European Wasp Control

waspThis information was provided by Laurie Nicoll to Andrew Smith. Laurie lives in central Victoria and has spoken to the local ABC, as well as local newspapers and Landcare about his wasp control process. He has developed a method to catch the queen before she makes a nest. His idea is cheap, environmentally friendly, recyclable and safe, easy to make, and most households will have the necessary ingredients for the bait! Finally Laurie does not intend to gain financially from this idea. It is provided FREE of charge.

This method needs to be started in October, which is the optimum time for success. The aim is to catch the QUEEN wasp before she makes a nest, using a simple, environmentally friendly method. The queen comes out of hibernation in spring with two things on her mind: (a) food for herself and: (b) a place to make a nest until there are workers to take over nest building, after which she only reproduces.


  • Use a 1.25 litre soft drink bottle with 3 holes approximately 10 mm in diameter and about 100 – 150 mm from the bottom of the bottle.
  • Make up a solution of 4-5 tablespoons of honey in hot water with a little pure vanilla essence  (which has alcohol in it).* This will do 4-5 traps.
  • Leave this to ferment in the sun.The bait will take a couple of days to activate.
  • Divide the bait between traps, top up with water to just below holes, replace cap and hang in a sunny spot in the garden – Fruit trees with curly leaf is a good place.
  • Shake every few days to let bait dribble out.
  • Keep in place until January.
  • Strain out when full, reuse and top up bait with water.
  • The traps need a little tending until January, meaning once full you need to remove the catch (wasps), reusing and topping up the bait, then replace the cap.

* Laurie believes there are many possibilities for bait but he has found honey works best, and once the bait ferments, bees are not attracted, though there may be some flies caught. If the bait is made up a few weeks before distributing to the traps, it will ferment. Laurie uses honey, pure vanilla essence and water.