What Are Cicada Killers?

August 15, 2019

In the animal kingdom, any creature with the word “killer” in its name is usually aggressive or dangerous by nature. Many of us have heard about animals such as killer whales, which are large predators in many of the oceans around the world, or killer bees which are a hybrid species of honey bee created in Brazil that ended up being more threatening than their tamer cousins; naturally, when people find cicada killers on their property, they might link the word “killer” to the nature of being aggressive – but are these insects really dangerous?

a cicada killer on a vibrant green leaf

Are cicada killers dangerous?

The short answer is, no, cicada killers are not dangerous, not to humans, anyway. However, they can be a nuisance to have on your property. While some species of wasps are after your open soda cans and picnic meats, cicada killers are only looking for the insect they are named after, cicadas. Unlike yellow jackets and hornets, they are solitary wasps that are generally very docile and may only sting when they feel threatened. Male cicada killers are more aggressive than females, but the males of this species do not have stingers. These insects can appear threatening due to their large size and loud buzz, though they typically avoid interacting with humans. Most people describe their sting as being about as painful as a bee sting, though individuals with an allergy to wasps may have a stronger reaction to the venom. Cicada killers are beneficial to the environment since they feed on plant-damaging cicadas, however, these wasps can become a problem if they build their nests around an entrance to your home or property.

How To Identify A Cicada Killer

Cicada killers are on the larger side of the spectrum when it comes to wasps, with adult cicada killers being up to 2 or 3 inches in length. Typically, female cicada killers are larger than males, but also tend to be the more mellow of the two. These wasps are black in color with few yellow markings, and their legs are generally bright orange. Cicada killers have one pair of transparent wings, which are tinted slightly brown.

Can you get rid of cicada killers?

The only reason cicada killers venture onto a property is to chase down and feed on cicadas. Unfortunately, this makes cicada killers incredibly difficult, or virtually impossible, to prevent. The only beneficial cicada killer prevention tip we can give is to contact a pest control provider such as Augustine Exterminators. We deal with many types of pests all year long, and cicada killers are just one of them. The pest technicians from Augustine Exterminators have what it takes to keep your property protected. Reach out today to learn more about how our pest control plans can benefit your home!

Tags: cicada killers | stinging insect identification | stinging insect prevention |

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