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“Lemonade” wasps attack timber cladding


A stop-start spring and a rainy July resulted in us experiencing a rather unusual summer in terms of wasps. There are a lot fewer of them, which has delighted many people. It’s certainly good news for those who have timber cladding because wasps can be very destructive. But how can wasps damage your cladding? And what can you do to remedy this?

How can wasps damage my timber cladding?

When wasps are building their nests, timber construction professionals are sometimes confronted with a troublesome peripheral phenomenon: wasps tucking into cladding. The most widespread wasp in Europe is the Common Wasp, also known as the Lemonade Wasp because of its penchant for sugary drinks. In springtime, these wasps build nests using wood fibres that they chew off trees and wooden buildings in gardens. Combined with the wasp’s saliva, these fibres form a pulp that is then used as a construction material.

Timber cladding exposed to the elements turns grey naturally over time. Its slightly altered fibres constitute a suitable base for these paper nests. By chewing into the outer layer, the wasps expose the unaltered inner fibres. This leads to a difference in colour with the greyed wood. So it creates “spots” on the timber cladding. 

Timber cladding attacked by wasps

How can these traces of wasp activity be removed?

Most of the time, these “spots” repair themselves pretty rapidly. The traces of erosion are superficial and soon begin to grey again. Your timber cladding or wooden fence has been attacked by wasps and you want to speed up its recovery? You can treat the wood with Woca Exterior Wood Cleaner.

This is the only thing you can do. The presence of wasps is a sign there is a nest very near you. If there is a wasp nest in your garden and it is a serious danger, the best thing to do is to find out what professional options are available in your area. Do not be tempted to play the hero; you wouldn’t want hundreds of angry wasps chasing your tail! You should also be aware that there are plenty of other species of indigenous wasps and bees that do not build paper nests. If you have any doubts about what species you are dealing with, contact a biologist or an insect expert.