Of course, your home is a place of warmth, comfort, food and the very best place to raise a family. Unfortunately, a lot of pests think so, too. Here is a list of the top ten pests you will find trying to make your home their home throughout the year:
Depending on the species, ants can be simply an annoyance or a real threat. Carpenter ants live inside wood in colonies chewed out with their mandibles and a large infestation can damage a building. Though ants in general don’t usually cause structural damage in a home and enter mostly to find food and water, the bites and stings of fire ants are memorably painful.
There are actually several kinds of roaches, including the American cockroach, the German cockroach, the Australian cockroach and the Oriental cockroach. All of them love to live in human habitations where they can find plenty of water and food. The food includes not just that which humans eat, but soap, dirty clothes, toothpaste, starches and their own dead relatives.
Mice contaminate food for both people and livestock with their feces and urine and sometimes spread diseases. If they’re not controlled, their population can explode. A female mouse is sexually mature when she is six weeks old and can have as many as 10 litters a year. Each litter will have between five and 14 pups.
These primitive insects are different from most others in that they lack wings. They are attracted to sugars and starches and are known for eating the glue used to bind books.
Termites, which are related to cockroaches, do an immense amount of damage to buildings with unprotected wood. They are social insects and can live in colonies with millions of individual insects.
Spiders are not insects but arachnids. Though they are beneficial because they eat insect pests and even other spiders, some people simply can’t stand them. Also, there are two North American spiders that are dangerous to people, though they are fairly docile. They’re the black widow, recognizable by the patent leather black of her legs and body and the red hourglass on her abdomen. The other is the brown recluse, which holds its legs crabwise when it’s at rest and has a pattern like a fiddle on the top of its thorax.
Though these pests donâ€™t bring disease, many people find them uniquely disgusting. As their name implies, they live in upholstery. At night, they suck blood from sleeping humans along the paths of the blood vessels. Once they are established in a residence, their eradication can be so difficult that people find they have to throw out their otherwise perfectly good furniture.
These tiny moths are inconspicuous and seek the darkness and warmth of soiled clothes. It’s not the moths that chew holes in fabrics, but their caterpillars.
Like clothes moths, it’s the larvae of these insects that damage fibers. Carpet beetles remain in their larval stage for at least a few months. Some larvae persist for years before they finally pupate.
There are several kinds of flies, but the housefly is most familiar to many people. Flies lay eggs in filth, and they carry pathogens both within and upon their bodies. This makes the fly a notorious disease vector. Flies transmit parasites and spread other diseases such as typhoid, dysentery, cholera and viral hepatitis.
While carpenter bees are generally not dangerous to humans, as the males are not able to sting people, these bees are very dangerous to the structure of one’s home. These bees make their homes in wooden structures, and will dig holes into the wood, whittling more and more away every year. These holes can allow water to come in and cause the wood rot.
Paper wasps, named for the paper like structure of their nests which are built from plant material and saliva. They often make their homes in structures like doors and windows, and can have very painful stings, causing serious reactions to people allergic to their venom.
Yellow Jacket Wasps
Yellow jackets, which are often mistaken for bees, can be identified by the alternating sections of black and yellow on their bodies. These wasps are dangerous as they often live in large colonies, and become very aggressive when protecting their colonies. Their stings can be very painful, can cause allergic reactions in many people. Unlike bees, yellow jackets can sting their victims repeatedly. While they are sometimes thought of as beneficial because of their habits of eating beetles, flies, and other pests, they also eat fish, meat, and sugary foods leading them to infest garbage cans and picnics.