Learn To Make Mosquito, Wasp, and Hornet Traps

Homemade Mosquito Trap

As the days get warmer and longer, the bugs come out more. I’m usually content to leave them alone, but when mosquitoes, hornets, and wasps start biting, they have to go! The process of making a homemade mosquito trap is much the same as a homemade wasp trap – the only difference is the bait.

Let’s begin with the wasp/hornet trap…

Homemade Wasp Trap

This is a good use for those plastic soda bottles, plastic milk jugs, or any other plastic container that has a cone-shaped top.

Supplies

  • plastic soda bottle
  • scissors
  • string for hanging
  • tape
  • bait (balsamic vinegar, flat soda, fruit, beer, wine, or fruit juice)
  • a few drops of dish soap, optional

Directions

  1. Cut the top off the bottle just below the shoulder, where the cone part begins. Take the entire top off. Remove the cap and recycle.
  2. Add your bait and a bit of water. A few drops of dish soap will help to kill the wasps quickly.
  3. Turn the top part over and fit it inside the bottom part so it looks like a funnel. Make sure there is enough room so that the funnel bottom does not rest on the bait. There should be enough room for the wasp to fly around.
  4. Carefully cut two holes in the top part of the bottle just below the top edge. Tape the two pieces together. String your string through both holes and tie the ends together.

Using your wasp/hornet trap

Hang near your home or outdoor area, but not right next to where you are. When it’s full or no longer attracts the wasps, take apart, empty and fit back together with new bait.

Homemade Mosquito Trap

(pictured above)

Supplies & Ingredients*

*You’ll be making the same type of set up as for the wasps, but you’ll use different bait.

Directions

  1. Place the brown sugar in the warm water. Stir to dissolve. Add the yeast. (The brown sugar feeds the yeast, which in turn gives off carbon dioxide, which mosquitoes are attracted to.)
  2. Begin assembling your trap as instructed above.
  3. Pour your bait into the bottom of the trap and complete assembly as instructed above.

Using your mosquito trap

Place the mosquito trap near where you work and play, not away from the areas like the wasp trap. This will probably fill up faster than the wasp trap, so you may need to clean it out more often.

Additional Notes

  • White sugar will work, but brown sugar and even demerara and turbinado sugars work better than white sugar.
  • Meat will attract wasps in the spring when they are looking for protein.
  • I bury the insides of the trap in my garden at the back edge. I used to compost the whole mess, but then I had raccoons and opossums digging in the compost.
  • After a year or so the plastic will start to break down. I recycle the plastic and make new ones each year.

Need more ideas for keeping pesky bugs and insects away? Check out these other articles:

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Comments

  1. How can we be assured we do not trap bees rather than just wasps and hornets?

    • The CO2 will last a few days Linda, but it will have residual effects for about a week. By that time you will probably need to empty or replace the trap.

  2. Thank you for the good information. So far as I am concerned, it is very useful information. Because I hate to be bitten by mosquitoes as well as there is so many mosquitoes in my country on accout of wet climate during summer. Once again, I ‘d like to thank you.

    • Thank you Jason! I know what you mean. I live in Western North Carolina which is considered a temperate rain forest. It’s very wet here and I swear, the mosquitoes here must have 3 horse engines on them, they’re so big! I’m hoping my bluebirds take care of some of them, but the traps will help too.

  3. I tried the mosquito trap last year, it didn’t work! Not a single mosquito was cought! Too bad because here in Italy we have tiger mosquitos from april to october, it’s a nightmare!

    • I’m so sorry it didn’t work for you Sandrine. I’ve had it not work for me a few times. Once it was because the yeast had died. I didn’t consider this until I tried a fresh batch and it worked very well. You might want to try again with new yeast.

  4. I’m wondering if you could think of an alternative to a plastic bottle…? I am trying not to use “disposable” plastics anymore, but I’d love to make these traps. I haven’t been able to think of an alternative and figured I may as well ask you and see if you have any come to mind. Thanks.

    • You could use glass Thera. You would do it the same way, but you would need a glass cutter to cut the bottle. It would also be heavier, so I would leave this one on the porch rather than hanging it. Packing tape works well to hold the two parts together. Or if you don’t want to use tape, try a seal made from silicone. Just spread it between the two parts and stick them together.

  5. I cannot believe you are killing wasps. Wasps, like bees, pollinate plants and flowers as they feed on nectar. They are VERY useful. If you ignore them they won’t sting you.