Q. We recently built a custom home in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan; construction began in the fall. During the warming months of spring, when the homeowners moved in, they began noticing perfect 1/4-inch-diameter holes in the drywall, as if someone had bored a hole with a drill bit. We discovered that the holes were being created from within the wall cavity by an insect chewing through the drywall. It was identified by the local extension service as a wood wasp. We've found seven wasps in the 5,400-square-foot home, and all seven have emerged from the main floor's exterior walls. The information I've found about life span, methods of control, degree of damage, and the like is somewhat contradictory. Even local pest-control experts disagree about what should be done about the wasps. Some recommend a whole-house fogging, while others advise letting them run their course. What's the best course of action?
A. Terry Brennen of Camroden Associates in Westmoreland, N.Y., a consultant who specializes in mold and pest issues, responds: Wood wasps — also known as horntails — aren't actually wasps at all, but received their name because of their resemblance to their stinging relatives in the Hymenoptera family.
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