Sunny days arrive, the thermostat rises slowly but surely and the trees are budding. The only downside, spring also rhymes with the return of certain pests, such as Asian wasps and hornets. The situation can quickly become dangerous, especially if vulnerable people live in your home. It is therefore sometimes better to destroy their nest to avoid any risk of bites and allergic reactions. 

Bees, bumblebees, wasps, and Asian hornets – what are the differences?

All these insects belong to the Hymenoptera family.

These pollinators contribute to biodiversity and the balance of nature. However, not all have the same behavior and do not represent the same danger for humans. Some tips to differentiate them and act in an appropriate way:

1. The bees

They feed only on the nectar of flowers. There is therefore no risk of seeing them turn around you during a meal on the terrace. The bee is only aggressive if you get too close to its nest. When a hive is overcrowded, the queen may decide to leave it.

A new group then forms, it’s called a swarm. It is a priori without danger, except when it decides to install its quarters in your flue or your shed. In this case, do not waste time and quickly contact a beekeeper who will try to capture the swarm to populate his hives.

2. Bumblebees

They are the hairiest and stockiest of the group. Bumblebees are important pollinators that go from flower to flower and are completely indifferent to your presence.

Non-aggressive, they only sting when they risk being run over or when their nest is disturbed.

3. The wasps

Wasps differ from others by their bright yellow color and very marked black lines. They can nest in roofs as well as in the ground. 

That’s why it’s not impossible to get bitten while walking barefoot in the grass. They are attracted to sugar and protein to feed their larvae.

This is why in the summer they may invite themselves to your table if you serve a barbecue or a fruit salad. Wasps are aggressive and can sting humans who disturb them. 

Unlike bees, which sting once, wasps can sting multiple times.

4. Hornets

They can be European or Asian. They are larger than the wasp and very noisy. The European is relatively harmless to humans but can cause colossal damage in fruit tree orchards.

The Asian him is very aggressive, it is what makes it much more dangerous for the man. It is found particularly in the South of France, but there is a rapid invasion of the rest of France.

Who can destroy the wasp or hornet nest?

Due to the aggressiveness of wasps and hornets, and in particular the Asian one, it is recommended to destroy a nest if you spot one on your property.

However, do not intervene alone! The Asian hornet’s stinger measures 6mm and a beekeeper’s outfit is not enough to protect against it.

Although kits with traps and insecticides are sold in supermarkets, the risks of destroying the wasp or hornet nest yourself are great.

Already, the location of the nest can be difficult to access and an attack by these pests is not to be neglected. For this kind of operation, it is better to call on a specialist.

Depending on your region of residence and the extent of the damage, you have several choices:

  • The Departmental Fire and Rescue Service (SDIS). Previously it was not uncommon for firefighters to intervene in this type of situation. This is less the case today, except in an emergency. Their intervention will cost you around 90 euros;
  • If the firefighters withdraw, private disinsection companies can take over. For a price of 70 to 150 euros, they ensure the total destruction of the nest and its inhabitants, using special products;
  • Depending on the region in which you live, the town hall or the county council may intervene. This is particularly the case in the South West. Indeed, faced with the proliferation of the Asian hornet, specific systems have been put in place. As part of nest destruction by an approved expert, the municipality can cover up to 80% of the bill.

The Compensation Home Insurance Offers

Multi-risk home insurance is intended to cover damage that could affect real estate, and possibly movable property, that you have declared in your contract. The minimum guarantees of this insurance are the guarantees

Water damage fire, storm, and natural disasters. 

Added to this is civil liability. Pests, such as fleas, bugs, or wasps, attacking the occupants or their environment are not taken into account by the MRH contract.

As a result, the breakage of tiles, the damage to the frame, or any other part of the accommodation damaged with the aim of destroying a wasp’s nest are not covered. Similarly, disinsection is generally not covered.

Some insurers offer this optional coverage. Compare the offers, get closer to your adviser to find out more and carefully read the general conditions of your contract.

Who pays the bill?


You are the owner

Are you the owner occupant of your home? It is then up to you to pay the bill yourself.

You are a tenant

Article 18 of the law of December 23, 1986, stipulates that the cost of the products is the responsibility of the tenant, while that of labor is the responsibility of the owner. This general rule, however, varies depending on when the pests were installed.

Two scenarios arise here:

  • On signing the lease, the landlord is required to provide the tenant with decent accommodation without “manifest risks that could affect physical safety or health, free from any infestation of harmful and parasitic species ”. The presence of a wasp or hornet nest is a health threat. If the insects have settled before the arrival of the tenants, it is thus up to the owner to pay the full amount of the disinsectization.
  • The tenant has the obligation to ensure the proper maintenance of the accommodation. If the animals have colonized the dwelling during the lease, the costs are shared according to the provisions of the law.

Are you considering an intervention by the fire brigade or a company specializing in pest control? Remember to notify your landlord beforehand. If you initiate action without his consent, he can legitimately refuse to pay the labor part of the invoice. It would thus remain entirely at your expense.


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