This homemade wasp trap with help get rid of annoying wasps, hornets and other flying, stinging pests. Save yourself and your family from stings this summer by crafting this homemade wasp trap from a a plastic pop bottle.
DIY Wasp Trap
Many people try to get rid of wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets to no avail. It can be tricky to prevent them from nesting in your yard or around your home.
This year there is a new foe on the block- The Giant Asian Hornet. This hornet has made it's way over from Asia and poses a huge threat to the honeybee population in North America.
This homemade wasp trap will work for all types of wasps and hornets and best of all- it's safe for bees! Check out the video below and then read on for more helpful tips to get rid of wasps. The full printable DIY instructions are at the bottom of this post.
The difference between a wasp and a bee
The main difference between and wasp and bee is that wasps feed on other insects, and bees feed on a mixture of pollen and nectar. Wasps have smooth bodies as opposed to bees that have hairy bodies. Bees die after they sting. Unlike bees, wasps and hornets will not die after they sting.
Common areas to find wasp nests
- Under roof awnings or behind shutters
- Hanging from tree branches
- Fence posts and play sets
- Hollow tree trunks or stacked wood
- Under tables or shade umbrellas
Yellow jacket nests are often hidden underground, so carefully check your lawn and mulched areas.
I found this out the hard way when I went into the woods near our house to dig up some ferns to plant in my garden. Somehow I accidentally dug right into a wasp. Unfortunately I was wearing shorts and I got stung about 20 times in the butt. It was awful.
6 Tips for treating nests
- Treat at dusk or dawn when the insects are less likely to be active.
- Wear gloves and long sleeves to avoid being stung.
- Spray wasp and hornet killer to kill the entire nest. Be sure to read the label before use.
- When spraying, make sure you stand away from the nest and not directly underneath.
- Spray with the wind, not against it.
- Never attempt to treat nests alone. Use the buddy system or ask someone else to treat it if you’re allergic to stings.
Tips to keep hornets out of your home
- Make sure all door and window cracks are sealed
- Inspect window screens to make sure there aren’t any holes
- Keep garbage containers sealed and away from entrances
- Rinse recycling materials before putting them in the bin
Several years ago we had a wasp infestation in our house! My husband and I noticed that there was a weird crackling sound in the ceiling of our bedroom. One day he was outside and saw the wasps flying into a hole on the side of our house the bedroom was on.
They were building a huge nest in the ceiling above our bed! My husband used the methods above to get rid of the nest and sealed up the holes in the siding.
If you touch the spot on the ceiling where they were building above us it feels paper thin. They were extremely close to breaking into our bedroom!
What are wasps and hornets attracted to?
These insects are attracted to sweet foods or decaying materials, so eliminate any food source. Wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets are extremely attracted to the sugar in some beverages.
To catch wasps and hornets you need the right kind of bait. The perfect lure is dependent on the season. In early spring, when wasps are reproducing, they are looking for protein; later in summer, they want sugar.
The more wasps you can catch earlier in the season, the less of a problem they will be during the summer.
In early spring the queen will be out on mating flights so this is a good time to try to catch as many of them as possible.
Supplies to make a homemade wasp trap
- 2 liter pop bottle
- Knife or scissors
- Sweet beverage like pop or juice
- Raw meat or a piece of hot dog for bait.
- Dish soap
- String or wire to hang it
Directions to make a homemade wasp trap
- Cut the top off the plastic bottle and discard the lid.
- Flip the top part upside down and insert it into the bottom half so it looks like a funnel.
- Add tape if you need to secure it.
- Pour in one cup of juice or full sugar soda.
- Add a tiny squirt of dish soap.
- Add a cap full of vinegar.
- Place the meat product inside with the sweet liquid.
- Poke a hole in each side of the trap and insert the string or wire for hanging.
Add about a cup of juice or pop into the trap. Leave an inch or so underneath the funnel so wasps can enter.
Next, squeeze a drop of dish soap into the liquid (the dish soap will break up the surface tension of the water and aid in drowning the wasps.) In spring, add a little bit of hamburger meat or a piece of hot dog to the soapy solution.
Add a cap full of vinegar. This is what help keeps bees out of the trap. They don't like the smell of the vinegar.
Set your traps out on the ground or hang them about four feet high to attract and catch more wasps. Find a good tree limb or fence post on your property—one that is at least 10 yards away from your family’s play, work, and gathering space and hang up your homemade wasp trap!
- Empty 2 L pop bottle
- 1 cup of juice
- 1 teaspoon of vinegar
- 1 drop of dish soap
- 1 oz of meat
- 1 yard of string
- Cut the top of the bottle off and remove the cap.
- Then, flip the top over and tape it in place.
- Poke a hole in each side of the bottle to insert the string.
- Pour the juice into the trap followed by the vinegar and dish soap.
- Add a small bit of meat to the mixture.
- Feed the string through the holes to hang it.
- Hang your trap.
Empty or discard your trap once a week and reset the trap.
Check back often to dispose of the drowned wasps and refill the bait. Be sure the wasps are dead before you open the trap to remove them—an escapee will go back to the nest and warn the colony.
Try not to crush the wasps while disposing of them, as the bodies release a scent that alerts other wasps of danger, potentially attracting a swarm.
You can empty the trap and refill it or just throw the whole thing out and make a new one.
What are your best tips to get rid of wasps? Will you try making your own homemade wasp trap this year?