Do Wasps Sting? Everything You Need to Know About These Backyard Insects

Posted by Matthew Rathbone on January 06, 2023 · 3 mins read

If you’re a homeowner, chances are you’ve come across a few wasps in your backyard. But do wasps sting? And if so, what can you do to keep yourself and your family safe around these insects? In this article, we’ll answer all your questions about wasps.

DIY Wasp removal recommendations

For non aggressive wasps I've had great luck spraying the nests with this Spectracide wasp remover in the evening. For more aggressive wasps I also use this rediculous looking upper torso Beekeeping suit. It seems silly, but trust me, it's amazing.

Types of Wasps

There are many different types of wasps, each with its own unique characteristics. Some common types of wasps include:

  • Yellow Jackets: These wasps are often confused with bees because of their yellow and black coloring. They typically build their nests in the ground or in hollow trees.
  • Paper Wasps: Paper wasps have long, thin bodies and build their nests in sheltered areas like under eaves, decks, or porches.
  • Bald-faced Hornets: These large wasps have white and black markings and build paper nests in trees or on buildings.

Wasp Behavior

Wasps are social insects that live in colonies. The size of the colony can range from a few dozen to several thousand individuals, depending on the species. Wasps feed on nectar and other insects, making them beneficial for controlling pest populations in your yard.

However, wasps are also known for their defensive behavior. If they feel threatened, they may sting to protect themselves and their colony. This is why it’s important to be cautious around wasps and avoid disturbing their nests.

Do Wasps Sting?

Yes, wasps can sting. Unlike bees, which lose their stinger and die after stinging, wasps can sting multiple times. The sting is painful and can cause swelling, redness, and itching. In some cases, people may experience an allergic reaction to a wasp sting, which can be life-threatening.

Keeping Your Backyard Safe

To avoid getting stung by wasps, it’s important to take steps to discourage them from building nests in your yard. Here are some tips:

  • Cover food and drinks when eating outside to avoid attracting wasps.
  • Keep garbage cans tightly sealed to prevent wasps from scavenging for food.
  • Seal gaps and cracks in your home’s exterior to prevent wasps from entering and building nests.
  • If you find a wasp nest in your yard, call a professional pest control service to remove it safely.


Now you know everything you need to know about wasps and their behavior. Remember, while wasps can be beneficial for controlling pests in your yard, they can also sting if they feel threatened. Take precautions to keep your backyard safe and enjoyable for you and your family.