SAN ANTONIO -- Rocko Whiting had to remove thousands of hornets from a tree in a northeast San Antonio neighborhood before most people had rolled out of bed.
Yes, he stirred the hornets' nest ever so slightly but not enough for a war with wasps.
"That's why we do it early in the morning or late in the evening," he said. "They are a little more docile and at rest. It's the element of surprise."
Whiting, who works for At A Boy Pest Control, was called out by a commercial client to the 9600 block of Broadway to remove the nest. He says the paper wasps or bald faced hornets had been in the tree for around two weeks.
How many wasps, exactly?
"I can't count that high," he said. "100,000 maybe? And who's to count for the ones that are going out back and forth."
The exterminator of 26 years said the hornets are about half the size of a honey bee with a very healthy sting. If stung, Whiting said said it generally last about five days.
The nest and hornets were removed in less than 30 minutes. They were bagged up and will be thrown away.