Queen wasps have spent the winter overwintering (sleeping), the warmer spring weather tells the wasps its now time to wake up. The queen wasps, which mated last autumn are now ready to start looking for a suitable location to build their own nest.
The queen builds the first stage of the nest on her own. She then lays a few eggs inside. while she finishes construction. The first worker wasps start to appear in late May to June. The new wasps then take over nest building and food collection duties, while the queen wasp concentrates on laying more eggs in the now rapidly growing nest.
By July the wasps nest can be the size of a football and by August will be home to thousands of wasps. Peak numbers are reached by late August to September where a large nest can be home to up-to ten thousand wasps.
Keep an eye out for these small starter nests in sheds and garages, if you decide to leave the wasps in peace just be aware that the area may be out of bounds until the end of the season in November.
Not all wasps nests cause problems, if its away from your home for example at the bottom of your garden then I would advise you to give them space and let them do their work. Wasps are beneficial insects as they are predators of other small insects and are increasingly recognised as valuable pollinators.
If you need a wasps nest removal in Leeds have a wasp nest give me a call or send a message.
Thanks to Dave Jones of the Facebook group Ecology of Vespinae for use of the photo :)