Wasps & Hornets in Oregon

Wasps, Yellowjackets, and Bees are stinging insects that can be both beneficial and harmful depending on the circumstances. It may not always seem like it, but wasps and yellowjackets do serve a purpose and are more beneficial than not. However, when they build nests on or around homes, they can quickly become a hazard.

To be clear, Good Earth does not provide service for:

  • Honeybees,
  • Bumble Bees,
  • Mason Bees, or any other beneficial pollinator even if they are nesting within a structure.

For those types of insects, it is best to work with a beekeeper to fully remove the nest rather than treat it. We have some great people to refer you to if dealing with Honeybees or Bumble Bees, just give us a call or text.

The Willamette Valley is home to several species of wasps, each with its unique characteristics and behaviors. Here are a few of the most common species you might encounter in the area:

Yellow Jackets: Yellow jackets are a type of social wasp that build their nests in the ground or in wall voids. These insects can be aggressive and will defend their nests. Yellow jackets can sting multiple times, and their stings can be painful and even life-threatening for those with allergies.

We get several species of Yellow Jackets here in Oregon, the most common being the western yellowjacket (Paravespula pensylvanica), the common yellowjacket (Paravespula vulgaris), and the aerial yellowjacket (Dolichovespula arenaria). 

The Common and Western Yellow Jackets will build concealed nests in the ground, at the base of plants, and sometimes even in the walls of structures. They are very quick to sting, particularly when a nest is stepped on or disturbed somehow. Aerial Yellow Jackets build nests that look similar to a hornet’s nest, a paper structure shaped like an oblong sphere. You will usually find these nests in trees or tall bushes, or sometimes hanging from the eaves of your home.

Paper Wasps (European Wasps): Paper wasps are another social wasp species that build their nests in sheltered areas such as eaves, tree branches, and door frames. These insects are less aggressive than yellow jackets, but they can still sting if they feel threatened.

Paper wasps build open-cell nests under eaves and in other protected areas. They look similar to Yellow Jackets, with black and yellow markings, but they are bigger and have longer legs that hang down during flight. They can be aggressive and sting if people get too close to the nest. They are also very sensitive to cold, so if you are going to service or knock down a nest, it is best to do so early in the morning when they’re at rest.

Bald-faced Hornets: Bald-faced hornets are a type of social wasp that build large, aerial nests in trees or on the sides of buildings. These insects are aggressive and will defend their nests vigorously, often stinging multiple times. Bald-faced hornet stings can be very painful and may cause an allergic reaction in some people.

Mud Daubers: Mud daubers are solitary wasps that build their nests out of mud. These insects are typically not aggressive and rarely sting people, or cannot sting at all sometimes. Mud daubers are beneficial insects as they prey on spiders and other insects, so they should be left alone if possible. Once the mud nests are abandoned, they can be easily removed.

What do wasps and hornets look like?

Like other insects, wasps and hornets have a segmented body consisting of a head, thorax, and abdomen. They have six legs, two sets of wings, and stingers (just the females). They can vary greatly in appearance depending on the species. Some are huge, some are small, some are hairy, some are black and yellow, and some are blue or green and metallic. Believe it or not, some don’t even have wings!

What are the signs of a wasp or hornet nest?
  • Numerous workers flying around a specific area.
  • Buzzing sound coming from a wall or ceiling.
  • Individual wasps going in and out of an entry point.
Why are they in my home?

Seeing wasps in your home can be scary and there are several reasons they may show up inside.

  • Looking for a nesting site.
  • Looking for protection to over-winter.
  • Accidentally, through an open window or door.
  • Looking for a food source.

Individual wasps appearing inside accidentally or looking to overwinter (hibernate) are not signs of a nearby nest. The wasps can be swatted or vacuumed up and do not require any further control measures. Seeing multiple wasps inside may be a result of a nest on the structure or inside a wall. This type of situation is best left to professional solutions.

How do I get rid of yellow jackets or wasps?

We offer services for wasps and hornets when they build nests near buildings. Warning: There is a high likely hood of getting stung if you try to do something yourself. For those who are allergic to stings, this can be a dangerous situation and should be handled by a professional. Over half a million people are sent to the emergency room each year as a result of being stung. 

Before you try anything with these dangerous insects on your own, contact our office and we will be happy to advise you on what would be best for your situation.

At Good Earth Pest Company, we take pride in our personal, friendly, and conscientious service. We understand that dealing with wasp problems can be stressful and disruptive to your daily life. That’s why we strive to make the pest control process as easy and hassle-free as possible, while still delivering exceptional results. Our tagline, “Hard on Bugs, Soft on You,” encapsulates our commitment to effective pest control that doesn’t compromise your comfort or safety.

Wasps and hornets are covered under our Standard Insect Program and Premiere Insect plus Rodent Program

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