Yellowjacket Bees

Any recommendations on how to get rid of Jellowjacket Bees.
My landscaper found a nest in the ground when he was mowing. I bought a can of Spectracide foam and sprayed the whole can into the hole last night.

This morning there's no difference - still dozens flying in and out of the hole.
Thanks for any suggestions.

marjon marjon
Aug '18

Shouldn't your landscaper know what to do...

Aug '18

I've got them too! sprayed 3 times,,,, they still come back. I put sticky pads on the porch, and they landed stuck till they died. 35 to 50, but they still return.
Next....I will spray with the old fashioned way that chases them away from re-nesting.
Good Ole K #1 ( KEROSENE ) .

It smells, but it chases insects away.

Embryodad Embryodad
Aug '18


They're actually in the wasp family and you usually need Wasp & Hornet killer to take care of a nest like that. They and I have had a very adversarial relationship over the years. Honeybees and Bumblebees and I never have issues, but Yellowjackets and I are another story altogether. They seem to seek me out and I've been stung and or bitten many times (they actually do both, which is also why they are hard to get rid of if they are actually on you). I've even had to make a trip to the Emergency room because my hand took about 5-6 stings and even with Benedryl it wouldn't stop swelling up. They do not lose their stinger and depending on the season and what the nest is in need of nutrition-wise will be looking for sugars (soda cans) or proteins (your grilled burgers or trash). At least that's what earlier research has shown me.

The best time to try to eliminate the nest is when it's cooler out (early morning or late evening) when they're less active. I've heard that flooding the nest with water quickly can work, but that's the only environmentally safe method I've heard of beside wasp traps. A CO2 fire extinguisher could temporarily slow them down so you could flood the nest, but I'm nt sure how well that would work. Otherwise there's the Wasp and Hornet spray, but for goodness' sake, stay as far away as you safely can while still being accurate with the spray. I can tell you from experience (and my old dog's) it's not fun and they will "gang up" on you quickly!

Maybe happiestgirl or Rebecka know of a more environmentally safe way to get rid of them. If so, I'd try their methods first before you go right to the wasp & hornet spray.

Best of luck!

Phil D. Phil D.
Aug '18

I used All Seasons Pest Control
908-850-8206. Came when they said. Sprayed the nest and I haven’t had the problem since.

Nellejoy Nellejoy
Aug '18

yellow jackets are not bees, they are wasps. They are aggressive and horrifying and have a crazy mean pack mentality - nonetheless, they are extremely beneficial and I don't advocate killing them unless they're invading your living space. Having said that - you may find that it takes several cans and/or several days of WASP spray to kill the hive. You may find them dying slowly, but they will eventually die. The good news is, they won't rebuild their nest in the same place next year. So if you can ride out the summer, you should be fine. If it's in your landscaper's way, well, um. Good luck.

Oh and YES, take the advice given above, and wait till dark at night to do it, or you'll be sorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!

Spectracide is crap.

Get the Ortho foaming spray.

Mark Mc. Mark Mc.
Aug '18

MYD I totally hear you. I typically am against killing ANYTHING, whether they are beneficial or not. Had their nest not been a foot away from my pool where the dogs are running all the time I would’ve let them be(e).
I found them or should I say they found me when I quietly put a chair a little close to their nest and they went on the attack. I couldn’t take the chance of anyone getting harmed by them. Any other way of getting rid of them without killing them would’ve been my first choice. If they could have relocated them it would have been fine with me but as far as I know nobody does that with yellow jackets.

Nellejoy Nellejoy
Aug '18

I've killed nests of ants before by pouring lots of boiling water down the hole. Not sure if this would work with yellow-jackets though and for sure whatever you try is better done at night. Good luck!

hktownie hktownie
Aug '18

I got rid of mine a few years back by covering the hole with one of these homemade soda bottle borax traps. I put it over the hole late at night, and placed a brick over it to keep steady.
Sprays rarely work as there are so many still underground when you spray. You will be surprised by the amount that will be dead in the trap after a week.
They have not been back since.

craftbeerlover craftbeerlover
Aug '18

One time, my friend and I were flying a kite in the back of my apartment complex and the kite got caught in the bushes just beyond the tree line. He climbed up a tree to get the kite out, and I took one fatal step to the right and yep - stepped dead on a yellow jacket hive in the ground! I didn't know yet, thought. Something touched my head, and I flipped my hair upside down and my friend slowly but firmly said "DON'T ... MOVE... You're on a hive..." and i was like, DON'T MOVE, MY ASS! I took off running, with the yellow jackets circling around me, I completely stripped off my shirt as I was running through the apartment complex. My friend was running behind me yelling for me to STOP!!! and my sister was standing at my apartment door bent over from laughing so hard. I got into the house and stripped naked in the bathroom, hyperventilating, listening to my sister laugh. I was told they were like a cyclone around me, and somehow I managed to only get stung three times. Important to note - I never actually SAW a single one of them.

Just watching that video gave the the willies! Those things are the worst!

3wbdwnj 3wbdwnj
Aug '18

I used borax in mine. I mixed a bunch of borax with hot water and poured it down the hole, then I covered the hole with a lot dry borax. That did the trick. Do it after dark so all the bees are home.

Jesse132 Jesse132
Aug '18

when I find a hive that cant be reached via spray, I just take a shop vac and stick it next to the hole. Don't completely cover the hole as you still want the ones outside the nest to try to come back in. Leave the shop vac on for about 6 to 8 hours a day. When you turn off the vac the bee's will be a state of shock and not able to fly around. Simply give them a spay and they will die. Then look for the queen. This can take 1 or 2 days to completely kill the hive but it works very well. I use this method often when I find hives inside the soffit of my home.

not sack
Aug '18

Simply pour a few pints of gasoline into the hole in the evening. Cover. In a day or two you will not see bees again. I have done this several times with 100% success.

Do not ignite the gasoline!!!

I've been using Delta dust on various in ground yellow jacket nests for over a year. Delta dust kills them all first time. I also bought the long handled bulb duster with brass nozzle so you do not need to get so close. Make sure you have the entrance hole figured out.. wait till it is fully dark out and poke the nozzle in the hole while shining a light on it. Wear long pants and jacket just in case. Pump the hole full of dust... I did one last week and one the week before.. no sign of bees the next day.

Aug '18

'll try a couple and see if anything works. Just found another nest over by the pool. Fortunately we closed the pool early so I'm not too bothered by that nest. Trouble is the house is up for sale so I'm trying to keep grounds neat for showings, and don't want anyone to get stung.
Thanks everyone for all the suggestions.

marjon marjon
Aug '18

Greg, that's my method of choice as well.

ianimal ianimal
Aug '18

hi, use a can of Raid fogger, bomb hole (throw into hole) and cover with board or other solid surface .do this in the evening when bees are more quiet.

We had to work on a chimney near a roof soffit that had a huge hive under the eaves inside a wall- it took them all out. We did have to do it twice though, but it is cheap and effective. You can get the Raid Flea Foggers at Home Depot in Mansfield or Pburg.

Good luck- keep your dog in (if any).

At night pour some dish soap in the hole, cover hold with some screen/mesh and then turn the hose on and fill the nest with water. Just make sure that there is only one entrance/exit. I have done this and it works.

I purchased a wasp catcher from QVC, works well. I have no problem with killing them though. They are relentless.

Aug '18

The worst of the worst is yet to come. They are 10 times worse end of August through October. Becarefull at all your fall functions keep your soda, beer, wine, and cider covered when not drinking.

Outdoor Woman Outdoor Woman
Aug '18

this has worked for me:

4catmom 4catmom
Aug '18

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