Jul 06, 2022

What does summer mean to you and your family? If you are like most people, you are probably looking forward to spending some time outdoors. Whether that means tending to your garden, hosting a BBQ in the backyard, or just soaking up some sun as you relax on your patio, the one thing you will want to avoid is spoiling it by getting stung! Did you know that approximately 500,000 people visit the emergency room every year due to insect stings?

Let’s take a look at how professional pest control in Knoxville can help you to have a sting-free summer season!


Tennessee is home to various species of wasps, including Yellow Jackets, Red Wasps, Paper Wasps & the misleadingly named Bald Faced Hornets, which are actually subspecies of Yellow Jackets, not a hornet! Yellow Jackets, in particular, are very aggressive and will sting multiple times. The results can range from huge welts around the sting to severe allergic reactions, so you will definitely want to avoid having their nest on your property. Unattended drinks and leftover food waste attract them, so if you are an avid barbecue host, your yard may become an attractive hangout spot for these pests. Red wasps are also a stinging menace commonly found in Tennessee and are known to cause excruciating stings and even potentially fatal allergic reactions. Red wasps are the largest species of wasp found in North America. The most common type of wasp you will likely come across is the Paper Wasp. You will commonly find them building a nest in attics or trees. These are far less aggressive than the other varieties and will only sting when defending their colony from a perceived threat. None of these species of wasps are going to be welcome guests, so it is best to call pest control in Knoxville to remove any nests you find and to arrange preventative pest control treatment to discourage their return. This is especially important if anyone in your household has a known allergy to wasps.

One type of wasp that deserves a special mention is another one with a misleading name - the Velvet Ant. These fuzzy red and black critters look like fluffy ants, but they are a wasp with a highly painful stinger. They are actually nicknamed ‘cow killers’ in reference to the sting feeling powerful enough to drop a cow due to its intensity. Of course, they won’t actually kill a cow, but you will still want to avoid them and contact pest control in Knoxville if you cross paths with one on your property.


European Hornets are commonly found in Tennessee. These pests first came to the United States from Europe in the 1800s and are particularly attracted to bright lights. One of the recommended deterrents is to switch your outdoor bulbs to yellow ones. European Hornets are not too aggressive but can sting multiple times if they feel threatened. They are also known to cause damage to bushes and trees while searching for food. If you believe you have hornets of any kind on your property, a call to pest control in Knoxville can help get rid of them for you.


It’s not just wasps and hornets that you need to worry about when it comes to stinging pests plaguing your summer activities. Tennessee also has a problem with Fire Ants! While fire ant colonies can be beneficial in controlling other pests, large colonies can cause more problems than they solve, and their stings can cause severe medical problems. Call on pest control in Knoxville to eradicate these stinging pests, but be aware that regular treatment every few months is going to be needed to keep them at bay.

Prevention Tips For Stinging Pests

The best prevention for stinging pests like wasps, hornets, and fire ants is to have regular treatments from pest control in Knoxville. However, there are also a few practical steps that you can take to help keep them away from your patio, porch, or deck area, allowing you a sting-free summer!

  • Secure trash cans properly to cut off food sources
  • Clean up food or drink spills quickly
  • Have pest control remove any wasps nests or ant hills
  • Switch outdoor lights to yellow bulbs
  • Avoid heavy colognes and perfumes

If you are looking to eliminate a stinging pest from your property and take steps to prevent future infestation, call Otis Pest Control for pest control in Knoxville and the surrounding areas.


Otis Termite & Pest Control is a full-service pest control company with a focus on outstanding service. We have been serving the East Tennessee area for over 56 years and our reputation is built on prompt and effective service. We’re good at what we do and we’re fast. We do the job right the first time – and that’s an actual guarantee! 

Call 865.690.1662 or visit www.otispestcontrol.net.



Emily Moeck

"I unknowingly moved into a home that had a HUGE bed bug infestation..."Don't you worry, we are on top of this until they are gone, I promise!"... Jack was knowledgeable and honest in his assessment of my house/treatment methods. Thank you, Jack and Rocky and the whole Otis team! My home is home again!"


Joshua Weaver

"Prompt responses and appointment times. Very friendly and knowledgeable. Straight forward service without any "pushing" for extras."


Charlotte Bishop

"These guys were super helpful and kind. Jack thoroughly explained every procedure and made what could have been a horrible situation much more bearable. I definitely recommend them!"


Tamie Ridenour

"Excellent service and staff!! They were at my house the same day I called, for New construction pre-treatment!"


Cathy Amos

"Highly recommend! Jack and Rocky are great! You've got a business and highest recommendation! Great people to work with!"

Contact the experts

Request a Free Inspection for your Pest Control Needs

Whether you have a residential or a commercial property need, please take advantage of our free inspection, and inquire about any of our pest control services in East Tennessee, please complete this short form and we’ll be in touch soon!


Main Headquarters

112 Hayfield Road
Knoxville, TN 37922


Location Specific Phone Numbers

  • Knoxville (serving Knox County)

  • Maryville (serving Blount County)

  • Lenoir City (serving Loudon & Monroe Counties)

  • Oak Ridge (serving Anderson, Roane, Scott, Morgan, Campbell, Union, & Cumberland Counties)

  • Sevierville (serving Sevier, Hamblen, & Cocke County)


Servicing all areas of Knoxville and surrounding counties and the Greater East TN area including Tri-Cities, Johnson City, Crossville & Chattanooga.

Please Submit Area of Interest