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Better protection than 'pepper spray'....wasp spray

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Wasp Spray - A friend who is a receptionist in a church in a high risk area was concerned about someone coming into the office on Monday to rob them when they were counting the collection. She asked the local police department about using pepper spray and they recommended to her that she get a can of wasp spray instead.

The wasp spray, they told her, can shoot up to twenty feet away and is a lot more accurate, while with the pepper spray, they have to get too close to you and could overpower you. The wasp spray temporarily blinds an attacker until they get to the hospital for an antidote. She keeps a can on her desk in the office and it doesn't attract attention from people like a can of pepper spray would. She also keeps one nearby at home for home protection. Thought this was interesting and might be of use.


Question: has anyone seen 'wasp spray' for sale in Costa Rica? Could someone bring it down in their suitcase?

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Munoz y Nana, the huge ferreteria in San Pedro, has had wasp bombs in the past. In recent years, we've brought it, double bagged and taped closed, in our checked luggage, and Mike Rappaport has brought it in in a consolidated container shipment.


The can we're using right now, Black Flag, doesn't have the range or the narrow stream of Spectracide. The latter is preferable, at least for attacking wasp nests.

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I actually looked into this initial "statement" its a email rumour mill. Look up snopes.com. In a nutshell yes you can "try" and use bug spray but the results will vary as to what brand your using whereas pepper spray has been tested and designed for use on humans and there are sprays out there that will achieve the 20 ft distance your after. If your going to consciously prepare yourself for self defence I think pepper spray may be a better bet. As far as if it is legal to use here? I don't know, it was illegal to use it in Australia so you'd need to be careful about the local laws.



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Thanx you Skipdingo,


I was about to cite the Snopes.com info here but you got to it first. Might be worth other Forums members having a look at.


Tingos' post about is a forwarded copy of an email that Snopes.com includes (link in previous sentence) in their discussion of this. This particular email itself has made the rounds several times as spam and actually really has nothing at all to do with Costa Rica. So there's actually no church receptionist in a high-risk area of Costa Rica that this text addresses.


Snopes.com says the info given about wasp spray is MIXED and points out that capsaicin pepper spray is made specifically for incapacitating an assailant. Wasp spray is made to kill wasps and may be adversely toxic to humans, but hey, there are those who've died after being exposed to capsaicin spray, too!


Snopes.com also explains that Pepper Spray comes in spray canisters that produce either a mist, or also are available which can shoot out a concentrated stream of spray from eight feet up to 20 ft.


In either case, using wasp spray or Pepperspray, in Costa Rica your assailant just might file a denuncia against you afterwards for injuring him. What a world, what a world!




Paul M.

Forums Moderator


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Defensive pepper spray (and other defensive implements) are legal here, although I don't have reference to the specific laws relating to them. They are available in many (most) gun stores. No permit required (except for the guns of course.)


I spoke with Jose at the Huracan store in Alajuela (sell guns and bicycles) to confirm. He has a variety of non-lethal defenses available and confirmed it is legal and no permit required.


Again, this is semi-hearsay since I have no specific law text reference, but if the store keepers that sell it say so I'd have confidence.

Edited by CMinCR
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