As summer turns to fall, many North Carolinians may notice more stinging insects in or around their property, according to the North Carolina Pest Management Association (NCPMA). According to the National Pest Management Association, more than 500,000 people go to the emergency room each year for injuries related to stinging insects.
In North Carolina, stinging insects can include bumble bees, honey bees, carpenter bees, wasps, hornets and yellow jackets.
Use caution and care: Keep in mind that not every wasp or bee is ready to sting. Some are only interested in pests and don’t attack humans, therefore don’t swat or wave insects away. Gently and slowly brush the insects away from you to prevent stings.
Cover it up: Keep food and trash cans covered. Many wasps and yellow jackets are attracted to sweet drinks and foods.
Be wise when outdoors: Don’t sit near trash cans when picnicking as they are prime targets for yellow jackets. And, don’t wear heavy perfume or aftershave when spending time outdoors. The smell attracts wasps and bees.
Mow carefully: Watch for yellow jackets when doing yard work. Yellow jackets often live in underground nests which can be disturbed by lawnmowers, weed eaters and other lawn tools.
Call a professional: Consult a pest management professional to determine the best solution to reduce stinging insects and other pests from your home and yard.