There are a variety of bugs that sting in Colorado. And when it comes to wasp pest control, we are the local experts. Colorado is home to wasps, hornets, yellowjackets, (both of which belong to the wasp family) and bees. Many times getting stung by one of these flying pests is painful, but can occasionally require medical attention. Let’s take a deeper look at the stinging insects found in Colorado.
Wasp Pest Control
Paper wasps are the most common wasp in Colorado, and the European paper wasps is an invasive species. As its name suggests, the paper wasp creates nests made of paper. These nests are typically found on building overhangs, under patio stairs, and even on the tops of window wells and door openings. Paper nests are created by the wasps from chewing on paper, cardboard, and wood. Several wasp species are social and active during the summer. Females will find shelter during the winter, and in the spring emerge and, if fertile, become a queen. Colonies can be as small as a few dozen or as large as several hundred insects. The Mud Dauber is another type of wasp here in the Centennial state. If you find yourself stung by a wasp, UCHealth suggests putting ice on the sting site to help reduce the inflammation. If your reaction to the sting is more severe, a prescription topical steroid may be necessary.
The most commonly found hornet in Colorado is the bald faced hornet. Bald faced hornets build new nests each year. A hornets nest is large and, similar to wasps, made from paper. Cartoons like Winnie the Pooh sometimes make people confuse a hornets nest for that of a bees nest. These nests can be larger than two basketballs, and filled with hundreds of hornets. In the fall, we see a high volume of hornet pest control calls because the nests are more easily spotted due to their large size. However, we encourage you to keep your eyes on your property all year round so we can knock out the problem before it gets too big. These nests are frequently found in trees, attached to buildings, and even in crawl spaces. Hornets feed their young live insects, and adults feed on leaves, tree sap, flies, bees, and other insects.
According to Colorado State University, the majority of stings here in Colorado come from the aforementioned European paper wasp and the Western yellowjacket. In fact, CSU estimates at least 90% of all stings in Colorado come from the Western yellowjacket. Stings can be extremely painful, which is why we suggest getting proper wasp pest control as soon as you realize you have a problem. Some yellow jacket species are particularly annoying in late summer. They are scavengers and especially annoying near outdoor food areas and trash receptacles. Unlike wasps, yellowjackets typically nest underground. They are sometimes mistaken for bees, as they are yellow or orange and black striped. They vary from honey bees however as they are not hairy and their colors are more intense.
Bees are the most different from the aforementioned stinging insects. While wasps, hornets, and yellowjackets feed primarily on other insects, bees live off pollen and nectar. Several bee species are very social and need each other to survive, however some are solitary creatures. There are various bee species in Colorado, including the bumble bee which is native to our state. There are over 20 bumble bee species in Colorado, all with thick, fuzzy bodies, and yellow or orange and black bands. Bumble bees create new colonies each spring, similarly to wasps. They make their nests in old rodent burrows and other small hollow spaces, which can include the inside of building walls. Colorado is also home to honey bees. Honey bees are typically not aggressive, and sting only when threatened. Many people know when a honey bee stings, the stinger, also known as the barb, becomes embedded in the skin, and then the bee dies. This is different from wasps, hornets, and yellowjackets, all of which can sting multiple times. Bees are important pollinators and assist many crops grown in Colorado, such as apples, pears, peaches and melons.
“I highly recommend Trevor and Complete Pest Control. Local pest control service that truly cares for their customers experience. Trevor took extra care to make sure the entire house was sprayed and went beyond to help us taking care of wasp nests. I always believed in the big companies but seriously, help out your local business and they won’t disappoint. Thank you for the pleasant experience. We will be calling again.”