I do not hate them really. I find it difficult to hate any form of life (roaches absoluely excepted
), but around here they are much more of a nuisance than a help. We also have a pretty bad mosquito and fly problem because too many people leave standing water and trash on their patios and do not mow their grass regularly. If I could waive a magic wand and get rid of anything, it would definitely be the mosquitoes, roaches, and at least 80% of the wasps.
I have been in this property for several years now, and I know a lot of the problems around here come from a small and very poorly maintained multi-family property one street over. They have two dumpsters that are CONSTANTLY overflowing with trash that blows up into my drive regularly, etc. I complained to Code once or twice a year, but nothing was solved. They would clean up, and within a week or two, the problem was returned.
Finally, this year, I complained to Code every time their dumpsters either were overflowing or their tenants simply left garbage on the ground around the dumpsters---something I do not understand at all. Dumpsters are made to collect the garbage. You walked all the way to the dumpster with your garbage, why would you leave it on the ground instead of putting it in the dumpster so long as there was space????? I spoke to the manager a few times because one of the tenants was leaving his bags of garbage along side the back of the building about 30 ft. from the dumpster regularly for no discernible reason. Likewise, some of the tenants have dogs and will walk their dogs on the grass of the houses nearby, including mine, without picking up behind their dogs, even though city ordinance forbids it. The manager was tolerating all of this until this year. This year I was like a dog with a bone. After all these years, I could no longer tolerate half hearted efforts to keep the dumpsters emptied regularly enough and to stop the tenants from leaving garbage on the ground and letting their dogs defecate on my back garden. I reported every offence to Code and to Animal Control. So, far it seems to be working. The last couple of weeks I have seen no garbage on the ground, and the dumpsters have not been allowed to reach over capacity. My back garden bed is free from dog waste, too. I have no idea how long they will continue responsibly, though, so I plan to install security cameras soon. That way, I can identify exactly who is doing these things and hand the evidence over to Code and/or to police. Once again, though, I bear the cost to protect myself and my property from irresponsible, dirty people. Not happy about it, but I cannot afford a better neighbourhood than this one, so this is the best I can do.
In the final analysis, the upshot is a lot of people will try to push off the costs of maintaining their property onto their neighbours. Those dumpsters, for example, kept an horrible fly problem and rat problem fed---literally. Other neighbours will not mow until Code threatens to mow for them and charge them for it. Their yards full of tall grass and weeds harbour tons of mosquitoes and provide shelter for rats, mice, and snakes. They simply could not care less. Most of these properties are rentals. Many owners live out of town and even out of state. A few live in town in MUCH nicer neighbourhoods than this one. Either way, so long as they collect their rents, they really do not care about the health and well being of the people here. They have never heard of the concept of enlightened self-interest.
I found that I have to contact Code, and occasionally police, to try to keep things here reasonably maintained. Bad landlords and uncaring, often dirty tenants are the basis for a lot of "pest" problems. For example, one neighbour had all sorts of bulk trash type items on his patio next door FOREVER. It was waist high and had begun to overflow through the fence onto my property. Code finally made him clear it out, but before he did so, I know tons of wasps built nests in there, and mice and rats made their homes amongst it all. On the one hand, I have no inherent hatred of wasps and rats, but on the other hand, I cannot tolerate them living next to me in such abundance that they spill over onto my property and cause other problems for the area.
I suppose if wasps were left to find natural nesting places here and there, they would not be such a problem right now, but they have overgrown the area thanks to poor property management. Anyway, that about sums up what I am facing and what I can do about it. The occasional wasp here and here will not bother me.