Yellow jackets are the wasps which most often come into conflict with humans. Unlike bees and paper wasps, yellow jackets are socially active, aggressive food gatherers who can become quite pugnacious when disturbed. Yellow jackets are considered beneficial insects, but it’s sometimes necessary to permanently deal with these surly wasps and their nests. Thus, learn in this article how to get rid of yellow jackets, keep reading.
Open the doors and windows if you’re inside. The goal here is the elimination of the threat. Sometimes that can be accomplished by providing the wasp with an escape route. Herding the yellow jacket is not recommended, however, as your efforts may put you at unnecessary risk of being stung. You should not, however, open a window or door that sits directly next to a known yellow jacket nest.
Leave any food which they’re interested in. Efforts to reclaim any food and drink will anger the wasp. Leave anything that it’s currently landed on alone. Quickly cover and seal away all other food and drink, then remove it from the yellow jacket’s vicinity.
Stay calm if the yellow jacket lands on you. Erratic movements will only increase the likelihood of being stung. If it lands on you, refrain from making any sudden movements. Ideally, you’ll wait for the wasp to fly away of its own accord. If that tactic isn’t working, use slow, gentle efforts to move it along.
Avoid antagonizing the wasp. Rolled-up newspapers and flyswatters can kill a yellow jacket, but physical combat can open you up to a world of hurt. Striking and failing to kill the wasp will only invite further stings.
Lure and trap the wasp with food. Yellow jackets often come into conflict with humans over food. They can be found buzzing around trash cans, and are particularly fond of fruit, meat, and sugary drinks. This can be used to your advantage: if the wasp isn’t already crawling on a piece of food you had out, try using some to coerce it into a landing. Place food inside a sealable jar, or a soda bottle with a screwable cap. Once the yellow jacket has landed, seal the wasp away and dispose of the bottle (or release it once you’re in an appropriate environment).
Create a more sophisticated, soapy trap. Fill a bottle or bucket with soapy water, and suspend a small piece of protein (lunchmeat works well) from string, 1-2 inches above the water. Once the yellow jacket retrieves the protein, they’ll fall into the soapy water and drown.
Image Credits: Terminix