What You Need to Know About Wasps in Phoenix, Arizona

Posted by Matthew Rathbone on January 05, 2023 · 3 mins read

If you’re a homeowner in Phoenix, Arizona, chances are you’ve encountered a few wasps buzzing around your backyard. While they can be beneficial for pollination and pest control, some species can also be a nuisance or even dangerous. Here’s what you need to know about wasps in Phoenix.

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.

Common Types of Wasps in Phoenix

Paper Wasps

Paper wasps are perhaps the most common type of wasp you’ll see in Phoenix. They are slender with long legs and a narrow waist, and their bodies are typically brownish with yellow or red markings. These wasps build papery nests that hang from trees, eaves, or other structures.

Yellow Jackets

Yellow jackets are another common wasp in Phoenix. They are slightly smaller than paper wasps and have black and yellow stripes on their bodies. Yellow jackets build nests in the ground or in cavities like tree hollows or wall voids.

Mud Daubers

Mud daubers are solitary wasps that build nests out of mud. They are long and slender with a narrow waist and metallic blue-black bodies. Mud daubers are not aggressive and rarely sting humans.

Cicada Killers

Cicada killers are large wasps that resemble hornets. They have reddish-brown bodies with yellow markings and are about two inches long. Cicada killers are not aggressive but can be intimidating due to their size. They get their name from their habit of hunting cicadas, which they paralyze with their sting and then carry back to their underground nests.

Dealing with Wasp Nests

If you discover a wasp nest on your property, it’s important to proceed with caution. While some wasps are not aggressive, others will defend their nests fiercely if they feel threatened. Here are some tips for dealing with wasp nests:

  • Don’t disturb the nest: If possible, avoid disturbing the nest. This will reduce the chances of provoking an attack.
  • Call a professional: If the nest is in a hard-to-reach location or you’re not comfortable dealing with it yourself, call a professional pest control company to remove it.
  • Use caution: If you do decide to tackle the nest yourself, wear protective clothing and approach it slowly and calmly. Use an insecticide specifically labeled for wasp control and follow the instructions carefully.

Preventing Wasp Infestations

The best way to deal with wasps is to prevent them from infesting your property in the first place. Here are some tips to keep wasps at bay:

  • Seal up cracks and crevices: Wasps often build nests in small openings in walls, roofs, and foundations. Seal up any cracks or crevices where wasps could enter.
  • Remove food sources: Wasps are attracted to sweet smells, so make sure to keep outdoor eating areas clean and free of leftover food or sugary drinks.
  • Keep garbage sealed: Make sure your garbage cans have tight-fitting lids and are emptied regularly.
  • Trim vegetation: Keep shrubs, trees, and other vegetation trimmed back from your home to reduce potential nesting sites.

By following these tips, you can help keep your Phoenix backyard free of wasps and enjoy your outdoor space without worry.