Red Velvet Ant/Wasp Invasion

Does anyone know of a good way to get rid of Red Velvet Wasps?

I usually see one or two in our yard this time of year, but this year they are worse. From what I have heard and read they have a really bad sting (they are called cow killers because of the painful sting) and I’m afraid one of the kids will get stung or our dog.

If you try to step on them, forget it, it don’t kill them. Yesterday there was a HUGE female on our rock path, I took a big rock and tried to squish it and it just kept on walking like nothing happened.

Does someone have a secret weapon for these things?

I found this on the internet.

[B]Velvet ants[/B]
Velvet ants are not really ants; they belong to the wasp family [I]Mutillidae[/I]. They are commonly referred to as velvet ants because the females are wingless, look and behave like ants, and are covered with a velvety “fur” composed of red and black hairs. The males look and act more like wasps.

The red velvet ant is actually a wasp, and the female can deliver a powerful sting.

In addition to being misnamed, velvet ants differ from ants in other ways. Females inflict painful stings, which should be cleaned and sterilized. If a sting causes a rash or breathing difficulty, the victim should see a doctor promptly.
It is almost impossible to eliminate these insects. Teach children to avoid them, and wear shoes when in an infested area. Fortunately, velvet ants usually travel alone.
Carpenter ants


Velvet ants prefer pastures and fields with sandy soil where their prey are most likely to be found. There is no effective control measure for them, and because velvet ants are uncommon and don’t cause any damage, no chemical control is recommended.

Thanks Sherl!

It figures that I would have something in my yard that is next to impossible to get rid of. :roll:

Normally I just leave them alone, but they are bad this year. I guess it’s because it has been dry and hot.:shrug:

Maybe if you can get rid of what they like to eat, they will leave also.

I think they mostly eat larva, although there was a mention of nectar. :shrug: From what I have read they stay underground most of the time and come out about this time of year. They are pretty to look at, but I don’t want to get stung by one.:teehee:

We have those around here, too-also known as “cow-killers” :oo: EEK! We just try to squish em, because we usually only see one at a time-but they are very difficult to squish!! Tough little boogers! (eew, sorry!!) Some do fly. Last year we had 3-4 of them flying around and DH made the kids go inside to be sure they didn’t get stung. We managed to kill them but it was not easy catching them.

My DH grew up in the country and had seen them before-but until we moved to the TX hill country last summer I had never seen one. They are kinda pretty, but when I heard they are also known as cow-killers, I decided I would stay FAR away!!!

Sorry I’m not more help-just wear shoes!