As you go to get your mail today, you might notice something different about your mailbox. In addition to your everyday bills and the ads that will go directly into the trash, you may find a dryer sheet. No, this didn't accidentally fall from your mail carrier's sleeve, but your mail carrier is the person who left it there. If you do run across a dryer sheet in your mailbox, you should probably leave it there. It serves a purpose far beyond keeping your mail smelling fresh!
According to a Reddit user who is a postal worker, mail carriers will leave dryer sheets to deter wasps and yellowjackets from hanging out in your mailbox. As the weather in the Treasure Valley gets warmer, these stinging pests hang out in mailboxes to avoid the heat. They even build nests in mailboxes, making it unsafe for both you and your mail carrier. However, wasps and yellow jackets absolutely loath the smell of the dryer sheet.
Not every mailbox needs a dryer sheet. Most mailboxes don't have problems with wasps and yellow jackets. If your neighborhood is infested, you should consider putting one in your mailbox yourself. According to the postal worker on Reddit, who claims to have been stung ten times last year says that it isn't uncommon to find up to five yellow jackets in one mailbox. Mail carriers are trying to get ahead of the wasp and yellow jacket season by placing the dryer sheets now.
So, if you see a dryer sheet in your mailbox, just leave it. It may keep you from a painful situation later this year.