Learn about pests aroud you

Ants

 ants2

Ants have become the primary pest infesting homes in recent years and are usually very difficult to control. Successful control of ant infestations takes some skill that is gained through knowledge of ant behaviour and experience in dealing with ants.

Basic Ant Biology

Ants are social insects that live in colonies and have several different types or castes of individuals. Each caste has a different function or job in the colony.

  • Workers forage for food, construct the nest and care for the young and the reproductive.
  • Reproductive include the original queen and the swarmer’s. The original queen’s job is to lay eggs. Swarmers are winged males and females that fly out to start new colonies and spread to new areas. These swarmers mate during the swarm, and the male dies soon after. The queen then locates a suitable nesting site, sheds her wings and begins to set up a colony.

Ants develop by complete metamorphosis, meaning the eggs hatch into larvae that must be cared for by the workers. The larvae pupate into adult workers or reproductive. After two or three years, the colony matures and begins to produce swarmers every year.

Ant Control

To get rid of ants, it is important to identify the ant species before attempting ant control. Some ant species, like Pharaoh ants, can be controlled using baits, while others cannot. To get rid of ants successfully, it is usually necessary to follow them back to their colony and treat the colony directly. Acebug pest control professionals have the experience to correctly identify your ants and kill them.

Types of Ants

Acrobat Ants

(Crematogaster spp.)

Characteristics

Size:

Ranges from one-eighth of an inch to more than one-fourth of an inch in length. The most commonly encountered species are found at the smaller end of this size scale.

Color:

Ranges from black to dark brown to red and black. The smaller species are typically uniformly dark in colour. A larger species, common is red and black.

Behavior:

When excited or disturbed, the acrobat ant workers run about with their abdomens held high above their heads. Like most ants, acrobat ants establish well-defined trails between the nest and food and water sources. They feed on a wide variety of foods, but the workers are partial to the sweet honeydew produced by aphids, scales and mealybugs found feeding on many trees and plants. Fruit trees, roses and many shrubs serve as hosts for aphids and may contribute to ant infestations in buildings. Most infestations inside are the result of workers searching for food.

Habitats

Acrobat ants are like carpenter ants in that they prefer to nest in moist or rotted wood. Colonies are most often found in tree holes, dead limbs, stumps and logs. Rotting areas in fences, decks and railings may also be nesting locations. Most infestations of acrobat ants originate from outdoor nests; however, if moist or rotted wood exists inside because of water leaks, this ant will readily nest indoors. Such interior nests are typically found around the perimeter – in soffits, door frames and skylights

Tips for Control

Acrobat ants are controlled by finding and treating wood where the ant colonies are located. Often, the nest may be located far above the ground in a tree where it is inaccessible to direct treatment. In such cases, limiting interior invasion of ant trails is critical. Repairing water leaks and drying out moist wood inside will help prevent infestations of both acrobat and carpenter ants. Improving attic and crawl space ventilation is also important in limiting acrobat ant infestations. General tips for limiting ant infestations include:

  • Eliminating piles of lumber, bricks or other debris that could serve as a nesting site for ants.
  • Keep landscape mulch less than two inches thick and at least 12 inches away from foundations.
  • Ensure the sprinkler system does not spray directly onto the foundation.
  • Seal as many cracks in the building’s exterior as possible.
  • Keep tree and shrub branches trimmed to prevent them from touching the building.

Bed Bugs

bedbug2We’ve all heard the reminder, “Sleep tight. Don’t let the bed bugs bite!” But since their bites are often painless (only have an itch filling) and skin reactions may afterward, many people are unaware when bed bugs have been feeding on their blood.

Basic Information on Bed Bugs

  • Bed bugs are reddish-brown and about one-fourth of an inch in length.
  • Bed bug bite wounds may show as generalized minor swelling or raised bumps that itch.
  • Bed bugs are not known to carry or transmit any human disease.
  • Getting rid of bed bugs can be extremely difficult because they may hide many feet from the bed in furniture, baseboards, doorframes, or within voids in the wall until they venture out to feed.
  • When bed bug populations become large, or when a host becomes scarce because no one sleeps in the bed for a period of time, bed bugs may crawl into other rooms or squeeze through walls to enter neighbouring locations. They may also be transported from place to place hiding in furniture, clothing, blankets and other belongings.
  • Evidence of bed bug activity includes live and dead bugs, dark spots on a mattress, box springs or bed frame, blood spots on sheets and empty tan-colored skins that are left behind when bed bugs shed their skins to molt into the next stage.

Habitats

  • Bed bugs infest homes, hotel rooms, and apartments by hitching rides on luggage, furniture, and other items carried from an infested room to another location. Bed bug prevention is difficult because it takes only one female bug or a few eggs deposited onto a bag to begin a new infestation elsewhere. Typically, an infestation begins in a single motel room, hotel room or apartment and then may spread to neighbouring units.

Tips for Control

  • Getting rid of bed bugs is very difficult. A consultation with Acebug fumigation company is recommended. Positive identification is important because bed bugs can be confused for flies’ bites. Misidentification can lead to unsuccessful bed bug control efforts.
  • Inspection is critical in preventing bed bugs from returning. Overlooking even the smallest crack in furniture may lead to a persistent infestation; therefore, beds, nightstands and related furniture often require disassembly and careful inspection.
  • Carpets may need to be gently lifted along the edge and the space beneath treated. Baseboards, door and window frames and any visible crack will require treatment in infested rooms. Should furniture be moved from an infested unit to another unit, it should be carefully inspected and cleaned or treated as necessary to prevent the spread of bed bugs to the new room.
  • People should take care when purchasing furniture at garage sales/second hand shops and should carefully inspect all sides and crevices for evidence of bed bugs. Picking up furniture that is seemingly in good condition left on the street for trash pick-up is not recommended.

Cockroaches

cockroaches2Cockroaches can be found infesting everything from homes to restaurants to ships and planes. They may follow water pipes and electrical lines through walls from one room to another and even from one apartment to another.

Cockroach Infestation

  • Cockroaches are accomplished hitchhikers. In fact, German cockroaches usually first get into buildings by riding in boxes, in furniture and in other items brought into the building. Most other cockroach species invade from the outside or from sewers or

Most cockroaches prefer to rest on wood rather than on metal and other surfaces. That’s why you’ll often find them living in wood cabinets or in cardboard boxes. German cockroach faecal material contains a pheromone that tells other cockroaches that the area is a good place to harbour. Large numbers of cockroaches may congregate in areas where faecal material has accumulated. These areas are called aggregation points.

All dishes and food items should be removed from shelving before treating for cockroaches. Good sanitation helps put stress on a cockroach population by making them more susceptible to treatments and baits.

Managing Cockroach Infestations

Acebug fumigation company professionals begin by inspecting and treating available hiding places in which cockroaches might live. This includes electric motors, electronic equipment, false ceilings, wall voids and accessible cracks and voids.

Mosquitoes

mosquitoes2The mosquito is the bane of man’s existence when it comes to human and animal relations. No other creature has caused mankind more annoyance, grief and disaster than this blood-feeding pest. The mosquito not only takes our blood in order to make eggs, which is an annoyance resulting in minor pain and itching, but can also cause medical concerns.

Basic Biology of Mosquitoes

  • The mosquito is a type of fly with a thin body, thin wings and long legs. The females are easily recognized by long, thin proboscis, or mouthparts, extending from the bottom front of the head.
  • Only the female mosquito bites – male mosquitoes feed on the nectar in flowers.
  • When a mosquito bites, she injects an anticoagulation agent into the skin to prevent the blood from clotting, thereby allowing her to feed. It is the body’s immune response to the anticoagulant that causes the reddened welts and itching.
  • People have varying reactions to mosquito bites, with some individuals experiencing rather large welts and severe itching.

Tips for Control

Complete control or elimination of mosquitoes around any property is not possible. Mosquito reduction, however, is very possible and involves a number of components:

  • Habitat Reduction – Remove items or address areas that have the ability to collect water and hold it for more than seven days. This includes preventing rainwater accumulation, monitoring gutters and emptying birdbaths or kiddie pools.
  • Controlling Mosquito Larvae – For properties that have ditches, small ponds or decorative garden ponds, environmentally friendly mosquito larvicides can be applied to the water by a pest professional in areas in which mosquitoes can breed.
  • Controlling Adult Mosquitoes – The best way to limit mosquitoes is to prevent adult mosquitoes from developing by eliminating or treating breeding sources. Because some adult mosquitoes are most likely always going to be present, treatments can be applied around a home to control as many as possible.

Consult a Acebug fumigation company specialist for tips and assistance in reducing mosquito populations. Attractive Targeted Sugar Bait, or ATSB, is a highly effective and environmentally friendly mosquito control solution.

Rodents

Rodents are highly adaptable animals that make up over 40 percent of the mammal class. With more than 2,230 species identified, their ranks are massive, although only three types are considered major pests in the United States. They are the house mouse, the Norway rat and the roof rat.

These three rodents are identified as major pests because they are commonly found near human dwellings and are most likely to benefit from human structures, food and waste. Rats and mice pose an issue for humans living within the same vicinity for a number of reasons.

BASIC RODENT BIOLOGY

Rats and mice are both capable of transmitting disease to humans through their hair, droppings and urine. A single mouse can excrete 40 to 100 droppings per day, according to the Mallis Handbook of Pest Control by Arnold Mallis.

Rats and mice might also bite, although it is not common. Sometimes a bite can result in rat-bite fever, a potentially fatal disease if not treated. Some people develop an allergic reaction to the excrement of rats or house mice, which can cause asthma-related symptoms.

In addition to causing disease, food contamination by rats and mice can cause billions of dollars in damage. Between one-fifth and one-third of total food production is lost annually due to rat contamination according to Mallis, who also states that a single rat can consume about 1 ounce of food per night. Some rat colonies can harbour more than 100 rats.

Rats and mice are also successful breeders. A female rat can reproduce every three weeks, and usually gives birth to about six to 10 young at one time. A female mouse reproduces every three to four weeks and usually gives birth to about five or six young, although sometimes up to 12. This means that both rat and mice colonies can grow large quickly, although rats only live for about a year. Mice can live up to two or three years under ideal conditions.

RODENT CONTROL

Rodents owe a majority of their survival success to their ability to adapt to different habitats. They are opportunistic food scavengers and will consume most types of food. If a certain food source runs out, they are likely to adapt to a new food source. In addition, they are mostly active just after sunset and just before sunrise – hours during which most people are asleep. These factors make rats and mice difficult to control.

Rats and mice are also successful breeders. A female rat can reproduce every three weeks, and usually gives birth to about six to 10 young at one time. A female mouse reproduces every three to four weeks and usually gives birth to about five or six young, although sometimes up to 12. This means that both rat and mice colonies can grow large quickly, although rats only live for about a year, Mice can live up to two or three years under ideal conditions.

Attempting to control a rat or mouse infestation can be dangerous. The most effective rodent control requires an integrated approach. Rodenticide alone is often not enough. Additionally, rodent control requires rodent proofing, harbourage reduction, trapping and increased attention to sanitation. For the most comprehensive solution, call a pest management professional.

Termites

termitesThere are numerous types of termites, including subterranean, dry wood and damp wood termites. They cause more than millions in damage annually and can cost homeowners an average of huge some in treatments and damage repairs. All types are a serious threat and require a different type of treatment strategy.

Signs of a Termite Infestation

Knowing the signs can save you thousands of dollars in treatment and repairs. If you notice any of the key indicators below, contact a Acebug pest specialist immediately.

  • Swarming termites are attracted to light and can sometimes be spotted near windows, doors, vents and lighting fixtures.
  • After termites enter a new home they shed their wings. You might notice these shed wings among dust near windowsills, heating vents, doors, in sinks and bathtubs and in spider webs. All of the wings are the same size.
  • Termites build muddy, flattened tubes approximately the width of a drinking straw. These tubes give them protection from predators and temperature extremes and help maintain a moist atmosphere.
  • Because termites eat wood from within, you can tap suspect wood with a screwdriver handle and listen for a hollow sound.
  • Dark areas or blisters in wood flooring may indicate termites feeding within or below.