With Fall right around the corner, you might think that means the flying insects and bugs disappear along with the warmer weather. While that’s true for some, wasps are the exception. You might start seeing more wasps and bees in your yard during the early fall months, and they could be more aggressive too. Let’s learn a little more about why wasps behave this way when cold weather starts to set in.
Wasp colony numbers are at the highest during the fall due to a wasp’s natural life cycle. During the spring, the Queen wasps emerge and begin laying eggs and building their colonies. During the summer the Queen’s job is to fertilize and lay eggs in order to grow their colony. That leads to higher colony numbers in the fall, sometimes hundreds or thousands of wasps can reside in one nest. More wasps, means a higher number searching for food, and probably in your yard. However, the food is dwindling too.
Limited Food Sources
Since adult wasps spend their summers caring for its larvae and the colony, they eat a sweet substance that is produced by the larvae in return for being fed insects. When the fall months arrive, and the Queen has stopped laying eggs, the larvae no longer provide a food source for the adult wasps, so they often turn to sweets and carbohydrates instead. The lack of food makes for more aggressive and angry wasps, and they likely hang around your yard searching for sugary foods.
Protect The Queen
The Queen wasp is likely the only one out of the colony that will survive winter conditions. Future colonies depend on the survival of the Queen, so when the weather begins to cool down, the preparation for the Queen begins. Any potential threat that a social wasp senses to their Queen, can be in danger of being swarmed or stung. Wasps can sting multiple times, and they also release a pheromone that attracts other wasps that may sting as well. This is just one other reason that wasps are much more aggressive and dangerous in the Fall.
The Search For Warmth
Insects can’t survive during the winter months, so when the weather starts to drop, they begin searching for warmth. Queen wasps won’t spend the winter in the nests the colony is using throughout the spring and summer, instead they search for warmer spots. Your home, unfortunately, is the ideal spot. Walls, sheds, and attics are common places the Queen wasp might choose to shelter in, and if they do choose your home, you will likely see them when they emerge in the springtime.