What are Cicada Killers?
Cicada killers are a kind of digger wasp. Cicada killers are large wasps that build their nests in the soil. They get their name from their ability to hunt and capture cicadas that they feed to their young. Despite their image, cicada killers are beneficial pollinators that protect trees from harmful cicadas.
What do Cicada Killers look like?
Cicada killers are about 1.5” long. Their bodies are smooth and shiny rusty-black color, with pale yellow stripes.
Are Cicada Killers dangerous?
Cicada killers are virtually harmless; the males don’t even have stingers. They will often hover and put on a good show if you come close to their nest, but rarely sting. If you try to handle them, or make them feel threatened, the females will sting. We often advise that you do your best to avoid their nesting site while they’re visiting, but know that they aren’t particularly territorial; once their one offspring is born, they will leave. It is always best practice to have a professional pest control company like Debug come out and identify what kind of wasp is in your yard.
Where did the Cicada Killers come from?
Cicada killers come around in the early summer. They like to build their nests near the edges of gardens and walkways where the soil is loose. They often seek sites that are sunny and have trees with cicadas living in them.
How do I get rid of Cicada Killers?
Cicada killers are attracted to loose sandy soil. The best way to stop having Cicada Killers visit, is to remediate the soil and make it healthy and plant grass or some other plant that provides ground cover. If you have concerns about a nest, call Debug and we’ll come out and help you identify the wasp and help you remove the nest, if needed.
Can I do anything to prevent Cicada Killers?
To keep cicada killers out:
- Remediate your soil by adding nutrients,
- Add plants like grass and ground cover plants to the soil after they have left. Cicada killers avoid soil with plants.