The yellow jackets are starting to come out. My property is covered in them. My question is how to get rid of them without endangering my poultry and goats. I have poured gas down the holes I could find. I did this after dark so they would hopefully be home. It didn't seem to do any good. I have fruit trees which I believe attracts them at certain times of the year. Of course, they aren't producing yet. I want my children to be able to play outside without the danger of being stung.
We googled for yellow jacket traps and got lots of hits, but out of all the homemade contraptions, the only one that actually had good results was the tripod with the hanging piece of fish over the bucket of water with a little soap in it. We placed one by the front door and the little darlings flocked to it.
The concept is fairly simple: In the spring, they are very hungry from their long winter's sleep so they are drawn to the 'fresh' meat. Being the greedy things they are, they gnaw off large hunks of the fish and attempt to fly away. BUT...the huge hunk of meat weighs them down into the water where they drown.
You do have to check the water every so often so that you don't have so many floaters that the new ones can climb out!
Last year we used one, this year we'll probably set up 6 all around the house.
We also had the commercial yellow jacket traps. I think I saw two dead ones for the whole season. I'll stick with the cheap, homemade traps this year for sure!
you know where the holes in the ground are to me its a give me, simply take a towel soaked in diesel and put over the hole with a rock to hold it in place as the wasp crawl out it will get them same as ants maybe in some worlds not eco friendly but works for me, no farm animal will bother save your gas but do you know every nest hole on your place is probably not so use some of the above adivce such as the fish traps.
I was not going to go here but I have to. I have worked for our state ag agency for 20 years and I have to say please do not use gasoline to kill yellowjackets. Gasoline will contaminate the soil for a very long time. Gasoline breaks down into byproducts like Toluene and Benzene. Not good. When killing a nest you must get to the queen, soak the nest with an insecticide. Please don't use gasoline.
Here at home I mostly use the gallon milk jug home made traps. Fill partly with soapy water, drill a 3/8 inch hole near the lid but down just a bit. Take the cap off and fill the inside of the cap with jam/jelly, packets from the local eatery replace cap, works well. they go in can't find their way out and soon tire and fall in the water.
I also have a removal bussness. Can't be fooling around with traps and what not when people want them gone YESTERDAY. I use Specrside pro,only place I have found the pro type is Home Depot.
It is a contact killer and also leaves a residue for several days to get any that touch any area around the entrance you spray. I give a money back garintee when I do the job. I have never in 7 years gave a nickle back the stuff works.
Garden View Apiaries. Where the view is as sweet as the honey.
A member of SEMBA & MBA.
I leave them alone except for the ones that are too close for comfort. After dark, with red cellophane over the flashlight, I will go out and dig the nest up with a can of spry all set to go or crawl out on the roof and spray under the eves or whatever the situation calls for. I read the insects cannot see red light and it does seem to hold true. I do not kill any of them that aren't a threat as they do pollinate and we don't seem to have bees like we used to.
Insecticide is just as bad as gasoline. It also contaminates the soil and water for years. Read the info on the label, the main ingredient is usually petrolatum distillates.
Best, simplest, and safest solution is to place a clear glass bowl over the entrance hole to an underground nest. The wasps can't figure out how to get around the obstacle. They will all die within 24 hours but you can leave the bowl in place for 2 days just to be sure.
As for the emerging queens you see now, the only control would be to smack each one with a fly swatter as you see one. Until they start establishing a nest they have no home base to return to in the evening.
We had several close calls with Yellow Jackets a couple of years ago and tried all the home remedies without any luck until someone suggested Sevin Dust. It worked the very first time! As you mention, use it late at night or early in the morning so as to get as many as possible in the nest (they will not go past it into the nest). With them being ground dwellers, cleanup & risk of exposure is minimal.
Hope this helps!
"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." -- Edmund Burke
Keeping it together with prayer and the "Handyman's secret weapon" - duct tape!