Stinging Insect Prevention and Removal Tips

Two yellowjackets sitting on a cardboard carton

Two yellowjackets sitting on a cardboard cartonStinging insects become more active as the temperature warms up in Georgia. As a result, your yard might not be the best place to spend time. Stinging insect prevention is essential to keep your yard and outdoor spaces safe and enjoyable for you and your family. Some of the most common stinging insects include yellow jackets, wasps, fire ants, and bumblebees. 

The specific ones you might encounter in Georgia include the bald-faced hornet, bumblebee, carpenter bee, sweat bee, and honeybee. You might also spot the cicada killer wasp, paper wasp, red paper wasp, velvet ant wasp, European hornets, mud dauber, and the yellowjacket.

Here are tips on keeping the above stinging insects from settling in your yard and eliminating them if they do.

Yellow Jackets

One of the most aggressive species of stinging insects is the yellow jacket. They typically build their nests in shrubs, trees, or ground. They are easily provoked and will attack in swarms, making them dangerous pests around your home. To prevent potential injury, call an exterminator when you discover a nest on your property.


Wasps, such as the cicada killer wasps, are easily distinguishable by their long, thin wings and slender bodies. They frequently build their nests in bushes, trees, or under eaves. While wasps are less aggressive than yellow jackets, they can still be a nuisance and deliver a painful sting if provoked. It is best to remove a wasp nest carefully to prevent unintentional stings.

Stinging Insects Prevention

Preventing stinging insects from ever making a home on your property is the best method to handle them. Here are some stinging insect tips you can use to keep them away from your space in the first place:

  • Maintain a tidy yard: Stinging insects like areas with lots of debris and waste. So, keeping your yard clean can prevent them from building nests.
  • Cover your food and drinks: Sweet and sugary foods attract stinging insects. So, be sure to cover your food and drinks when eating outside.
  • Seal any cracks or holes: Stinging insects can nest in small spaces. Seal cracks or holes in your home’s exterior to prevent them from getting in.

Getting Rid of Stinging Insects

Do you have a problem with stinging insects in your home? If so, you must be cautious to prevent potential harm when eradicating them. Here are some recommendations for eliminating stinging insects:

  • Call a professional: If you have a yellow jacket nest in your yard, call a professional exterminator. 
  • Use insecticide: Use an insecticide spray to destroy the nest and kill the insects. This works well for smaller nests.
  • Remove the nest: Remove the nest at night when the insects are less active and use protective clothing to prevent stings.

Call a Professional Exterminator

Stinging insects can be a real pain, both literally and figuratively. You can enjoy your outside space without worrying about painful stings by taking steps to keep them from nesting in your yard and knowing how to eliminate them if they do. 

It is crucial to contact qualified exterminators if you have a stinging bug infestation on your property. They will address the situation safely and effectively. At Active Pest Control, our experts can identify and eliminate stinging insect nests on your property. Contact us today to schedule an appointment. Remember to visit our Pest ID page for more information on identifying stinging insects. For best results, contact Active Pest Control for all your pest control needs.

Natural Ways to Repel Bees and Wasps

A wasp sitting on a leaf

A wasp sitting on a leaf

Are you planning to spend some time outside this summer? You won’t be alone: wasps and bees are active in the summer in Georgia. A run-in with wasps or bees can result in annoyance, stings and even serious allergic reactions. But how can you keep stinging insects at bay without loading up on bug spray? To learn how to repel bees and wasps while you’re outdoors this summer – naturally read on!

Plants That Bees and Wasps Love

Since bees and wasps are pollinators, it’s not shocking that they’re attracted to plants. Here are some flowers that bees and/or wasps are especially attracted to: 

  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Honeysuckle
  • Lantana
  • Lilacs
  • Perennial Yarrow
  • Poppies
  • Pale Purple Coneflower
  • Sweet Fennel
  • Wisteria
  • Queen Anne’s Lace
  • Sedum
  • Snapdragon
  • Sunflowers

Are any of these growing near your home? If so, consider moving them further away, if possible. Especially if they’re close to a patio or other outdoor space that you use frequently.

Plants That Bees and Wasps Hate

Wasps and bees are attracted to some plants based on how they smell but repelled by other plants for the same reason. The plants that repel them include: 

  • Basil
  • Citronella
  • Eucalyptus
  • Geraniums
  • Marigolds
  • Peppermint
  • Spearmint
  • Thyme
  • Wormwood

To keep stinging insects away from your porch, deck or patio, consider adding some of these plants near your home’s outdoor spaces.

Bees and Wasps and Food

Stinging insects, especially wasps, are also attracted to food. This can be a problem because whether it’s barbecues, picnics or kids with ice cream, eating food outside is a part of summer. 

However, there are steps you can take to reduce the chance that bees or wasps will ruin an outdoor meal.

  • Put away food and drinks promptly after eating a meal outside. 
  • Keep sugary drinks closed or covered to keep wasps out.
  • When you put food or food-related trash in a trash can, close the lid securely.

Bees and wasps are attracted to food. However, like with plants, there are some food items that bees and wasps don’t like, including: 

  • Bay Leaves
  • Cinnamon
  • Cloves
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Garlic
  • Sliced Cucumber
  • Vinegar

If you keep one or more of these in close proximity while you’re enjoying the outdoors, it could help keep stinging insects away. For example, you could place cinnamon sticks or a glass of vinegar on a patio table. Or bring some sliced cucumber on a plate if you’re eating a meal outside.

How to Keep Bees and Wasps Away with Essential Oils

Another way to keep stinging insects away naturally is to make an essential oil-based pest repellent spray. Stinging insects dislike the smell of the essential oils below:

  • Citronella oil
  • Clove oil
  • Eucalyptus oil
  • Geranium oil
  • Peppermint oil
  • Rosemary oil

Simply combine essential oil and water at a ratio of two drops of essential oil per ounce of water to make a natural alternative to store bought insect repellent. 

Best Bee and Wasp Exterminators in Georgia

Natural pest repellents can help keep some wasps or bees away. However, they won’t be enough to deal with a serious infestation. In that case, you may need to hire a local exterminator to get rid of the stinging insects on your property. Active Pest Control has been providing exterminator services in Georgia since 1985. If you’re looking for eco-friendly bee, wasp and hornet removal, call us today for a free quote

Bee Sting vs Wasp Sting

Bee Sting vs Wasp Sting in Atlanta GA - Active Pest Control

Especially in the summertime here in Atlanta GA, the chances of getting a bug bite while spending time outdoors are likely. The main culprits? Bees and wasps! These stinging insects typically prefer to mind their own business, but there are times when they can and will sting people nearby. Many people call any type of sting a “bee sting”, but the truth is, wasps are responsible for more stinging incidents. While the reactions from their stings can be similar, the nature of when and how bees or wasps sting can be different. The stinging insect experts at Active Pest Control are here to help set the record straight on bee stings vs wasp stings—read on to learn more!

Did I Get Stung By a Wasp or a Bee?

Bees and wasps differ widely in appearance and temperament. What makes them sting someone, as well as how the sting feels itself, also differs by species. In general, bees are not aggressive and thus unlikely to sting unless directly provoked. Honey bees are the bees that will lodge their stinger in the person they sting, causing them to die shortly afterwards. Other bees can sting repeatedly, but it is rare for them to do so.

Wasp stings are known to be more painful than bee stings. This is due in part to the fact that wasps are capable of stinging repeatedly—often in the same spot. Wasps are more aggressive and will sting at will, especially when they are provoked or when their nest is threatened.

Bee vs wasp sting infographic

Wasp or Bee Sting Reactions

There are a number of symptoms associated with bee and wasp stings. Usually, the reactions to a sting by either of these pests are largely the same. After being stung, it’s important to remove the stinger (if it was lodged) and immediately clean the area with antibiotics. Some of the common reactions to a bee sting vs wasp sting include:

  • A sharp, stinging pain at the site of the bite.
  • Swollen, red bumps wherever a bite occurred.
  • Itchiness and irritation.
  • A numb feeling at the site of the bite.

More serious reactions can happen, especially if someone is allergic to bees or wasps. Anaphylactic reaction to a bee sting can start within two hours of the incident and rapidly get worse. Immediately get to a doctor if you start to break out in hives or have trouble breathing.

Who to Call for Wasp or Bee Problems

Bees and wasps are a normal part of our environment. In fact, they play an essential role in pollinating our flowers and foliage! That said, stings are a common occurrence in the spring and summer. If stinging insects build a nest on or near your property, it’s crucial that you contact a local bee and wasp removal expert to deal with the problem. Trying to get rid of them yourself can leave you vulnerable to being stung repeatedly. Contact the team at Active Pest Control today!

Top Tips for Pest-Free Outdoor Living

Avoid mosquitoes in your Atlanta GA backyard with tips from Active Pest ControlWith summer winding down, you’re likely wanting to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Whether you are hosting a backyard barbecue or reading out on your patio at night, the last thing you want to deal with is a pest problem. Mosquitoes, ticks, flies, lawn pests, and wasps are just a few of the many pests that can become quite a nuisance. At Active Pest Control, we know you want to enjoy your time spent in your outdoor living spaces to be pest-free, which is why we’re here to provide you with our top tips for pest-free outdoor living in your Atlanta area home.

Common Pests in Your Yard

The time of year that provides nice enough weather for you to be outdoors is also the time of year when pests are most active! Whether you have a garden in your backyard or couches and tables on your deck, you will likely encounter some of the following pests:

How to Prevent Pests in Your Outdoor Living Space

To keep pests away when you’re in your yard, there are several things you can do. The best ways to keep pests away in your outdoor space are as follows.

  1. Get rid of standing water. Mosquitoes only need a half inch of standing water to breed.
  2. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed. Overgrown grass or vegetation provides mosquitoes and ticks with shelter.
  3. Know how to look for ant hills. Even a tiny mound can contain thousands of ants inside.
  4. Check wood structures. Termites and carpenter bees will damage your wooden decks or porches.
  5. Use an insect repellent. Insect repellent containing DEET will help repel mosquitoes and ticks.
  6. Clean your patio or space regularly. Crumbs or spilled liquids will attract ants and other insects.

Year-Long Pest-Free Living

Pests are just a fact of life outside. However, you don’t have to let them ruin your time spent in your own backyard! For help implementing pest-free outdoor living tips, the experts at Active Pest Control can help. Contact our residential exterminators to learn more.

Insect Bites in Rome, Georgia

There are a lot of things that can bite your kids in Rome. As a parent, it is important to know how to recognize signs of something serious and how to treat bites, so that your kids–and you–can get back out to play. This is by no means a comprehensive article on the topic of insect bites. Our focus is to cover the three types of bugs that will bite you most and give you some tips on how to lessen the impact these bugs can have on a beautiful summer day.

Stinging Insects

Here are some things you and your kids need to know if you get stung by anything.

· Most bites are benign, but if you or your child has an allergy, things can go from irritating to dangerous, fast. If they have trouble breathing, issues swallowing, wheezing, or facial swelling, seek medical attention immediately. Severe allergic reactions can even lead to anaphylactic shock.

· Stay calm. Frantic movement can cause the insect to sting again.

· Move away from the insect that stung you. Many stinging insects have the ability to swarm.

· Get the stinger out as soon as you can. When bees sting, they leave their stinger and venom pouch on the wound. The venom pouch will continue to pump venom for over a minute. Scratch it off; don’t pinch. Pinching can cause the rest of the venom to deploy.

· After the initial scratch, stop scratching. Scratching a bite can cause infection.

· Elevating a limb and applying an ice pack for at least 15-20 minutes each hour will reduce swelling.

Tick Bites

There are a whole ton of diseases that can be spread by tick bite but, by far, the worst is Lyme disease. Contrary to what you may have heard, Lyme disease can be found in Georgia and should never be ruled out when dealing with a tick bite. Here are the three things you need to know most about ticks.

· Lyme disease does not always leave a recognizable bullseye rash on the skin. This can throw some doctors off.

· Lyme disease takes 24 to 48 hours to transfer from the tick.

· If you or one of your children get bitten by a tick, it is important to catch the tick and bring it in with you to the doctor. Lyme disease can cause extended medical complications. Knowing if Lyme disease is a factor will lead to quicker treatment.

Mosquito Bites

With increased travel and more deadly viruses getting into the United States from other countries, it is becoming more important to protect ourselves. But, if you get bitten, here are some things to remember.

· Avoid scratching the bites. This will only make the itching worse.

· You can alleviate the itching of a mosquito bite by using 1% hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions for dosage and usage for all first aid products.

· An ice pack can help to relieve itching.

· If you develop flu-like symptoms after being bitten by mosquitoes, consider consulting a doctor. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

For protection from stinging insects, ticks, and mosquitoes on your property in Rome, Georgia, give us a call at Active Pest Control. Fewer biting insects in your backyard mean fewer bites. And that is always the best way to go.

Protecting The Pollinators

Active Pest Control is making great strides to protect pollinators in our environment. Bees of all types play an important role in transferring pollen from bloom to bloom and helping to ensure that our food and plants continue to thrive year after year.

We, just as many of our customers, are concerned with the decline in the population of bees with particular attention on the most efficient pollinator, the honeybee. Science is still determining root causes for this decline and they have identified several factors; parasites, pathogens of adult and young bees, bee nutrition, weather, genetic variation, beekeeping practices, and pesticide exposure. No single factor is to blame.

To cap off Pollinator Protection week in June of 2013, President Obama issued a Presidential memorandum. That memorandum tasked a newly created “Pollinator Health Task Force” to expand federal efforts to reverse pollinator losses and help restore populations to healthy levels. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a key member of this task force, has narrowed its focus down immediately to a specific type of insecticide class called neonicotinoids that has been implicated in some of the high profile bee kills seen in different parts of the country.

Honey bees and other pollinators are considered beneficial insects and we do not condone the use of insecticides of any kind on them. It is our position that honeybees are a valuable resource that should be protected. We aim to manage infestations of these insects by removal relocation and not extermination and encourage homeowners to try and live in harmony while the bees are foraging for pollen around their homes.

Active Pest Control is very aware of the pollinator issue facing us. We are working closely with our state pest control association, our national association, and our state regulatory agency to stay on the forefront of information and best management practices for management of household pests in combination with pollinator protection. We follow all EPA guidelines and label directions to ensure that we are doing what is appropriate based on the science available to us. We have shifted our product selection or exterior foliar application away from the implicated insecticides and have trained all of our partners to be extra observant when treating for normal pest issues. Treatments will be focused, and applications will not be made to buds, blooms, or leaves of flowering plants so pollinators will not come in contact with them during their foraging activities.

If you do have concerns with honeybees in or around your Atlanta property, please do not make any application of an insecticide. Please notify Active Pest Control so that we can investigate and respond accordingly for protection of this natural resource.