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Hello All,

I'm new to beekeeping and could use some guidance.

Yesterday I went to do an inspection on my hives and was stung while getting my equipment on. I was surprised considering my hives were 30ft away but didn't think anything about it. Thought I must have done something to upset the bee. Completed my inspection and went to go put my stuff away inside the barn. That's when I noticed what I thought were honey bees flying around the underhand of the roof. Didn't see swarm cells in the hive so I was pretty sure it wasn't a swarm. I got a ladder and looked closer. Definitely yellow jackets. Black and bright yellow. No fuzz.

I am looking for suggestions on how to get rid of yellow jackets that won't hurt the honey bees.

So far they have not bothered my honey bees, but would like to remove them before they start to or do any damage in the barn.

Thanks

Scott
 

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Hey Scott, most of the time yellow jackets nest in the ground. I havent ever seen them build like wasps. Here in Virginia, we follow them to the hole. Usually they have a hole about 2-3 inches across. We have pumped water in the hole to drown them, have also used flammable liquids. They are nasty. Im sure they serve some purpose, feeding the bears I guess. Anyway, I have a little chasing to do myself. They are harrassing one of my hives, and me when I try and study it. Seems the Bees always get the upper hand on them, but they are a nusiance. Good Luck. G
 

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We hang yellow jacket traps from Lowes all around each yard, you would be surprised by the number of Jackets they kill, saves many nucs. As how to kill a nest that got into you equipment use soapy water. It may not be yellow jackets in equipment I find hornets like to build in equipment more often but same to kill them but a little harder as the type of nest they build protects them from the soapy water till you start tearing it apart.
 

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If you can get close enough, any kind of dry powder insecticide works well, they will track it around and eliminate each other. If you have a puffer type applicater, a few good puffs usually does the trick.
 

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hornet trap.jpg

I make these up and place near my hives. Have had hornets, yellow jackets, wasps and moths in the traps. Not 100% sure if it's the vinegar or banana that keeps the honey bees away. You might want to try a few.
 

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If their nest was under the eves they probably are paper wasps. A strong soap solution, 1 cup dawn to 1 gal. water, sprayed or thrown on them will take care of the problem.
 

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They will occasionally nest in a roofspace. Here is a pic I took of one such, after I killed it with powder.

Do what Hilreal said.

 

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If they are inside the wall you might need to use something that they will track into the nest. What has worked best for me with Yellow Jackets is Apicide powder. At night when they are all inside shoot the powder into the entrance hole several times. The bees will track the powder into the nest and in a few days they will be history, including any new bees that emerge. You should be able to buy the product in a plastic squeeze bottle from one of your local pest control companies.
 
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