Watch These Wasp Fighters Save an Elderly Client From 10,000 Yellow Jackets That Invaded Their Home

German yellowjacket, European wasp or German wasp (lat. Vespula germanica), on a wooden board
© tasnenad/

Written by Sharon Parry

Updated: November 20, 2023

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When you watch a video from a channel called ‘Hornet King’ you have a pretty good idea of what you’re going to see. These German yellow jackets have set up home in a bathroom ceiling. We see the wasp expert carefully remove the nest by vacuuming up as many yellow jackets as he can to make the removal safer.

There are around 8,000 insects around this nest. The workers flood out to defend their colony but many are sucked up by the vacuum. Eventually, the expert can reach in and remove the actual nest. He takes it home to feed it to his pet birds.

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What Exactly Are Yellow Jackets?

Yellow jacket is a collective term for a type of wasp. It includes several species. In this clip the particular species setting up home in the house is the German yellow jacket and their scientific name is Vespula germanica. This is an invasive species in the US. It was first recorded in the northeastern US during the 1970s. However, it was then recorded in the Pacific Northwest in the 1980s and spread down the coast. It reached Southern California in the 1990s.

What Problems Do German Yellow Jackets Cause?

Yellowjacket nest

Yellowjackets will aggressively defend their nest.

©Daniel Loya/

Unfortunately, German yellow jackets like to nest in attics and the walls of buildings. This brings them very close to the people living in those buildings and makes them a public health threat. The queens spend the winter by themselves in a protected place and start a new colony in the spring. They do this by climbing into structural cavities through small cracks.

In this clip, you can see the classic papier-mâché type nest that they constructed. By the middle of the summer, there are more than 4,000 insects around the nest which can reach two feet in diameter. It is also thought that these wasps may present a threat to native US animals.

Do Yellow Jacket Stings Hurt?

Yes, yellow jacket stings can be very unpleasant. They can cause pain and localized swelling in most people, but some people are allergic to them. These guys inject venom into the skin using their stinger. The stinger is not usually left in the skin so they can sting multiple times. People who suffer a serious allergic reaction can feel a tightness in their throat or chest, wheezing, and trouble breathing. Immediate medical attention is needed if you suffer this sort of reaction.

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About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

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