2.6 FAQs and Blog

The following is a list of the most frequently asked questions:

Where should I position the WaspBane wasp trap?

Generally speaking the WaspBane wasp trap should be placed downwind of the area that you want to protect. This will help WaspBane intercept wasps before they reach the area you want to protect. There are exceptions to this. For example, if you have fruit trees that you wish to protect then WaspBane should be placed in the trees just before the fruit ripens.

What does downwind mean?

In terms of prevailing wind, then the direction of the wind should be such that it carries from the area you wish to protect towards your WaspBane trap. Wasps follow scent. It is important that the wasps find WaspBane before they find the area you wish to protect. By having WaspBane downwind, any wasps coming up the scent trail will encounter WaspBane first. If WaspBane is placed upwind (i.e. the wind blows from WaspBane towards the area you wish to protect) then the wasps will find the area you wish to protect before they find WaspBane.

I have wasps which regularly fly into my kitchen, what should I do?

There are a number of steps that you should take. Take care to pack away or cover food in air tight containers to minimise sweet smells. When cooking sweet foods close doors and windows and turn on the extractor fan. After cooking, clear away promptly. When throwing away rubbish, make sure that it is bagged and sealed properly. Sealing bin liners properly will reduce the amount of sweet smells that attract wasps. Make sure wheelie bins are kept clean and that rubbish is bagged and sealed before being placed in wheelie bins. Store garbage and dust bins away from your kitchen preferably downwind of the kitchen door or windows. Not only will this stop the smell of the garbage coming into your home, the garbage may also intercept wasps before they come into the kitchen. Set one or more WaspBane traps downwind from the kitchen to help intercept wasps before they reach the kitchen. If your garbage or dust bin is already downwind of your kitchen, then setting WaspBane above the garbage or dust bin would be ideal.

My WaspBane wasp trap does not appear to be catching many wasps?

This is quite normal. The WaspBane wasp trap does not have to kill many wasps to be effective. Because WaspBane kills all of the scouting wasps that it catches, these scouting wasps can’t return to their nests to bring back more wasps. The important thing is not how many wasps have been caught but how many persist in the area you want to protect. If wasps continue to persist and WaspBane isn’t catching them, then the chances are that the wasps have another food source that they are programme feeding on. This alternative food source will need to be removed first to interrupt the programmed feeding behaviour of the wasps. In such situations it’s best to place the WaspBane wasp trap in the exact same location where the original food source was before being removed. This is known as interruption.

Placing a low efficiency trap next to WaspBane will have the same effect as an alternative food source. WaspBane will kill all of the scouting wasps that it catches so there will be no swarm feeding at the WaspBane trap. The low efficiency trap on the other hand will attract more wasps and become the source of programmed feeding. First appearances would suggest that the low efficiency trap is working better but this isn’t the case because the trap will remain persistently busy and there will be lots of wasps in the area to be protected. If the low efficiency trap is then removed, WaspBane will mop up the persisting wasps and the area to be protected will become wasp free.

It may also be that WaspBane has been placed upwind instead of downwind of the area that needs to be protected. Changing the position of WaspBane will help. Using the wrong bait, placing WaspBane in the shade or in a wind trap may also affect performance.

Finally, the most common reason as to why WaspBane might not be catching many wasps is down to wasp life cycle. If wasps are still hunting for insects they will ignore sweet foodstuffs and will not be attracted to WaspBane. Wasps start sweet feeding when their nest mature. When nests mature varies from one year to the next. The earliest that nests mature is the third week in July. The latest can be early December. Setting WaspBane too early will result in no wasps being caught.

How will I know if wasps in my area are still hunting insects?

When hunting, wasps can be seen routing through the grass or through bushes and trees. They will fly close to and hover around the ground, plants, trees, compost heaps or buildings or cobwebs and will frequently land on leaves, twigs, branches and any other surfaces which might be hiding insect prey such as bark or fence panelling. They will explore crevices and holes for insect prey which they take back to their nests to feed their young.

When should I set my WaspBane wasp trap?

You should set your WaspBane wasp trap when wasps start sweet feeding. This will vary from year to year but it is rarely before the middle to the end of July but can be as late as December. The third week in July is normally a good time.

I have a wasp nest in my garage, will WaspBane help?

If you know the location of a nuisance wasp nest that is a hazard then you should have it professionally treated by a reputable pest controller. Don’t be tempted to do it yourself unless you have the proper protective clothing. WaspBane is not designed to eradicate nests.

I placed WaspBane next to an active wasp nest and it failed to catch a single wasp?

This is correct. Wasps do not feed in the vicinity of their own nests so as not to attract predators to the nest. Wasps will not normally feed within 30 to 40 meters of their own nest. If you place WaspBane next to a nest the wasps will ignore it. Moreover, the sentry wasps guarding the nest will chase away any wasps from other nests so you shouldn’t expect to catch a single wasp.

Can I use WaspBane indoors to remove wasps that are plaguing my house?

No. If you use WaspBane indoors it will only attract wasps inside. Once inside the wasps will become confused and will not be able to find the trap (because the aroma from the trap will have filled the whole room making it difficult for the wasp to follow a scent trail). Set WaspBane downwind from your house to intercept wasp before they come in.

Where should I place my WaspBane wasp trap if I am to stop wasps coming indoors?

You should set your WaspBane wasp trap outside your house a few meters downwind of your home preferably in a sunny location, exposed to the wind, possibly in a tree and out of the reach of children. If your garbage can or rubbish bin is also downwind then suspend WaspBane above the bin.

Is it safe for me to use WaspBane if I am allergic to wasps?

WaspBane will work to reduce wasps in the area you wish to protect but there is always the risk that it will not catch every wasp so you will still need to take care. Unlike other wasp traps however, WaspBane will not make your wasp problem worse because it does not cause swarm feeding. Whilst it should be relatively safe for you to use WaspBane to help protect you, it is strongly recommended that you get someone else to install and handle the WaspBane wasp trap so that you don’t take on unnecessary risks.

Should I handle WaspBane if I have an allergy to wasps?

WaspBane is safer than other traps but that does not mean that you should take risks. It is strongly recommended that you get someone else to install and handle WaspBane instead. However, if there is no one else that can help, then the safest time of day to handle WaspBane is preferably at the crack of dawn as the sun rises before wasps start flying. Better still, set the WaspBane trap before wasps start sweet feeding, i.e. before the third week in July, and then leave the WaspBane trap well alone until after the end of the wasp season when it’s too cold for wasps to fly. Never attempt to remove the self sealing safety seal to refill the bait chamber. The bait chamber is intended for disposal. Dead wasps are still capable of inflicting a sting and there are two recorded cases of pest controllers having anaphylactic reactions after being stung by dead wasps when cleaning out wasp pots.

Do you supply a smaller version of the WaspBane wasp trap?

No. The size and shape of the WaspBane wasp trap is determined by wasp behaviour. Changes to the size and shape of the WaspBane wasp trap will result in the trap not working as efficiently as intended. It may surprise you to know but changing WaspBane by as little as 2mm in one key dimension reduces the effectiveness of the trap by over 60%!

Can you cover the bait chamber to hide all the dead wasps?

No. It is absolutely essential that the bait chamber remains clear and transparent. Any attempt to cover the bait chamber will result in wasps escaping from the trap.

How often should I rebait my WaspBane wasp trap?

For safety reasons the WaspBane wasp trap is designed to work throughout the whole wasp season without the need for rebaiting. In routine use you should only have to bait up the WaspBane wasp trap once at the beginning of the season unless you catch so many wasps that you exceed the safe capacity level. In which case, the bait chamber must be replaced with a new one.

What does safe capacity level mean?

This is the level to which the WaspBane wasp trap can safely catch wasps before there is a risk of the safety seal jamming, or wasps being pulled through the safety seal during disassembly or clogging the trap so that wasps can escape. Although it happens in practice it is very rare that the safe capacity level is exceeded.

My WaspBane wasp trap is not filled to the mark on the bait chamber?

The mark on the bait chamber is the safe capacity level which relates to the number of wasps that the trap can safely catch before the bait chamber should be replaced with a new one. There is a ‘fill level’ mark indicated in yellow with yellow arrows on the product label found on the side of the bait chamber. This is the level to which bait liquid should be added.

How do I replace the liquid in the bait chamber?

For safety reasons the whole bait chamber should be replaced with a new bait chamber. For your safety do not attempt to remove the safety seal and safety seal insert. To do so significantly increases your risk of being stung if not by live wasps then by dead ones. There have been two recorded cases of pest controllers being rushed to hospital suffering anaphylactic shock after being stung by dead wasps when cleaning out wasp pots.

Is it safe to dispose of the WaspBane wasp trap?

The WaspBane wasp trap contains no pesticides or poisons and is therefore treated as non hazardous waste. We do not recommend trying to recycle the bait chamber because the wasps caught in the trap remain a hazard to human health. It is preferable for the bait chamber to be incinerated. The vapour chamber can be recycled. Please follow your local rules for waste disposal and dispose of WaspBane in a responsible manner. It is recommended that the liquid in the trap is drained away before disposal simply by inverting the uncapped bait chamber over a compost heap or other suitable area. The safety seal will prevent wasps escaping but is not liquid tight and will allow the bait chamber to drain. Please only attempt this when you know wasps are not flying, for example after the wasp season has finished (late November onwards) or at the crack of dawn before wasps far started flying for the day. The bait chamber should then be re-lidded with the lid provided but the lid should be left loose. This will allow the bait chamber to squash flat if disposed off to land fill and not incinerated.

I’m afraid WaspBane will spoil the appearance of my garden?

The WaspBane wasp trap is constructed from transparent and neutral green plastics. When suspended in trees it becomes perfectly camouflaged so much so that people find it hard to find it again.

Why buy WaspBane when I can make my own trap from a jam jar or plastic bottle?

Whilst home made traps will kill lots of wasps, scientific evidence has shown that home made traps are low efficiency traps that actually INCREASE the number of wasps in their vicinity because they cause swarm feeding by attracting more wasps than they kill. Home made traps make your wasp problem worse!

Why is WaspBane better than other traps then?

Most of the wasp traps on the market including dome traps, blown glass and home made traps are low efficiency wasp traps which means they attract more wasps than they kill and they actually make the wasp problem worse. WaspBane is scientifically proven to reduce risk and has a number of advantages over these other traps:

1. The WaspBane wasp trap is highly efficient which means that once a wasp enters the trap it cannot escape and therefore cannot bring back more wasps into the area you wish to protect. Unlike other wasp traps WaspBane does not cause swarm feeding.

2. The WaspBane wasp trap has a unique bait system which means that in routine use you only have to set the trap once and it lasts all season long. Not only is this much safer because you are not exposed to wasps because you don’t have to handle the trap, it also saves a lot of time, effort and mess and is actually cheaper in the longer run. Most traps on the market are cheap to buy but expensive to service especially because they need rebaiting every two to three days.

3. The WaspBane wasp trap is designed with a self sealing disposable bait chamber which means that you are protected from the wasps in the trap at all times. With other traps on the market not only do you have to clean out all those dead wasps in the trap but you have to do so whilst there are still live wasps in and around the trap.

4. The WaspBane wasp trap is designed to be suspended or placed on its heavy base. This means that WaspBane can be used in lots of different situations.

What’s the difference between efficiency and effectiveness?

Efficiency is the percentage of caught wasps that a trap kills. For example, dome traps are about 10% efficient. This means that they kill 1 in 10 of the wasps that they catch. This allows the escaping wasps to return to their nests to bring back more wasps. The trap will still kill 10% of these returning wasps so the trap will look busy and will be filled with lots of dead wasps and will look as though it is doing a good job when in fact it is not. WaspBane is a high efficiency trap which kills virtually 100% of the wasps that it catches. This means that wasps cannot return to their nest to bring back more wasps. High efficiency traps rarely look busy and often kill very few wasps. However, high efficiency traps remove wasps from the area you wish to protect which is what traps are supposed to do.

A wasp trap is said to be effective when it removes wasps from the area you wish to protect. If a high efficiency trap is placed or used incorrectly then it may not be effective. Low efficiency wasp traps are always ineffective.

I’ve never been stung by a wasp so I don’t know if I’m allergic – what should I do?

Only about one person in 125 will have a serious reaction to a wasp sting so the important thing is not to panic unduly because there is about a 124 out of 125 chance that you will be fine. If you are stung then there are certain symptoms which you should look out for. If you have any swelling away from the site of the sting, especially around the throat or face or if you have any difficulty breathing or you feel weak and light headed as though you are about to faint then call an ambulance and don’t wait for the symptoms to get worse. Don’t be tempted to drive yourself. There is a special type of allergic reaction which affects the blood vessels to the heart. This is known as Kounis syndrome. If you develop an unexplained pain in the chest, or a pain in the upper left arm, or have difficulty in breathing up to two weeks after a wasp sting then seek urgent medical attention and inform your doctor that you were stung by a wasp. Wasp stings can bring on an allergic heart attack which may not develop for several days after the wasp sting.  If you are still concerned then check with your doctor or pharmacist about what’s best for you. They may recommend you keep some chlorpheniramine 4mg tablets just as a precaution.

My lime trees are plagued with wasps – will WaspBane help?

WaspBane is unlikely to be of benefit because lime trees are an overwhelming food source that WaspBane cannot compete with. It is far easier and safer to replace the lime trees with alternative trees which do not produce lots of sweet sticky sap. If you cannot replace the lime trees then using large numbers of WaspBane wasp traps might help but we recommend that you e-mail the WaspBane office for specific advice.

How big and heavy is the WaspBane wasp trap?

When assembled the WaspBane wasp trap is about 50cm tall with a 15cm x 15cm wide base and weighs about 1.3Kg when reconstituted with liquid bait.

Is WaspBane effective against paper wasps?

No. Paper wasps (polistes wasps) behave differently and are not attracted to WaspBane.

After a couple of weeks will WaspBane start to smell and need rebaiting?

No. Provided that the instructions that come with WaspBane have been followed properly, then the bait placed in the bait chamber should remain effective all season long and should not smell of rotting insects.

I added water to the bait powders and have not caught a single wasp?

This is correct. The bait powders that come with the bait chamber are not an attractant and will not attract wasps. The powders are food grade materials which are designed to keep the liquid bait that you add fresh. For the WaspBane wasp trap to work you will need to add a liquid attractant. A mix of sweet lager with equal parts of water and about 100g to 150g of honey is known to work well.

Why are there different versions of the WaspBane trap?

All versions of the WaspBane wasp trap are physically the same and work in the same way. The only difference between the versions is either the packaging or whether the bait has been pre-diluted. The consumer version of the trap has all of the necessary packaging and information for members of the public to install and use the trap. The consumer version comes with dry bait powders for ease of shipping and for a longer shelf life. The commercial version comes without packaging and is for professional installation. The commercial version also comes either with dry bait powders or ready prepared for immediate installation.

If your question has not been answered in the above FAQs or any of the other pages of this website then we would love to help. Simply e-mail to info@waspbane.com or post a comment below. Please note that all comments will be checked and WaspBane reserves the right not to publish comments which are not helpful.

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