wasp nest decoys

mstywoods(z5, Westminster, CO)March 30, 2012

Already starting to see yellow jackets and/or wasps buzz'n around the house! When I was at McGuckins Hardware in Boulder a few weeks ago, I found some fake wasp nest decoys that are supposed to "scare" the wasps away as they are territorial. I didn't buy them because they were a bit pricey and they seemed rather large, and the one brand was rather ugly for using on the front porch (which is where I really need one!).

But now am reconsidering. Maybe they do work. In internet searching, it seems they mostly have gotten thumbs up reviews.

One brand, which is a little more attractive, is Wasp Bee Gone or Natural Wasp Repellent Decoy:

Another brand is the Waspinator, which is a bit smaller, but rather ugly - but I'm really not trying to please the wasps ;^), and if it really does work I suppose being ugly is ok!!:

I also found some DIY ones, like this: Homemade Wasp Nests (basically taking a paper bag, and stuffing it so it is puffed out). There was even one project that was more industrious by using that spray foam to coat a plastic bottle, and spray painting it afterwards to look more like a nest.

Not sure which way to go. Have any of you tried any of these methods?

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I can't say how effective these decoys are but we definitely had a problem with wasps when we moved into a house that had been empty for quite some time. We found out about the problem the first summer.

Not wanting to handle active/thriving nests, the following winter my DH went into the attic only to find about 20 abandoned nests, one the size of a volleyball. He followed the directions CAREFULLY on the wasp killer spray, wore heavy clothes just in case and sprayed. The next day he went and knocked then all down, threw them in a bucket of water and trashed them. All the wasps were dead but who wants to take a chance.

He then used expanding foam on any cracks that he could see sunlight coming through. Next year, we were wasp free!

I realize wasps can be beneficial but when they start overtaking your property, it's a whole other ballgame. I read somewhere, they can actual bore holes in your drywall and get into the house....that's when I decided the wasps were going.

Good luck, getting through at least this year.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2012 at 11:09PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

I have no idea if the "fake nests" are effective either, but I have to say I'm doubtful! I can never believe how many wasps I get around here, and I've already found one in the house and have my "little" vacuum At The Ready to take care of anymore stinging anythings I find inside, and I'm finding them cruising around all over my yard already too. Every year I find them building nests all over the place--including in the junipers both in back and in front of my house! I'm allergic, and while I feel pretty sure I'm gonna be ok around bees as long as I'm careful to not "disturb" them, I don't have that same confidence with the wasps! Wasp spray is amazingly cheap--and effective, and that's what I use to "deter" them--permanently! But the point I'd make about the fake nests is that I have several REAL nests here and there that are either too high for me to knock down or that I just haven't bothered to knock down--and the REAL nests sure don't seem to scare any away, so I don't understand how a FAKE nest would be any better. As a matter of fact, it's not at all unusual for me to find "new" wasps building their nest either very close to, or right on top of, the old nests! I always tend to be a skeptic when somebody's trying to sell me something, but I would be really, really surprised if wasps were "scared" by the human version of a "nest" if they're not scared by the real thing. To me that first one you posted looks kind of like a cool Chinese Lantern! Maybe the wasps will have a different opinion about it!

If you should decide to try them, Misty, I would be VERY interested to find out what you think of them later in the summer! Maybe I just don't understand the mind of a wasp!


    Bookmark   March 31, 2012 at 12:26AM
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david52 Zone 6

There is a major difference between assorted species of bees, hornets and wasps and what to worry about. Around here, we get the 'yellow jacket' hornet/wasp, that build those huge nests that these fakes look like. I'd be skeptical if the fakes work, because these nests are built in well-hidden locations, disguised in trees and shrubs, and the only time I can find them is when the population of wasps is big enough to follow to their nest. Or often its later in the winter, after the leaves are gone, then its "Oh, thats where it is!"

Anyway, those things are nasty. The other wasps, the mud dabbers and so on, rarely sting, and I watch them out eating aphids and so on, and leave them in piece.

The 'yellow jacket' wasp species around here is also almost black in color.

Here is a link that might be useful: link to general descriptions

    Bookmark   March 31, 2012 at 10:16AM
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There out if full force at my house. I was watering yesterday and they were dive bombing me. So sad to see the cold today, but maybe it will keep the pests at bay. Can you believe wasps out in march, early april.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2012 at 7:55PM
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mstywoods(z5, Westminster, CO)

Oh my, Aloha - 20 nests?! I've wondered if we might get them in our attic, too, as late last summer a piece of our vinyl siding fell off of the roof edge. We haven't put it back on yet as it's all the way to the top and we'll need a really tall ladder to get up there. We may have to hire someone for that job - neither one of us wants to, or should be, on a ladder that tall!

I know what you mean, Skybird, about seeing old nests around and yet still see the wasps. Maybe they were their old nests?! I don't know. And I also thought that one fake nest looked like a chinese lantern - it's the same kind of fabric and wire frame. Also, you can't see it in the pic, but it has a hole in the side so it looks like a nest of sorts. But I kinda of wonder if the wasps would just go inside of it and make a nest of their own there! I know they did that in the bird houses I put up along our fence for decoration - I had to plug up the holes so they wouldn't do that any more.

So I couldn't resist making my own version of the fake wasp nest, just to see if the concept would work. I recycled/upcycled items I had around the house already to make it - took two 5" peat pots and placed them together at the large end, then slipped a plastic mesh wrap (that they put over the glass bottle of wine I bought at Total Beverage) over them to hold them together, then glued the seam. I spray painted it black, but didn't like the looks of it. So I covered it all with paper mache, I then spray painted it black with a little gray. Now, it's not any prettier than the waspinator, and maybe even a bit uglier, but didn't really cost me anything to make! Maybe this is close enough in shape to fool the foolish wasps - we'll see! If it does, I'll make some more!!

Here's my recycled/upcycled wasp nest decoy:

    Bookmark   April 5, 2012 at 9:44PM
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We have yellow jackets galore - I sprayed (which I HATE doing, but we really couldn't even go outside, there were so many), destroyed nests, you name it. When I started seeing them in our basement (they kept going to a spot under our siding) I called in an 'environmentally friendly' pesticide dude. He said the nest was under the siding, big, and probably went all the way up to the interior drywall. Nice. We saw none for the rest of the year after he sprayed but I've seen a few already this year...I'm with Skybird, we have nests everywhere and they sure don't seem to care!

Please keep us posted on your decoy - nice work! Our friends across the street have one of the yellow plastic cylinder traps and (ick) put a piece of ham in it instead of the attractant. The ham gets pretty rank but man, do they get a lot of 'em in there!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2012 at 5:45AM
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