Record reader asks: What am I gonna do with this humongous wasp nest?

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Dear readers:

Our recent stories about oversized wasp’s nests seems to have stirred up, well, a wasp’s nest of interest and commentary. Kaye Ernst of Hemlock Farms in Pike County wrote us with this story and sent these photos of her recent discovery.

To the Editor:

I don’t want to start a “War of the Wasps,” but I couldn’t help notice your photo of a wasp’s nest that appeared in the paper just the other day. And I must say, that sucker has nothing on the nest that currently resides in my yard (please see attached pictures).

You might ask how it could be possible that my family failed to notice this boulder-sized beast all summer long.

Well, it was obscured by the surrounding foliage and my green-thumbed father’s version of a hanging garden on his elevated deck. Sure, we noticed more wasps than usual this summer, but no one was stung, so we put it down to country living. It wasn’t until the leaves started to fall and my father took all his plants inside for winter (he can’t bear to see anything die) that the nest was revealed along with thousands of wasps engaged in furious activity.

Obviously, I have to do something.

One of the perks of living in a gated community is that we have an environmental specialist on staff (perhaps a plain ol’ tree hugger would be cheaper). Anyway, she very nicely looked up wasp behavior for me and found the following: With the onset of fall, all adult wasps busy themselves for migration to wherever it is that wasps migrate (hopefully Florida).

All young wasps are killed by the first frost. The queen either chooses to hibernate in the nest until spring, or she finds somewhere nearby to hang out for the duration. Come spring, the wasps will either re-inhabit the nest or build a new one nearby.

Great. This sucker has to go.

The Enviro Lady praised me over and over for not choosing the “chemical method” employed by most exterminators and for respecting the natural habitat and yadda yadda. What she didn’t know is that I’m a tad low on funds at the moment and that, since hiring an exterminator would seriously cut into my manicure budget, I would have to take this project on myself.

The nest is some 25 feet above ground and approximately 16 feet from the corner of our deck so getting at it is not easy. I decided that calling my oldest brother would be my best course of action. He’s six-foot-four, former military, and one of those hunty-jumpy-climby-outdoorsy types who I was sure would know just what to do.

His response to my query was as follows: A) Move, or B) Call your other brother.

Well, my other brother is kind of an idiot, but what other options did I have? So I called. My assessment of my other brother’s mental capacity was immediately validated when all of his suggestions involved a flame-thrower.


Putting aside the fact that using an incendiary device in a heavily-wooded, gated community with very strict rules would be a very bad idea, where on earth would I get one? And if you know, please don’t tell me. That knowledge is just plain creepy.

However, I remain open to suggestions. If any of your readers have any creative ideas for getting this mastodon down (no flame throwers, please) or if they have a 20-foot ladder for hire (on the cheap), please let me know at [email protected].

No crazies, please (unless they look like George Clooney, and, in that case, we’ll talk).

Thank you for your time and attention and your wonderful coverage of local life here in the Poconos.


Kaye Ernst

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Record reader asks: What am I gonna do with this humongous wasp nest?
wasps stung – Yahoo News Search Results
wasps stung – Yahoo News Search Results

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