UltraPro Pest Control knows your intruder, its behaviors and characteristics!
Eliminating pest harborages, sealing cracks, screening all vents, keeping weather-stripping in good repair and maintaining good sanitation – both inside and out – are all essential in winning the ‘war on bugs.’ However, pests can nearly always find what they need for life and breeding within structures inhabited by humans. Although some pests are helpful to our environment, and others only cause general annoyances, many spread disease and cause major structural damages. Insects and rodents cost homeowners and businesses billions of dollars in damage each year.
TERMITES live in colonies that, at maturity, number from several hundred to several million individuals. Termites are widely known as an economically significant pest that can cause serious structural damage to buildings, crops or plantation forests. Their habit of remaining concealed often results in their presence being undetected until the timbers are severely damaged and exhibit surface changes. Once termites have entered a building, they do not limit themselves to wood; they also damage paper, cloth, carpets, and other cellulosic materials. When termites have already penetrated a building, the first action is usually to destroy the colony with insecticides. Regular inspection by a competent, trained and experienced inspector is the best defense.
CARPENTER ANTS are large wood-destroying ants indigenous to many parts of the world. They prefer dead, damp wood in which to build nests. Sometimes carpenter ants will hollow out sections of trees. The most likely species to be infesting a house in the United States is the Black Carpenter Ant (shown). Carpenter ants can damage wood used in the construction of buildings. They can leave a sawdust like material behind that provides clues to nesting location.
ANTS form colonies that range in size from a few dozen to colonies which may consist of millions of individuals. Their ability to exploit resources brings them into conflict with humans, as they can damage crops and invade buildings. They carefully select their nest sites and will avoid sites with dead ants, as these may indicate the presence of threats or disease. They are quick to abandon established nests at the first sign of threats. Populations are controlled using insecticide baits, either in granule or liquid formulations. Bait is gathered by the ants as food and brought back to the nest where the poison is inadvertently spread to other colony members. Boric acid and borax are often used as insecticides that are relatively safe for humans.
MICE can at times be harmful rodents, damaging and eating crops, causing structural damages and spreading diseases through their parasites and feces. In North America, breathing dust that has come in contact with mouse excrements has been linked to hantavirus, which may lead to Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS). Baiting procedures are commonly used as an effective rodenticide. An effective rodenticide must be tasteless and odorless in lethal concentrations, and have a delayed effect. This is because mice will often taste a small amount of the bait and then continue eating if they do not get sick.
POWDERPOST BEETLES spend months or years inside wood in the larval stage. Their presence is only apparent when they emerge from the wood as adults, leaving pin hole openings behind and piles of powdery frass below. The term ‘powderpost’ comes from the fact that the larvae of these beetles feed on wood and, given enough time, can reduce it to a mass of fine powder. They are therefore considered pests. If wood conditions are right, female beetles may lay their eggs and reinfest the wood, continuing the cycle for generations. Heavily-infested wood becomes riddled with holes and rooms or basements packed with a dusty frass â€” wood that has passed through the digestive tract of the beetles.
COCKROACHES adapt readily to a variety of environments, but prefer warm conditions found within buildings. Cockroaches leave chemical trails in their feces as well as emitting airborne pheromones, which other cockroaches will follow to discover sources of food and water. They are among the hardiest insects on the planetâ€”some species are capable of remaining active for a month without food and are able to survive on limited resources like the glue from the back of postage stamps. Some can go without air for 45 minutes. They can also passively transport microbes on their body surfaces, including those that are potentially dangerous to humans. Cockroaches have been shown to be linked with allergic reactions in humans, such as asthma.
FLEAS are external parasites that live off the blood of mammals. They lay 500+ eggs over their life, allowing for phenomenal growth rates. Flea bites cause an itching sensation and some people and animals suffer allergic reactions to flea saliva, resulting in rashes. Bites generally result in the formation of a slightly-raised swollen itching spot with a single puncture point at the center and often appear in clusters that can remain itchy and inflamed for up to several weeks afterwards. They can also lead to hair loss as a result of frequent scratching and can cause anemia in extreme cases. Fleas can also act as a vector for disease, transmitting between rodents and humans by carrying Yersinia pestis bacteria (bubonic plague), endemic typhus fever, and in some cases tapeworm.
TICKS are blood-feeding parasites that are often found in tall grass and shrubs where they will wait to attach to a passing host. Young ticks have six legs, and mature ticks have eight legs. They vary in size and appearance depending on the species. Ticks are vectors of a number of diseases, including Lyme disease, Q fever, Colorado tick fever, tularemia, tick-borne relapsing fever, babesiosis, ehrlichiosis and Tick-borne meningoencephalitis, as well as anaplasmosis in cattle and canine jaundice. Frequent grooming and chemicals for control may control the spread of ticks.
BEDBUGS are small, elusive, and parasitic insects that live strictly by feeding on the blood of humans and other warm-blooded animals. The name ‘bed bug’ is derived from the insect’s preferred habitat infesting house, especially beds or other common areas where people may sleep. Bedbugs are mainly active at night and are capable of feeding unnoticed on their hosts. Most observed bites consist of a raised red bump or flat welt, and are often accompanied by very intense itching. The red mark is the result of an allergic reaction to the anesthetic contained in the bedbug’s saliva. Reactions to bedbug bites may appear indistinguishable from mosquito bites, although they tend to last for longer periods. Bites may not become immediately visible and can take up to nine days to appear.
MOSQUITOES lay their eggs in water, which can be a salt-marsh, a lake, a puddle, a natural reservoir on a plant, or an artificial water container such as a plastic bucket. In some species of mosquito, the females feed on humans, and are therefore vectors for a number of infectious diseases affecting millions of people per year. During the heat of the day most mosquitoes rest in a cool place and wait for the evenings, although they may still bite if disturbed. Mosquitoes are adept at infiltration and have been known to find their way into residences via deactivated air conditioning units.
STINK BUGS, also known as â€œShield Bugs,â€ have glands in their thorax between the first and second pair of legs which produce a foul smelling liquid. This liquid is used defensively to deter potential predators and is sometimes released when the bugs are handled carelessly. The nymphs, similar to adults except smaller and without wings, also have stink glands. Although they are harmless to humans, when they group in large numbers they can become significant pests. They are seen typically in late summer through fall, and can be seen in many color varieties including brown, black, green, and red (some look like ladybugs).
BOX ELDER BUGS are about Â½ in long with a dark brown or black coloration, relieved by red wing veins and markings on the abdomen. In autumn, they can become household pest by seeking winter hibernation locations and find their way into buildings through crevices. They remain inactive inside the walls and behind siding while the weather is cool. When the heating systems revive them, they begin to enter inhabited parts of the buildings. In the spring, the bugs leave their winter hibernation locations to lay eggs on maple or ash trees. Groups of 50-200+ bugs may gather on house siding or brick, usually in a sunny spot. Insecticides have been proven to be very effective in killing these bugs.
CLOVER MITES and other types of mites can become a nuisance in and around houses. They generally enter houses close to thick vegetation and can infiltrate houses in very large numbers through cracks and small openings around windows and doors. Whether indoors or outside, clover mites are found more commonly in sunny areas than in darker areas. Chemical control of mites generally involves pesticides that are specifically developed for mite control. Because most miticides do not affect eggs, a repeat application is usually needed for control. Since an egg can develop into a mature mite able to lay eggs of its own in as little as 9 days, more frequent application may be required in hot, dry conditions.
SILVERFISH are called such because of the insectâ€™s silvery light grey and blue color, combined with the fish-like appearance of its movements. Silverfish consume matter that contains polysaccharides, such as starches and dextrin in adhesives. These include glue, book bindings, paper, photos, sugar, coffee, hair, carpet, clothing and dandruff. Silverfish are considered a household pest, due to their consumption and destruction of property. While responsible for the contamination of food and other types of damage, they do not transmit disease. They prefer humid conditions and can be found in basements, bathrooms, garages, closets, and attics.
SCORPIONS Scorpions have two large pedipalps which terminate with a chela (hand or ‘pincer’). They are well-known for the long five-segmented metasoma (tail) with an additional telson that bears the stinger/aculeus (pseudoscorpions lack a metasoma).Scorpions are found under rocks and other surface debris, in road cuts, cliff faces, under bark of live and dead trees, in houses, lumber yards, and deeply buried to depths of 20 feet in arroyos!.They eat mostly soft-bodied insects and other arachnids, including other scorpions. They generally avoid malacostracans (pill/sow bugs, wood lice) except in some species it is an exclusive food item. Some larger species are known to prey on vertebrates such as lizards, snakes, and small mammals (shrews, rodents).
MILLIPEDES Males often have missing legs where their gonopods are located. While many species have the gonopods on the seventh segment, some do not. Moist areas such as under rocks, rotting logs, leaf debris. Most millipedes eat decaying plant material, but a few species occasionally can be carnivorous. Some may also occasionally eat moist, living plants.
EARWIGS Earwigs have slender flattened body, bead-like antennae, and are easily recognized by the pair of large pincers (cerci) at the tip of the abdomen. Adult males have 10 abdominal tergites; females, 8. Some are wingless, but in most the fore wings are represented by short leathery covers called tegmina, under which the hind wings (if present) fold in a unique fan-like fashion leaving a chitinized triangular part exposed.Year-round, but often inactive/hiding in cold or dry weather. Plants, organic matter, other insects (some are almost exclusively carnivorous, and many are important in controlling soil pests).
Bed bugs are also known for being elusive, transient, and often nocturnal which can make individual bugs difficult to detect in lighter cases. While individuals have the option of contacting a pest control professional to help determine if a bed bug infestation exists, there are several do-it-yourself methods that may work equally well. Often the case is that bed bugs will manage to hide in the cracks of a bed, in the mattresses, in furniture, up under couches, in the seams of chairs, in the creases of upholstery, etc. or in areas that an inexperienced person is least likely to check the bed bug's survival. They may also be detected harboring themselves within the pockets and insides of clothes that are not regularly washed (i.e. jackets, coats, etc.). For reasons such as this, it may be a good idea to have the assistance of an experienced person with respect to detecting an infestation.