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Stinging Insect Identification

What are stinging insects?

Stinging insects vary greatly by behavior, nesting habits, and appearance, but they all have in common a stinger extending off their abdomen. The stinger is why these pests come to be such unwanted pests when they decide to nest in our yards. Eco-important pests, stinging insects help to pollinate plants. Predatory species like paper wasps, yellow jackets, and mud daubers help control nuisance insects and dangerous insects like mosquitoes, aphids, and other garden pests.

a mud dauber on a flower

Some stinging insects feed on many of the same foods we do like sugary liquids and proteins, which is why yellow jackets and other stinging insects are problematic around garbage cans, recycling bins, and wherever there is food outdoors.

Are stinging insects dangerous?

Most people cringe at the sight of wasps, yellow jackets, and other stinging insects near their homes, and for a good reason. When stinging insects nest in a yard or other high-traffic areas near people, the risk of a sting occurs.

When stinging insects live outside, away from us and our homes, they pose little threat. But when they decide to share our yards and houses, they are dangerous. Stinging insects are small, and their only means of defense is using their venom-filled stinger.

In those allergic to the venom, the consequences of being stung can be life-threatening. Even those who are not severely allergic would rather not be stung by these pests and cause people to avoid their yards when stinging insects are present.

Why do I have a stinging insect problem?

Stinging insects typically only become a significant problem for people when they decide to nest in our yards or homes. If stinging insects visit your yard only to feed or pollinate, they usually don’t pose too many issues, as long as you give them space. But, when they have a nest present, they are more likely to sting to protect the nest and colony members located inside.

Each spring, wasps, yellow jackets, and mud daubers emerge from overwintering sites to create a nest. Throughout the spring and summer, they gather food and increase their numbers. Stinging insects tend to be most problematic for people in the late summer and fall when their populations are high, trying to find enough food to support the colony before food sources begin to die off. When stinging insects feel threatened, it doesn’t take much to annoy them, and they react by stinging.

Where will I find stinging insects?

Stinging insects will take advantage of any space providing them with an appropriate area to build a nest near their preferred food sources. Whether you live in a more rural location, in the city, or somewhere in between, you will find stinging insects.

Aerial (above the ground) nesting locations include tree branches, between rock crevices, utility poles, bridges, roof eaves, and doorways. Those nesting on the ground build their nests under shrubbery, dense vegetation, naturally occurring ground holes, and the abandoned nests of small animals. Stinging insects also like to build nests indoors in large open spaces found in man-made structures like garages, sheds, barns, and warehouses.

How do I get rid of stinging insects?

If stinging insects have become a problem on your Florida property, reach out to the professionals at Rodent Solutions. With over 21 years of combined experience, you can put your trust into our professionals and our effective pest control solutions. Through inspections, removal, and exclusion services, and more, we will solve your pest problems and prevent them from returning.

To eliminate stinging insects from your Bradenton property, or the surrounding locations, call Rodent Solutions today.

How can I prevent stinging insects in the future?

Stinging insects and other pests are problematic in Florida throughout much of the year. The following prevention tips will help you to guard your home against stinging insects:

  • Maintain your property’s trees and shrubs by cutting back overgrown limbs and branches. Cut shrubs and bushes back away from walkways and your home’s exterior walls.
  • Seal up spaces in your exterior walls that may allow stinging insects to move into your home.
  • Fill in ground holes that develop in your yard.
  • Limit the flowering vegetation you have planted on your property, especially near your house.
  • After eating outside, clean up leftover food and drinks that could attract foraging stinging insects.
  • Keep tight-fitting lids on trash cans and recycling bins.

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