As summer begins to come to an end and Sacramento gets a bit of relief from all those hot summer days, new insects take flight to pester us. Particularly common in late summer to early autumn are yellow jacket wasps who are known for their aggression and painful stings. With changing seasons comes an overall change in their behavior, including more contact with humans.
Yellow jackets are always active, but their colonies continue to grow and amass both workers and reproductives as the year progresses. With growing populations comes increased competition for food sources. But it’s not just increased food scarcity that drives more contact between humans and yellow jackets, it’s also the type of food that the wasps are seeking out. At this point, they’re developing a sweet tooth.
In spring and early summer, yellow jackets are eating protein for the most part. However, the switch to fall means that they start looking for very high-energy food sources and carbohydrates, such as those seen in sodas. As people begin to head outdoors and enjoy the cooler weather for picnics and backyard barbecues, the chances of coming into contact with a yellow jacket increase exponentially. Further, yellow jackets nest close to or even in the ground, meaning you might not know you’re near a nest until you are upon it.
If you think you have a yellow jacket colony on your property, call Specialized Pest Patrol, Sacramento’s leading pest experts.