Pest Control
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How to Get Rid of Hornets

Discover effective methods on how to get rid of hornets and reclaim your space. Expert tips for safe and successful hornet control. Get started now!

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Coleman Spaulding
August 7, 2023
Last Updated:
October 10, 2023
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Coleman Spaulding
August 7, 2023
Last Updated:
October 10, 2023

Identifying a Hornet Infestation

Understanding the signs of infestation, areas prone to hornet activity, and differentiating hornet species will empower you to take appropriate measures to safeguard your surroundings.

Signs of Hornet Infestation

  • Frequent Sightings: If you spot hornets flying around your property regularly, it could indicate an infestation nearby.
  • Nest Presence: The discovery of hornet nests, often resembling papery, grey structures, is a clear sign of infestation.
  • Increased Buzzing: A sudden increase in buzzing sounds from hornets may indicate their nesting activities nearby.
  • Aggressive Behavior: Hornets can become more aggressive when their nests are threatened, posing a danger to residents.

Areas Prone to Hornet Infestation

  • Tree Branches: Hornets are known to build their nests on tree branches, especially in secluded areas.
  • Eaves and Roof Overhangs: The sheltered spaces under eaves and roof overhangs provide ideal nesting sites.
  • Garden Sheds: Hornets may find garden sheds appealing for their nesting needs.
  • Wall Cavities: Empty wall cavities or gaps in buildings offer hidden spots for hornet nests.

Differentiating Hornet Species by Signs

  • Bald-faced Hornets: Recognizable by their large, football-shaped nests and white facial markings.
  • European Hornets: Distinguished by their reddish-brown color, yellow abdominal stripes, and nesting in tree hollows or buildings.
  • Yellow Jackets: Smaller and more aggressive, known for their ground-nesting and nesting in wall voids.

Remember, hornets can be dangerous, and it's best to contact a professional pest control expert for safe and effective hornet removal.

Removal of Hornets

Safety and eco-friendliness are at the forefront of our approach. We'll cover non-toxic and eco-friendly solutions, as well as chemical and pesticide options, providing you with the knowledge to tackle hornet infestations with confidence.

Non-Toxic & Eco-Friendly Hornet Removal

Baits & Traps:

  • Utilize sugar-based traps to attract and capture hornets.
  • Hang traps near nesting areas or high-activity zones for maximum effectiveness.

Natural Repellants:

  • Use essential oils like peppermint or clove to deter hornets from nesting or foraging.
  • Spray repellants around potential entry points or nesting sites.

Non-Toxic Repellant Products:

  • Choose insect repellent sprays or powders that are safe for the environment.
  • Follow the product instructions for proper application and efficacy.

Biological Control Methods:

  • Introduce natural predators of hornets, such as praying mantises or nematodes, to reduce their population.
  • Encourage birds like blue jays or woodpeckers that feed on hornets.

Chemical & Pesticides for Hornet Control


  • Chemical solutions should be a last resort and used with caution.
  • Select pesticides specifically designed for hornet control.


  • Wear protective clothing, including gloves and a face mask, when handling pesticides.
  • Keep children and pets away from treated areas until deemed safe.

How to Apply Pesticides Effectively:

  • Directly apply the pesticide to hornet nests during the evening or early morning when they are less active.
  • Apply the product according to the manufacturer's instructions for optimal results.

Professional Hornet Removal Services:

  • If the infestation is extensive or challenging to handle, consider hiring a licensed pest control service for safe and effective removal.

By utilizing these methods, you can successfully remove hornet infestations while ensuring the safety of both your property and the environment.

Dealing with Specific Hornets Species

Identifying the specific hornet species is crucial for effective hornet control, as different species may have distinct behaviors and nesting habits. We will equip you with the knowledge and strategies to tackle these hornets with confidence and ensure a hornet-free environment.

Bald-Faced Hornet (Dolichovespula maculata)

  • Description: Black with white markings, aggressive when threatened.
  • Nesting Habit: Builds large papery nests in trees or on structures.

Dealing with Bald-Faced Hornets:

  • Approach their nests with extreme caution due to their aggressive nature.
  • Use non-toxic traps to capture foraging hornets and reduce nest activity.
  • Seek professional pest control services for safe and effective nest removal.

European Hornet (Vespa crabro)

  • Description: Larger than other hornet species, brown with yellow markings.
  • Nesting Habit: Often found in tree hollows, wall voids, or attics.

Dealing with European Hornets:

  • Locate and seal potential entry points in your home to prevent nesting indoors.
  • Use natural repellants or non-toxic products to discourage nesting in vulnerable areas.
  • For extensive infestations, consult pest control experts for removal.

Eastern Yellow Jacket (Vespula maculifrons)

  • Description: Small yellow and black hornets with short temper.
  • Nesting Habit: Build nests underground or in wall voids.

Dealing with Eastern Yellow Jackets:

  • Locate ground nests and treat them with care using natural repellants or traps.
  • Avoid disturbing ground nests during daytime when hornets are most active.
  • If stung, seek medical attention if you have allergic reactions.

Baldfaced Hornet (Dolichovespula maculata)

  • Description: Black with white markings, aggressive when threatened.
  • Nesting Habit: Builds large papery nests in trees or on structures.

Dealing with Baldfaced Hornets

  • Approach their nests with extreme caution due to their aggressive nature.
  • Use non-toxic traps to capture foraging hornets and reduce nest activity.
  • Seek professional pest control services for safe and effective nest removal.

Understanding the different hornet species and their habits will help you develop appropriate strategies for their removal and control. Remember to prioritize your safety and consider seeking professional assistance for challenging infestations.

Prevention Measures for Hornets

Preventing hornet infestations is essential to ensure a safe and hornet-free environment in the mid-west region of the USA. In this section, we will explore effective prevention measures to keep hornets at bay and minimize the risk of infestations. By adopting these proactive strategies, you can significantly reduce the likelihood of encountering hornet problems around your property.

Regular Cleaning Practices

  • Keep your surroundings clean and free of food debris that might attract hornets.
  • Dispose of food scraps properly and ensure outdoor trash cans have tight-fitting lids.
  • Clean up spills promptly, especially sugary liquids, as they attract hornets.

Proper Food Storage

  • Store food items in airtight containers to prevent hornets from accessing them.
  • Avoid leaving pet food or birdseed outdoors, as they can attract hornets.
  • Keep outdoor dining areas clean and free of food leftovers.

Sealing Entry Points

  • Inspect your property for gaps and openings that may serve as entry points for hornets.
  • Seal cracks in walls, windows, and doors to prevent hornets from entering indoors.
  • Check for gaps in eaves, roof vents, and chimneys, and fix them promptly.

Ant-Repellent Plants

  • Plant insect-repellent herbs and flowers around your property to deter hornets.
  • Lavender, mint, basil, and marigolds are known to repel hornets and other insects.
  • Consider landscaping with these plants near outdoor living areas.

Natural Solutions

  • Create homemade hornet repellants using a mixture of water and essential oils.
  • Peppermint, eucalyptus, and citronella oils can be effective in repelling hornets.
  • Spray the solution in areas prone to hornet activity.

Regular Property Inspection & Maintenance

  • Conduct regular inspections of your property for signs of hornet nests.
  • Check trees, shrubs, and outdoor structures for potential hornet colonies.
  • Remove any developing nests early to prevent further infestation.

Pest Control Subscription

  • Consider subscribing to a professional pest control service for regular inspections.
  • Pest control experts can identify potential hornet issues and address them promptly.
  • Regular treatments and preventive measures can be taken to keep hornets away.

By following these prevention measures, you can create an environment that is less attractive to hornets and reduce the risk of hornet infestations around your home or property in the mid-west region.

The Different Species of Hornets

Understanding the characteristics and behaviors of these hornets is crucial for implementing targeted pest management approaches. Our expertise in hornet removal allows us to share valuable insights on how to get rid of hornets and ensure a hornet-free environment for the mid-western communities.

Bald-faced Hornets (Dolichovespula maculata)

  • Appearance: These hornets are black with white markings on their face, thorax, and abdomen.
  • Nesting Habits: Bald-faced hornets build large, paper-like nests in trees, shrubs, and buildings.
  • Behavior: They are aggressive defenders of their nests and can deliver painful stings.
  • Control Strategies: Remove nests with proper protective gear or seek professional hornet control services.

European Hornets (Vespa crabro)

  • Appearance: European hornets are larger than other species, with yellow and brown markings.
  • Nesting Habits: They build nests in tree hollows, wall voids, and attics.
  • Behavior: European hornets are nocturnal and attracted to lights, making them a nuisance around outdoor lighting.
  • Control Strategies: Seal entry points in buildings, use traps, and keep outdoor lights off when not needed.

Paper Wasps (Polistes spp.)

  • Appearance: Paper wasps have slender bodies with long legs and are usually brown or reddish in color.
  • Nesting Habits: They construct open, umbrella-shaped nests under eaves, ledges, and branches.
  • Behavior: Paper wasps are less aggressive but can sting if provoked.
  • Control Strategies: Physically remove small nests during early spring or seek professional assistance for larger colonies.

Eastern Yellowjacket (Vespula maculifrons)

  • Appearance: These yellowjackets are black and yellow, resembling typical wasps.
  • Nesting Habits: Eastern yellowjackets build underground nests in abandoned rodent burrows or in wall voids.
  • Behavior: They are aggressive defenders of their nests and can be a nuisance during picnics and outdoor activities.
  • Control Strategies: Locate and treat the nest entrance with appropriate insecticides or seek professional hornet control.

Understanding the different species of hornets and their unique nesting habits and behaviors is crucial for effective hornet control in the mid-west region. By applying targeted strategies and seeking professional assistance when needed, we can create hornet-free environments that ensure the safety and comfort of residents in the region.

Everything you should know about Hornets

By gaining valuable insights into these aspects, you can make informed decisions on how to get rid of hornets and implement effective hornet control measures.

Life Cycle of Hornets

  • Hornets begin their life cycle as eggs laid by the queen in the spring.
  • The eggs hatch into larvae, which are fed and cared for by worker hornets.
  • Larvae develop into pupae within the nest's cells, and eventually, adult hornets emerge.
  • The newly emerged adults take on various roles within the hornet colony, such as workers and reproductive members.
  • The life cycle of hornets continues throughout the summer, with the colony growing in size until late fall.

Foraging & Feeding Habits

  • Hornets are omnivorous insects, feeding on a variety of food sources.
  • They are known to be predators, preying on other insects and arthropods.
  • Hornets also scavenge for sweet substances like nectar, fruit juices, and sugary liquids.
  • In their quest for food, hornets can become a nuisance around outdoor dining areas and trash cans.

Seasonal Behavior of Hornets

  • In the spring, hornet queens emerge from hibernation and begin building new nests.
  • During the summer, hornet colonies reach their peak activity and size.
  • In late summer and early fall, hornet colonies produce new reproductive members, such as future queens and drones.
  • As the temperatures drop, the hornet colony's worker population decreases, and the new queens leave to find overwintering sites.
  • The remaining colony, including the old queen and males, eventually dies off with the onset of winter.

Hornets in the Ecosystem

  • Hornets play an essential role in the ecosystem as predators of various insects.
  • They help control populations of pests like flies, caterpillars, and other harmful insects.
  • Hornets are pollinators and contribute to plant reproduction by transferring pollen while foraging for nectar.
  • Despite their ecological significance, hornets can pose risks to humans and pets when nesting near residential areas.

Understanding the life cycle, foraging habits, and seasonal behavior of hornets, as well as their role in the ecosystem, can aid in hornet control strategies. By applying effective and safe methods, you can manage hornet infestations in the mid-west region while respecting their ecological contributions.

Impact of Hornet Control on the Environment

We explore the environmental footprint of chemical pesticides, eco-friendly pest control methods, and sustainable practices for hornet control to ensure a harmonious balance between pest management and ecological preservation.

Environmental Footprint of Chemical Pesticides

  • Chemical pesticides may provide quick results in hornet control, but they can have negative consequences for the environment.
  • These pesticides can harm beneficial insects, wildlife, and contaminate water sources.
  • Long-lasting residues of chemical pesticides can persist in the environment, posing risks to non-target organisms.
  • Their use requires caution to avoid unintended harm to the ecosystem, especially in areas near water bodies, gardens, and farms.

Eco-Friendly Pest Control Methods

  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a holistic approach that focuses on minimizing the use of chemical pesticides.
  • IPM combines various strategies, such as biological control, habitat modification, and cultural practices, to manage pests effectively.
  • Biological control involves introducing natural predators or parasites that specifically target hornets.
  • Habitat modification includes removing potential nesting sites and reducing attractants around homes and properties.
  • Cultural practices, like regular inspection and sanitation, play a vital role in preventing hornet infestations.

Sustainable Practices for Hornet Control

  • To promote sustainability, consider using non-toxic and biodegradable products for hornet control.
  • Opt for natural repellents, which are often derived from plant-based essential oils and do not harm the environment.
  • Eco-friendly traps and baits can also be effective in reducing hornet populations without causing harm to other organisms.
  • Encourage the use of physical barriers, such as screens and mesh, to prevent hornets from entering buildings while allowing air circulation.

By adopting eco-friendly and sustainable hornet control practices, we can protect both the environment and human health while managing hornet infestations effectively. It is essential to strike a balance between hornet control and ecological preservation to ensure a safe and harmonious coexistence with these insects in the mid-west region.

How dangerous are hornets and their stings to humans?

Hornets can be quite dangerous as they have potent stings that can cause severe reactions in some individuals. Their venom can trigger allergic reactions, leading to swelling, difficulty breathing, and even anaphylaxis in sensitive individuals. It's crucial to exercise caution around hornets and seek professional hornet control if their presence poses a threat to human safety.


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