Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Danger lurking around every corner

Toward the back side of our barn, we have a gate.

Once we get livestock, this gate will be used to keep the cows from entering the driveway area; but at the moment, it's always open and we seldom pay attention to it.

This week, I had a project to do at that end of the barn. When I stepped outside, I noticed something interesting about this gate. Let's peer a little more closely at the upper right-hand corner, shall we?

The amount of frantic activity going on with this colony of yellow jackets was amazing. The wasps were clustering so thickly along the bit of nest sticking out of the pipe that they often dropped off and fell to the ground beneath.

Notice how they're building new cells outward from the core of the gate's hollow pipe. I'm working on the assumption it's because the rest of the hollow portions of the gate are already full of wasps. Whee!

I tell ya, danger lurks around every corner around here.

These wasps are doomed. I hate yellow jackets.


  1. Best time to spray...early morning when they're all at home. We've had several in our corner iron posts this, too.

  2. Beasts they are! We have a hive hidden somewhere in our woodshed that will be doomed soon.

  3. I’m sure you’ve heard of, or used, some home remedies for dealing with a sting from these little devils. I’ve used essential oil of lavender on both yellow jacket stings and fire ant bites. It works fantastic. I heard about it from a book on gardening. The author said she never goes into the garden without a bottle in her pocket. For me it took away the pain/itching immediately. I did need to reapply throughout the day but the pain was nowhere near what it was when I got stung before I knew about the lavender. Plus, for fire ants if you reapply for several days, even if no more pain, the lavender will reduce the welt.

    I’m writing this sitting in a hotel room due to having to bug out from ANOTHER Florida hurricane!

  4. I got stung on my finger by a yellowjacket when I was about 9 years old. The swelling went all the way to my shoulder before it stopped. Never been stung by one since but doctor says I need to keep Benadryl with me 24/7 'cause if it happens again, I'm in trouble. I trust you'll understand if I don't volunteer to help you and Don get rid of those little demons.

  5. The wife got stung by a bunch of those little nasties. They were in a hollow concrete block that she tried to move. Got stung about 12 times in seconds. Took her to the urgent care (1 hr wait) where they gave her some benadryl and ran some tests. She was really wobbly. Sprayed a whole can of wasp spray on the little devils that night after dark!!!

  6. Meat tenderizer and ammonia will neutralize the pain immediately, one for bees and one for wasps/yellow jackets, but I can't remember which for which, lol.

  7. Diesel fuel will also take them out. Thin oily liquid blocks their breathing tubes.

  8. Something to keep an eye out for with kids. We had one of those portable basketball things that we had in the driveway for our son. He was about 7 when I kept hearing, bounce thunk, bounce thunk, then a shriek. When he got into the house he had gotten a bunch of bites on his leg. My point is plug the poles/pipes on those basketball boards so the wasps don't go in in the first place. Once we got it cleaned out I used super large corks to plug up those pipes. Problem solved.

  9. Go out after dark and use a piece of paper on fire to burn them out. They can't see you then.

  10. Egads! Yellow jackets are vicious. I once had some chase me all the way from the backyard garden, up the stairs, and inside, stinging me all the way.

  11. Patrice, Did you try your whiz bang deal post a few years ago dealing with wasps? I can't remember it exactly but involved some sort of chemical with raw ground beef.

    1. I remember that, ground beef with dog flea/tick medicine and an attractant in a cup...

  12. We were processing broiler chickens outside today and the little buggers would not leave us alone! Thankfully no one got stung but they were very persistently going after the guts, etc. Ugh.