How To Kill Paper Wasps

Over the last couple of years, I’ve had several encounters with paper wasps and had varying levels of success in attempting to kill paper wasps as well.

In the last couple of weeks, there have been four different sets of paper wasp nests forming around the house. Two of the four were in really inconvenient places, such as above the back sliding door near the laundry and in the joint of our clothes line.

On the weekend, it seems like as good a time as any to try my hand at killing the paper wasps again. Last time I attempted it, I was armed with a can of Mortein and I can assure you, when I sprayed their nests – they were very unhappy.

Wanting to see if I could one up the paper wasps this time, I was armed with a can of Baygon Surface Spray and WK-40. You’re probably wondering what WK-40 is; well it is your garden variety WD-40, the spray lubricant with a thousand uses with an awesome new label provided by Andrew for my 27th birthday. The WK-40 was the key in avoiding getting bitten this time, as with the thin nozzle connected you can spray a tight stream of WK-40 for over 2 metres – great for distancing yourself from angry as hell paper wasps!

With a can in either hand & feeling a little like Peter Venkman from Ghostbusters, I walked up as close to their nests as I dared and coated them & promptly ran away as the wasps swarmed the area looking for something to string! As it turns out, WK-40 and Baygon Surface Spray is a lethal concoction with great knockdown power.

In each of the four paper wasp nests, I came out on top without getting bitten once. I’m sure WD-40 didn’t have killing paper wasps on their list of 1000+ things that their fantastic lubricant is good for!

9 thoughts on “How To Kill Paper Wasps

  1. You know the real trick is to wait till just after dark when they have all returned to the nest and are tucked inside sleeping…. no running away like a girl required :)

  2. Yes, works very well even on ants – they just ly down, have a few wriggles and that’s just about it. Toads don’t like it either!

  3. Jacob,

    Except for one of the nests, which had considerably larger paper wasps than the others – I didn’t really need to run away; thinking that was just a reflex as I’ve learned a painful lesson in a previous encounter!


    There are so many things that the infamous toad doesn’t like, two come to mind immediately and they are Dettol and virtually any of the Harpic cleaning products.

  4. Angela,

    As far as I’m aware, there is no way to guarantee that they won’t come back and build another nest. However, if you’re following the advice above and kill the paper wasps in the current nest – there won’t be any left to come back and create another nest.

    To give you an idea, the nests that I killed that I refer to above haven’t come back in the last month – so chances have it that they won’t at all. If they do, I’ve got the magic concoction to make them go away just as fast again!


  5. I hate those little basturds I just peg any object at them and run hoping none of those wasps are following

  6. Al,

    All your advice works fine for active nests.

    Each year in the middle of winter I climb up to the eaves and get rid of all the empty nests – hundreds of them. I burn the old nests so no chance of the queen coming back. However, each spring somehow another colony starts in exactly the same place.

    Is there anything I can spray on the eaves to discourage new colonies? One year I actually repainted the whole eave in the hope of getting rid of any “marker” for any new paper wasps to start anent, but sure enough back they came.

    So what I am after is something I can paint/spray in winter that discourages new nests in the spring.

    Thank you

    Peter Batey

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