Wasps are attracted to water, sweet smells and tastes, and bright colors, all of which are present in and around a family swimming pool. A wasp infestation around your pool is not only a nuisance. It can also be dangerous for people who are allergic to wasp stings. Calling in an exterminator would be the most expedient solution, but there are a few things you can try on your own to eliminate these pests.
Deterring Wasp Infestation
Clean up sugary spills from sweet drinks right away. Avoid wearing bright floral patterns, perfume or cologne, particularly in late summer. Cover food and open drink containers and dispose of them in garbage cans that are tightly covered and cleaned of any food or drink spills. Remove fallen fruit from the ground, and don't walk barefoot around fruit trees.
Purchase a commercial wasp trap and bait it according to the manufacturer's directions. Alternatively, make your own water trap by following the step below.
Using a utility knife, cut the top off a two-liter bottle down to the shoulders of the bottle. Throw away the bottle cap. Fill the bottle to the halfway point with water and squirt in a little liquid soap. Smear some jam or honey on the bottle opening and invert it so that it sits on the other part of the bottle like a funnel. Tape the two parts together if necessary and place the trap far from the swimming pool area. The wasps will fly in to get to the sugary substance and most likely fall into the water. Empty the trap daily.
Destroying the Nest
Locate the nest if possible. Early summer is the best time, before the wasp colony begins to grow. Wasps will travel far from their nests to locate water so the nest may not be on your property. If you observe wasps traveling in a straight line, chances are they are going from or to the nest. Take care to observe from a distance. If the nest is easily accessible, you can try to destroy it or kill the wasps yourself. Otherwise, you might want to call in a professional.
Wait until nightfall when the wasps will likely be inside the nest. Wear protective gear and make sure no skin is exposed. Cover a flashlight with red cellophane or a translucent red cloth; wasps are attracted to light but cannot see the color red. Turn on the light and keep it trained on the nest.
Approach the wasp nest quietly to avoid arousing its inhabitants. Wasps can be very aggressive when disturbed, but they are less active at night, particularly if the temperature is below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Apply commercial insecticides to the nest according to the manufacturer's directions. Check for wasp activity in the morning.
Alternatively, if you have no insecticide, quickly cover the nest with a bag, tie it off, and cut it down. Drop it in a bucket of water or freeze it to kill the wasps.