European wasps (EW’S) are native as the name suggests to Europe and Northern Africa.
They were first found in Australia in 1956 and have been slowly gaining a
foothold ever since.
EW’s are a very aggressive wasp and (unlike bees) can sting multiple times and
have a pheromone that they release when defensive to call in backup. When
disturbed it has been documented on many occasions that hundreds of stings can
occur in a very short period of time.
Whilst no deaths have been attributed to EW’s in Australia yet, our climate
allows the wasps to survive year round rather than in the cycle they follow in
Europe which sees most colonies completely collapse each year. So EW’s
colonies are much larger here than in Europe allowing the wasps to be much
more of a threat to humans and animals.
A young girl stumbled into a wasp nest in Braidwood in 2019, was stung over
300 times and was lucky to survive, see this link
An entire town was held to ransom last year by European Wasps which was the last thing
they needed after being ravaged by bushfires and then flood, most people would
recall the name Mallacoota, read about it here
There are large populations of European Wasps in various areas around NSW including The
Southern Highlands, Lithgow and Orange. When I first came to Sydney
around 30 years ago European Wasps were readily found throughout the city and Eastern
Suburbs and all the way to the Highlands and beyond. For some inexplicable
reason around 15 years ago they just vanished from Sydney and the Wollondilly.
Disconcertingly, European Wasps are being reported once more in Sydney Wollondilly and the Southern Highlands.
Our worry at Pestgo is that European Wasps may gain a foothold in the Wollondilly and
hence we ask for members of the public to please keep an eye out for them.
The only way to ensure that these pests do not overrun us is through education of the
public and we will be lobbying council to start some form of that.
If you believe that you have found European wasps please contact us and we will help you with identification and elimination.