Yellow Jackets and Chainsaws

BIGChrisNH

Minister of Fire
Dec 16, 2015
512
New Hampshire
I've long had a propensity for being stung by bees, brown hornets, yellow jackets, horseflies, etc. I sat down on a plastic chair by the fire pit earlier this summer that had a yellow jacket nest the size of a softball underneath it, that was a lot of fun.

Anyway, today I finally decided to pull down a large oak branch widow maker from out back on my property. I went out there with some cable and a come-along, and the whole thing came crashing down like I wanted. I cut it up into 6 foot lengths and was shouldering them out of there. As I was reaching down for the last one, my foot squished down on something soft and I felt the familiar pain of a yellow jacket sting on my hand. It's surprising how fast you can run in a helmet and chaps LOL. I'm very thankful I didn't step on the nest with a running chainsaw.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
4,494
Downeast Maine
I've long had a propensity for being stung by bees, brown hornets, yellow jackets, horseflies, etc. I sat down on a plastic chair by the fire pit earlier this summer that had a yellow jacket nest the size of a softball underneath it, that was a lot of fun.

Anyway, today I finally decided to pull down a large oak branch widow maker from out back on my property. I went out there with some cable and a come-along, and the whole thing came crashing down like I wanted. I cut it up into 6 foot lengths and was shouldering them out of there. As I was reaching down for the last one, my foot squished down on something soft and I felt the familiar pain of a yellow jacket sting on my hand. It's surprising how fast you can run in a helmet and chaps LOL. I'm very thankful I didn't step on the nest with a running chainsaw.
I knocked over some pallets that had a nest in them. I was stung three times, it was not fun.
 

JimBear

Feeling the Heat
Dec 15, 2017
484
Iowa
I've long had a propensity for being stung by bees, brown hornets, yellow jackets, horseflies, etc. I sat down on a plastic chair by the fire pit earlier this summer that had a yellow jacket nest the size of a softball underneath it, that was a lot of fun.

Anyway, today I finally decided to pull down a large oak branch widow maker from out back on my property. I went out there with some cable and a come-along, and the whole thing came crashing down like I wanted. I cut it up into 6 foot lengths and was shouldering them out of there. As I was reaching down for the last one, my foot squished down on something soft and I felt the familiar pain of a yellow jacket sting on my hand. It's surprising how fast you can run in a helmet and chaps LOL. I'm very thankful I didn't step on the nest with a running chainsaw.
Lol. Sounds vaguely familiar. I just went out the other day to start clearing a fence line. First tree was a 10” - 12” Honey Locust, made my face cut & Carpenter Ants started pouring out. I just chuckled & said find a new home. Made my back cut & backed away as it came down. Then out poured the bumble bees. :eek: They were whizzed off, I was swatting & flailing as I scooted on down the fence line. Fortunately I didn’t get stung. I cut in a different spot for awhile then grabbed my gas can & a 5 gallon bucket. I poured about 1/2 gal. of gas in the bucket to toss on the mess. I got about 10’ from the mess & my leg was wet.:oops: My bucket had a small hole in it & was leaking out on my britches & running into my boot:rolleyes: . I called it a day after that.
 

MissMac

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2017
629
NW Ontario
i've had yellow jackets making nests in my wood shed all summer. got them all knocked down only to realize that they've also built a nest right in the middle of my one stall that's full of wood. i've been stung twice this week trying to put more wood in the shed, and i'm not looking forward to having to get wood this fall - i think i'm gonna have to wear a bee-suit until it gets really cold out. sigh.
 

WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,912
Winter WI
I once sawed into a hollow maple pole and shazam! there was a wasp nest in it and they weren’t happy at all lol. Yes funny how fast you can cut and run , and drop the saw too. I think I got stung 7-8 times on that one. I get stung a few times each summer up here it seems and they often get the back of my hands so there is a period of a few days where my hand is swollen and itchy even when I take Benadry.
 
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BIGChrisNH

Minister of Fire
Dec 16, 2015
512
New Hampshire
i've had yellow jackets making nests in my wood shed all summer. got them all knocked down only to realize that they've also built a nest right in the middle of my one stall that's full of wood. i've been stung twice this week trying to put more wood in the shed, and i'm not looking forward to having to get wood this fall - i think i'm gonna have to wear a bee-suit until it gets really cold out. sigh.
That’s tough. Wood sheds are very “waspy ” places usually. Hot and dry in summer without much traffic
 

BIGChrisNH

Minister of Fire
Dec 16, 2015
512
New Hampshire
I once sawed into a hollow maple pole and shazam! there was a wasp nest in it and they weren’t happy at all lol. Yes funny how fast you can cut and run , and drop the saw too. I think I got stung 7-8 times on that one. I get stung a few times each summer up here it seems and they often get the back of my hands so there is a period of a few days where my hand is swollen and itchy even when I take Benadry.
That sounds like something that would happen to me. My hand is pretty plump right now
 
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BIGChrisNH

Minister of Fire
Dec 16, 2015
512
New Hampshire
Lol. Sounds vaguely familiar. I just went out the other day to start clearing a fence line. First tree was a 10” - 12” Honey Locust, made my face cut & Carpenter Ants started pouring out. I just chuckled & said find a new home. Made my back cut & backed away as it came down. Then out poured the bumble bees. :eek: They were whizzed off, I was swatting & flailing as I scooted on down the fence line. Fortunately I didn’t get stung. I cut in a different spot for awhile then grabbed my gas can & a 5 gallon bucket. I poured about 1/2 gal. of gas in the bucket to toss on the mess. I got about 10’ from the mess & my leg was wet.:oops: My bucket had a small hole in it & was leaking out on my britches & running into my boot:rolleyes: . I called it a day after that.
I find the bumbles to be more docile usually. And I don’t blame you for calling it a day
 

Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
977
Palmyra, WI
When I was keeping honey bees, I was able to mow right up past the hives at any time without an issue. Maybe something to do with the mower vibration and engine running that kept them disoriented. On the other hand, I drove by with a trailer behind once, and the fender that was hanging out tipped over a bunch of hives an spilled them open. My theory went out the window at that point - I didn't have a high enough gear to get the heck outa there.

The yellow jacket nest from a week ago that was under the wood pile here has finally given up it's residents. A garden hose and repeated flooding has finally driven them off.
 
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BIGChrisNH

Minister of Fire
Dec 16, 2015
512
New Hampshire
When I was keeping honey bees, I was able to mow right up past the hives at any time without an issue. Maybe something to do with the mower vibration and engine running that kept them disoriented. On the other hand, I drove by with a trailer behind once, and the fender that was hanging out tipped over a bunch of hives an spilled them open. My theory went out the window at that point - I didn't have a high enough gear to get the heck outa there.

The yellow jacket nest from a week ago that was under the wood pile here has finally given up it's residents. A garden hose and repeated flooding has finally driven them off.
Yeah I hate to disturb them if I don’t have to. I’ll sneak over at night and grab the last logs out of that area.
 

Lakeside

Minister of Fire
Feb 6, 2009
535
Mike's World
Don't Like yellow jackets

Stepped on a hollow log with a nest inside when I was 12 years old and proceeded to get stung over 30 + times.. I had them stuck in my sneakers and you name it too. I soon had quite the negative feeling for them and would go out of my way to catch a solo one and torturing it by slowly tearing off its wings.

I tend to like all of nature but those little yellow jackets are not tops on my list.
 

Woodsplitter67

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2017
1,351
Woolwich nj
i've had yellow jackets making nests in my wood shed all summer. got them all knocked down only to realize that they've also built a nest right in the middle of my one stall that's full of wood. i've been stung twice this week trying to put more wood in the shed, and i'm not looking forward to having to get wood this fall - i think i'm gonna have to wear a bee-suit until it gets really cold out. sigh.
I wait untill we have a cool morning when the bees are lethargic and then spray with bee spray.. normally I don't go into the sheds until early October I still have wood in my house in a rack if I need to do a fire
 
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Grizzerbear

Minister of Fire
Feb 12, 2019
589
SW Missoura
I got stung this last weekend by a red wasp.....right above the ear lobe.......while stretching woven wire around a rock basket corner. Apparently it has a nest inside somewhere. After yelling some profanities I moved on down the fence line. Those wasp/bee stings will certainly wake you up lol.
 

MissMac

Minister of Fire
Dec 4, 2017
629
NW Ontario
I wait untill we have a cool morning when the bees are lethargic and then spray with bee spray.. normally I don't go into the sheds until early October I still have wood in my house in a rack if I need to do a fire
Unfortunately, they've built a nest somewhere entirely inaccessible deep inside my 5-deep stacks. They are in the stall that i'm burning this winter - somewhere in between the 2nd and 3rd row. So I won't even see the next until i've gone through 2 stacks. Will be interesting this fall trying to get those first bits of wood out without angering them on a daily basis.
 

Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
977
Palmyra, WI
Unfortunately, they've built a nest somewhere entirely inaccessible deep inside my 5-deep stacks. They are in the stall that i'm burning this winter - somewhere in between the 2nd and 3rd row. So I won't even see the next until i've gone through 2 stacks. Will be interesting this fall trying to get those first bits of wood out without angering them on a daily basis.
Below 50 they tend to start to go dormant. Frost temps kill off all but the queen, who finds some leaf litter etc to winter over in.
 

PNWfirburner

Member
Jan 22, 2018
11
PNW - Washington
I found a ground yellow jacket nest a couple years ago while dragging felled trees on my property. I got stung 9 times and reacted badly. I went to urgent care and passed out at the front counter while trying to check in. I got a couple of epinephrine injections and an ambulance ride across the street to the ER. It was a close call and 10 more minutes waiting to head to urgent care wouldve been the end of me. About a month later, roughly a 100x30 foot black cloud of honey bee swarm transited overhead at my property where I was working by myself. My heart skipped a few beats but I was ok. I carry a stupid epi around with me now and have to be cautious this time of year when the wasps start to get aggressive.

Pay attention to your reaction when you get stung. You can become allergic at any point and the more encounters you have getting stung, the more likely you will become allergic.
 
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Zack R

Feeling the Heat
Sep 27, 2017
406
Sisters, OR
flic.kr
I'm not normally a big fan of pesticides but this stuff works wonders on yellow jackets, wasps, ants, etc... I had a paper wasp nest under my siding one year and this killed the whole thing off with ease. Its a fine dust that they carry back to the nest, wiping it out.

Be sure to get the hand duster for application. This bottle will last years since it takes so little to be effective.

https://www.domyown.com/tempo-dust-p-391.html

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johneh

Minister of Fire
Dec 19, 2009
2,963
Eastern Ontario
This time of year we have lots of yellow jackets (too many apple trees)
The wife is allergic to them 1 or 2 stings just benidrill .3 or 4 an EpiPen 5 hospital now
and I mean now. It is 15 min away have to make sure I call on the way so they are ready for her
had to do it twice in the last 10 years. Not my idea of a good day. you would think she would learn
to stay out of the orchard
 
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WiscWoody

Minister of Fire
Dec 24, 2011
1,912
Winter WI
A friend of mine climbed into his skid steer once, closed the door and was putting down the lap bar when he found out there was a wasp nest behind the seat. Yowza! ::-)
 
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Smokepole

Member
Sep 28, 2019
100
Foothills N.C.
It has been a bad year for yellow jackets here too. In and around my yard, I have gotten rid of 4 nests.
In the woods below my house the skunks have dug up two more.
Around here the worst thing for yellow jackets is a hungry skunk.
 

LiamFitzpatrick

New Member
Aug 12, 2020
24
Parkers Lake, KY
Couple of years back I was pulling hay bales for the horses and when I reached for a bale near the bottom of a pile I heard the buzzing and thought, "Oh sh*t, this is gonna hurt." My wife was watching me and said that I ran the thirty feet out of the shed and into the field so fast she thought I had levitated. I was stung over 100 times as I ran most of the 150 yards to the house. Couple of Benadryl and some topical cream and I was fine with all swelling gone in a few hours. I've never had problems with bee stings or yellow jackets so I wasn't worried but my mother-in-law and my wife both wanted to rush me to the ER. This turned out to be yellow jackets but we didn't know until a local bee expert showed up to identify what kind of bee it was. He was going to collect the hive. He passed on this collection job. Later that winter I returned to the scene of the crime to see the hive I'd torn completely in half when I picked up the square bale of hay that I'd lifted. There'd be no way to know that was going to happen until you get into it. I didn't see any of the hive occupants until they introduced themselves, personally.!!!
 
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blades

Minister of Fire
Nov 23, 2008
3,519
WI, Leroy
yellow jackets I don't mind too much, but them German Hornets that have the same coloring are a pia and anywhere else. The buggers built a nest under the siding in a corner of my home this year. This particular area is an add on to the home housing stairs into basement with access from the garage on one side and yard on other. They got me a couple times- I got revenge. They then moved to start a hive under the shingles about a couple foot above same area - got them too . took about a week or so to wipe out the first nest- could not get close enough to get insecticide in behind siding, was hitting the area from both sides. Going to have a company come in and increase the height on the bilco door unit which is very close to this area - so they had to go.