Insects In And Around Your Home Or Business


Because of their painful stings, which sometimes can be fatal to some allergic individuals – wasps should be dealt with quickly whenever they are seen near homes and buildings. Their colonies can be found in leaves, trees, shrubs, walls, inside attics, etc. There are several varieties of wasps in the United States, including hornets, paper wasp, and yellow jackets. The color ranges from black to combinations of black with yellow, white or brown markings.

All wasps don’t sting; only the queens and workers have egg-laying tubes forming the stinger. Wasps are most common during warm spring and summer months and are most active during daylight. To ensure wasps stay away from your home or garden, always pick up fallen fruits and refuse the ones that attract wasps. Seal all holes around the house. If you have a wasp nest on your property, call us for the best treatment.

Ants In and Around the House

Ants are social insects and live in large colonies. There are two main types of ants in a colony: queens and workers. The queen ant lays eggs and worker ants care for the larvae, look for food and defend the nest.
Depending on the species, ant colonies multiply by swarming or budding and swarming means that winged males and females leave the colony to mate at certain times of the year. The mated females then established new colonies.

Carpenter Ants
These ants are the largest in size and are sometimes hard to identify by size or color because they are so variable. Winged males are smaller than winged queens. Wingless queens measure 5/8 inch, winged queens 3/4 inch, large major workers 1/2 inch, and small minor workers 1/4 inch. Workers have some brown on them, while queens are black. Workers have large heads and a small thorax, while adult swarmers have a smaller head and larger thorax. Carpenter ants do not eat wood but they do excavate into the wood. They will nest inside the wood and seriously damage wood buildings. These ants are difficult to control and professional help could be necessary.

Thatching Ants
There are many different species of thatching ants. Several are red and black while others are all black. Worker Ants range in size from 3 to 9 mm in length. Winged male ants of some species look almost identical to winged male carpenter ants. They often nest in tree stumps and large mounds in fields. Sometimes satellite nests are built in wall voids, attics and other parts of buildings. They do not cause damage but they can be annoying and can bite. there can be several queens in the colonies and colonies can contain many thousands of workers. Mating flights mainly occur in late summer.

Pharaoh Ants
Pharaoh Ants are small yellowish ants almost translucent and they can be a major nuisance inside a house. They prefer warm moist conditions. Pharaoh ant colonies are very large – containing up to 300,000 individuals and several queens. They feed on jellies, honey, peanut butter, corn syrup, fruit juices, greases, dead insects and other sweet stuff. They can be a serious problem in hospitals, restrooms, hotels, grocery stores, etc. These ants are difficult to control and sprays should be avoided that cause colony to split and spread, making the problem worse.

Odorous House Ants
Odorous house ants are small black ants about 1/16 to 1/8 inch long. These ants occasionally forage indoors for sweets and other foods. When crushed, they give off an unpleasant odor like rotten coconuts. This odor can be used to identify them. Odorous ants found indoors in the early spring may stop their activity indoors once warm summer weather arrives or when their preferred food source is removed. If the ants are routinely foraging inside and no action is taken, they will likely return in subsequent years as the colony gets bigger over the years, the ants may become more of a nuisance and control measures may become necessary.

Cornfield Ants
Cornfield ants are a problem in homes. They are often called moisture ants and they are not normally seen indoors except when the large winged honey-colored females or the smaller dark males swarm in the late summer. Cornfield ants prefer moist areas, and colonies are often found in decayed logs, stumps or in soil. In homes, colonies usually infest decayed wood previously damaged by carpenter ants or termites. Cornfield ants could further deteriorate the already decayed wood. Cornfield ants are indicators of possible moisture problems in the home and

Pavement Ants
The narrow, parallel grooves easily identify Pavement Ants on their heads and thoraxes. Pavement ants are 1/16 to 1/8 inch long with a dark body and lighter-colored legs. They have two small spines on the back portion of the thorax. Pavement ants nest outdoors, along curbing, under concrete slabs, etc. Inside structures nest in walls, insulation, floors and near heat sources during the winter. Pavement ants may forage in the home throughout the year, feeding on grease, meat, live and dead insects, honeydew, roots of plants, etc. Although they are not aggressive but workers can bite and sting.

Cockroaches Lifecycle and Habits
The most common cockroach in the US is the German cockroach. Cockroaches have three stages in their life cycle: the egg, nymph and adult. The females carry the egg cases around until just before they hatch. Over their lifetime, a female may produce 4 to 8 egg cases of about 40 eggs each. German cockroaches develop more quickly than other: their eggs hatch in 16 to 28 days, depending on the temperature. Nymphs develop to the adult stage in 74 to 103 days, depending on temperature.

During the day, these roaches may be hiding behind baseboard moldings, cracks around cabinets, closets or pantries, in or under stoves, dishwashers, and refrigerators. If roaches are seen during the day, the population is large. German cockroaches have a high need for moisture and usually travel 10 to 15 feet for food and water in kitchens, bathrooms, etc. Adults may die in two weeks without food and water but can live a month with only water. If the cockroaches are not controlled in time, they will get in and multiply very quickly in TVs, stereos, VCRs, telephones, etc.

Prevention and Sanitation

German roaches can move from one building to another during the summer – entering through cracks in foundations, gaps around doors or windows and along water and gas pipes. All the openings around the house should be sealed, and holes around the plumbing pipes should be filled. Check for cockroaches or insects before bringing any old appliances or furniture to your house. Clean areas under cabinets, stoves, sinks, and refrigerators regularly. Clean up spilled foods and liquids, and wash dishes as soon as possible. Keep food in tightly sealed containers.

Health Hazards
Cockroaches are a health hazard because they carry bacteria on their bodies which can be transmitted to people. The main diseases transmitted are different forms of gastroenteritis, including food poisoning, dysentery and diarrhea. If you are allergic to house dust, you may also be allergic to cockroaches. Bits and pieces of their bodies and feces can become part of the dust in your home. Allergic reactions to roaches happen more often to persons who have asthma. So if you or other family members have allergic symptoms talk to you, doctor.

Please remember that all pesticides can be harmful if not used as directed. Follow the label instructions carefully.
We offer cockroach control without any spray. You don’t need to empty your cabinets or leave your house. We offer up to a 3-year warranty. Please contact us for more information.

Silverfish and Firebrats
Silverfish and firebrats are shaped almost like fish. They hide in the smallest of cracks and crevices. They reproduce at a high rate which makes it hard to control them. Silverfish and firebrats live outdoors but when building conditions are warm and damp, they may move inside and adapt to the indoor environment. They can move around with items transferred from one place to another. They may even travel through heating ducts that originate in damp basements.
Silverfish and firebrats are similar wingless insects. They both feed on starches such as paste, glue, fabrics, cereals or wallpapers with paste. They can live without food for several months. Silverfish prefer warm moist areas, while firebrats prefer hotter areas. They are active during the night, leave yellowish stains on fabrics and live up to 2 1/2 years.
Silverfish are gunmetal gray in color, while firebrats are light gray with darker stripes. Silverfish are up to 13 mm long, whereas firebrats are up to 8 mm long.

While silverfish or firebrats are found in a structure, it indicates excessive humidity. Reduction of humidity is essential for long-term control. Effective long-term control may require improving ventilation, repairing leaks, installing fans, etc. In multi-story residential buildings – controlling these insects could be very hard. For any consultation, please contact us and we will answer all your questions.

Adult fleas are not only a nuisance to humans and their pets, they can also cause medical problems like flea allergy, tapeworms, and skin irritations caused by flea salivary secretions that vary among individuals. The typical secretion to the bite is the formation of a small, hard, red, slightly raised itching spot. There is a single puncture point in the center of each spot. Fleas can also transmit bubonic plague from rodents to rodents and humans. The tapeworm that infests dogs and cats can appear in children if pests or infested fleas are accidentally consumed.

Adult fleas are about 1/16 to 1/8 inch long, dark, reddish brown, wingless, hard-bodied, and difficult to crush between fingers. They have three pairs of legs. Fleas are good jumpers, leaping up to 7 inches and horizontally 13 inches. They have piercing-sucking mouthparts and spines on the body projecting backward.

Life Cycle and Habits
Fleas pass through a complete life cycle consisting of egg, larva, pupa, and adult. After each blood meal, females lay four to eight eggs at a time – about 400-800 within a lifetime. Females lay eggs on the host animal or in its bedding—the eggs hatch in about 10 days. Larvae feed on adult flea feces, which contain dry blood. When mature, they spin silken cocoons in which they pupate. The pupal stage lasts up to 20 weeks. Adult fleas may remain resting in the cocoon until the vibration of walking people or pets is detected. Adult fleas can not survive or lay eggs without a blood meal. Sometimes humans are attacked by fleas when they come home after a few days of being away because the fleas are starved of blood. and their usual host cat or dog is boarded out during vacation.

Effective flea control requires three major steps: sanitation, insecticide application, and flea control on the animal. If fleas are a problem in your home, please contact us. We will be happy to advise you on a possible solution.