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Bee & Wasp Repellent

Portable personal repellent for bees and wasps.
  [vote for,

I am allergic to bee stings, so this is something I've been researching for quite a while. I have done many internet searches, I've talked with entomologists - NOT EVEN ONE GLIMMER OF AN ANSWER.

Here's the requirements: 1. Portable. Gotta be able to take it with me wherever I go. Therefore it can't be a plant, or a paint additive, etc. 2. Repels, but doesn't aggravate. I don't want to anger the critters, don't want to kill them, just want them to stay away.

Anybody know of a baked solution, or of any hint of a solution?

quarterbaker, Jul 26 2001

Bee-Tour http://www.beetour.com/html/whatisit.html
I have no idea how this works, or if it works, but it claims to repel bees and other flying insects. [jutta, Jul 26 2001]

Bee-Safe http://www.beesaf.com/
Ditto. Spray at individual bee, wait for hive to get the message. Active Ingredient: Peppermint Oil [jutta, Jul 26 2001]

The Sawyer Extractor (TM) http://www.baproducts.com/sawyer.htm
Not a repellant, but useful for those with allergies if repellants fail. It's the last photo on the page. [beauxeault, Jul 26 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Eric the Half a Bee http://bau2.uibk.ac...ricTheHalfABee.html
[benfrost, Dec 31 2001]

Cyril Connolly http://www.google.c...safe%3Doff%26sa%3DG
[normzone, Sep 19 2006]


       I think you're taking the wrong approach here. Instead of spraying yourself with something to repel wasps, you need to spray something else in your surroundings to attract them. Then they'll go to that and leave you well alone.
-alx, Jul 26 2001

       _I_ know that if I ignore them, they'll leave me alone. I once performed 2 hrs mechanic work on a car that had 2 very active wasps nests under the hood. I had wasps flying around me and walking on me the whole time, with NO STINGS. The real problem is that other people don't know how to behave around wasps/bees. I've had it happen several times that someone near me will swat at a bee, and it will sting me.   

       Putting something attractive somewhere else doesn't seem right. Kind of like the bug zappers - they attract more bugs to the area than would otherwise be there.   

       Some chemical that is mildly unpleasant to hymenoptera family would be all that's required.
quarterbaker, Jul 26 2001

       As long as it is not unpleasant to humans of the hymenoperator sex.
thumbwax, Jul 26 2001

       thumbwax: *!*   

       Step on a ground-wasp nest. Think over and over, "Wasps are our little buzzy friends. If I ignore them, they will not--OW!--sting me. OW! OW!" Point being, accidents can happen and for people who are sensitive to the stings it can be pretty serious. I'm very insensitive to stings, which is good luck on me, but I sympathize. OW!
Dog Ed, Jul 26 2001

       My very first day of Kindergarten. Took pair of Blue Jeans off clothesline, put them on, got stung by wasp. Mom extracted stinger oh-so-carefully, put a little bleach on there. Was in school 5 minutes later. Just another day in paradise. Couple of years later, playing catch at Grandmothers while barefoot - Stepped on wasp. Grandmother took charge and repeated cycle and I resumed catch with shoes on.
Summer Camp years later, friend got stung by a bee. Except for a few dudes I beat the hell out of - Never seen such fear in ones eyes. My friend was very nearly a goner, as he - like my Mother - is allergic to bee stings. What I do when aggressive stinging insects - particularly wasps, is salute them with eyes wide open and at full attention. They give me the inspection and move onto the next potential kamikaze target.
thumbwax, Jul 27 2001

       If your repellant fails, and you're only stung once or twice, I find a Sawyer Extractor (TM) (link) is useful. It's a syringe-like pump that instead of pumping liquid through a needle, sucks air out of a vacuum chamber that you fit over the sting area, and pumps the "venom" out. I'd think this would be especially useful for those with sting allergies.
beauxeault, Jul 27 2001

       Smoke tends to work. Not necessarily cigarette smoke, but some sort of smoke generator which you carry on a belt and which pipes the smoke around a network of tubes draped around your person. A battery-powered version of the 'Smokey Joe' kit used for stage work would probably be suitable.
It's worth mentioning that, as [thumbwax] noted, bleach is a good antidote for wasp stings (they being acidic), but bee stings are alkaline, so vinegar should be used instead.
angel, Jul 27 2001

       Most "bug sprays" and "insect repellants" are just as effective on bees and wasps as on mosquitos (too often not very). I once sprayed a particualarly agressive bee/wasp (I forget which) with some Off and sent it into seizures. And even if the Backwoods Formula doesn't work as a repellant, I've found it makes an effective paint solvent.
nick_n_uit, Jul 27 2001

       Hymenoperator? (Does that include the former hymenoperators, as well?) And yes, wasps are complete bastards. They freak me out and make my skin crawl just thinking about them--especially the ones that look like a Sikorsky Skycrane
bristolz, Jul 28 2001

       Mephista, there are self-injection kits available for use against anaphylactic shock (the life-threatening systemic reaction of those allergic to stings). They are available by prescription only. The active ingredient is epinephrine, and I've heard that the treatment involves sufficient risk that it should not be used unless a life-threatening reaction develops (usually involving swelling in the mouth and throat, which shuts off breathing passages). Not all who are designated "allergic" to stings will develop anaphylactic shock in response to all stings, and those who have been stung before with only local pain and itching may nevertheless experience an anaphylactic shock reaction. It kills more people in the U.S. than snakebite, but is still quite rare.
beauxeault, Jul 28 2001

       I hope I can come back as a smooth hymenoperating hymenoptera dude.
thumbwax, Jul 28 2001

       Wouldn't that have to be dudette?   

       Not as a repellant, but as an 'attract them somewhere else': Open a bottle of orange soda, the sticky-sweetest you can find. Dump 9/10ths of it out, leaving half an inch or so in the bottom. Keep the cap handy. Yellowjackets and wasps will fly into it and be so reluctant to leave that the bottle will fill with them. Screw the cap on. Repeat as necessary.   

       Apparently a lot of people drinking orange soda outdoors get stung in the back of the mouth by wasps. Someone on one of the newsgroups I read said they've done this, and seen bottles full of wasps.
StarChaser, Aug 04 2001

       I just used something similar to the products linked by jutta, above. Made by Woodstream, it's a poison-free wasp and hornet killer: 8% mint oil, 1% sodium lauryl sulfate, the rest water and CO2. Worked for me pretty well on paper wasps and ground wasps.
Dog Ed, Aug 05 2001

       Does it work on W.A.S.P.'s?
thumbwax, Dec 28 2001

       essential oils, citronella mainly. Citronella is derived from cultivated grasses. It is so strong, it has been used as a pesticide for over 50 years. It repells biting insects fleas etc, wasps and such alike, and mosquitos big time. It keeps dogs and cats away, is toxic to birds, dogs and cats hate it....(yet its used on flea collars). But its completely harmless and infact has beneficial use for humans, as it has antiseptic qualities. Its a beautiful lemony smell- im going to put some in the burner tonight as my flatmate got stung by a hornet and is allergic. I found it, apologised to it- and squashed it.:)
isla, Apr 24 2002

       // Step on a ground-wasp nest. Think over and over, "Wasps are our little buzzy friends. If I ignore them, they will not--OW!--sting me. OW! OW!" //   

       In this scenario, a repellant won't help you one whit.
magnificat, Apr 25 2002

       Isla, in my experience citronella does very little to dissuade bees. And the problem with "attracting them elsewhere" is that when bees converge on an area, they tend to "scout". Once they're attracted to a source of interest (pollen, odors, food), they can spread out across several yards looking for other sources. So unless that half-empty bottle of orange soda is down the street at the neighbors, it's probably better you not try to "attract" bees, period.   

       Even using the so-called "traps"... you'll get one or two in the trap at a time, and a dozen or so scouting the rest of your yard.   

       Our problem is the kids. They get overly excited about the bees, and tend to aggrevate the situation. As QuarterBaker originally mentioned, REPELLING them is the answer.
servomation, Jul 25 2002

       //Most "bug sprays" and "insect repellants" are just as effective on bees and wasps as on mosquitos (too often not very). I once sprayed a particualarly agressive bee/wasp (I forget which) with some Off and sent it into seizures// Does this work with the combonation sunscreen bug repellent?
snakefreak, Oct 22 2003

       My second grade teacher was allergic to bees and our school was too poor for screens, much less AC. whenever a bee came in shed empty an entire bottle of RAID Horet/Wasp killer stuff out in the room. Going after the bee. Please for the love of God don't take this approach. She may have saved her life but I think she took several years of all of her students lives. Deet lik in most bug spray helps with bees/wasps, Also permathin sprayed on clothing, not your skin, helps. Not foolproof and kinda inconvienent and even a bit smelly I'm afraid. Or tell the kiddies to scream and wave their arms while running away from you and let them get stung instead.
tedhaubrich, Jun 09 2004

       Bees and yellowjackets are attracted to bright colors and the color black especially. In combination with the insect repellent sprays, you could try wearing some protective clothing, and never sweet perfumes. Avoid eating cooked, sweetened meat outdoors, or drinking brightly colored sweet drinks outside.   

       Bee keepers usually wear white, but white, off-white, light non-colored fabrics, knits but never wool. You want it to fit closely enough that it won't trap a bee or wasp inside, or allow them to crawl into the clothing easily, but at the same time, it's good to keep it either thick and tightly knit enough to make it hard for the sting to penetrate, or to leave a pocket of air around your body, so long as the sleeves, waist, collar are fitted. Wear a hat, keep long hair braided, and ideally you might be able to have something covering your face and neck.   

       When attacked by angry swarms, cover your face with your hands and run away to inside the closest shelter, or through thick patches of trees, or dive into the nearest body of water.   

       To avoid creating an angry mob, never swat at them, and absolutely do not smash one. This releases a chemical that they react to. So does being stung. Once one has stung you, leave the area immediately.
Rhiannon, Sep 19 2006


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