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Archive for June, 2012

Boxelder Bug

Posted on: June 29th, 2012 by pelican

 

Pest Stats
Color: Black with reddish or orange markings on dorsum
Legs: 6
Shape: Elongate-oval, somewhat flattened with head narrower than pronotum
Size: 1/2” (11-14 mm)
Antennae: Yes
Region: All

Boxelder bugs get their common name from the fact that they are often found on and around boxelder trees. This species is native to the western states, but can be found from eastern Canada throughout the eastern United States, and west to eastern Nevada wherever boxelder trees are found.
Habits
The boxelder bug population lives and thrives on maple and seed-bearing boxelder trees during the warmer months where they lay their eggs and feed on leaves, flowers and seeds. Occasionally, they will feed on the fruits of plum and apple trees.
Habitat
In autumn, boxelder bugs become gregarious and congregate on the south side of rocks, trees and buildings where the sun hits. After large masses gather, they migrate to nearby buildings or homes to overwinter. These pests tend to hide in small cracks and crevices in walls to insulate themselves from the cold winter temperatures. In late March to early April, adults leave their overwintering sites to return to their host trees for the warmer months.
Threats
Boxelder bugs are not known to bite, but their piercing-sucking mouthparts can occasionally puncture skin, causing a slight irritation and producing a red spot similar to a mosquito bite. When crushed or handled roughly, boxelder bugs may leave a reddish orange stain from their fecal material that can result in discoloration of curtains, drapes, clothing, etc.
Prevention
In order to prevent boxelder bugs from invading homes, repair holes in window and door screens, seal cracks and crevices with a good quality silicone or silicone-latex caulk and install door sweeps to all exterior entrances.
If boxelder bugs have already entered a home or building, no attempt should be made to kill them in wall voids because dead insect bodies can attract dermestid beetles. Rather, using a vacuum cleaner to remove them may provide temporary relief. The bag should be removed to prevent the bugs from escaping.
If an infestation is suspected, a licensed pest control operator should be called to evaluate and assess the problem.

 

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

Summer’s Most Dangerous Pest (Part1)

Posted on: June 29th, 2012 by pelican

Most people consider Memorial Day Weekend to be the unofficial start to summer, but in the pest control industry, we consider it the official start of pest season. It’s true, household pests are a concern year-round, but there is no doubt we see an increase in many types of pests once the weather heats up. If you’re like most and are planning to spend lots of time out in the sun this summer, it’s important to be aware of the risks posed by summer’s most dangerous pests – and learn how to keep yourself and your family safe.

1. Mosquitoes

Overview

Mosquitoes are perhaps the most dangerous of summer pests. They are most well known for their pesky biting habits, which can leave itchy, red bumps. But the real threat posed by this pest is their ability to transmit numerous diseases including West Nile virus, malaria, yellow fever, dengue and encephalitis.

Risks

Although many of these diseases are rare in the U.S., some – including West Nile virus – are more common. In fact, the CDC reports there were more than 700 cases of West Nile virus in the U.S. in 2011, resulting in 43 deaths. According to the CDC, symptoms of West Nile virus include fever, headache, tiredness, body aches, and in some cases, skin rash and swollen lymph glands.

Prevention

Avoid being outdoors at dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active.
Eliminate or reduce standing water on your property, which can be a breeding site for mosquitoes. Drain flower pots, swimming pool covers, barrels and other objects that can collect water on a weekly basis. Add a fountain or drip system to ponds and birdbaths on your property to keep water fresh.
Repair or replace any torn screens on windows and doors.
Use an insect repellent containing DEET or picaridin on exposed skin whenever outside for prolonged periods.

http://www.pestworld.org/news-and-views/pest-articles/articles/summer%E2%80%99s-most-dangerous-pests/

Summer’s Most Dangerous Pest (Part 3)

Posted on: June 27th, 2012 by pelican

3. Bees & Wasps

Overview

Yellowjackets, Africanized ‘killer’ bees, wasps, hornets and other stinging insects are a summer staple, frequently showing up at pool parties, barbecues and baseball games —especially in the late summer months. But these pests can pose a serious health risk if a hive is threatened or provoked, causing them to swarm and sting en masse.

Risks

Stinging insects send more than half a million people to the emergency room every year. Young children, the elderly and especially those with allergies are most at risk.

Prevention

Wear shoes, especially in grassy areas.
Overseed grassy areas to get better coverage, as this will deter ground-nesting insects.
Paint/stain untreated wood.
Remove garbage frequently and keep trashcans covered.
Do not swat at a stinging insect as it increases the likelihood of an aggressive reaction.
Avoid wearing sweet-smelling perfumes.
Ensure all doors and windows in your home have screens that are in good condition.
Seek immediate medical attention if stung, as reactions can be severe.

http://www.pestworld.org/news-and-views/pest-articles/articles/summer%E2%80%99s-most-dangerous-pests/

Summer’s Most Adngerous Pests (Part 2)

Posted on: June 21st, 2012 by pelican

2. Ticks
Overview

Ticks are always an issue during the summer months, but with their populations expected to be unusually high this season, they will be a major concern for those spending time outdoors. Of greatest concern is the blacklegged deer tick, found in the Northeastern U.S., from Virginia to Maine, in the north central states, mostly Wisconsin and Minnesota, and on the west coast, primarily in northern California.

Risks

Blacklegged deer ticks can transmit Lyme disease to humans, as well as pets. The CDC describes the symptoms of Lyme disease as fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic skin rash called erythema migrans, which forms in the shape of a bull’s eye. According to the CDC, Lyme disease can also affect joints, the heart and the nervous system if left untreated.

Prevention

Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts and closed-toe shoes when outdoors, especially in wooded areas or tall grasses.
Wear light colored clothing, which makes it easier to spot ticks and other insects.
Wear a bug spray containing at least 20% DEET when outdoors, and reapply as directed on the label.
When hiking, stay in the center of trails, away from vegetation.
Keep your own yard tick-free by cutting grass low and remove weeds, woodpiles and debris.
Inspect yourself and your family members carefully for ticks after being outdoors.

http://www.pestworld.org/news-and-views/pest-articles/articles/summer%E2%80%99s-most-dangerous-pests/

Earwigs

Posted on: June 15th, 2012 by pelican

Description
Earwigs got their name from the myth that they crawl into sleeping people’s ears and tunnel into their brains. The long cerci, or clippers, on their backsides easily identify an earwig.

Color: Dark Brown, Shape:1 inch, Size: Long, Narrow, Legs: Six, Antenna: Yes, & Flying: No.

Habits
Earwigs hide during the day and feed on leaves, flowers, fruits, mold and insects at night.

Habitat
These insects live together outdoors in large numbers. They can be found under piles of lawn debris, mulch or in tree holes. They gain entry to a structure through exterior cracks.

Threats
Contrary to folklore, earwigs do not crawl into ears and eat people’s brains at night. They do not spread diseases, but their menacing appearance can be alarming to a homeowner.

Prevention
Remove harbor-age sites such as leaf piles, mulch piles or other vegetation. Seal cracks and crevices well to prevent structural entry.

 

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

Powder Post Beetle

Posted on: June 13th, 2012 by pelican

Powderpost beetles lay their eggs in cracks of wood and the larvae tunnel into the surface, filling it with a very fine powder-like dust. Powderpost beetles have long, narrow, flat bodies that allow them to easily attack wood surfaces. These beetles are reddish-brown in color.

There are several hundred species of these, but fewer than 20 are widespread.
Are small, between one-tenth and one-third inch in length and usually are reddish brown in color.
Can emerge from wood used in construction from one to 10 years after a structure has been built.
Usually emerge in the spring.
Are most likely to be found in softwoods (pine, spruce, fir) or certain hardwoods (oak, maple) frequently used for construction, including wood used in log homes, conventional homes and furniture.
Are attracted to lights or to windows.
Live between one and two years.
Burrow small, one-eighth inch round holes in wood, and larvae create channels where they have chewed their way through. There is usually a fine sawdust-like powder streaming from exit holes.

Habits

Adult powderpost beetles are very active at night, enjoy flying and are attracted to the light.
Habitat

Powderpost beetles often attack hardwoods, and can be found in hardwood floors, timbers and crates, antiques and other objects made of hardwood materials.
Threats

Some researchers believe that powderpost beetles are second only to termites in the United States in their destructiveness to wood and wood products.
Prevention

Powderpost beetles can be prevented through vigilant inspection of wood sources in the home.

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

Question & Answer

Posted on: June 7th, 2012 by pelican

Do pests have to bite, sting, or crawl on people to make them sick?

ANSWER: No, surprisingly enough, you can get a pest-related sickness without ever coming into direct contact with a pest! Cockroach allergens, which consist of droppings, shed skins and secretions, have been shown to trigger asthma attacks in children.

 

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

Did You Know………..

Posted on: June 5th, 2012 by pelican

Bees must collect the nectar from 2,000 flowers to make 1 tablespoon of honey.

 

Source: http://www.pestworld.org/

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