Open pipe mud daubers (Trypoxylon politum) are long and thin with a waist that looks threaded. They are usually all black, all metallic blue, but may have some color, especially on their legs. An adult mud dauber can grow to be between 1/2 to 1 inch in length. These insects are solitary wasps which may seek refuge around your home by making long, elaborate nests out of mud, thus the name. They are apt to hang around homes that offer a stable food supply of spiders.
Don't let their docile manner fool you—they can be aggressive, but not as aggressive as some other types of wasps. These wasps are, in fact, different from other wasps in many ways. They are the only type of wasp where the males will stay in the nest to defend the eggs while the female is out hunting for food, but if a human or animal approaches, they will not defend the nest.
Mud Dauber Problems
These wasps create nests in sheltered areas around a home, such as underneath eaves, awnings, and decks. They may also build nests in barns, garages, attics, and sheds, and these can be unsightly. Usually, new individual nests are built for individual families but some species will reuse nests that other mud daubers have built. These wasps do not live in large colonies.
If you have a lot of open pipe mud daubers around your property, this is indicative that you have a large spider population as well, as these insects feed on spiders, as well as nectar and honeydew. Mud daubers have a venomous sting that paralyzes spiders so the wasps can bring them back to their nests. Stinging humans, however, is not something these wasps generally do, but they will sting if squeezed. This can happen if they are accidentally stepped on or sat upon.
Mud Dauber Prevention
Approaching mud dauber nests should always be done with caution, as stings can sometimes occur. To prevent mud daubers, keep these tips in mind:
- Use professional techniques in order to reduce the number of spiders that live on your property.
- Inspect the outside of your home for nests made out of mud with holes in them.
- Remove all old nests from your home, barns, outbuildings or other locations.
- Partner with a qualified pest control company for wasp control.
How Innovative Pest Control Can Help
The professional pest control technicians here at Innovative Pest Control know how to remove and control all stinging insects on your property. We can also control the spider populations in order to reduce the chances of wasps returning. Reach out to Innovative today with questions or to schedule your residential pest control services.