Question: We are buying a house in Edmonds, Wash. During the inspection they found a dormant wasp/hornet nest. It was very large, 2 to 3 feet in diameter. The sellers had it removed. Is there anything I should do to ensure the wasps/hornets don’t come back? Or do they only nest for a year?
ANSWER: The nests are used only once. You can remove the old nest and dispose of it. Make sure that you have verified there are no queens or other wasps in or on the nest. If there are, they need to be killed first.
From the size of the nest you describe my best guess is that it is probably a Bald Face hornet (Dolichovespula maculata) nest. These nests consist of several tiers of carton cells surrounded by a paper envelope. They resemble a bloated football or an inverted teardrop. Entomologists consider hornets, like the bald face hornet, to be yellow jackets (aerial nesting).
The European hornet (Vespa crabro germana) is considered to be the one true hornet in the United States. In a home it would build the nests in cavities within the structure.
Should wasps or hornets return, you will observe them building a new nest. Call your local Orkin Pest Control Branch Office and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and develop a scientifically sound customized solution for you to take care of your wasp or hornet issue. The specialist is equipped to handle these dangerous stinging pests.