Wasps set for a bumper summer in East Cambridgeshire, experts warn

Rob Simpson

Rob Simpson - Credit: Archant

Experts are warning of a bumper year for wasps in East Cambridgeshire.

Mild spring temperatures following a relatively cold winter have created “perfect conditions” for the insect, according to Basis Prompt, a body representing the pest control industry.

And with forecasters predicting warmer than average weather for the rest of May and June, it is expected that a huge rise in both the number and size of nests is on the way.

Figures produced by the British Pest Control Association last week indicate problems with wasps in East Cambridgeshire saw the district council called to deal with 27 incidents of wasps nests in 2014, compared with 38 in 2013.

Rob Simpson, leader of Basis Prompt, said: “The annual wasp population in the UK is very much dependent on weather conditions.

“The number of nests seemed to be down significantly in 2013, but there was a substantial increase last year when numbers returned to something like normal.

“Colder winters often mean there are more wasps about the following summer as mated queens spend the period deep in hibernation.

Most Read

“If it’s milder in December and January, wasps become restless and use up their food reserves. They then have nothing left to forage on, so they die.

“This year, temperatures were relatively cold during the winter and have so far been warm in spring, so we’re expecting our members to receive a deluge of calls.”

In a typical British summer, Mr Simpson said wasps will not appear in huge numbers or become a big issue until August or September.

But they begin building new nests in spring and Mr Simpson says it’s best to have them treated as early as possible, when the colony is smaller and the wasps less aggressive.