In case you thought that we may have taken a crash course in Latin, we are referring to the common wasp (or Vespula Vulgaris) and not an offensive Italian (singular) motor scooter!
It is being reported that June–August this year might see record numbers of wasp infestations throughout the UK as the weather hopefully begins to warm up with the onset of summer. In 2020, pest control specialists working for Aviva reported almost 13,000 incidents between April and October, with more than half during July and August 2020.
The figures for 2021 to date are on a par with 2020, but the weather has been more unsettled, prompting the warning that levels this summer might be even higher.
Most household insurance policies do not provide any cover for the actual damage caused by an infestation of wasps, or indeed any other insect or animal, but some will include cover for their removal by a pest control professional within the home emergency section of the policy - if they pose a risk to health or to property damage. You should speak to your broker to establish the level of cover provided as this can vary.
In the meantime, here are some tips to help you reduce the risk of infestation and guide you through what steps to take should it happen.
- Locating a nest – if you see large numbers of wasps in and around your home, then this may be a sign of nesting. Watch for patterns, to determine whether they are returning to a specific part of your property, including your garden and any outbuildings.
- Noise – loud buzzing is a signal that wasps are nesting. If a nest is not visible, then it may be hidden within the property.
- Nests are normally grey or brown and of a similar size to a rugby ball, with the entry point usually on the bottom of the nest.
- To aid in the prevention of nesting, consider the following measures.
- Check your property carefully and seal and crevices or cracks where wasps might enter the property.
- Empty composts heaps and bins and seal any rubbish bin left outside the property.
- Consider using insect screens to prevent wasps from entering your property, particularly when doors and windows are left open during the warmer months.
- Use wasp/inspect traps available from good DIY retailers.
- Never attempt to remove, or disturb, a nest. Always employ a professional pest control expert to carry out this potentially hazardous job.
If you require any further guidance, then please speak to your Account Manager.