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Yellowjacket FAQs

I think I found a yellowjacket nest. What should I do?

  1. Avoid the area! Yellowjackets rarely sting if they are left alone
  2. Keep children and pets away from the nest.
  3. Do not disturb or try to remove the nest.
  4. Avoid loud sounds and vibrations near the nest.
  5. Even though your neighbor might suggest it, DO NOT pour gasoline or other flammable products into the hole.
  6. Notify your local Mosquito Abatement District, a pest control company or local governmental authorities for identification and removal.

If I am attacked by yellowjackets, what should I do?

  1. Leave the area quickly!
  2. Cover your face
  3. Use clothes to protect your eyes and mouth from yellowjackets.
  4. Yellowjacket attacks can last until the victim vacates the area
  5. Seek basic first aid if necessary
  6. Watch for allergic reactions

Myself/child/pet was stung by a yellowjacket, bee, wasp. What should I do?

  1. Wash the sting with soap and water.
  2. Apply antihistamine or anti-itch medication, ice or cold cloth, or meat tenderizer to the bite for swelling and pain.
  3. Watch for swelling or hypersensitive reaction.
  4. For allergic reactions seek medical care immediately. Watch for difficulty with breathing or dizziness.
  5. If stung in the mouth or throat seek immediate medical care.

How can I protect myself/child/pet from yellowjackets, bees, wasps?

  1. Avoid wearing perfumes or other scented products such as sunscreen, deodorants, cosmetics, hairsprays, and brightly colored and patterned clothes.
  2. Avoid going barefoot, especially in vegetation.
  3. Avoid cooking and eating outdoors where yellowjackets are present.
  4. Do not swat at yellowjackets.
  5. Do not drink soft drinks from an open container. Keep lids on drinks.
  6. Keep foods covered. Close or cover containers of meat or sugary foods.
  7. Check food before you put it in your mouth.
  8. Place all food waste in tightly covered garbage cans.
  9. Place traps far away from eating and gathering areas.
  10. Keep garbage cans away from picnic areas.
  11. Eliminate water sources like dripping outdoor faucets or standing pools of water.
  12. Contact your local Mosquito and Vector Control District for assistance with the elimination of these pests.

What does a yellowjacket's nest look like?

Yellowjacket nests can be difficult to identify as many of them appear to be nothing more than a hole in the ground. Yellowjacket nests can frequently be found along ditches, paths and fence lines. You can find a photo and additional information about yellowjackets on our Yellowjacket Species page.

What does an umbrella wasp's nest look like?

Many people mistake an umbrella wasp nest for a yellowjacket nest. Umbrella wasps commonly build their nests under eves of homes and in wall areas. Their nests have the shape of an inverted umbrella thereby giving them their name. They can also be known as paper wasps. You can find a photo and additional information about umbrella wasps on the Other Wasp Species page.