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Yellow Jackets are a very common summer and fall pest in the United States, but they have some pretty
unique characteristics. One of these is their distinctive coloring which can range from
yellow to white or black with stripes on the abdomen. The best way to understand what sets
yellow jackets apart from other wasps is to learn about their habits, lifestyle, and potential threat they pose
to families in and around Murfreesboro.
There are over 1,500 social wasps in the world and almost all of them have the ability to sting you.
Yellow Jackets are no different — they will protect their home and sometimes, that means stinging your kids,
family members, or even your pets. The overwhelming majority of these instances happen
when someone disturbs or enters into their nest site which is usually near small openings such as
windows, doorways or vents where they use for entry/exit points around your home.
To build the nest, the Yellow Jacket queen will find the perfect materials to create her paper-like nest.
She collects wood fibers and mixes them with saliva on chewed up pieces of wood, creating an innovative
material that's ideal for building nests. These nests can be up high or even in the ground.
The nest building normally happens in early spring and will carry the new colony all the way to the winter.
The queen is the only member of the colony able to survive through winter. Typically, the queen will look for a suitable location
to build a nest and start her new colony. Sterile daughters are the first to join the colony and will take care of the
needs of the queen while she focuses on producing more eggs. She will continue to do this throughout the summer months — these
eggs will turn into workers that will help enlarge and maintain nests as well as find food sources nearby.
During the summer months, they feast on rotting perishables
that would otherwise spread plant disease, and they feed off of the brood of other harmful bugs such as
aphids, caterpillars and flies instead of damaging crops or ornamental items like honeybees do. Yellow
Jackets also hunt for housefly larvae.
However, their sting is often enough reason to send them packing as these benefits can be achieved by great lawn care and quarterly
pest control (both offered by Thrive Pest Control).