WSU CAHNRS

Washington State University

Gardening in Washington State

A Beneficial Wasp in the Wrong Place, Wrong Time Becomes a Pest

As a newcomer to our home landscapes in the Pacific Northwest (PNW), the European paper wasp, Polistes dominula, has a reputation as both a beneficial predator and a pest. The European paper wasp is a relatively tame wasp that forages within landscape plants in search of leaf-feeding caterpillars and other insect prey. However, it is also a nuisance pest that will sting people who accidentally disturb or threaten it or its nest.

Paper wasp

In early spring, homeowners may remove wasp nests by knocking them down with a long broom, pole, or strong stream of water from a hose. This is the best time to remove a nest because only a single female will be guarding it. It may take repeated removal of each nest to discourage the wasps from replacing it. It is important to wear gloves and protective clothing to reduce any risk of getting stung, and although the sting is mild, it will get your attention.

For more information, go to The European Paper Wasp  FS152E located at http://cru.cahe.wsu.edu/CEPublications/FS152E/FS152E.pdf.

Submitted by: Mike Bush and Todd Murray, March 31, 2015

=============================================================================

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*

*

Gardening in Washington State, Puyallup Research and Extension Center, Contact Us

This web site requires Internet Explorer 8+ or Mozilla 22+
© 2017 Washington State University | Accessibility | Policies | Copyright | Log in