Cicada Killers

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What Are Cicada Killers?

Cicada killers are large wasps that are docile in nature and typically make their grand entrance sometime in the summer months. Cicada killers fulfill their name during the summer season and hunt down cicadas that become food for their grub-like larvae.

a cicada killer wasp outside a home in suffolk county
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Things You Should Know:

Cicada killers are large, docile wasps who are referred to as gentle giants.

Cicada killers prey on cicadas in order to feed their larvae.

Ground nests made by these pests can attract foraging skunks.

Why Are They Around My House?

Cicada killers are attracted to turf with specific features. They prefer well-drained, open patches of soil that are in full sunlight. Their nesting grounds are usually near trees that provide lodging for cicadas. Your home may be providing the ideal grounds for cicada killers, and this could be the reason you have seen a sudden influx. Some property owners may have noticed excavated soil or dirt along their patio edges, sidewalks, or even in their flowerbeds and gardens; this is a good indicator that cicada killers are active on your grounds. The female cicada killer’s purpose in removing soil or dirt is to create an underground burrow where she can raise her young. This process displaces a substantial amount of soil as she digs individual tunnels that can range from 30 to 70 inches long and have the potential to run 12 to 15 inches below the surface.

Are Cicada Killers Dangerous?

Some refer to the cicada killer as the gentle giant. Although they appear large and intimidating, they are non-aggressive creatures. Unlike other stinging insects found in our area such as the honey bee and the hornet, they do not have the instinct to guard their nest, which means generally you can walk through an active area and remain unnoticed. If a male cicada killer spots you, they may try to check you out, but they are harmless and do not have a stinger. The most a male cicada killer can do is increase its buzzing sound and change colors to warn and discourage its prey. Even if you stumble upon a female cicada killer, she is unlikely to sting unless she feels threatened.

With their digging nature, cicada killers have the capability to cause even brick patios with sand bases to become destabilized, which can make them a problem. Additionally, a cicada killer’s nesting grounds can attract unwanted wildlife such as skunks, which dig up their tunnels to feed, resulting in more disturbance to your property and the potential for an encounter with a wild animal. 

What Does It Take To Get Rid Of Cicada Killers?

Cicada killers can be tough to eradicate without the help and expertise of an exterminator. However, there are a few measures that can be taken to rid your property of these wasps. These endeavors can include the following:

  • Keep your lawn and any areas they would choose to burrow in well-watered to discourage them from continuing progress there.

  • Cicada killers are poor fliers and are easily eliminated with the swing of a racket or a shoe step.

  • If you have spotted the opening to their tunnels, try pouring boiling water down the burrows at night when the females have returned to their eggs. Thus, getting rid of the eggs and the adult wasps.

Although these measures are helpful, they are not a guarantee. If you have seen cicada killers around your home, don’t hesitate; contact the NY pest control specialists at Parkway today! Offering pest control in Long Island, Westchester County, and throughout New York and Fairfield County, CT, Parkway is ready to help you get rid of insects and rodents quickly and efficiently.

Helpful Articles About Cicada Killers

Is It Dangerous To Have Stinging Insects On My Nassau County Property?

Are The Wasps & Hornets Near My New York Home Dangerous?

Why Stinging Insect Infestations Are Better Left To The Professionals


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How Soon Can You Get Here?

Here at Parkway, we understand pest infestations can produce urgent situations, which is why we offer emergency and same day services. In most cases we can be there the very next day.

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Is The Treatment Safe?

At Parkway Pest Services we pride ourselves on being Green Shield Certified and we use effective Integrated Pest Management techniques, which is a much safer option for you, your family, and the environment. Through our IPM practices, you will see less use of chemicals unless absolutely necessary. We focus on baiting and the exclusion of pests as our primary solutions for controlling your problem.

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How Can I Prevent A Future Infestation?

Preventing cicada killers from invading your property is nearly impossible. With new hatchlings every year and new females in search of the perfect breeding ground, the task of keeping them away from your home can become stressful. However, you can relieve your worries with a protection plan from Parkway Pest Services. For more information on how our pest control experts can help protect your home from cicada killers, call our office at (888) 243-2672 to speak with a friendly representative or simply click here to complete our online form.


PestGuard Protection

Designed to control the basic needs of pest control, this plan effectively protects your home from occasional invaders that are frequently encountered as well as most wood destroying insects. In addition to controlling carpenter ants, cockroaches and other insects and rodents, this home pest control plan includes treatment of yellow jackets within two feet of the dwelling. With our friendly and knowledgeable exterminators on the job, you can say goodbye to ants in the kitchen, mice in the attic and the other pests scattered throughout the house.

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