It’s pretty easy to fantasize a world where the wasp doesn’t exist. Summers would turn out to be a lot more relaxed and picnicking outside with sugary treats wouldn’t feel like risky business. The sound of buzzing wouldn’t immediately cause us to frantically decipher if it’s “bee or wasp” and running, ducking and diving away in fear wouldn’t be part of a typical summer afternoon. Anyone who’s ever had a run-in with these angry little bugs knows that a wasp bite or sting is wildly painful! So the question remains of how wasps could possibly benefit us. You might be surprised to find out that they do more than just buzz around angrily!
Wasps are unwanted pretty much everywhere, except in our gardens. Yellow jackets, paper wasps, and hornets, the most common species of wasp that grace Alberta, are actually very efficient forms of pest control. Though they do consume some of our more beneficial bugs, wasps feed on insects that can do a lot of damage to our gardens. Caterpillars, grubs and weevils can wreak havoc on vegetables, but the wasp finds these bugs make appetizing dinners. In fact, wasps do such a good job of chomping down on pests that farmers have used them as a natural pest control for their crops. Without the wasp, it would become quickly apparent just how many troublesome insects would run rampant without their most notorious predator.
Wasps don’t just help with controlling pests. They play a vital role in the pollination of local plants and with the bee population at risk, it’s no surprise that we could use all the extra help we can get. Though bees are much more efficient in their pollination because of their hairy bodies, wasps still carry some pollen back and forth when on the hunt for an insect meal.
They’re definitely not on the nice list, but wasps do some good for us and the environment. Paper wasps and hornets feed on the caterpillars, grubs, flies and weevils that make a meal out of our plant friends while yellow jackets scavenge about for the carcasses of insects in both urban and natural habitats. They might be aggressive, but a wasp-free world would mean bug bodies piling up and all our healthy vegetation being consumed by insects rather than us.This isn’t to say that if you or a family member is allergic that the nest shouldn’t be taken care of! The species of social wasp that builds its nest near our homes or in our BBQs should only be the rulers of our backyard to an extent.
If you need help or advice with removing a wasp nest, give our service team a call at 403-262-1666 and we’ll make sure you don’t have to be afraid to run around in your own backyard!