Understanding Wasps in Santa Ana, California - A Guide for Homeowners

Posted by Matthew Rathbone on February 22, 2023 · 2 mins read

Are you a homeowner in Santa Ana, California, wondering about the wasps buzzing around your backyard? Don’t worry; this guide will help you understand these insects better.

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 Found in Santa Ana

Santa Ana is home to several species of wasps. The most common ones include:

  • Yellow Jackets: These are black and yellow wasps that often build nests underground or in wall cavities.
  • Paper Wasps: These wasps have slender bodies and build umbrella-shaped nests under eaves, porches, and decks.
  • Mud Daubers: These wasps build their nests out of mud and fill them with paralyzed spiders for their larvae to feed on.
  • Cicada Killers: Despite their name, cicada killers are not dangerous to humans. They are large, solitary wasps that hunt cicadas for their young.

Identifying Wasps

Identifying wasps can be tricky since some species look similar. However, there are a few things you can look out for:

  • Body shape: paper wasps have slender waists, while yellow jackets have chunky bodies.
  • Nest location: yellow jackets usually build underground nests, while paper wasps build their nests above ground.
  • Behavior: yellow jackets are more aggressive than other wasps and are more likely to sting.

Dealing with Wasps

If you spot a wasp nest on your property, don’t panic. Here’s what you can do:

  • Keep your distance: Wasps are less likely to sting if you don’t disturb their nest.
  • Remove food sources: Yellow jackets are attracted to sweet foods, so make sure to cover sugary drinks and keep your trash cans sealed.
  • Call a professional: If you have a large wasp nest or are allergic to stings, it’s best to call a pest control expert.


Now that you know more about the types of wasps found in Santa Ana, identifying them should be a breeze. Remember, most wasps are not aggressive unless provoked, so it’s best to leave them alone. If you have any concerns, contact a professional for assistance.