Wasps could be a problem this year

A European wasp.
A European wasp.
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A bumper year for wasps is expected after shock figures reveal callouts to wasp problems more than doubled in two years.

Environmental health officers from Lancaster City Council went to 435 callouts for wasps between 2013-2014, compared with 204 between 2012 and 2013.

Now pest experts are predicting that problems with wasps could increase this year.

Figures produced by the British Pest Control Association indicate problems with wasps shot up by around 87% in the UK last year compared to an unusually quiet 2013.

Rob Simpson, leader of independent pest controllers register BASIS PROMPT said: “The annual wasp population in the UK is very much dependent on weather conditions. The number of nests seemed to be down significantly in 2013, but there was a substantial increase last year when numbers returned to something like normal.

“Colder winters often mean there are more wasps about the following summer as mated queens spend the period deep in hibernation.

“If it’s milder in December and January, wasps become restless and use up their food reserves. They then have nothing left to forage on, so they die.

“This year, temperatures were relatively cold during the winter and have so far been warm in spring, so we’re expecting our members to receive a deluge of calls..With warm weather expected and nests growing in size as the season progresses, we expect the number of wasp-related enquiries to rise substantially.”

He said homeowners shouldn’t be tempted to tackle issues themselves.