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Guide to Stinging Insects in Ohio

close up of a wasp

Nothing can ruin your time outdoors quite like having an ominous insect buzzing around. With summer approaching, you need an action plan in place to protect your family from painful stings. If stinging insects are making you feel unsafe outside, it’s time to take action.

  • What Are Common Stinging Insects in Ohio?
  • How Do I Prevent Bees and Their Stings?
  • How Do I Get Rid Of Hornets?
  • How Should I Remove Stinging Insects?
  • How Do I Treat Bee Stings?
  • Yellow Jackets vs Bees
  • Are Mud Daubers Dangerous?

What Are Common Stinging Insects in Ohio?

There are a variety of stinging insects that can be found around our Akron Ohio service area. Some being more dangerous than others. Some of the most common stinging insects found around Ohio are:

Yellow Jackets

While we love our honey bees, sometimes it’s a little more difficult to feel the same way about it’s relative, the yellow jacket.

  • Compared to bees, yellow jackets are slimmer in size & fold their wings back when at rest
  • They prey on other insects and also love human food unlike our pollen loving friends
  • They are black and yellow or black and white in color.

The German Yellow Jacket is the breed most likely found in the Midwest. This breed loves residing in enclosed structures so look out for nests in places like wall voids, attics, crawlspaces, and cracks or crevices around the exterior of buildings. Their nests can also be found in the ground in places like rodent burrows. Be sure to check for their nests before doing any yard work because their stinging occurs when they are aggravated. It’s also possible that you could find a yellow jacket nest hanging, but these are less aggressive.

One main spot yellow jackets can always be found is around trash cans. Be sure to keep a lid on your garbage at all times and to empty the container often so there is not a build-up enticing the yellow jackets. If you do suspect that you have yellow jacket nests then try to spot where they are coming from so it is easier to kill the source. There are ways to get rid of the nests with at-home treatments, and if you are going to attempt this be sure to do so at night as yellow jackets have a hard time seeing without daylight.

Of course, the best treatment for these pests is to call a trained exterminator. Epcon Lane offers yellow jacket treatment options so be sure to give us a call if you think you have these pests hanging around your property. Nothing ruins a summer picnic like an infestation of yellow jackets and guests getting stung!


If you have not heard, bees are in trouble! I know some of you may be thinking, ” Good! No more getting stung!” While you may think that bees can be a nuisance to us, they are actually extremely crucial to our survival. Did you know that bees are responsible for 1 in 3 bites of food we eat! That of course includes honey, but we have bees to thank for all the other crops that grow too.

A new edition to the endangered list is the Rusty Patch Bumble Bee. They were added on March 27, 2017. They have found that “the rusty patched bumble bee is likely to be present in scattered locations that cover only about 0.1% of the species’ historical range.” Around 20 years ago the rusty patched bumble bee was so common you would not have even noticed it flying from flower to flower to pollinate. Now, it is the first-ever bumble bee in the United States to be declared on the brink of extinction.

As a company, Epcon Lane will not be killing any rusty patch bumblebees and you can help too. Plant flowers! Plant any of your own that you prefer from spring to fall. Many companies are dedicated to helping save the bees. Honey Nut Cheerios will send you a free packet of wildflower seeds when you go onto their website to save the bees! We know that bees can sometimes get a bad rep, but they truly are a friend to us and we need to help keep them around for years to come!

Paper Wasp

When the weather gets warmer pests begin to wake up. The first pests that you are going to see around are paper wasps. So what is a paper wasp? A paper wasp is classified within the stinging insect category.

  • They are brownish in color with yellow markings. There are also a few that could have reddish markings.
  • Their shape is typical of your average wasp (like a yellowjacket body) and they have six long legs.
  • They have antennas and their size ranges from ⅝-¾”.
  • They typically make their nests in residential yards. You will know if you have an infestation because you will be able to see their nest as well as the wasps actively flying around. Paper wasps get their name because of the paper-like look of the nests they build. 

The wasp will not only make their nest outdoors but indoors as well. Shrubs and trees could have nests in them so it is important to check those before coming into contact with them to avoid being stung. Because the wasps could make their nests indoors, it is equally important to make sure all cracks and crevices are sealed, as well as keeping doors and windows closed so that the wasps are unable to come into your home. 

When you are outdoors, it is also important to keep your food covered as well as any perfume or cologne to a minimum. Wasps are attracted to both of these things and they are more likely to be drawn to you if you or your food smells good!

If you notice a nest, it is important to contact a licensed exterminator, like Epcon Lane. Do not try to remove the nest yourself because it is extremely likely that the wasps will protect their home and they will do that by stinging you.

How Do I Treat a Bee Sting?

If you are stung by a wasp or bee, your first action is simple, if you are allergic, seek immediate professional medical attention. Bee allergies are serious reactions that can lead to death if untreated. If you’re not allergic to stings, follow these steps, provided by WebMD:

  • Remove the stinger. If left in your skin, stingers can cause irritation or deposit small doses of venom in your bloodstream. Remove the stinger with tweezers or a scraping motion. Avoid squeezing the stinger to prevent the additional release of venom.
  • Ice the area to prevent swelling. If you’re wearing snug jewelry near the affected area, remove at once. Elevate stings on your legs or arms.
  • To moderate pain, you may take appropriate doses of over-the-counter pain medication. You may also take an antihistamine to help with itching.
  • Keep the area clean. Look for results in two to five days.

Remember, the most painless treatment is the prevention of the sting in the first place. Call Epcon Lane to make your summer bee-free!

How Do I Prevent Bees and Their Stings?

  • To keep bees, wasps, and other related stinging pests away from your home, your most important objective is to eliminate the nest. To use a bee spray effectively, approach the nest at dusk when the bees are not at their peak level of activity. Don’t hold a flashlight close to you as you spray. The light will guide the bees to you.
  • You should seal all unfinished wood with paint, caulking, or other types of sealers. This will guard your home against pests that like to chew on wood, such as carpenter bees and yellow jackets. You should also remove any rotting wood.
  • When holding outdoor occasions, avoid letting meat and sugary substances sit in the open for long periods of time. This will attract bees hunting for their morning cup of sugar.
  • The important thing to keep in mind is that bees are attracted to flowers, so the more you look and smell like a flower, the more attractive you’ll be to bees! If you’re spending time outdoors, try to avoid bright or floral-patterned clothing, strong fragrances, or scented cosmetics.
  • If bees do approach, don’t swat! Staying still as bees explore the area can keep them from feeling threatened.

Bees may be are crucial to the environment and are currently in decline so it is important not to kill them. If you find that you have a bee problem, the pest control professionals at Epcon Lane can safely and humanely remove them from your home.

Yellow Jackets vs Bees

Although yellow jackets look similar to bees they are a type of wasp and can be identified by their prominent yellow markings. To keep these menacing pests away it is best to follow the same guidelines you would for bees. Unfortunately, while bees can only sting once, yellow jackets can repeatedly sting so use extra caution to stay still when one appears. Furthermore, you should never squish a yellow jacket as it will release a signal that draws more near.

How Do I Get Rid of Hornets?

Hornets are another type of wasp and you can spot them because they are much larger than other stinging insects. They are not aggressive unless their nests are approached but they have a sting that is very painful. Be aware of any hornets you see around your home as there is likely a nest nearby. There are various sprays available to eliminate nests but unless you are particularly fearless, it is best to call a professional about hornet removal.

Are Mud Daubers Dangerous?

Mud daubers have a distinctive long slender middle section and are typically black. While these pests are members of the wasp family they do not typically sting. Nonetheless, they can be a nuisance. Pest control specialists at Epcon Lane can remove mud daubers and advise you on how to seal your space to prevent future nesting.

How Should I Remove Stinging Insects From My Yard?

While bees may be frightening they typically won’t sting unless provoked. This is because most bee species can only sting once and some will even die after. The important thing to keep in mind is that bees are attracted to flowers so it is advantageous to steer clear of wearing brightly colored clothing or strongly scented cosmetics while outdoors.

Furthermore, food will draw them near so picnicking may not be the best option. If one does approach try not to swat it and stay still. Bees are crucial to the environment and are currently in decline so it is important not to kill them. If you find that you have a bee problem the pest exterminators at Epcon Lane can safely and humanely remove them from your home - call us at (330) 278-8939 today for help! 

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