Monthly Archives: September 2012

Are most autumn Wasps male or female?

Whether most autumn wasps are male or female does not really make much difference to your frustrating experience with these insects at this time of year. The autumn months are when wasps can become a persistent nuisance and are more inclined to use their tiny but painful stings.

Most of the wasps you’ll see buzzing around in the autumn are female or worker wasps. Over the year, hundreds, if not thousands, have emerged from their papery grey nests to join the growing crowd that serve their queen. Their job is to gather food, usually in the form of other insects, and help to make the nest larger.

By the end of the summer, the next generation of queens will have left, looking for mates and then for somewhere to hibernate through the winter. This leaves huge numbers of infertile female worker wasps with no real work to do. That’s when they become particularly irritating pests.

The roles of male and female wasps

Most of the eggs laid by a queen wasp become female workers. It’s only towards the end of summer when some develop into males and others into young queens. All of these will leave the nest when fully developed, going in search of mates from other wasp nests.

Having mated with a queen, the male wasps die. The fertilised new queens go looking for somewhere to spend the winter, where they will not be disturbed. This hibernation period is also when they are most vulnerable. If you come across a hibernating queen wasp, perhaps in a shed or loft space, it should be easy to kill. However, if you have any concerns about it, contact a Wasps Pest Control specialist.

As spring arrives, the warmer weather wakes the queen, who will go in search of a suitable place for her nest. This could be a hole in a tree or building, a sheltered spot inside a hedge, or some other location it considers safe enough to start constructing a nest.

The first eggs it lays will grow into infertile female wasps, the workers, who take over responsibility for extending the nest and gathering food while the queen continues to lay eggs.

Female wasps are the pest control problem

By the autumn, the wasp nest is probably home to thousands of insects. It becomes overcrowded, as building stops, and the temperature inside the nest rises. The worker wasps continue to collect food but once the queens and male wasps have left, there are fewer wasp grubs to feed.

The workers become overfed and overheated in their crowded nest. Sometimes they are tipsy from eating over-ripe fruit. It’s often these hot, bothered wasps who turn up uninvited at picnics and barbecues or come into your home, searching for sweetness to feed on. They become easily irritated and angry, and will often sting with little provocation.

While they are at their worst in the autumn, wasps can be a pest control problem at any time of year. They are best dealt with in the early summer, when the nests are smaller and the male wasps and young queens have yet to hatch.

If you need to deal with wasps in the autumn, it is usually better to call in a professional pest controller. They will have all the necessary protective equipment and expertise to remove the nest completely and efficiently.

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Are Cockroaches a problem in London?

There are several types of cockroach which can be a problem in London, as they are in many urban settings. These tough and unpleasant insects like to live close to people, partly for warmth and partly because of the easy access to food.

London’s catering businesses, and other firms handling food, can’t afford to ignore the risk of cockroaches getting into their premises. These ugly beasts are not just unpleasant to look at; they also have a proven ability to spread nasty diseases.

Cockroaches present the same risk to homes. If they are able to get into your kitchen, they will crawl over work surfaces in their search for food, leaving behind them a trail of germs picked up from rotting food or sewer pipes.

Cockroaches that are a problem in London

The three main types of cockroach found in London are the German cockroach, the Oriental cockroach and the American cockroach. They are all various shades of brown, with distinctive long oval bodies, six legs and two very long antennae sticking out from their heads.

They’re usually around 20-30mm long, which is around one inch. Despite being so large, they are a difficult pest to spot because they only come out in the dark. During the day they sit motionless for hours in crevices and behind cupboards, which is why they can go unnoticed for so long.

However, when they do come out, they go in search for tiny scraps of food and will try to find their way into broken or split packets. All the time they are potentially spreading infections, such as salmonella.

How to deal with a cockroach problem

With all pests, prevention is better than cure. Cockroaches prefer to live inside buildings and they will often make their way into your home or premises while hidden inside packaging, secondhand furniture or appliances. Giving these a thorough check before allowing them into your home or work space is an effective first step in pest control.

Another way to check for cockroaches is to look into food stores and preparation rooms when it’s dark. This is when the pests will be active, so they are easier to spot. Keeping these areas clean and keeping food in sealed containers will reduce the risk of an infestation.

If you have the slightest concern about a possible Cockroach Infestation, take action immediately. They breed extremely quickly, which is why they are a difficult pest to control. Various insecticides are available, but if you are dealing with a large number, it’s likely you will need professional help.

London pest controllers have years of experience dealing with cockroaches, because they can be such a problem in the city. Consulting an expert is often the most cost-effective and fastest way to deal with the issue.

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