Wasps in the Mast - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 16 Old 07-09-2009 Thread Starter
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Wasps in the Mast

Anyone have any ideas on how to get rid of them? When I tug on a halyard . . . out they come . . . really pi$$ed. I’m sure a video of me dancing in the cockpit swatting the air would be a big utube hit.


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post #2 of 16 Old 07-09-2009
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Spray as much insect spray as you can in a hole in the mast and run like hell. Do it at night when they are all in their nest. Don't use the wasp and hornet kind that sprays 20 feet, use a fogging kind.

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post #3 of 16 Old 07-09-2009
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Wasps in mast

We had bees in Rio Dulce, Guatemala. First cousins, anyhow.

By all means, spray up the mast. The marina squirted stuff into the halyard exits.

The thing that seemed to work, finally, was to tie a messenger line to the shackle end of each halyard, saturate the last 20' or so of each halyard in full-strength liquid insecticide (coil them down in a bucket and pour the stuff over them), and pull the halyards up in to the mast.

Next day, use the messenger line to retrieve the halyards, re-soak, and repeat.

And again. And again. It took us about 3 weeks.

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post #4 of 16 Old 07-10-2009 Thread Starter
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Thanks! It never occurred to me that the little buggers were most likely using the halyards to walk up and down on the inside. Poison soaked messengers . . . perfect! Thanks

Night . . . absolutely!


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post #5 of 16 Old 07-10-2009
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Call PETA down to take care of those little buggers... Didn't they get up set because someone swatted a fly... Well let them take each wasp out of your mast by hand.


Personally I don't think PETA would come to your boat to do the dastardly deed on those wasps.

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post #6 of 16 Old 07-10-2009
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You probably shouldn't lick your hands while sailing if that's the case.. or your winches for that matter..


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post #7 of 16 Old 07-10-2009 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by WheresTheBrakes View Post
You probably shouldn't lick your hands while sailing if that's the case.. or your winches for that matter..
Good thinking! Don't those poisons go inert after a few weeks?


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post #8 of 16 Old 07-10-2009
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Gas em.


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Bees can be exterminated by spraying them with a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher. The extinguisher must contain nothing else, just plain carbon dioxide. Stand upwind if possible
from Alternative Pest Control

I am picturing renting a CO2 cylinder from LiquidAire or equivalent, stuff a hose in a hole at the bottom of the mast, crack the valve open and let it fill the mast up. May also cause the formation of dry ice inside the mast which will sublimate with time, continuing to keep the mast filled. The only problem is that the CO2 is heavier than air, so the initial burst would need enough pressure and volume to completely drive the air out of the mast. The more holes you plug on the bottom the better results you would probably have.

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post #9 of 16 Old 07-10-2009
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Try taking the top and spray tube from a can of wd40 and fitting it to a can of flying insect killer. Put the tube in the halyard exit and fog the inside. Here's the only problem - The wasps will come POURING out of there when you remove the tube. They will be dying and disoriented, but if there are a lot of them in there, they'll come flooding out. Have another can of spray in the other hand to defend yourself.

And definetly make a video....
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post #10 of 16 Old 07-10-2009
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Thought about this a little more.. Heres another idea :
Take a trash bag and cut a small hole in the side, put the hole over the halyard exit and tape it to the mast.. put a insect fogger can in the trash bag and seal the bag with tape, set the fogger off by pushing the button through the bag..squeeze the bag to get more smoke in the mast.. ?!?!?
Tell us what you did !!!


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