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6 Common Pests to Watch For

6 Common Pests to Watch For

6 Common Pests to Watch For

Posted February 13, 2020

Each season encourages unique pest control problems. Pests consume your food, elicit allergic reactions, and even spread diseases.

This year, defend your family from common household pests. Here are a few pests you should be watching for.

Common Pests

1. Mice and Rats

Rodents spread diseases, gnaw holes in your home and furniture, chew through wires, and contaminate your food, especially during the winter, though they can become a problem at any time of the year. Effective ways to prevent rodents from infiltrating your household include:

  • Storing your food and your pet’s food in airtight containers on a high shelf
  • Not leaving pet food out for long periods of time or overnight
  • Finding and blocking entry points with silicone caulking, copper mesh, steel screening with 1/4 inch gauges, or steel wool
  • Keeping floors and countertops clean

Squeaking and scratching at night, feces dropped around food sources or storage areas, and nests made of shreds of paper, pillow stuffing, or wall insulation can be signs of a rodent infestation.

2. Bed bugs

Luckily, bed bugs don’t spread diseases. However, they do come out at night and feed on warm-blooded animals, including humans, for up to 12 minutes at a time.

Bed bugs look something like a tick with six legs, and when unfed, they are flattened, oval-shaped, and reddish-brown with a ribbed abdomen.

Bed bugs can hide in the seams and crack of furniture, in folds of curtains, in drawers and amongst clothing items, around box springs and bed frames, and in the junction where carpet and baseboards meet.

Look for discarded exoskeletons, feces that look like minuscule dots of black pepper, egg casings similar in appearance to crumbs, and bloodstains on bedsheets. Watch for these common signs of bed bugs.

3. Carpenter ants

Unlike termites, carpenter ants cannot actually digest wooden materials. However, this common type of ant is still capable of massive amounts of building damage, leading to thousands upon thousands of dollars in repairs.

There are 24 species of carpenter ants in the United States, making identification difficult. The color and size of carpenter ant species can vary even within a single colony. A mature colony usually contains around 3,000 ants, but have been known to grow to 100,000 if conditions are right!

You might have a carpenter ant infestation if you see worker ants inside, if there are wood shavings beneath tunneling damage in wooden items, or if large winged swarmer ants emerge out of walls or other parts of your home.

4. Flies

Fruit flies, house flies, and drain flies are the most common types of flies you might see in your home. Best practices to get rid of these are:

  • Use a drain cleaner
  • Keep trash cans clean and lids secure
  • Dispose of any rotting fruits and veggies
  • Keep food in airtight containers.

You can also purchase flypaper or similar fly traps. Remember to keep doors and windows properly sealed or covered with screens that are in good repair.

5. Spiders

There are many species of spiders that are commonly found in homes. The two most dangerous spiders in North America are the black widow and brown recluse spiders. Either of these spiders can cause serious damage.

Black widow females, the more dangerous of the two, have red marks on the back or underside of their abdomens, depending on the species. Black widow spiders weave messy, irregular webs in dry, dark locations like your garage or basement. Brown recluse spiders are uniformly sandy brown in color with unmarked, long legs. Brown recluse webs are usually hidden shelters. Watch for these in your basement or in boxes and other storage areas.

Eliminating clutter and food sources, such as other small insects, can help prevent both spiders from living in your home.

6. Cockroaches

Cockroaches can spread disease, contaminate your food, and cause allergies. They pick up germs on their bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage, then transfer these germs to food or surfaces in your home.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), they are proven or suspected carriers of the organisms causing diarrhea, dysentery, cholera, leprosy, plague, typhoid fever, and viral diseases such as poliomyelitis. Certain roaches have been reported to spread at least 33 different kinds of bacteria and six kinds of parasitic worms – gross!

Cockroaches have adapted to live in almost any setting, even extreme cold. Your home is an excellent harboring spot for these pests because of the warmth and access to food, so sealing up your home and food is the best preventative defense against them.

Household Pest Protection

Common house pests are most often discovered in kitchens and bathrooms where they are looking for water and food sources. They can also harbor in crawl spaces, basements, and attics where they can live undisturbed.

Entry points can include gaps around windows and doors.Seal gaps and crevices with silicone caulking, including utility pipe entries, and install weather stripping and door sweeps. Keep your lawn maintained and store firewood at least 20 feet from your home.

Fox Pest Control

Fox Pest Control has the knowledge and experience to protect your home from these common pests.

We offer customizable solutions to fit your pest needs and a year-round Home Protection Plan that is guaranteed to keep pests out.

Restore your peace of mind by calling Fox Pest Control for a free inspection and estimate because No Bugs is Simply Better.

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