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Sitting in my backyard the other day a curious yellowjacket flew onto my hand. Two things come to mind: (1) That fall is just around the corner. (2) That outdoor dining will become challenging.

Remember, yellowjackets this time of the year can appear to be quite aggressive. However, they are just searching for food to store up for the soon to be upon us, Winter!!

This presents many challenges when trying to enjoy the outdoor barbecue season which is still very much in play.

I understand that after 30 years of pest management experience that “spraying” will not do anything to control yellow jackets (unless of course there is a nest in your backyard) in your backyard or your outdoor dining area wherever that may be.

Here are some helpful do it yourself tips that may make your outdoor dining experience more enjoyable during the late summer and fall season. Also remember, that as your barbecue continues into the evening there are other challenges involved with insects that I’d also like to share with you.


Outdoor eating equals conflicts with flies and yellow jackets.

Lights + people’s cell phones will attract bugs of all kinds in a big way at night.


Cool LED lights (basic incandescent ones) are less attractive to night-flying insects. Also, the more traditional yellow bug lights can be very helpful, although they’re not as attractive. Also, remember to shut off the lights inside your house to minimize night-flying insects from flying into your backyard.

Trash away from the dining area.

Use rotating fans (mounted or stand up). Not only does this cool the area, but more importantly, it also as makes it difficult for insects to battle.

New citronella oil has cedar mixed in and works well in tiki torches around placed around the outside sitting area. You can even buy decorative lanterns for tables. Cool ambiance and bugs hate smoke.

There are also a variety of trapping devices on the market that can be very helpful in trapping flies and yellowjackets. Some of the better ones are “pre-baited“ so there’s nothing to add and I have found some of them to be very good at attracting flies.

Trapping yellow jackets can be a little bit tricky because they’re more finicky when it comes to food choices. Experimenting with various types of baits and traps (Victor makes a good one) will increase your chances for success. Remember to change the baits periodically because they can begin to smell!

I hope that you find this information useful. Please feel free to visit our website, give us a call, or send us an email.