I myself am highly allergic to five different species of bees. I carry epi-pens in all of my vehicles and tool bags. Almost died the first time I was stung, was in a coma for two days.
About 15 years ago I was on a job with one of my service technicians. We were talking about being allergic to bees. He told me that he was allergic. I asked him if he carried an epi-pen, and he did not even know what they were. Long story short, that weekend he was stung by a nest yellow jackets, went into anaphylactic shock and died about two weeks later.
If you are allergic always keep an epi-pen handy. It will save your life.
Back in the mid 90's one of our guys was working on a roof and got stung, he kept on working as he wasn't allergic. He straighten up from installing a transformer, and that was the last thing he remembered. There was a guy from another company that saw him approaching, and collapsed. He spent over a week in ICU. Came back to work after a couple months. He quit the next summer, couldn't handle the heat anymore, because of the damage done. Two of use went up on the roof the next day, found a paper nest in a four inch piece of pipe. The Wasp was the size of a humming bird, killed it after watching the nest, then three more showed up. Closest thing we could find that matched was a Japenese Honey Bee Killer wasp. A body was given to Nova, they tried to tell use it was a Cicada Killer, but they live under ground by themselves.
The kid next door knew where all the yellow jacket nest where, I've Sevined close to a dozen nest. He also wanted to show me a weird ant, that he played with, I finally saw it. I was like Holy Crap it's a Velvet ant. Thought they only lived in parts of Texas, OK, NM and AZ. Told him and his Dad about it's sting. I'm out of Sevin, would like to capture it and give it to Maryland Entomology.
That's what's left of a Hornets nest. Had a call 25+ years ago, they'd turned their AC off for vacation. When they returned, turned it back on, made a weird noise and it quit. The unit was a flat top York with the fan underneath, the nest actually bent the fan blade, then stalled the motor. They wanted me to do something, couldn't even go past the backyard gate, told them to get an exterminator, and to tell them the nest broke open. Then we'd be back.
It ain't EPA approved but - - -
take care of yellow jacket nests in the ground with half-a-cup of gasoline and a funnel. Ease up to the hole just about dark, drop the funnel in the hole, pour the gas in, and you're done! Nothing ever comes out.
Has anyone noticed yellow jackets seem to aim for you face and ears? The worst is roof top units that have been vacant or broke for a while. I started up 14 package units in a strip mall we had installed the spring before, just about all the inducer wheels were stuck, had to break them free and run, all were packed with yellow jackets. Pulled a "fireman" sliding down my extension ladder on the first big one i hit.
Think you are right about yellow jackets going for the face. I walked in
a back yard to check a unit, and immediately a yellow jacket hit me
in the face. Luckly I was wearing sun glases and the darn thing hit
my glasses, then went to its nest. I keep a can of spray, and fixed
the whole nest.
Are they bigger despite being skinny. I saw some a few years ago. they were coming up out of the ground. I have no clue what they were. They were not aggressive.
Ground dwelling yellow jackets are rare here. Ground dwelling bumble bees aren't. I used to love bush hogging on the farm. Never knew an old International diesel tractor could go that fast.
They were close to 2" long. The bodies were kinda thin. About the size you'd get gluing 2 hornets together in series. 2 of them were sitting side by side on the top of an AC when I arrived. They didn't come after me, and actually watched me for a while before flying away.