly attracted to backyard events, resulting in an increase in your chances of being stung. Their nests are typically built in branches, porch ceilings, eaves, and attic rafters.
Prevent wasps by:
- Keeping doors and windows shut
- Covering any openings in your home’s exterior
- Keeping outdoor waste containers completely covered
These social insects are usually anywhere humans are found. They have a non-fuzzy, black and yellow striped body. Attracted to sweets and proteins, they commonly invade outdoor events. Their nests can be found either high up or in the ground. Yellow jackets will sting multiple times if they feel threatened and can sometimes cause allergic reactions.
Prevent yellow jackets by:
- Avoiding sweet smelling perfume or cologne when outdoors as this will attract them
- Using plants that help deter yellow jackets, including spearmint, thyme, and lemon grass
If you have a stinging pest problem, reach out to your local Ft. Lauderdale pest control company for professional help in removing these pests from your property.
South Florida Pest Control
The summertime should bring activities such as lounging by the pool, having picnics, or enjoying our yards, not dealing with summer pests! Most active during warmer months, stinging pests can pose a health threat to your family. Check out our list of common South Florida stinging pests to lookout for this summer.
Paper wasps are semi social insects, meaning they live in colonies containing workers, queens, and males. These pests are reddish-orange to dark black with a long and slender body. Paper hornets tend to nest in round, upside-down paper combs, attached by a single stalk to a horizontal surface, often resembling an umbrella. These pests will typically build their nests underneath objects such as porches, decks, or soffits. Paper wasp nests house egg-laying females, the queen, and subordinate females who function as workers. Paper wasps will sting, with some people allergic to their venom.
Also, a social insect, yellow jacket nests contain female workers, males, and reproductive queens. Yellow jackets are black and yellow, often getting mistaken for bees. These pests will construct their nests into several layers made of tiny bits of wood fiber chewed into a paper-like structure. Yellow jacket nests will only produce males when it’s time for them to breed, then they die off. Their nests are large, often built underground or in hollow logs, tree stumps, between walls, and inside recycling bins where a food source is found. If threatened, yellow jackets will alert their nest to attack the nearby offender, painfully stinging them.
There are several species of hornets including the bald-faced hornet, European hornet, and the giant hornet. These pests can be beneficial to homeowners as they will control common household pests. Though, they will quickly become a nuisance if they build their nests throughout your property. Common areas where hornets build their nests are hollow trees, attics, porches, and inside of walls. These pests will sting to protect their colonies, repeatedly stinging during an attack.
If you’ve noticed these stinging pests around or inside your home, it’s best to reach out to your local South Florida pest control company to inspect and safely remove them.
Stinging insects, such as yellowjackets, wasps, and hornets, send more than 500,000 people to the emergency room each year. With the weather warming up, these pests are looking for a food source. While you’re enjoying your backyard barbecues and relaxing by the pool, remember these tips to help keep stinging pests from ruining your outdoor fun.
These slim-bodied insects have six legs and two wings. They are busy at work scavenging for food during the summer months. They will typically build their nests in branches, porch ceilings, and attic rafters. They are highly attracted to picnics and backyard barbecues, increasing your chance of being stung.
These social insects are found anywhere with human activity. They feed on sweets and proteins, often invading outdoor events. They have a non-fuzzy black and yellow striped body and measure less than an inch long. Sometimes they build their nests in high places, like the side of a building. Most of the time, yellow jackets’ nests are built in or near the ground, including shrubs, timber, and logs.
These insects typically prefer a forested environment and are known to build nests in hollow trees or walls of houses and attics. They are attracted to light and will try to fly into your windows at night if a light is on. They are generally non-aggressive near their nests, but if they feel threatened, they will potentially sting.
Stinging Insect Prevention:
- Avoid wearing strong fragrances and opt for an unscented sunscreen
- Keep outside food covered and sealed tightly
- Stick to darker colors since florals and bright-colored clothing tend to attract these pests
- Seal cracks and crevices on the outside of your home to prevent these insects from building a nest inside
- Remain calm if you find yourself near one of these pests to avoid an aggressive attack
If the stinging insect problem is bigger than you can handle, then calling your local pest control company might be the next step in prevention.
Spotting stinging pests around your business can be alarming. Yellowjackets, wasps, and hornets are all active during the warmer season as they go in search of a food source and a place to establish their colony. These pests can pose a serious health risk to your customers and business. We break down the most common stinging pests and the best ways to avoid them.
Wasps will build their paper-like nests on eaves, porch ceilings, branches, and windowsills. These pests search for food during the summer months. They are highly attracted to any food found outdoors, along with anything with a fragrant smell such as candles or flowers. When threatened, these pests will sting multiple times and eventually call on reinforcements from other wasps by emitting pheromones.
Hornet nests are built in hollow trees or the walls of buildings and attics. These pests are attracted to light and will often fly into open windows at night if they see a light. Hornets like to eat fruit and honeydew, causing them to congregate in areas where these foods are found. While they are non-aggressive near their nests, they will sting if they feel threatened. When stings occur, the stinger can get lodged in the skin.
Yellowjackets are social insects and can be found wherever humans are. These pests like to eat sweets and proteins and will invade outdoor events to find these foods. Yellowjackets build their nests in high places, such as on trees and buildings, or on the ground. If they feel threatened, they will sting multiple times which can be extremely painful.
Stinging Pest Prevention for Your Business
- Always keep outside food areas clean, wiping up any leftover food debris.
- Keep garbage cans tightly sealed and emptied regularly.
- Untreated wood can attract stinging pests; make sure to stain, seal, or paint wood throughout your business exterior.
- Perform weekly inspections throughout your business property to keep an eye on these pests.
- If you have a public area where customers can eat, use signage to remind them to throw away food scraps and clean up spills.
If you have a problem with stinging pests, contact Commercial Services for an inspection and treatment plan.
An encounter with a stinging pest can always be alarming, as they are known to have a painful sting. Since stinging pests are most active during the spring and summer, it’s important to know the most commons ones to look out for and how you can protect yourself and your family.
Social in nature, the yellowjacket can live in nests or colonies containing anywhere from 1,000 to 4,000 workers. Yellowjackets tend to build their nests on trees, buildings, and in the ground. Unlike bees, these insects have smooth stingers where they can sting several times if they start to feel threatened, which can be severely painful. These insects are highly attracted to sweet foods and proteins. If you plan on having a picnic or BBQ outside, make sure to keep your food covered tightly to eliminate the chance of attracting them.
Another popular stinging insect you should be aware of this spring and summer is the hornet. Hornets can sometimes be a benefit to homeowners as they can help control common household pests; although, they can quickly become a nuisance as they will often build nests throughout your property, such as in hollow trees, in the walls of houses and attics, and even in abandoned beehives. Like yellowjackets, these insects have smooth stingers. If stung by a hornet, the stinger can get lodged in the skin at the site of the sting. Hornets will eat tree sap, fruit, and honeydew. To prevent an encounter with these insects, keep both your food and garbage sealed in containers.
Known to build construction paper-like nests on branches, porch ceilings, eaves, and attic rafters, wasps can easily infest your entire property. These pests live in small colonies and like to eat nectar, along with common household pests such as flies and caterpillars. If these insects feel threatened or their nest is disturbed, they will sting multiple times. Their stings can be painful and often cause an allergic reaction. If you encounter hornets, don’t swat at them as this will only agitate them; instead calmly walk away and they generally will not follow.
If you’ve noticed these popular stinging insects around and inside your home, it’s best to reach out to your local pest control company to inspect and safely remove these insects.