BERKELEY (KCBS)— The record drought could be making this year’s yellow jacket nesting season even worse than normal with recent reports of a string of attacks in an East Bay park.
The attacks happened last week near Northeast Berkeley Park’s playground when several adults and dogs were stung, some of them several times.
Megan Caldwell with San Mateo County Mosquito and Vector Control said it’s not surprising.
“Ground nesting yellow jackets and yellow jackets in general will aggressively defend their nest,” said Caldwell.
She said the drought means those nests were not washed away during the rainy season as usual, making the issue worse throughout the Bay Area.
“Be cautious while picnicking, look at your food or drink before you put it in your mouth. Make sure there’s not a yellow jacket helping itself to your meal,” Caldwell said.
Ground nests can be just about anywhere, including yards, and have about a quarter-size hole with a steady stream of yellow jackets coming in and out throughout the day.
Her advice is to leave the wasps alone if you see them and contact a pest control company to have them removed or to contact your local vector control district.