Hello, I was just reading your article on the net and we are battling the mud daubers in the engines of out lawn equipment and tractors. Are there any traps or anything other than the chemicals to get rid of them, or will the chemicals hurt the machinery. Thanks in advance.
Most of the products we have listed in our MUD DAUBER CONTROL article can be used to keep them away on your engies. Remember, tractors and most all farm equipment are designed to be used outside. This means they are built to withstand water. Since concentrates like the CYPERMETHRIN are being mixed with nothing but water and the treatment dose is so light, your engine won’t be subjected to anything that could harm it if the treatment is done properly. Additionally, the oil, smoke, gas and other fluids found on most any engine are far more dominant than anything we sell. This means these contaminates will actually work against the Cypermethrin treatment. In other words, what’s on the engine and the running of the engine will make anything we sell not last as long as it normally would. That being said, we do have two products that would be good choices for this problem.
First, lightly spraying the exposed areas of the motor with the Cypermethrin mixed at 1 oz per gallon of water will both stop the wasps from nesting as well as kill any that land on it. And since they can readily detect the Cypermethrin and don’t like it, they’ll avoid treated surfaces. Do the treatments every two weeks to start to make sure it’s lasting during this time and then after a month of good results, you can wait a little longer in between treatments if the mud daubers are staying away. I would guess a month would be the longest window of protection you should expect to get and treatments should be done during mud dauber season. This is usually spring, summer and most of fall.
Another product to be considered is a dry spraying aerosol that came out this year which we have found works great for ants, spiders and wasps. PT PHANTOM is a residual type aerosol that will last 2-3 months inside the home when sprayed on baseboards and other locations where pests are active. Outside, I have found it to last 4-6 weeks on my boat which is stored out in the open. I would expect 3-4 weeks on anything like an engine which is what I found to be the case in my motor housing on the boat. The decking where spiders were nesting don’t get hot so I guess the Phantom lasts longer there but in the engine compartment, where mud daubers have been active, it only lasted about a month before they started building a new nest. It took two treatments in there to knock them out for good this year. The good thing about having some of this to use is that it’s handy and ready to spray. No mixing is needed which for me was important. Additionally, I was treating close to water and couldn’t use anything that would run or leak into the lake. The aerosol is light and dry to the touch right after it’s applied. Since it only takes a second or two blast to get a good area treated, there is little risk of run off or contamination so it’s ideal for my needs. For you, it could be helpful if you only have a couple of motors to treat. If you have 5 or more, the Cypermethrin might prove to be more efficient cost wise to use in the long run but either will handle the job quite well.