Let’s say you’re tired of staying inside and go to your backyard to do some grilling. Maybe you invite a few friends or neighbors over, and everyone is maintaining safe social distances. You’ve got your meat and veggies sizzling, a few beers or other tasty beverage opened, and people seem to be having a good time.

Suddenly, you hear a scream. You look up and see several guests madly swatting away at yellowjackets that landed on their soda cans. The commotion aggravates the wasps and a guest is stung. Hopefully, they’re not allergic! Guests and family members run screaming, and your backyard barbecue has turned into a feast—but not for you or your guests.

The good news is that this nightmare scenario is avoidable. By taking a few essential steps, you can avoid your backyard barbecue from becoming a scene from a B horror movie.

Cover All Food

During the summer, yellowjacket wasps love the sweet stuff. Any open containers of liquids and food—soda, juice, ice cream, fruit, etc.—are all things that wasps will find interesting (not to mention flies as well). To keep yourself protected, it’s a good idea to keep your food safe—this could be as simple as draping some plastic wrap over dishes. You might also want to invest in something like these reusable bowl covers. For drinks, it’s also a good idea to pour them into containers with lids. Sure, drinking wine out of a travel mug isn’t the sexiest, but it sure beats getting stung. Wiping down surfaces with a dilute solution of household ammonia will help temporarily repel them.

Cover Your Trashcans

Even if your trashcans aren’t anywhere near where you’re grilling or eating, it’s a good idea to keep them covered. Table scraps, empty soda cans, etc., can all attract wasps. And if they find your trash can, they likely will follow the scent of you other, fresh food (even if it’s covered). To be on the safe side, make sure your trashcans stay covered nice and tight at all times.

Blow Them Away

Yellowjackets (and their stripped, stinging cousins) aren’t the only ones to be attracted to backyard barbecues. Mosquitos also love it when people spend time outside. It’s like a potential feast for them!

Now, you might’ve heard that citronella candles are sufficient for creating a sort of barrier that mosquitos won’t cross. However, it turns out that they’re not that effective, blocking only about half of all mosquito bites. There are several sprays and oils that you can use (on yourself or your yard), but one thing that works effectively is a fan.

It might be a surprise to some to learn that mosquitos aren’t strong flyers. What else would you expect from their frail body and wings? Air from a fan can be strong enough to keep them away, as they won’t be able to fight against the drafts it creates.

EcoCare Can Help

Of course, if you have a stinging pest infestation, it’s probably time to call the pest control professionals. Get in touch with us, and we’ll gladly help you manage pest infestations in your yard or home.