As one of North America’s largest and most aggressive social wasps, bald-faced hornets are known for their bold and often menacing behavior. And at the center of every colony is the powerful and formidable bald-faced hornet queen responsible for the success and growth of her entire colony.
In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at the role of this hornet queen and explore how she can quickly create a vast colony of undesirable backyard guests.
Bald-faced Hornets: An Overview
Bald-faced hornets are a force to be reckoned with. These pests are some of the largest yellow jackets in the United States, measuring around an inch in length. Their distinct black and white colorations across their faces and abdomens help set them apart from the other species.
While they’re not technically hornets, they have a temper to match! Like most other social wasp species, a bald-faced hornet nest is ruled by aggressive workers who’ll do anything to protect the queen and eggs. These social insects live in large colonies that they will defend fiercely.
Their nests are large and in charge, too, comprised of wood pulp and fiber. While wasps won’t eat wood, they scrape off these small shavings to create the papery material that keeps their nests together.
Bald-faced hornets have their perks, aiding pollination and controlling nearby insect populations. However, once they inch too close to your home in nearby branches, shrubs, or buildings, they aren’t a pest you should have hanging around.
If you come across a bald-faced hornet nest, it’s essential to exercise caution. Do not attempt to remove the nest yourself, as this can provoke the hornets and lead to a dangerous situation. Instead, contact a professional pest control agency like us that can safely remove the nest and eliminate the hornets.
Bald-Faced Hornet Queen
The role of the bald-faced hornet queen is pivotal in the growth and survival of the colony. In the spring, the queen emerges from hibernation and begins searching for a suitable location to build a nest.
Once she finds the ideal spot, she starts building the nest, laying her eggs, and rearing her first batch of workers, who will take over the nest-building duties and begin foraging for food.
The queen’s primary job is laying eggs and maintaining the colony’s reproductive success. She can lay up to 400 eggs daily, and the workers tend to them until they hatch into larvae.
The queen also plays a critical role in maintaining the colony’s social structure. She releases pheromones that regulate the behavior and reproductive status of the workers.
As the summer comes to a close, the bald-faced hornet queen will lay reproductive eggs that develop into males and new queens. Once these new hornets emerge and mate, the males die off, and the new queens find a place to hibernate for the winter. The old queen, workers, and any remaining males will die as the weather gets colder.
Overall, the bald-faced hornet queen is essential to the colony’s survival. As such, she is protected by the workers and plays a vital role in the social structure of the nest. Without her, the colony could not produce workers or expand its territory.
Protecting Your Yard Against Bald-faced Hornet Hives
Preventing a queen from building a nest on your property is the best way to avoid a hornet infestation.
However, these tiny pests are often difficult to spot in the hustle and bustle of the fall and winter months!
Start by regularly inspecting your home, paying close attention to eaves, overhangs, and other potential nesting sites. Seal gaps or holes in these areas to prevent hornets from accessing them.
Removing any potential food sources that may attract bald-faced hornets is also important. Keep your outdoor areas debris-free, including fallen fruits, garbage, and compost piles. Keep your trash cans tightly sealed, as they can attract hornets looking for food.
Deterrents can also help. Hanging decoys resembling bald-faced hornet nests can effectively prevent them from building an actual nest in the area. These decoys can be found at most hardware stores and are easy to install.
Act quickly if you spot a bald-faced hornet queen scouting a location to build a nest. Contact us here at proof. Pest Control! This will prevent her from building a nest and laying eggs.
While it may be tempting to handle a bald-faced hornet infestation on your own, it’s important to remember that these insects are very aggressive, and their stings can cause severe reactions in some people.
Removing a nest without the proper training and equipment is incredibly dangerous, so you should never attempt this alone.
Improper removal techniques worsen the situation, as bald-faced hornets may become even more aggressive in response to a perceived threat.
Calling in a pest control professional with experience dealing with bald-faced hornets is the best action if you suspect an infestation.
Here at proof., our technicians have the knowledge, tools, and protective gear necessary to remove the nest and eliminate the problem safely. Plus, we can also advise you on steps you can take to prevent future infestations, such as sealing up potential entry points and trimming back foliage near your home.
Contact us today to remove and prevent dangerous bald-faced hornet infestations!