Learn all about dirt daubers sting, pictures, nest and dirt dauber vs. wasp. Dirt dauber (sometimes called “mud dauber,” “dirt digger,” “dirt dobber,” “dirt diver”, or “mud wasp”) is a name commonly applied to a number of wasps from either the family Sphecidae or Crabronidae that build their nests from mud. Dirt Daubers are more of an annoyance than a threat. They build nests up high in the eaves of our homes and buildings and can get in the way of our daily activities.
With more than 30,000 identified species, wasps make up a large contingent of the flying insect population. Though humans are most familiar with the types that sting, many kinds are harmless to people. Fully grown, a wasp can reach 1.5 inches in length and is identifiable by body type as well as by varied and distinctive coloration. Mud daubers fall into the solitary hunting wasp category, while creatures like yellow jackets and hornets are social varieties.
The whole nest building process can take from 3 hours to 2 to 3 days. It usually ends when the wasp runs out of spiders or energy. During this nest building process, the female does all the work. The male remains in the nest, guarding it to make sure that no parasites get into the nest cells before they are sealed. The muddy nests of mud daubers are an occasional nuisance to some homeowners, but the wasps themselves are not aggressive or dangerous. However, they will sting if handled. A trowel and a hose can be used to remove old nests.
Mud daubers place paralyzed spiders in the nest cells as provisions for their young. Stinging the spider subdues the spider and also helps preserve it, so when the wasp larvae hatch, they have fresh meat. Black-and-yellow mud daubers prefer crab spiders and other small, colorful species. Organ pipe mud daubers also provide spiders for their young. Blue mud daubers use large numbers of black widow spiders.
One of the most common ways to take care of dirt daubers is to simply remove the nest. Unfortunately, this can be more difficult than it sounds because most dirt dauber nests are built in locations that are harder for people to reach. In addition, there is always the possibility that you might be stung by a dirt dauber in the process.
What is Dirt dauber
Dirt daubers are typically about ½-1” in size and are usually black with a skinny stalk that connects the thorax to the abdomen. They have an iridescent sheen to their bodies and their wings could be transparent or dark brown to black. Some are yellow and black. Their nests are constructed of mud, giving them their name. They are tube-shaped and constructed side by side like columns.
Dirt dauber Sting Pain & Treatment
Dirt dauber sting treatment that is required depends on the severity of the reaction or symptoms.
- For less severe local reactions, a mild pain killer such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen can be used to make the victim more comfortable. Topical anesthetic creams will also help relieve the pain. Antihistamines are also very useful for a wasp sting because they help control the swelling, itch, and skin redness. Antihistamines and pain killers can be taken for several days until the symptoms decrease in intensity. Hyrocortisone creams or calamine lotion can also help reduce swelling and itch.
- Other treatments involve using cold compresses and ice packs (15 minutes on and 15 minutes off) to reduce swelling, ease the pain, and slow the spread of venom. A paste of baking soda can also be used to relieve some of the wasp sting symptoms.
Dirt dauber Pictures
Dirt dauber Nest
Female dirt daubers construct nests of mud. Many short mud tubes, usually about 1″ long, are constructed side by side. They usually build their nests in a sheltered site, such as under eaves, porch ceilings, in garages and sheds left open, in barns and attics, etc. Nests typically exhibit round holes in them as the wasps emerge. This means the nest is probably old and inactive after springtime.
Dirt dauber vs Wasp
Dirt dauber and Wasps are both members of the Apocrita sub-order of insects and are closely related in many ways. Both insects are parasitic and are important pest control agents throughout their range. There are, however, differences between wasps and mud daubers regarding their appearance, behavior and reproduction that makes it easy to differentiate between the two insects. Though mud daubers are a type of wasp, many characteristics set them apart from the “typical” wasp. Both are of the Hymenoptera order. The differences between the creatures start there and range from the way that they look to what and how they feed. Dirt daubers are solitary insects while many species of wasp are social and live in large hives. One of the primary differences between wasps and mud daubers is their size and shape. Dirt daubers tend to be larger but more slender than wasps.