How to Remove a Wasp Nest?

Wasps nest in the grass
Wasps nest in the grass

In general, wasps are very helpful insects to have around. They reduce the number of small pests that tend to eat plants, fruits, and vegetables. A good supply of wasps near your yard can help keep your garden thriving all summer. Unfortunately, some wasps choose to build their nests in places that can create a hazard for you and your family. If a wasp nest is too close to your home, there are ways to remove it safely. Always make sure that anyone working to remove a wasps nest is not allergic to wasp or bee stings.

Find the Nest

Many times you will notice an increase in the number of wasps that are hovering around your doors or windows before you discover the actual wasp nest. If you watch the wasps for a little while you will notice that they tend to fly in a straight line when they are approaching or leaving their nest. If you follow the most prevalent path that the majority of the wasps fly in you will be led straight to the nest. Some wasps build their nests inside walls or under the ground. These nests need to be removed by experts because it is very difficult to remove them without agitating the wasps.

Choose the Right Time of Day

Most types of wasps become sluggish and sleepy in the late evenings or after dark. They are most active during the heat of the day. The best time to remove a wasp nest is at night when the sun has been down for about an hour. Night time is when the majority of the wasps will be inside the nest and sleepy, which means you will be able to remove the most number of wasps with the smallest risk of being stung. If possible, have a friend help you by shining a bright light on the nest while you work.

Wear Protective Clothing

Wasp stings can be particularly painful and dangerous, especially if you are stung multiple times. When you begin to remove the nest, make sure you are wearing multiple layers of clothing so that wasp stingers can’t penetrate through to your skin. Seal off the cuffs of your pants with rubber bands to keep wasps from flying up your pant legs. Wear sturdy gloves and make sure that the cuffs of your shirt are wrapped around the base of the gloves to seal your shirt sleeves from wasps. Cover your head with a thick hat and be sure you wear eye protection.

Use a Pesticide

The easiest way to remove a wasp nest is to spray it with a commercial pesticide and wait for the wasps to die before you transfer the nest to the trash. If you choose this option, the pesticide will have clear instructions for use printed on the side of the can. Make sure that the area around the nest is cleared of people and pets before you spray the pesticide. It is a good idea to plan your escape route before you apply the poison so that you will be able to make a quick retreat as soon as the nest has been sprayed.

Non-Pesticide Options

It is possible to remove wasp nests without resorting to pesticides that can harm the environment. These options require a little more patience and quickness on your part, however. The best way to naturally remove a nest is to wait until after dark and gently wrap a plastic bag around the nest. Pull the top of the bag tightly closed so that no wasps can escape once the nest is covered. Submerge the nest in a pail of water overnight to kill the wasps, then throw the nest in the trash.


Author: Kelly

Kelly Sperber has been a professional writer for 5 years. She joined TheHousingForum Team in January, 2011. Kelly enjoys skydiving, attending fashion shows, and gardening in her spare time.

6 thoughts on “How to Remove a Wasp Nest?”

  1. We have wasps entering through holes in the garage walls although they are not in the garage so we assume that they are in the cavity & there is no way to get in to remove the nest… please can you let me know what is the best insecticide to use and once we have erradicated them how to we prevent them from coming back

    1. Pamela, you did not mention what type of wasp you were having problems with or the factoring circumstances to consider, such as people with allergies, pets or small children being in the home. This makes it difficult to recommend any specific commercial products. However, just spraying the wasps and their nest with soapy water usually works well to kill the wasps. However, it is still best to spray them when the wasps are drowsy. You can also set natural wasp traps to lure them out of their nest so you can eliminate them. To keep the wasps from coming back in to the garage, find and seal any cracks, holes, and crevices, and screen any vents. But that won’t stop them from entering the garage whenever the door is opened. Placing rags soaked in peppermint oil in various places around the garage may also get the wasps to move away or deter them from coming back.

  2. Is that water, soapy water or insecticide? Really don’t want to use the latter. Is there any way of removing a nest without killing the wasps??

    1. Heather, spraying the wasps with soapy water will kill the wasps, as will using insecticides. Sometimes using pure water will only get the wasps wet and angry, while at other times, it will get them to move away temporarily. Spraying peppermint oil will probably only get the wasps out of the nest temporarily. However, once the wasps are out of the next, you should be able to move the nest elsewhere, if you take some precautions.

  3. Unfortunately, the larvae are probably still alive and will hatch soon. You have to totally soak the nest if you want to kill the larvae as well

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