Wasps, such as yellow jackets, are potentially beneficial insects to our surrounding environment; however, when they invade and make their nests in areas that we frequent outside of our homes, they become a very painful type of pest. It is common knowledge to virtually everybody that yellow jackets have an incredibly painful sting and if a person is stung by a swarm, can potentially be deadly.
When it comes to eliminating yellow jackets, many pesticides work, but you will want to keep risks in mind due to the ability of yellow jackets to quickly emerge and begin stinging you. Since liquid insecticides are too unstable in trying to cover all the wasps, a dust insecticide is the most well-rounded method to inject into a nest.
What dust kills yellow jackets? Due to the erratic behavior of yellow jackets, the best method for killing a yellow jacket colony is insecticide dust. Delta Dust and Drione Dust are two of the best products to eliminate an entire yellow jacket nest.
Yellowjackets are active from mid-spring to mid-autumn, typically late April to early November in most regions. These insects will typically build their nest in trees, shrubs, within shallow soil deposits, and manmade structures around the eaves of homes and garages.
If you discover a yellow jacket nest anywhere in your yard or near your home, it would likely be in your best interest to eliminate the dwelling; especially if small children and pets frequent the areas where nests are distributed.
A nest should never be knocked down or destroyed, as this will only inflame the wasps to attack and move their nest t a new area in the same vicinity.
Sprays are not safe for eliminating yellow jackets due to their contact killing capabilities—but dust made of powerful chemicals is generally safe and highly effective if administered correctly.
When is the Best Time to Kill Yellow Jackets?
Before we get into the best dusts to utilize, it is important to know more about the behavior of yellow jackets to avoid being swarmed.
Yellowjackets, like most wasp species, are primarily active during the daylight hours; this is when the colony will typically expand their nest and repair it, as well as when the workers forage for food to bring back to the queen.
The best time to treat a yellow jacket nest is during the dawn or dusk hours, as the wasps are as less active than during the day. The earlier in the year that you destroy a nest makes it less of an attractive spot to the yellow jackets throughout the rest of their season.
Yellowjackets do not like to be disturbed; they will not seek out people to sting, but one slight disturbance will set them into a stinging pattern that will be unforgettable.
How Do I Treat for Yellow Jackets with Dust?
Dust is the best and most effective insecticide to eliminate yellow jackets and destroy their nest. As previously mentioned, sprays and aerosols are not very effective in destroying the yellowjacket nest. You would not be able to spray every individual yellow jacket in a nest and by the time you tried to spray more than a few, you would likely already be in severe pain from stings due to their quickness and propensity to sting multiple times.
Yellowjackets are very territorial and highly sensitive to being moved or disturbed; so, trying to fight them with a spray bottle is a losing battle.
Likewise, you should never attempt to knock down a yellow jacket nest or try and physically remove it; pouring gasoline on a nest is also highly dangerous.
By selecting strong insecticide dust, you now have a tool that will allow you to conspicuously coat the entire entry point to a nest with dust and flee the sight in enough time to avoid detection by the wasps.
Whatever dust you choose, the application method is generally the same for each. The safest method is to use a dust applicator to avoid clumping the dust and disturbing the yellow jackets more easily.
For yellow jacket nests inside of the ground, the first action is to observe a void for yellow jacket activity to make sure the product can kill the wasps; then wait for dusk and using the applicator, puff six to seven clouds of dust around the entire entrance point—enough to coat the wasps as they crawl out of the hole. You can then inject the nozzle into the void about half an inch and puff six to seven more clouds of dust directly into the hole.
If at any time you hear or see yellow jackets starting to stir, immediately move away from the nest and back into your home. Applying dust to the area surrounding the entry point will ensure that the dust coats any yellow jacket exiting the nest and the wasps will also spread the dust to all the other wasps inside of the nest, including the queen.
Dust is important because unlike aerosols, dust can penetrate through the protective cell membranes that cover large parts of the nest. Your safety should be the top priority, so it is important to remember that yellow jackets are active during the day; at dusk and through the night, they are deep within the nest resting. Always be prepared to move quickly in administering the dust and fleeing away from the nest.
Does Drione Dust Kill Yellow Jackets?
Drione Insecticide Dust by Bayer contains the active chemicals amorphous silica dioxide, piperonyl butoxide, and pyrethrin. These three chemicals have three different actions on insect anatomy: silica dioxide shreds the waxy cuticle on yellow jacket exoskeletons, while butoxide and pyrethrin damage and eventually destroy the respiratory and nervous systems. This product will immediately go to work in killing yellow jackets, usually within minutes of contact. Due to three different attack points from three chemicals, Drione Dust is incredibly lethal and will work to eliminate the nest in a matter of days.
Will Permethrin Kill Yellow Jackets?
Permethrin belongs to a class of insecticides known as pyrethroids, which are generally safe to humans and work to destroy the central nervous systems of a wide range of insects. Pyrethroids are particularly lethal to bees and wasps, so in wondering if this chemical will kill yellow jackets, the answer is a definite yes. Permethrin is one of the chemicals that make up Drione Dust, but whatever permethrin product you choose to use against yellow jackets, the best product against them should be in dust form.
Does Sevin Dust Kill Yellow Jackets and Wasps?
Sevin Dust is a crystalline powder insecticide that contains the toxic chemical carbaryl, a central nervous system antagonist against insects. Although this product is highly effective against a wide range of outdoor pests, yellow jackets and wasps are not listed on the label as insects within the product’s target range. There may be a chance that this product can, in fact, kill yellow jackets and wasps, as the product is lethal to honeybees—which are similar in taxonomy to yellow jackets and wasps. If you already have this product on hand, dusting the product around yellow jackets entry points to a nest may be a viable experiment to check if the product is effective.
Will Delta Dust Kill Wasps?
Delta Dust is one of the more effective dust to use against a yellow jacket nest. Deltamethrin attacks and destroys the central nervous system of yellow jackets and is also a versatile product due to its waterproof qualities. This component can be particularly attractive if the environment of your yard is humid or moist—a factor that would make other dust not very effective. Delta Dust can survive moisture and rainfall once the dust has settled.
Yellowjackets are a dangerous, yet solitary insect that unfortunately chooses to make their homes near human habitats. Due to their painful stings and potentially lethal effects on humans in swarming attacks, it is necessary to eliminate them from your yard once you notice a nest. Aerosol and spray insecticides pose problems when used to treat yellow jackets due to the inability of the product to destroy an entire nest. Dusts are truly the best method and can be applied to nest entry points to ensure the chemical coats the body of every wasp that enters or exits the nest.
Drione Dust combines three toxic chemicals into one formulation to ensure yellow jacket mortality. Similarly, Delta Dust is also highly toxic to yellow jackets and is also waterproof, which can be an attractive benefit for moist environments. Yellowjackets are highly aggressive insects that are primarily active during the daylight hours; therefore, the best time of day to treat against them is at dusk or overnight to avoid being quickly stung. Whatever dust you choose to use to eliminate a nest, it is important to exercise caution when treating against yellow jackets due to the extreme pain they can bring.