If you have an allergic reaction to stings, call a pro. Never mess with them. Anaphylatic Shock can be deadly in a short amount of time
Generally, leave'm alone, stay away during bad weather and give'm a little more room when it starts to turn fall. The really do eat a tremendous amount of insects. Baldfaced Hornets
be thay. Yellow Jacket Hornets
are more of a PIA in September 'cause they get all excited about sweets and meats this time of year - their last big picnic is right around the corner. They'll be gone after a few frosts. Most of the time the winter weather beats them up pretty bad. The only critter that makes it through the winter is a few queens that hatch out to start new colonies next spring. That is if the nest make it through in tact. If if falls to the ground, something generally will rip it apart to get to those few protein rich pupa that are waiting for spring.
I've had a few hives start on the garage door header. Got stung once when I closed the door to the old shop when a thunder storm was near - hurt like ... but not too bad. Other than that, they'd just look at me as I opend and closed the overhead door - they get use to patterns that aren't threats. They'd just fly around me. I've had hives in bushes that I mowed by all summer long and never even got chased. This isn't to say William's storys aren't on the mark - these hives were use to me but I'd never want to surprize one - never. Hornet/wasp stingers
aren't barbed so when they sting, they shoot a little venom into you. Again and again if you don't stop them. Painful. They run low after a few stings but keep on trying like the clip is still loaded. Honeybee stingers are barbed
and they leave the venom sack behind hooked to the sting
and the venom sack mussels pump a little at a time until either you scrape it out
, scraping from under the sack to lift the sting/sack out or it pumps dry. Do it soon after you see the sting/sack but never pinch it - you just inject it. Honeybees die soon after they depart without their sting but Hornets/Wasps live to recharge and sting another day.
Again, it's a whole different story if you have an allergy to stings - it's a very serious
event if you're allergic.
former sideline beekeeper.