The Autumn War – Understanding the Surge in Wasp Activity and Aggression

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The Autumn War

The Autumn War: Understanding the Surge in Wasp Activity and Aggression

As the days grow shorter and the temperatures drop, something sinister is happening in the world of wasps. In recent years, there has been a surge in their activity and aggression during autumn months – leaving many people wondering why these tiny creatures are suddenly so angry.

If you’ve found yourself dodging these winged insects more often than usual, fear not!

We’ve done our research to help you understand what’s causing this Autumn War and how you can protect yourself from getting stung.

Wasp identification

Wasps and Their Aggression

The Autumn War

As the weather cools and winter approaches, wasp activity begins to die down—that is, until late autumn. For a few weeks leading up to winter, wasps become increasingly aggressive as they compete for food sources.

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What causes this surge in wasp activity and aggression?

The Autumn War As the weather cools, the wasps’ food sources begin to disappear. The insects they typically eat—such as flies and other small insects—are less active in the cold weather. This forces the wasps to search for alternative sources of food, which brings them into contact with humans more often.

As the days get shorter, wasps begin to prepare for winter by stockpiling food. They do this by feeding on sugary substances like fruits and honey. This helps them build up their energy reserves so they can survive the long winter months when food is scarce.

Autumn is breeding season for many species of wasps. The males of most species die off after mating, leaving the females to fend for themselves. This makes the females particularly aggressive as they compete for resources.

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What Causes the Increase in Wasp Activity in Autumn?

The Autumn War As the weather cools and autumn sets in, many people find themselves dealing with increased wasp activity. While wasps are more active in the warmer months, they can become aggressive as the weather cools and their food sources dwindle. There are a few reasons for this increase in wasp activity and aggression:

  • The queen wasps that survive the winter will begin to lay eggs in the spring, resulting in a larger population of wasps by autumn.
  • As temperatures cool, wasps’ metabolism slows down and they become less efficient at digesting food. This can lead to them being hangry, which can make them more aggressive.
  • Wasps are attracted to sweet smells, so if you’re outdoors enjoying fall activities like apple picking or making pumpkin pies, you’re more likely to attract them.
  • Wasps are also attracted to lights, so if you’re sitting outside on a chilly evening enjoying the last of the warm weather, they may be drawn to your porch light or campfire.

If you’re dealing with increased wasp activity this autumn, there are a few things you can do to deter them:

  • Keep food covered when outdoors, especially sugary drinks, or anything with a strong smell.
  • Be mindful of where you sit when outdoors – avoid areas near trash cans or other potential nests.
  • Turn off external lights during the evening.
  • Trim back any overgrown vegetation. Wasps like to build their nests in hidden, dark places. If you have any bushes or trees that are touching your home, trim them back.

If you do find yourself with a wasp nest on your property, don’t try to remove the nest yourself. This is very dangerous and should only be done by a professional that have the proper equipment and knowledge to safely remove the nest without putting anyone at risk.

The autumn war is a phenomenon that has puzzled scientists and nature enthusiasts for many years. Although we still don’t understand the full details of why wasps become more aggressive during this time, we have made great strides in understanding the underlying causes. By properly identifying and avoiding potential triggers, such as loud noises or bright colours, people can help reduce their risk of becoming a victim of wasp aggression.


Do you have an issue with wasps around your property?

Further Reading

I am not a wanna Bee, I am a wasp

How and why wasp nests are constructed

Harems of female lovers

What pests should I look out for in winter

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