Canberra is home to many wasp and bee species, including the famous European honey bee (Apis mellifera) and the European wasp (Vespula germanica). Although Canberra’s bees are considered non-threatening (unless you’re allergic to them), its wasps are a different story. ACT Pest Control – a leading provider of pest control services in Canberra – can help you deal quickly and efficiently with bees and problematic wasps.
Bees aren’t generally considered to be pests, as they play a vital role in the pollination of many native plants. If you have a bee nest near your home that isn’t causing problems, it’s probably best to leave it alone. A nest that’s situated in your home (commonly in a wall or roof cavity) can usually be relocated by a registered beekeeper. In cases where a beekeeper can’t relocate the nest (due to access restrictions), pest control is usually the only option.
The European wasp (Vespula germanica) is an introduced species that first came to the attention of Australian entomologists in 1959. The European wasp is a stoutly-built insect that can sting repeatedly without dying (unlike bees). Pest controllers in Canberra usually get the callout for European wasps in summer – when a nest starts to grow in size.
European wasps are more aggressive than bees, and will attack humans if their nests are disturbed. In Canberra, European wasps start breeding heavily in late spring / early summer – creating large communal nests in the process. The nests are usually found in the ground or in roof and wall cavities. European wasps are attracted to pet meat and sugary foods / drinks.
The common paper wasp (Polistes humilis) is smaller and less aggressive than the European wasp, but still capable of delivering a nasty sting. Like the European wasp, the paper wasp starts breeding in spring and finishes up in early autumn. Paper wasps usually create their small nests in wall cavities, on fences and under house eaves. In terms of diet, paper wasps enjoy fruit pulp / nectar and other insects (caterpillars, small spiders, moths, butterflies).
The Asian paper wasp (Polistes chinensis) is a recently introduced species that’s larger and more colourful than the common paper wasp. A unique characteristic of the species is that a foundress (female founder) sometimes engages in cannibalism (eats its own larvae) when food is scarce. It’s not known precisely how the Asian paper wasp entered Australia, but the species is well-established in Japan, China, Korea, Mongolia and New Zealand. Its diet and habitat are similar to the common paper wasp.
The social wasp (Vespula spp.) – also known as a yellow jacket – is similar in appearance to the European wasp, but has black dots on its face. The social wasp breeds in spring and builds its nest in wall and roof cavities, as well as under eaves, porches and floors. A colony of social wasps will start out eating insects, but progress to sweeter foods over the summer.
The elimination of wasps in or near your home is important, especially if you have children. Wasps not only possess a nasty sting (which some people are allergic to), but can eat away your internal wall plaster as well.
For more information on wasp and bee pest control services in Canberra, please call the experienced team at ACT Pest Control on 1300 022 122.
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