A note of thanks

The hectic Fall trade show season is over for the RESCUE! team, so now we're back to blogging. Our Customer Service Department shared the following note with me from a customer who had tried our Yellowjacket Trap without any luck this summer. After some probing, our rep determined that the customer had a paper wasp problem -- not a yellowjacket problem -- and therefore needed our W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets instead. So we sent him one! Here's his response, in a letter to us:

Sirs:

Thank you for helping us determine the proper trap for our paper wasps here in Richland. We had originally purchased a trap that was only effective for yellowjackets, and we were very annoyed that we didn't catch a single insect in the first month.

After we received the W*H*Y Trap in July, we began to catch the paper wasps, and over the summer and fall we caught about two dozen wasps. We are impressed by your knowledge of insect behavior and how to attract them.

... Another important feature of your traps is that they are made in the U.S. Please don't ever consider getting them made by foreign labor.

Thanks again for standing behind your products, even when the consumer buys the wrong product; that is excellent service. We will certainly recommend your products.

Sincerely,

Marc & Janet/Richland, WA

October 30, 2009 in Life at Sterling, Testimonials, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (13) | TrackBack (0)

This is WHY he likes our traps

Happy customer Ron in Lyle, Washington e-mailed us recently to send us photos of our products at work: both the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets and the RESCUE! Yellowjacket Trap.

Gould-LyleWA1 

Time to dump the bodies in this one -- there's no room for more to get in!

 Gould-LyleWA2

Side by side, both traps are working wondrously!

Gould-LyleWA3 

Thanks, Ron! Anyone else have photos to share? Send them here.

August 4, 2009 in Hornets, Testimonials, Wasps, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

Costco knows WHY

WHY traps in Costco Specially-wrapped two-packs of our W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets are now in 153 Costco warehouses around the country for a two-month window.

You can see whether your local Costco carries the W*H*Y Trap by searching your city on our web site's location map.

Get them while they're hot... this is what's left of two pallets in the Spokane Valley Costco after only two weeks.

June 25, 2009 in WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Answering your W*H*Y questions

WHY_Package With the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets in consumers' hands and about six months of sales under our belts, we've had the chance to hear which questions are most frequently on the minds of users.

Where should I place the W*H*Y Trap?

Hang the trap outside at least 20 feet from any outdoor living areas to draw wasps, hornets and yellowjackets away. In general, hanging the trap closer to a house, deck or other structure will draw more paper wasps since they frequent those areas for nest building sites and materials. If a nest location is known, the W*H*Y Trap should be placed at least 20 feet away from the nest.

It is best to avoid placing the trap inside bushes or trees where foliage will surround the trap. Open-air locations will allow the attractant scents to release freely and will yield better catches.

In extreme hot and dry conditions, it is best to hang the trap in the shade to keep the liquid attractant from evaporating too quickly. If nighttime temperatures are lower than 50°F, we recommend hanging the trap in a sunny spot. 

If catches are low, try moving the trap to a new location, such as a spot that receives different wind or sun patterns. 

What time of year should I use the W*H*Y Trap?

As soon as the daytime temperatures hit 70 degrees on a consistent basis, the queens will start emerging from hibernation to look for new nest sites. Paper wasp queens are the first to start flying. You can begin using the W*H*Y Trap at this time to catch the queens, and continue using it all spring and summer and into fall to catch the workers.

Once the queens have already begun building their nests in spring, there will likely be a quiet period of lower catches until the worker populations begin to emerge.

DSC_0070 Will the W*H*Y Attractant work in my Yellowjacket Trap?

No; the W*H*Y Trap is designed with two chambers and two entrances to keep the attractants separated. If combined in a trap with one entrance, the three attractants in the W*H*Y Attractant will cancel each other out.

Is there something I can put in the W*H*Y Trap to rebait it, instead of using the W*H*Y Attractant Kit?

Sorry; but no. It took our scientists six years in our lab to come up with the right formula to lure all 21 species of insects, and although the ingredients are naturally-occurring, they are created by chemists and cannot be replicated with anything you would find in your refrigerator or pantry.

Will the trap work on bees?

Our product is not targeted at bees because they are beneficial for pollination. The attractant in the W*H*Y Trap is not appealing to bees.

I've used your Reusable Yellowjacket Trap before and I like the long-lasting (10-Week) cartridge. Will you eventually have a longer-lasting attractant for the W*H*Y Trap?

Yes! That's what our scientists are working on right now. We hope to have a longer-lasting W*H*Y Trap Attractant Kit on the market within the next two years.

Have a question not answered here? Ask it now by leaving a comment!

June 17, 2009 in Helpful resources, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (23) | TrackBack (0)

We're Emmy Award winners!

Sterling International: pest control innovators, insect behavior experts, Emmy Award winners.

That's right, we're Emmy winners... for our TV spot entitled "Break Room", which advertises the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets. Jones Advertising, the agency behind this funny spot, picked up the award last Saturday night in the Commercial, Single Spot category.

David Edgerton, Jones Advertising Vice President, accepted the award at the 46th Annual Northwest Emmy Awards ceremony:

Emmy Award 2 

And here's the award-winning spot:

June 4, 2009 in Life at Sterling, Video, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

WHY-vangelists share their photos

I caught five yellowjacket queens and one blackjacket queen over the weekend in my W*H*Y Trap. Unfortunately, I can't show you this catch because I forgot to take a photo of it -- it was time to rebait the trap and I was eager to do so to catch the paper wasps I saw flying around.

Thankfully, we have some early WHY-vangelists who have done a better job of documenting what their W*H*Y Trap has caught so far this spring. Take a look...

Pat Pfeifer in Plummer, Idaho had a good early catch of wasps in the top chamber of his W*H*Y Trap (note the bodies that had already sunk to the bottom of the water):

Pfeifer's WHY Trap

Pfeifer's WHY Trap2 

This photo shows a trap in Canada -- Creston, BC to be exact. The catch is from late April/early May:

Creston BC spring catch 

Here are some photos showing the top and the bottom of the W*H*Y Trap in Greenacres, Washington:

Rod 5-17-09 2 

Rod 5-17-09 1 

Our favorite is still from Stamford, TX -- this shows a catch made back in February!

BrendaKirschnerStamfordTX 

Keep those W*H*Y Trap photos coming, folks!


May 26, 2009 in Hornets, New RESCUE! Products, Wasps, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Soapy wings

If you're using the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets, here's a helpful hint we've discovered:

DSC_0067 When baiting the top chamber, add 1-2 drops of dishwashing liquid to the top chamber. This will coat the insects' wings and make it harder for them to fly once trapped -- which leads to an earlier death... mmmwahahahaha!

Ahem. Happy trapping.

May 14, 2009 in Hornets, Wasps, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y campaign sparks award-winning work

Last Thursday was a good night for our Marketing Department. We won six Spark Awards from the Spokane MarCom Association for various elements of our campaign to launch the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets.

Entries for the Spark Awards are judged heavily on the results achieved by a marketing project or campaign. With the W*H*Y Trap accepted into nearly every lawn & garden retailer for this year, we had some great results of which we could boast.

Here are (L-R) Marketing Coordinator Alyssa Ando, yours truly, and Sales & Marketing Assistant Jonathan Manfredonia with our haul:

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And here's a list of what we won:

Merit Award for our "Break Room" :30 TV spot

Excellence Award for our "Rumble" :30 TV spot

Excellence Award for our W*H*Y Trap package design

Why_pkg

Excellence Award for the BugBlog in the "Writing/Recurring Columns" category

Excellence Award for the BugBlog in the "Electronic & Interactive Communications" category

Merit Award for the W*H*Y is the Answer campaign in the "Marketing Communications Campaign" category.

April 27, 2009 in Life at Sterling, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wasp weather... and we're catching them!

If the Northwest could string together more than two 70+ degree days in a row, we'd all be very happy. But this week, those two warm spring days were enough to capture a bunch of paper wasp (and some yellowjacket) queens in the WHY Trap. The photos and video below were taken on president Rod Schneidmiller's property.

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Last night, three days after those photos and video were taken, it snowed. Many of the wasps were still alive today, and they huddled together for warmth near the top of the trap:

IMG00009-20090422-1827

April 23, 2009 in New RESCUE! Products, Video, Wasps, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

WHERE to find the W*H*Y Attractant

Early indications are that the new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets will be a big seller for 2009. Customers in the Southern U.S. are already using it with success in catching the queen wasps, hornets and yellowjackets before they build nests.

WHYTA_WaspHornetYellowjacketAttractant We've heard from some customers that finding the W*H*Y Trap Attractant Kit has been a challenge. We definitely don't want it to be, and we're constantly working to make the product available in more locations. Our experience is that retailers commonly underestimate the demand for the refill attractants, despite our best sales efforts to get more on the shelf.

If you are not able to find the W*H*Y refills at the store where you purchased the trap, your best bet may be online. Below is a list of online retailers carrying the W*H*Y Attractant. Each link goes directly to the order page for the product.

AceHardwareOutlet.com

Pestdetour.com

AtticTrunk.com

BackyardStyle.com

NationalMarineProducts.com

JeffersPet.com

RachelsRobin.com

Pet-dog-cat-supply-store.com

HardwareandTools.com

HomeandBeyond.com

As always, we appreciate hearing from you regarding any issues you may have with finding our product.

March 19, 2009 in Retailers, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (16) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: We catch another wasp!

Just when we thought we knew the 20 species caught in the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets, we learned this week that we catch another species of Paper Wasp -- bringing the total wasp species to 7 and the entire species count to 21!

Thanks to some data gained in testing in the southern U.S., we've determined that our trap catches Polistes exclamans, also known as the Common Paper Wasp.

Exclamans_Common_Paper_Wasp This species is 5/8 inches long and displays extensive red coloration on the head, thorax and abdomen. The abdomen has bands of red, black and yellow and one large red and black band toward the top. Queens and female workers have a predominantly red thorax, while males are mostly black. Antenna will be red with a prominent black midsection.

Common Paper Wasps hunt caterpillars to feed nest larvae and feed on sugars and flower nectar.  Workers will rest on the nest at night and during periods of cooler weather.

Common Paper Wasps are not typically aggressive, but will sting if provoked or if they feel their nest is threatened.  Males also exhibit territorial behavior, which is unusual for Paper Wasp species.

Exclamans_Common_Paper_Wasp_Nest The Common Paper Wasp is found in Texas, Oklahoma and Florida; as far north as New Jersey, Indiana and Illinois; and west to Nebraska and Colorado. It is considered an introduced (non-native) species in southern California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Hawaii.

Common Paper Wasp nests resemble the upside-down umbrella shape and open-honeycomb design of other paper wasp species, and are usually found in sheltered locations near human activity-- most  commonly in roof eaves and trees.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: The W*H*Y Trap from RESCUE! will catch the Common Paper Wasp!

March 4, 2009 in Entomology, Science, Wasps, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Video of the Week: How to set up the W*H*Y Trap

We recorded a short video this week as a demo on how to set up the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets. It's a simple process and you don't need to raid your refrigerator to bait the trap!

Once the snow melts here in Washington, we'll amend the video to show where to hang the W*H*Y Trap outside.

February 27, 2009 in Video, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y we love our customers

This is WHY we do what we do.

Our office is buzzing today over a web comment we received. Brenda in Texas is using the new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets already after purchasing a full case of the product -- just as she said she intended to do last year.

Here's her original comment from last year on the "Tell us WHY" page on our web site:

"We live in West Texas and are inundated with paper wasps. When I walk out the front door, I take a fly swatter with me so I can fight my way off of the porch. In the summer, they dive bomb us when we are in the pool. We go through cases and cases of Wasp spray each summer. Those darn things can get inside the home through the smallest crevice and yesterday we had 25 in our living room when we returned home. Needless to say, we are very anxious to purchase a case of WHY traps and have them out in early spring so we can catch the queens."

Brenda followed through on her intentions and is already having great results with the W*H*Y Trap. Here's what she sent us today:

"I ordered a case of WHY Traps and have put three of the traps up. The first trap is still catching paper wasps even though the water is gone. The second trap (see picture) has caught quite a few considering it's only February and that trap has been up for only 24 hours."

WHY customer photo TX 

We think those actually look like red wasps in the trap -- they're likely queens, because of the time of year and their size.

Thanks for the feedback, Brenda!

February 24, 2009 in Testimonials, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Western Yellowjacket

Today's post closes out the W*H*Y Wednesday series we started in Fall 2008 that focused on each of the 20 species caught in the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets.

Last, but certainly not least, is Vespula pensylvanica, the Western Yellowjacket.

Pensylvanica_Western_YJ_Queen Western Yellowjackets are most easily identified by the yellow ring surrounding the upper portion of the eye, commonly called an “eye loop”.  Their abdominal markings closely resemble that of the German Yellowjacket, marked with a black diamond on the uppermost segment.  Roughly a half inch in length, like other yellowjacket species, they will have stout bodies, black antennae and yellow legs.

The Western Yellowjacket is found not only in the Western U.S., but also the Upper Midwest, as illustrated in the map below:

Western_yellowjacket 

Western Yellowjackets will scavenge for protein and sugar, becoming "picnic pests". This species is known to create severe problems for loggers, fruit growers and those engaged in outdoor activities.

Pensylvanica_Western_YJ_nest The majority of Western Yellowjacket nests are found in abandoned rodent burrows, but they've also been found in attics and building walls. Colonies range from 1000 to 5000 workers at peak size. In warmer climates, entire colonies can overwinter -- not just the queen.

Western Yellowjackets may be a hazard if agitated while scavenging. They are also a stinging hazard if the nest is disturbed. Western Yellowjackets can be very annoying to humans, since they are likely to be found near human activity.

Here's a video we shot of a Western Yellowjacket nest, located under the front steps of a house:

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: the W*H*Y Trap from RESCUE! will catch Western Yellowjackets!

February 11, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Traps on your list?

If you're in the Pacific Northwest, you can find them at Fred Meyer. Here's a photo I snapped yesterday with my phone:

IMG00068.jpg on TwitPic

February 11, 2009 in Retailers, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y goes live at 5!

Our company founder and president, Rod Schneidmiller, was interviewed live on-air for the 5 p.m. newscast of our local ABC affiliate, KXLY4, two days ago. Rod talked with anchor Robyn Nance about the new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets.


February 5, 2009 in Television, Video, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Transition Yellowjacket

Today's featured species is Vespula flavopilosa, the Transition Yellowjacket.

If insects could experience human emotions, V. flavopilosa would probably have an identity crisis. This species (sometimes called a Hybrid Yellowjacket) is so named because it's thought to be a cross between the Eastern and German Yellowjacket, and possibly related to the Common and Western Yellowjacket. Like these other species, Transition Yellowjackets have yellow and black coloration and a stout body, and are roughly 1/2 inch in length.

V. flavopilosa is also occasionally called the "Downy Yellowjacket" or "Yellow-haired Yellowjacket" because of the fine yellow hairs all over its body -- as shown in the top photo on this site.

This species is found in the Northeastern U.S., as illustrated on the map below:

Transition_yellowjacket

Transition Yellowjackets will scavenge for protein, are attracted to meats and sugary foods, and may be pests around trash cans and picnics. They are less likely to be near human dwellings than other species such as the German Yellowjacket and Eastern Yellowjacket. This species is a stinging hazard if agitated while scavenging or if the nest is disturbed.

Their nests are subterranean, carton-shaped and tan-colored with 500-1,000 workers. Common nest sites are in yards, along roadsides and sometimes within structures.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: The W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets will catch Transition Yellowjackets!

February 4, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y: The Buzz is getting out!

WHY Trap on blue Today's edition of our local paper, the Spokesman-Review, includes a story about our new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets.

Here's an excerpt:

"Snow on the ground means nothing at Sterling International, the Spokane Valley company that’s buzzing around the clock making traps targeting the stinging bugs of spring and summer.

Sterling, which has been in business more than 25 years, has just released a product six years in the making, a three-in-one plastic trap it calls the WHY.

As in wasps, hornets and yellowjackets."

Click here to read the full article.

February 3, 2009 in Life at Sterling, New RESCUE! Products, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: the Southern Yellowjacket

Today's featured species is Vespula squamosa, known as the Southern Yellowjacket.

This yellowjacket has been a thorn (sting?) in the side of people who live in warmer climates, because its colonies can survive the winter and grow to become massive. Monster yellowjacket nests like this one in Florida and this one in Georgia (100,000 yellowjackets in the cab of a truck) are most likely built by V. squamosa.

Squamosa_Southern_YJ The Southern Yellowjacket can be distinguished from other yellowjackets in the southern U.S. by two long, yellow stripes on the thorax. Its stout body is about 5/8 inches long, which is larger than average for most yellowjackets. The Southern Yellowjacket queen is distinguished by an orange abdomen with very few black bands.

Southern Yellowjackets will scavenge for protein and are attracted to meats and sugary foods, and may be pests around trash cans and picnics. In warm climates, some Southern Yellowjacket colonies can overwinter, lasting longer than a year. This species is considered a social parasite to other yellowjackets, usually taking over Eastern Yellowjacket nests.

Southern Yellowjackets inhabit the southern and eastern U.S., as far north as PA and MI, and as far west as TX. Their "footprint" is shown in the highlighted portion of the map below:

Southern_yellowjacket 

Squamosa_Southern_YJ_nest_3 Southern Yellowjacket nests are likely to be found in urban and suburban areas, such as yards, parks and roadsides. Most nests are subterranean, but Southern Yellowjacket nests have been reported in aerial locations and house wall voids. Peak population usually ranges between 500 and 4000 workers. Entire colonies -- not just the queen -- can overwinter in warmer climates.

Colonies are typically large, so disturbing a nest can result in swarming. Since nests are usually found in urban and recreational areas, there is a greater risk of stings and surprise encounters.

 WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: the new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets from RESCUE! will catch Southern Yellowjackets!

January 28, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Prairie Yellowjacket

Atropilosa_Prairie_YJ Today's featured species is Vespula atropilosa, also known as the Prairie Yellowjacket. This is one of the common species we have in our back yards here in the Pacific Northwest.

This species has been observed with two different marking patterns on the abdomen, one of which closely resembles the Forest Yellowjacket.  However, the abdominal markings most commonly seen have mostly yellow coloration, thin black bands with center points and black dots.

The Prairie Yellowjacket is found in the highlighted areas in the map below:

Pairie_yellowjacket 

Prairie Yellowjackets are predators of only live prey such as spiders, flies, caterpillars and hemipterans.  They are not known to hunt other wasp, hornet or yellowjacket species.

This species is abundant in prairie and open forest areas, but are also known to nest in lawns, pastures and golf courses.  Most nests are subterranean, but some have been found in wall cavities.  Their nests are typically smaller colonies with less than 500 workers.

Prairie Yellowjackets are not a serious stinging hazard unless the nest is disturbed.  Because they frequently nest in lawns, this species and its nests are more likely to be found near human activity.

Here is more information about the Prairie Yellowjacket.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your area: The new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets will catch Prairie Yellowjackets!

January 21, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

All hands on deck

One phrase you'll never hear at Sterling International: "That's not my job." No one here is above doing any task, because we're all invested in the success of our company.

Today was a perfect example. In order to produce enough W*H*Y Traps to meet a truckload shipment to Wal-Mart, everyone from the office -- the President, his wife, the Vice Presidents, our General Counsel, Marketing, Customer Service and R&D -- worked the assembly line today. Our blistering pace produced 6 pallets' worth (3,360 traps) in four hours.

Below L-R: General Counsel Bob Loomis, VP of Sales Jim Oxley, Gigi Schneidmiller and President Rod Schneidmiller set the pace at the beginning of the line.

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Below: Personnel from Marketing, Customer Service, R&D and Operations load attractant into the traps, attach lids, and enclose the traps in the cardboard packaging before they're boxed up.

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This isn't the first time we've been "all hands on deck". It's happened various times in our 27-year history.

One of the examples our President likes to cite took place in the late 1980s. He explains: "Sterling got a call from L&L Nursery Supply, a major distributor of our products. They had a regional account out of Portland, OR called Bi-Mart that was carrying another brand of yellowjacket trap, but that manufacturer was done shipping product for the year.

"It was early afternoon on a Thursday. We were told that if we could get yellowjacket traps to them by Friday, they would buy our product. However, we didn't have the product made up, and the day's deadline for shipping had passed. We pledged to do what we could.

"We had the office staff and everyone else out there assembling traps, and we held off the truck until 7 p.m. I personally loaded up the trailer. Thankfully, Spokane to Portland was one day service, so L&L was able to get product into the Bi-Mart stores on Friday.

"And Bi-Mart has been a customer of ours ever since."

January 19, 2009 in Life at Sterling, New RESCUE! Products, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Northeastern Yellowjacket

This week's featured species is the Northeastern Yellowjacket (Vespula vidua), found in the highlighted portion of the map below. It's a safe bet that most members of this species are quiet right now, with the frigid temps in that part of the U.S. But as with other yellowjackets, the queens will emerge in early spring to look for new nest sites.

Northeastern_yellowjacket 

Like some Forest Yellowjackets, the Northeastern Yellowjacket is most easily recognized by the thick black band across the upper portion of its abdomen. However, the Northeastern Yellowjacket will never have the two extra spots through the black band, which are present on many Forest Yellowjackets. This species is often called a ground hornet, most likely due to its larger than average size, roughly 5/8 inches long.

Northeastern Yellowjackets commonly make subterranean nests in high traffic areas such as yards and pastures, as well as some forested areas. However, their nests can also be found in logs and manmade structures. Colonies last one year and rarely grow beyond 500 adult workers. Adults feed on sugary foods and forage for live insects to feed larvae.

Northeastern Yellowjackets are not a serious stinging hazard unless the nest is disturbed. However, due to nesting habits in areas of human traffic, the chances of human interaction are increased.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: The W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets will catch Northeastern Yellowjackets!

January 14, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Video of the Week: "Break Room"

Let's head back to the break room for a donut, shall we? Maybe we'll hear the latest buzz about what's happening in the company.

January 9, 2009 in Amusement, Video, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The German Yellowjacket

Germanica_German_YJ_2 Today's featured species is Vespula germanica: The German Yellowjacket.

Like most yellowjackets, the German Yellowjacket is roughly a half-inch long with yellow and black coloration.  It possesses an arrow shape at the top of the abdomen, much like the Eastern or Transition Yellowjacket, but this marking on the German Yellowjacket is usually narrower than that of other species.

Introduced to the U.S. from Europe, the German Yellowjacket is found primarily in the Northeast. This species is rapidly expanding and now found in limited areas in the Western states of Washington and California. The highlighted areas in the map below show the German Yellowjacket's footprint.

German_yellowjacket 

German Yellowjackets are “picnic pests”, frequently scavenging for meats and sugary foods and hovering around trash cans and barbecues. They are a hazard if agitated while scavenging. 

Their nests are primarily found in wall voids and structures, but may be subterranean as well. The photos below show a subterranean nest which our scientists excavated several years ago.

Nest_inside 

IMG_4757 

IMG_4771 

WHYTR_200dpi Good news for those who have this species in their backyard: the new  from RESCUE! will catch German Yellowjackets!


Technorati Profile

January 7, 2009 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Forest Yellowjacket

Today's featured species, as we close out 2008, is the Forest Yellowjacket, Vespula acadica.

Acadica_Forest_YJ This species is known to have three different marking patterns. Many will resemble the Northeastern Yellowjacket with a solid black band across the upper portion of the abdomen; though the majority will have two yellow or brown spots on this black band. Most rarely observed are the specimens without the black band and more yellow coloration on the abdomen. Their stout bodies measure roughly a half-inch in length like most other yellowjacket species.

The Forest Yellowjackets' habitat is, naturally, in heavily forested areas. The highlighted portion of the map below shows where they are found in the U.S.:

Forest_yellowjacket

Forest Yellowjacket colonies last for one year. They are predators of live prey only, such as flies, caterpillars, hemipterans and aphids.

Forest Yellowjackets typically build aerial nests, but subterranean nests in logs are not uncommon. This species usually has smaller colonies, with fewer than 500 workers.

Nature toward humans: Because this species is primarily found in more heavily forested areas, the Forest Yellowjacket has limited contact with humans. If the nest is disturbed, Forest Yellowjackets will sting aggressively and persistently.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your back yard: the new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets from RESCUE! will catch Forest Yellowjackets!

And even more good news: We shipped our first truckload of W*H*Y Traps yesterday, and more are on the way in coming weeks.

Thanks for following us, and Happy New Year, readers!

December 31, 2008 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

First W*H*Y Traps shipped today!

Perhaps you noticed that I goofed and posted the W*H*Y Wednesday post on Tuesday. But I was just too excited, because our first W*H*Y Trap shipment went out today!

These traps -- all 3200 of them -- are destined for Wal-Mart stores in Florida. Ironically, the Yellow Freight truck was running late after being stuck in the snow. But at 4 p.m., we loaded 6 pallets onto the truck and sent it on its way to warmer climes.

Here's a photo of (L-R) yours truly, Paul Crooks (Industrial Engineer) and Alyssa Ando (Marketing Coordinator) in front of the shipment:

First WHY shipment 104 

And here are some scenes from earlier today as the assembly line rolled out the W*H*Y Traps:

First WHY shipment 100 

First WHY shipment 088 

First WHY shipment 087 


First WHY shipment 093

First WHY shipment 094 

If you're in Florida, these will be coming to a store near you... and many more will be shipped out to other states next week!

December 23, 2008 in Life at Sterling, New RESCUE! Products, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: the Eastern Yellowjacket

Maculifrons_Eastern_YJ Today's featured species is Vespula maculifrons, or the Eastern Yellowjacket. This species can be distinguished from other yellowjackets by the wide arrow shape at the top of its abdomen. Eastern Yellowjackets carry all the typical yellowjacket physical characteristics, such as a half-inch long stout body, yellow and black coloration, yellow legs and black antennae.

The Eastern Yellowjacket is found in a large section of the U.S. east of the Rockies, as shown in the highlighted portion of the map below:

Eastern_yellowjacket 

Eastern Yellowjacket colonies are often found in yards, golf courses, recreational areas and manmade structures. They will scavenge for human food, and therefore are considered "picnic pests".

Eastern Yellowjackets typically build subterranean nests in yards, along roadsides, hardwood forests and creek banks, and in urban areas such as attics and manmade structures. Nests range from 4-12 inches in diameter and are tannish-brown in color, with larger colonies consisting of 3000-5000 workers. Entire colonies -- not just the queen -- can overwinter in warmer climates.

Again, Eastern Yellowjackets are "picnic pests" and can be dangerous if agitated while they are scavenging. They are also a stinging hazard if the nest is disturbed. Since this species is more likely to be found around human activity, Eastern Yellowjackets present more of a stinging hazard than other species.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your backyard: The new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets will catch Eastern Yellowjackets!

December 23, 2008 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

W*H*Y Wednesday: The Common Yellowjacket

Today's featured species is Vespula Vulgaris -- the Common Yellowjacket.

Vulgaris_Common_YJ As its name suggests, the Common Yellowjacket possesses all the most common features of yellowjackets: stout body, roughly 1/2 inch in length, yellow and black coloration, yellow legs and black antennae.

As for their habits, Common Yellowjackets will scavenge for protein and are attracted to meats and sugary foods. They are often pests around trash cans and picnics. Colonies will last for one year.

The highlighted portion of the map below shows where Common Yellowjackets are found in the U.S.:

Common_yellowjacket 

Common Yellowjacket nests are typically constructed in logs, rotting stumps, and in the soil. They are alos commonly found in between the walls of structures. Nests are very brittle and are red to tannish-brown in color.

Nature toward humans: Common Yellowjackets are "picnic pests" and quite annoying to humans. They are also a stinging hazard if agitated while they are scavenging, or if the nest is disturbed.

WHYTR_200dpi Good news if you have this species in your backyard: The new W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets from RESCUE! will catch the Common Yellowjacket!


December 17, 2008 in Entomology, Science, WHY Trap, Yellowjackets | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sterling gets an early Christmas present

Hot off the presses -- or in this case, the injection molding machine -- we have our first complete, non-prototype, finished W*H*Y Trap!

President Rod Schneidmiller holds this early Christmas present by our company tree in the front lobby.

P1000335 

Here's a closer look:

First WHY closeup 

I can't tell you how excited we are to have a finished product. These photos don't do it justice -- the parts have such a high-quality look and feel. Everyone in the office was positively giddy to see and hold the trap. Next week we hope to be running the parts, assembling the traps with their attractant and packaging, and shipping displays.

December 11, 2008 in Life at Sterling, New RESCUE! Products, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Parts is Parts

And parts are good, when we're talking about parts that make up our highly anticipated new product! We're getting close to having all the parts ready to assemble the W*H*Y Trap for Wasps, Hornets & Yellowjackets. Our Engineering Department is tweaking things like the clarity of the tube, the finish of the top and bottom caps, and the fit of the assembled parts. It's all looking very good, and I should be able to post some photos of the parts in the next few days.

In the meantime, enjoy this blast-from-the-past commercial which talks about some less appealing parts...

December 9, 2008 in Life at Sterling, New RESCUE! Products, WHY Trap | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

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