Entomology (Study of Bugs)/new type of wasp

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Question
the wasp in question
the wasp in question  
Lately at my homestead I have been seeing this new form of wasp solid black with two thick yellow strips on the back bit. my father was stung by one and his entire hand swelled to twice its size and affected his arm and shoulder. they seem to form their nest just anywhere, I found them on berry vines and on rose bushes. They do not react at all to commercial anti-wasp products. what should we do because they are getting larger in population and I don't think we can take a sting anywhere near the neck or chest area.

Answer
Hello Dustin,

You have Four-toothed Mason Wasps (Monobia quadridens), and yes they can inflict some pain. Often they are not nuisances and will leave you alone. However, the swelling your father experienced sounds like an allergic reaction to a sting, so it is probably a good idea to clean up the nests.

There are a number of strong insecticides that can be used with wasps, but they don't always work, as you mentioned. Because of your father's reaction, and their resistance to wasp spray, I do NOT recommend you attempt to exterminate them yourselves. Call a pest control service and let them take care of it.

Good luck!

Best,
Jessica

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jessica Mellinger

Expertise

I can answer questions about invertebrates native to California, including insects commonly found in homes. If you have an identification request, please attach a photo to your question.

Experience

I was involved in collection and identification of invertebrates for the United States Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division for six years. Also, I provided these same services intermittently for the UC Davis John Muir Institute of the Environment for many years. I have been a member of AllExperts.com since 2009.

Organizations
Department of the Interior: United States Geological Survey, Davis Field Station; University of California, Davis Aggie Alumni Association; UC Davis Center for Neuroscience; U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs

Education/Credentials
I have two B.A.'s from the University of California, Davis and two Associate's degrees from Sacramento City College.

Awards and Honors
Special Thanks for Achieving Results award from the Department of the Interior

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