Mud daubers are a species of wasp found throughout all of the United States. There are many species found in urban areas all of which are likely to nest on your home. Included on this list is the organ pipe, the black and yellow, the blue, the potter wasp and the mason species. These wasps are so categorized because they create larva rearing mud tubes where young wasps will hatch and develop. Typically you’ll find their nests on the sides of your home but they can choose many locations to build them like boats, electric panels and even cars.




Mud daubers like to construct nests between brick in mortar joints, where wood trim facia boards and molding meet and around window and door frames. Though they all seem to be the same type of nest, in fact each species has distinct characteristics associated with design patterns of the mud. The easiest to identify is the organ pipe whose nests are long and resemble the way the pipes of an organ sit. Black and yellow daubers build their nests more on top of each other and the other species are different still. Regardless of the way these nests are constructed, mud daubers frighten many people and have been mistaken for termites on too many occasions.





Most mud daubers feed on spiders. Females seek out spiders, sting them and deposit their bodies in the back of a larva cell of their nest. An egg is then laid on the spider for the young so when it hatches, it will have plenty of food on which to feed.

A female will typically have several eggs in a single “pipe” and will have 3-6 pipes per nest. If conditions allow, she may have more than one nest. Its not just coincidence that nests seem to prevail on certain homes. It appears to be homes which are stucco, brick or other porous, rough surfaces which this wasp definitely seems to like. No doubt its both easier to build nests on such surfaces as well as the fact that nests seem to “hold together” better on them too. This lends credence to the theory that daubers generated from nests built on such surfaces are more likely to use an identical surface for their own reproductive egg laying.





Most definitely. But they’re not as likely to sting as other species. Mud daubers generally use their stinger for food and will not sting unless provoked. The rule here is simple; avoid handling them and don’t put your hand by their nests and you should avoid getting stung. That being said, you don’t want to let them build nests on your boat, home, deck, patio, etc. where you want to spend time relaxing!



Like most wasps, mud daubers don’t like CYPERMETHRIN. This product is both easy to use and works great at controlling local infestations. Your method of treatment will vary on the time of the year you are treating. If it is spring and they have just begun nest making, simply spray the Cypermethrin on the sides of the home where there is activity.

Use 1 oz per gallon of water and use 1 gallon per 500 sq/ft of surface area. Treatments should repel them from the area; nests directly treated will die off within a few days.

Viper Cypermethrin





For most treatments,  simple PUMP SPRAYER is all you need to apply the solution.


Pump Sprayer




If you have heights of 15 feet or more, use a HOSE END SPRAYER to make the application. Using the power of your garden hose, you can generally treat any home in very little time and reach 20-25 feet up which can be helpful.






No doubt the hose end sprayer is easy to use. But it will use more product to do the job compared to the pump sprayer.

On the flip side, the pump sprayer may not be able to reach quite high enough so you may need both pieces of equipment.

Which ever you use, try to get about 500 sq/ft of coverage per gallon of material used.

And remember that most homes will need 2-4 gallons to get adequate protection. Although you may only see activity on one side of the home, try to treat as many sides as you can. This will prevent them from simply moving to the untreated side of your house instead of moving off your property completely. Expect to make applications about once a month throughout the spring and then a few more during the year.

Cypermethrin works well on mud daubers and treatments will both kill and repel them from the area. Its also good for use on plants and other areas in the yard where unwanted wasps might be active.



For 1-2 nests, WASP FREEZE can be used. But keep in mind it uses a heavy oil which can stain most any finish. And treatments won’t last. So for most mud dauber problems, wasp freeze is not a good option. And since the overspray can suffocate any kind of ground cover or flower, you must be careful when using it in the yard too.

Wasp Freeze






Since mud daubers will routinely nest in hidden spaces like under decks or in cracks or crevices, the liquid Cypermethrin is not always the best option. It just doesn’t penetrate these spaces well and since any wasp will sense its presence, they’ll avoid the treatment. This will allow them to relocate and build nests where you missed with the spray.

Furthermore, mud daubers like to nest on cars or boats and once they get “scented” with mud dauber pheromones, more will be coming around throughout the wasp season.

Fortunately there is an active that works as a “non repellent”. Known as PHANTOM AEROSOL, this active won’t be noticed by mud daubers or any other insect. They’ll readily walk over the treatment and in turn, pick up a lethal dose. It will take a good 2-3 days to kill them but this is by design and normal. The good news is they won’t know its there which insures they pick up a lethal dose and die.

Phantom can be sprayed on boats without hurting the deck and its ideal for use in the cracks and gaps found on decks, brick work, etc. Use it every 2 weeks when they’re active and remember a little goes a long way.

Phantom Aerosol






Within a week of spraying with cypermethrin, mud daubers will be gone. To keep them away all summer, spray once every 1-2 months during the warm season.

For a more “permanent” solution, add some NBS REPELLENT to your paint or stain the next time you apply any to your homes siding. NBS uses essential plant oils and will readily repel wasps for up to a year or more when used as an additive. You can also spray NBS to repel mud daubers but keep in mind its not an insecticide so it won’t kill any already active. But it does a good job of keeping them away and can be used on plants, etc. where wasps are unwanted.

Mix 3 oz per gallon of water and spray the mixture over 500 sq/ft of surface area for up to 4 weeks of repellent action. Renew monthly to keep them away for good.





Mud daubers are persistent once they identify your home as a place they like to nest. But if you’re able to treat early in the spring, you can expect 1-3 treatments to keep your home dauber free for the season. If you have a big infestation, it will require removing active nests and spraying over as much of the home as possible. This will insure they don’t simply move over to untreated areas.


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Comments on MUD DAUBER TREATMENTS Leave a Comment

March 6, 2012

Ken @ 2:41 pm #


Mud daubers like to build nests in our boat’s folded sails. When we’ve finished sailing we flake the mainsail onto the boom and cover it with a canvas “jacket”. When we return a week later and hoist the sail we often find that mud daubers crept in under the jacket and built nests within the folds of the sail. We need a repellant but we’re reluctant to use any chemical spray or oil that might discolor our sails, or any solid device that could emit fumes under the hot jacket….for the same reason. Any ideas? Is the Waspinator effective against mud daubers?

November 17, 2012

Ken Pedersen @ 11:35 am #


@Tech Support:
We bought a can of Phantom and have used it successfully all season…..after each sail we’d spray all edges of the sail cover and also the end access points, including the sail’s luff. Only one mud dauber found its way under our sail cover and that was likely due to: 1) inattention (3 weeks lapse) on our part, and 2) not thinking that a prolonged rain might diminish some of Phantom’s effectiveness. A quick weekly spray does the job and we’ve gone 2 weeks between sprays without any bug access.

July 1, 2012

Rosanne Wisor @ 9:35 am #


I have mud daubers making nests in the ground. They leave holes where they enter and exit. I have at least 30 holes and because they are so active I can’t weed or even walk close to where they are. They’re are on the south side of the house so it is all day sun. Help! Thanks.


April 22, 2013

Gerald Smith @ 3:54 pm #


@Tech Support: Good information! I have these holes all along the edge of my pond, sometimes going down to the water level and causing the ground to sink in spots. I’ve been filling the holes with Sakrete and filling in the last couple of inches with dirt. I can imagine an archeologist digging up my yard in 200 years and wondering about the meaning of those concrete pillars!

July 4, 2012

debbie @ 8:34 pm #


We have blue mud daubers around the casing of our in ground pool at two corners and we can’t seem to get rid of them. We killed one and compared it to make sure that they are indeed blue mud daubers we need them gone because of allergies and little kids. Please help!!!!!

September 2, 2012

scott klaverkamp @ 11:18 am #


We live in the country and the wasps are building nests in every can light in our covered decks. I can remove the light bulb, but you have to stick your hand inside to remove the baffle which I don’t want to do. Any type of spray I can use without damaging the light components?

September 3, 2012

scott klaverkamp @ 9:39 am #


@Tech Support:
Will it kill what is in the mud (nest) also, or do I have to knock down the nest?

February 15, 2013

Marty @ 3:37 pm #


I have hundreds of nests up in my attic; just discovered them. They seem dormant at the moment. Should I knock them down and get rid of them or leave them?

April 28, 2013

Mary @ 12:30 pm #


We have a 20′ porch ceiling and mud daubers like to nest on the high walls back there. Can Cypermethrin be used in a power washer….it’s the only thing that will reach that height. And if so what about blowback spray…is it harmful to humans?

April 29, 2013

Mary @ 7:58 am #


Great info, thanks! Can the Onslaught also be used in and around boats without staining or discoloring the covers?

May 31, 2013

Megan @ 5:06 pm #


This is our second summer in our home, which is a log home. Already the mud daubers are out of control. Most of the advice I’ve seen on getting rid of them entails destroying the nests. The problem is I can’t find them. I’ve found a few in boxes in the garage and destroyed them but that’s not even where we have the wasp problem. They swarm the outside walls of the house. They’re always there but I never see any nests on the walls out the house. To make things worse, somehow they get inside. We don’t even open our windows. We run the ac instead hoping that that will prevent them from getting inside but it doesn’t help. The house is brand new and so the windows are in perfect condition and the screens fit perfectly and tightly. Still they’ll be in between the screen and the window. Just now one flew out of the upstairs bedroom and he seemed to come from nowhere. I can hear them buzzing around through the beams in the upstairs bedroom. It’s almost as if they are inside the walls looking for a way out and then eventually get out into the house. I feel helpless. Do you think it’s possible that they have bested in the walls of our home? What should I do?

August 24, 2013

Jennifer @ 3:57 pm #


We have a very large workshop which is overrun with wasps, dirt dobbers and some type of large roach. We can’t enter our garage. We had an infestation of spiders before the wasps and then dirt dobbers moved in. We need a permanent solution. We use the garage for storage, boat, etc. We can spray, apply powder, or whatever and wanted to also know if there was a stinging light we could use as prevention. Please help.

February 28, 2014

Suzanne @ 9:45 am #


We have a two story boat dock. The biggest problem is wasps of some kind. They crawl down into the cracks on the top deck. The top deck is wood on top and has metal underneath. Do you think they have nests in between the wood and metal? The space is about six inches in height and 32 x 32 feet (length and width). If so, is there a way to treat the dock without damaging fish, etc. in the water? A secondary problem is spider webs. We knock them down and they are back within hours.

April 24, 2014

Stephanie @ 12:16 pm #


About two weeks ago (before my Drione dust shipment arrived) I noticed a carpenter bee flying around two small holes between the bricks in the side of my house. Now the holes are filled with mud which leads me to think it’s actually a mud dauber nest. I have the Drione now, but I want to know if I should poke a stick or something in the hole to break up the mud so I can dust? I just don’t want a swarm flying out at me if I do. Any suggestions?

July 2, 2014

Debbie @ 1:33 pm #


I live in Florida and have mud daubers all over my home and I’m getting ready to repaint the entire house. The painters will remove the nests when pressure washing the home prior to painting. Is there anything they can add to the paint itself which will help repel the mud daubers from re-nesting all around the home?

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