Learn More About Wasps
Arizona is home to a number of species of wasps that thrive in the hot desert climate. The paper wasp, also known as the umbrella wasp, is the wasp that we most commonly find around Tucson homes and swimming pools. There are three species of paper wasps that live in Arizona: the yellow paper wasp, Navajo paper wasp, and the Arizona paper wasp.
Facts About The Arizona’s Paper Wasps
Paper wasps get their name from the paper-thin, honeycomb nests they build on the eaves of buildings or in doorways each spring. Their nests are made from plant material combined with saliva and appear to be made from paper, hence their name. Their nests include numerous compartments where the queens lay their eggs and rear their young.
Paper wasps are social wasps, which means they live in large groups. By late summer as many as 200 wasps may be present in a single nest. By late fall, the queen and workers die and the nest is abandoned.
Paper wasps have very painful stings and can sting multiple times. They usually do not sting people unless they are provoked, but they will fiercely protect their nests if threatened or disturbed. While wasps benefit the eco-system by pollinating plants and preying on other pests, they are territorial and can pose a threat to people or animals who get too close to their habitats. Because of this, and because many people have allergic reactions to wasp stings, you should remove nests that are close to your home or structures on your property to protect your family, pets, and livestock.
Safety Tips On Wasps
- Do NOT panic!
- Do not make any rapid movements or any sound.
- Do not spray anything in the air or at the swarm or hive, including water.
- Do not throw rocks or any objects at the swarm or hive.
- Refrain from swatting at wasps buzzing around your body.
Wasp nests should ideally be removed early in the season to keep the population from growing too big. Removing a paper wasp nest may be dangerous, therefore, you are advised to contact a pest control professional to remove nests and treat wasp infestations.