Florida Black Wasps: What You Need to Know as a Homeowner

Posted by Matthew Rathbone on March 24, 2023 · 3 mins read

As a homeowner, you might have noticed some strange-looking wasps in your backyard. One of the most common types of wasps that Floridians encounter is the Florida Black Wasp. In this article, we’ll discuss what these wasps look like, where they like to build their nests, and how to prevent them from becoming a pesky problem in your yard.

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.

What Are Florida Black Wasps?

Florida Black Wasps (Sphex pensylvanicus) are a type of solitary wasp found throughout Florida. They are known for their shiny black bodies, which can range in length from ¾ to 1 ½ inches. These wasps are typically found in sandy areas, such as gardens, lawns, and wooded areas.

How Do Florida Black Wasps Build Their Nests?

Unlike social wasps, Florida Black Wasps are solitary insects. Each female wasp builds her own nest, which is usually located underground. The female will dig a tunnel, which she then constructs with small chambers. Each chamber will house a single egg and a paralyzed insect, which will serve as food for the developing larva.

Are Florida Black Wasps Dangerous?

Florida Black Wasps are not particularly aggressive and rarely sting humans unless provoked or threatened. However, their sting can be painful and cause swelling or itching. If you are stung by a Florida Black Wasp, clean the area with soap and water, and apply a cold compress to reduce swelling.

How Can You Prevent Florida Black Wasps from Nesting in Your Yard?

The best way to prevent Florida Black Wasps from nesting in your yard is to make it an unattractive habitat for them. Here are a few tips:

  • Keep your lawn well-maintained and free of debris.
  • Avoid over-watering your lawn, as damp soil can be attractive to Florida Black Wasps.
  • Seal any cracks or holes in your home’s foundation or walls, as these can provide access points for the wasps.
  • Keep garbage cans tightly sealed and dispose of food waste promptly.

If you do spot a Florida Black Wasp nest in your yard, it’s important to take caution when removing it. It’s best to call a professional pest control company to handle the job safely and effectively.

In conclusion, while Florida Black Wasps may look intimidating, they are generally harmless to humans and play an important role in controlling insect populations. However, if you want to keep them out of your yard, following the tips above can help. Remember to always use caution when dealing with wasps and seek professional help if necessary.