Wasp presence stings; Dr calls for more action to stop spread

More must be done to halt the invasion of Chinese Paper Wasps, says Rose Valley resident and beekeeper Dr Michael Hindmarsh.

Dr Hindmarsh raised concerns about the appearance of the wasps in the region with Kiama Council and the DPI earlier this year.

Dr Michael Hindmarsh.

Dr Michael Hindmarsh.

He said the council said they would be informed by the DPI; he says the DPI told him landowners were responsible for controlling any wasps on their property.

The DPI, however, says they have no jurisdiction over the wasps, as they are not an agricultural pest.

"Asian or Chinese paper wasps, Polistes chinensis, have been established in Australia since the late 1990s and are regarded as an established species and not an invasive species," a DPI spokesperson said.

"Their feeding behaviour is similar to native paper wasps."

DPI does not have a control program for Chinese Paper Wasps.

Dr Hindmarsh believes the wasps pose a direct threat to the region's subtropical rainforest butterflies, as well as human and animal health.

"Bee veils will be a necessity, not a fashion accessory," he said.

He is also concerned about the efficacy of available wasp traps.

"My trials with envirosafe wasp traps caught no Chinese wasps," he said.

"They can only be trapped with ... protein food."