Why Wasps, Hornets and Yellowjackets Are Good

wasp nest on porch

We have a live and let live policy when it comes to critters around here—and we have  LOTS of every kind imaginable. I’ve found that on the whole, coexistence works best. Especially when it comes to the outdoors, which is their home.

So it was no surprise that a recent visitor was aghast that we’ve allowed this bees nest to get so big. Ok, huge. What were we thinking?! Especially since this is a hornet nest and they are considered more aggressive than paper wasps. (We also have a bunch of those nests around but they’re not as impressive.)

Paper wasps, hornets, and yellowjackets all belong to the Vespidae family. All of them provide valuable ecological services, including pollination, predation, and parasitism.

So, what I was thinking was that I was thankful to have more pollinators to help with my garden and more insect eaters to help keep the garden insect population down during this very wet summer. I’ve picked bushels of veggies this season with plenty of bees and wasps flying about. I haven’t been stung once.

Yes, while they can sting, we’ve had no problems with swarming or stinging or any other nuisance behavior. No, we haven’t been able to use this porch this summer, but we need to redo the deck anyway.

So, come Fall, we’ll have to take measures to get them relocated.

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