Wasps may be a pest, but they have a vital role to play within the ecosystem, acting as a natural predator to other parasites. If you leave a wasp nest on your porch, it will typically last around 3-4 months, before the wasps disperse and the nest becomes dormant.
You do not need to remove old wasps nests from your porch. As they face the outdoor elements, they are likely to erode and disperse over time by themselves. The wasps won’t return to their old nest, so you don’t have to worry about a further infestation from them, but there are hazards associated with wasps nests that you may need to monitor.
By reading through the article below you can educate yourself on the effects of dormant wasp nests and use the information to make informed decisions.
Alongside the advantages and disadvantages of removing a nest, the article will examine which wasps return to their nests, how to remove a wasp nest with natural solutions, and tips to prevent wasps from returning to your home.
What Are The Dangers Of Old Wasp Nests?
If your house requires any servicing, some professionals may refuse to enter if they see a wasp nest. Furthermore, there is the aesthetic look to consider of a wasp nest being prevalent at the front of your house.
Whilst wasps do not return to their old nests, you may find that bumblebees will happily take residence in an old wasp nest. Aside from bumblebees, an old wasp nest can provide shelter for other pests such as greenflies and cockroaches. If you’re looking to avoid an infestation, it may be better to remove the nest.
As wasp nests are made from chewed-up wood, they are essentially paper. Therefore they can be a potential fire risk.
Finally, wasp nests can cause damage to your property. As they grow and expand they suck up moisture, which can damage the surface beneath. Unfortunately, you are unlikely to see this until you remove the nest, or experience a leakage. At this point, the damage is already done and could require financial input to rectify.
Will Wasps Return To An Old Nest?
Wasps do not use the same nest twice. The odd stray may briefly return before realizing that the nest has been abandoned and they need to fly away to their new residence.
Though they will not use the same nest twice, they may use the same location multiple times.
There is an exception to the rule; continue reading to find out which wasps can use a nest more than once.
Are There Any Benefits To Leaving An Old Wasp Nest?
Though you might face multiple infestations from one swarm, an old nest can deter other queens from setting up in a location that is already “taken.”
If you have used an insecticide on the nest, there may be lingering remnants that will discourage other wasps from nesting there. By removing the nest, you remove multiple deterrents.
Furthermore, by leaving a wasp nest you will not have to deal with the hazards of nest removal such as parasites, dust, or unsafe access. The nests will not go rotten or give off a smell and if exposed to outdoor elements, likely, they will eventually break down and wear away by themselves.
Is There More Than One Type of Wasp Nest?
With over a hundred different species of wasps swarming the globe, it is no surprise that there is a multitude of nests. This article focuses on the wasp nest you are most likely to see on your porch, the paper nest, but there is another type of nest you could discover.
A mud dauber wasp creates its nest from – you guessed it – mud. The term “mud dauber” encompasses a range of wasp species from the organ pipe dauber to the blue mud dauber.
You can view a mud dauber nest here. Their appearance is a stark contrast to that of a paper nest.
How Do The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Removing The Nest Compare To A Paper Wasp Nest?
If you discover a mud dauber nest, there are a few additional factors that you may wish to consider before deciding whether or not to remove it.
An advantage of removing the nest is that, although rare, some mud daubers will return to the same nest the following year. In contrast to paper wasps whose nests are only occupied through the summer, a mud dauber’s nest will be occupied throughout the entirety of the year. This is because mud daubers leave larvae in the nest, who emerge and feed on the spiders their parents have left for them.
On the other hand, mud daubers act as effective pest control as they consume critters such as black widow spiders.
If you do decide to remove a mud dauber nest it is very easy to do as mud daubers do not return to their nests in the evening, instead, finding a place outdoors to sleep. You can remove their nest in the evening, without the risk of a swarm attack.
How Do I Remove An Old Wasp Nest?
Before removing a nest, ensure that it has been properly vacated. You can do this by spraying an insecticide on it or approaching it carefully and with proper PPE.
Once you have established that the nest is empty, you can go about removing it. A simple way to do this is to take a bin liner, wrap it around the nest and gently remove it from the attached surface.
It’s a good idea to wear a mask as you do this as inhaling the dust from the nest can be an irritant.
Ensure that you tie the bag tightly and place it into a closed outdoor bin.
How Can I Prevent Wasps From Returning?
There are many actions you can take to prevent wasps from returning to your home. The first is to remove and spray for nests each year. Even if there is no wasp nest, the insecticide spray can act as a deterrent to prevent wasps from setting up home. If you’re looking for an alternative to chemical sprays, try peppermint oil. Wasps are repelled by the scent and it is easy to bottle up your natural solution to spray around the outside of your home.
Want tips to create your own natural wasp repellent sprays? Check out this page.
Dispose of food leftovers and ensure that all bins are properly sealed. Whilst peppermint will deter wasps, there are plenty of other smells that will attract them, particularly sweet smells.
Seal off any cracks. Not only will this help to prevent an infestation, if wasps do build a nest on your home, at least they cannot get into your property. By preventing them from infiltrating the inside of your house, you prevent a lot of potential property damage.