In St. Louis, stinging insects are typically hard to identify, because well, we run away at the first sight of them and a lot of people just assume that all stinging insects are bees.  At Rottler, we realize that there are a variety of stinging insects that call Missouri home, including the baldfaced hornet.  In fact, because these stinging insects are quite active, we’ve highlighted some information we deem essential on the pest below.  

It is important to know that baldfaced hornets are a type of yellow jacket that travels in packs, which means if there is one, there are a ton. This stinging insect varies in length, ranging from 5/8 of an inch to 7/8 of an inch long, but the queen bees may be substantially larger, at a whopping 3/4 of an inch to 1 and 1/8 inch. (Talk about intimidating!) One immediate way to distinguish them is to notice the white markings on various parts of their body. Many of them hold white patterns on the thorax, white stripes on the abdomen, as well as white markings on the face.

Another way to distinguish this stinging insect is to look around for their nest. Chances are that if it is in fact a baldfaced hornet, there will be a home base clear in sight. They build large paper nests, with grey coloring that is shaped like an inverted pear. The nest is carefully woven into the branches that are holding it up or sometimes even attached to a building. Think of this nest like the community center for hornets. It is always buzzing, busy and full of new projects and ventures. These hornets are massive social creatures and thrive on making every effort to expand their clan. And, they're good at it, which means action has to take before the clan expands out of control.

The location of the nest can vary from shrubs or vines at ground level to 66 ft or higher in trees. Nests may also be built on:

  • Overhangs

  • Utility poles

  • Houses

  • Sheds

  • Other structures

Nearly all nests are constructed in sheltered locations. This is where it gets tricky. If a baldfaced hornet's home is built high up in a tree, eliminating the nest may not be necessary. However, if the nest is low to the ground and near a heavily trafficked area (which is very common), then the nest should be treated immediately, with professional help.  

It is extremely important to seek professional help for the removal of baldfaced hornets and their nests, as any aggravation to these clan-like protective creatures may create havoc and result in stings.  Effective St. Louis pest control takes practice, patience and the right professional. Call us today to discuss your situation, to learn how our pest control services can resolve your pest problem and to map out a safe and effective treatment to make your home and property buzz free!

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