Stinging Wasps and Bees

Published 2008

Despite their many benefits, stinging insects may sometimes pose a hazard and it may become necessary to control them. Insect stings probably injure more people each year than all other venomous animals combined.

Insect stings are normally characterized by moderate to severe pain, localized reddening and swelling, and occasionally even mild headache and fever. Treatment involves disinfecting the wounded area with soap and water. Meat tenderizer, which contains an enzyme that breaks down the venom, and/or a baking soda paste also may be applied to the sting site to help relieve pain. Several over-the-counter remedies also are available.

In allergic individuals, insect stings can cause a life-threatening systemic reaction which can rapidly lead to anaphylactic shock. Symptoms may include swelling,a choking sensation, difficult breathing and blueness in the lips and extremities. This publication covers identification, biology and control of wasps and bees, including cicada killers, carpenter bees, digger wasps, mud daubers, yellow jackets, paper or umbrella wasps, honey bees, and bumble bees.

Publication Details


Fred P. Baxendale

Shripat T. Kamble

Marion D. Ellis



Insects & Pests

Publication Date February 04, 2002
Last Revision Date November 26, 2008
Language English


Series NebGuide