Can Rats Live In The Ceiling?


It can be distressing to wake up to rat droppings and chewed items all over your home. Unfortunately, spotting a rat during the day can be difficult as these pests love to stay in out-of-sight places and are nocturnal, which means they are active mostly at night.

Thus, it is probable that rats are nesting in the walls and ceilings, or crawl spaces in your home, away from predators and the elements. Besides, these rodents will gnaw on anything that comes their way, causing a lot of damage to your property.

Having rats in the ceiling is an indication that they have already built a nest and started breeding. And as they are capable of reproducing at a very fast rate, it won’t be long before their numbers grow exponentially and become an infestation.

Keep reading to find out if you have rats living in the ceiling and how to deal with the rat infestation, if detected.


How Do Rats Get In The Ceiling?

Rats can enter the ceilings through small holes as they can fit through a half-inch diameter opening. Sometimes they might chew their way through the cracks and crevices in the ceilings and other entry holes. Some species of rats tend to live exclusively on the roof, and you will find them running in high places such as trees or telephone lines, and climbing into the attic and ceiling in your home.


Can Rats Climb On Ceilings?

Considered to be excellent climbers, the rats can climb on surfaces such as ceilings. In fact, rats are able to climb most rough and smooth vertical surfaces, up to 13 inches in height. Thus, they can climb up the walls and find openings in the ceilings. The ability to jump even 20 times their height or walk on pipes, wires, and thin ropes, allows them to easily get up onto the rafters in your home.

Moreover, they can access climbing objects from the outside and use them to climb onto the roof, before entering through openings into the ceilings.

During the dry or cold winters, the rats will look for climbing materials to access the ceiling. When living in the ceiling, they can easily come out and get downstairs at night to find food and water in your house.

They can also stay on your roof and climb up the ceiling during the winter season. As they are warm-blooded animals, they would stay on the roof as long as they are protected from the harsh weather outside.



Can Rats Chew Through The Ceiling?

If a rat has found its way from the outside into your home, it might chew through the ceiling to get into any space in the house. In fact, it happens quite often that a rat that lives in your home to chew through the ceiling.

The chewing often happens in house structures that are made from materials such as drywall. Typically, ceilings and walls are made from drywall. The rats’ sharp front teeth, the incisors, can easily eat through drywall, as well as plaster, wood, and plastic. They will bite through the ceilings when they recognize a food and water source in your home.

Thus, if you hear chewing sounds in your ceiling at night when it’s quiet in the house, it might be best to call a pest and wildlife control expert to investigate. It can be challenging for a homeowner to find the entry spots made by a rat in the ceiling. This is because rats tend to be discreet and won’t chew on the obvious spots in your ceiling. They might chew about a half-inch hole in the ceiling, close to the wall, and find their way into the house by climbing down and up the walls.

These rodents prefer cluttered places in the house, so it would be better to check these spots for rat bites and find ways to exterminate them from your property. What’s worse, the rats might chew on electric cables on the roof, which can lead to a fire hazard, so you should deal with the rats on your roof immediately.


Can You Hear Rats In The Ceiling?

The roof rats can be quite noisy and will make scratching and squeaking sounds when nesting or running in the crawlspace of your ceiling. You can easily distinguish the rat noise from the noises made by the home appliances.

Because rats are very fast, it’s likely that you hear them scurrying quickly around the crawlspaces. They also tend to follow the same runways over time, thus, you may hear noises coming from the same area in your house structure.

In addition, your pets will hear the sounds before you hear them, so you should observe their behavior if you suspect a rat infestation on your property. Your dog might be looking up the ceiling constantly or bark while staring at the roof.

Moreover, apart from hearing animal noises on the roof or ceiling, you can notice rat droppings in your home, and they might host pathogens leading to health issues. Also, if you have fruit trees in your backyard, you might notice half-eaten fruits. If these pests enter your home, you might find that leftover foods in your kitchen are gone. You might be lucky to see the rats climbing the walls up the ceiling if you wake up at night.


If you can hear strange noises on the roof or in the ceiling, especially during the night, you should have a pest control technician inspect it as soon as possible to find out whether there is a rat infestation.

Rats can be really hard to remove once they have entered your house, thus, specialist help is needed. At American Pest Control, we provide homes in Northeast Georgia with reliable and effective pest control services specific to your homes’ needs. So don’t hesitate to contact us today for a quote and a free inspection!


Can Mice Travel With You When You Move House?


Mice are notorious wild animals that can be a big problem to get rid of when they get into your home. These small creatures are able to use any tiny hole to access the house in order to look for food, warmth, and shelter for survival.

Thus, it is necessary to take precautions when moving house so that you avoid a mouse infestation in your new home.


Can Mice Travel With You When You Move House?

Mice can travel from one house to another and they are very smart when it comes to hiding. They can hide in furniture like sofas, beds, and closets, and will create a comfortable nest for themselves and their babies.

When you move house, you most likely don’t even realize that there might be rodents hiding in your storage boxes, bags, and containers. They create a cozy nest in sofas and armchairs mostly because they find soft and warm fabrics, foam, stuffing inside.

These pests can reproduce while nesting in there and will have many young ones at once. Keep in mind that is not wise to poison the mice nesting in the sofa because it can cause serious health problems in people. The best way is to set up traps where these rodents go for their food and water.


Can They Hide And Travel In Furniture, Boxes, Or Bags?

Don’t be surprised that mice can follow you, travel in your belongings, and move with you into your new house. This is because they squeeze into your boxes and bags that they find to be warm, cozy, and dark.

Mice can climb surfaces up to about 79 inches and jump up to 9.5 inches in height, which means they could jump and climb from one item to another with ease to find shelter. They are capable of climbing and jumping any smooth and rough surface, which makes it easy for them to travel to new locations.

It is very easy to notice the presence of these rodents in the house when you hear strange noises and see mysterious holes in the boxes. Additionally, there is a probability of spotting chewed clothes and shredded papers when you start unpacking in your new home. They will do this to build a comfy nest for themselves. Mice will also leave their droppings anywhere in the house.



Can They Survive The Move?

When you relocate to a new house, the mice will also travel together with you. Once in your new house, these animals will have to learn about their new surroundings and ways to find food and water.

Provided there is enough food, the new environment will automatically suit the rodents and they will be able to survive there. However, a relocated mouse may find it hard to survive in the new environment and may not survive if there is not enough food and water in the new location. If it’s not able to find anything to eat or drink, it’s going to eventually die.


How Do Mice Get Into The House?

Mice are clever, inquisitive, determined, and opportunistic, thus, they will search for tiny openings and cracks to squeeze through in search of food. For this reason, it’s important to take care of small gaps in the house structure to ensure that mice are not getting inside.


They can climb the ladders, walls, cables, and can swim through the water pipes to get indoors. These rodents can quickly adapt to the new environment that is your new home if they can easily hide and find a meal. On top of that, they can be very destructive because they can easily damage your belongings, furniture, clothes, and food supplies.


Surprisingly, mice can potentially come up through the toilet. They can also enter into a home through the bathtub drain and sink if the drainage is not properly sealed. They can access through windows, ceilings, and walls as well because they’re able to climb rough vertical surfaces.


Because of their small size, they can squeeze themselves through a small, 1/4 inch gap. They will sneak in very small spaces as they have a sharp sense of smell, hearing, and touch which enables them to find food and be difficult to trap. Since human housing is the best place for these rodents in terms of shelter and food, they hide very well and usually come out at night or in dim light.


They are most attracted to messy and cluttered homes because they can easily get into rubbish, get scattered food and various materials to build nests. They will also get inside clean and tidy houses, although they don’t favor them as much as unkempt houses.


Thus, if you want to avoid mice infestation in your new home, take the time to finish unpacking from your recent move as soon as possible. If you leave your unpacked possessions still sitting in the attic, garage, or in an undisturbed corner of your house, these rodents will get a perfect place to make a nest.


Your new home is supposed to be a place where you can relax, and feel comfortable and safe. This may be difficult to do if you suspect that you have mice roaming around your clean house. If you think there might be a mice infestation, don’t hesitate to call the exterminators at American Pest Control in Athens, GA, for a free inspection or an estimate.


Do Rats Come Out During The Day?


Rats fall under the category of the most loathed pests in homes, mainly due to their ferocious destructive habits. If you’ve been wondering whether they do come out during the day, you’re not the only one! In short, you will rarely see rats during the day, but the fact is that they do come out.

During and after the 2020/21 global pandemic, rat sightings during the day have become even more common, taking into consideration that food sources have become more scarce. With this in mind, it would not be surprising to spot a rat in your home, or even outside, during daylight hours.


What Time Do Rats Usually Come Out?

Rats are generally known to be nocturnal, which means that the best time for them to come out and do their rodent business would be at dusk. That, however, does not mean that they cannot come out during the day.

Due to the fact that they tend to live close to humans, rats have adapted their natural instincts to best suit their needs. As such, they are now able to come out only when the surroundings are less dangerous for them, which is mostly after dark.

Depending on the location and environment, however, they can still come out in the daylight as long as it is safe for them. This is especially the case where there are safer routes to explore during the day.

In fact, there are some places, mostly commercial such as bars and clubs, that favor rats a lot during the early daytime hours. These are sites with too much activity going on in the evenings and nights, so rats prefer sneaking in during the day as this is when there is the least activity.



Where Do Rats Hide During The Day In A House And Outside?

Houses with higher levels of cleanliness are less likely to foster rat infestations. That being the case, where do rats hide during the day in a house if they cannot come out?

Rats prefer hiding in holes, which is why they often find cracks and crevices inside your home. They may also crawl up through drains, so it is important to check your shower drain and gutter on a regular basis.

When outdoors in the yard, you can find these rodents underneath trash and debris if you have some outside your house. If there are garbage cans and dumpsters around, they will use those too, as a means of cover from predators. Rats also crawl up trees during the day to look for food sources.

In a city, rats tend to hide in sewers and other public places during the day where they can avoid predators. They will only come out when it’s dark or when they feel that it is safe to do so.

That said, the most common places where rats like to hide in your house during the day include: air ducts; behind cabinets and cooking stoves; under refrigerators; inside woodpiles; in piles of clutter; in storage boxes; in ventilation systems; inside hollow walls; in drains; in wall and ceiling crawl spaces; and in attics and basements.

On the other hand, the outdoor hiding locations for rats include: in the garage and outdoor shed; in rain gutters, outdoor drains and sewers; under bushes and shrubs.


Is It Bad To See Rats During The Day? Does It Mean An Infestation?

Rats will only come out when they feel that it is truly safe, which is why you rarely see them during the day. Thus, seeing one or more rats during the day is often a likely sign of an infestation in your home or commercial property.

On the other hand, it is also possible that there is just one rat that you’re seeing during the day. If it keeps returning to your yard or around your house, however, that can be indicative of an infestation.

In such cases, the best thing to do is to take note of where the rat flees to after you’ve scared it. That way, further inspection can make it easier to determine whether you are facing a rat infestation on your property.

Other indications of an infestation include, but may not be limited to:

– Lots of droppings in a certain area

– Chewed-through holes in floors and walls

– Nesting material, which often contains paper, fabric, or even plants

– Strange smells coupled with other signs such as droppings and rat activity during the day


The takeaway here is that seeing rats during the day is not necessarily supposed to be a bad thing. However, seeing one or many rats during the day in addition to other signs of an infestation should make you feel a little concerned. Thus, it is important to take action as soon as possible and get in touch with an expert.

If you believe you have a problem with rats in your home or yard, our American Pest Control team is specially trained in rodent trapping, removal, and control. So contact us today to learn more about our residential and commercial pest control services in Northeast Georgia, and to schedule a free inspection.


Will There Be More Mice If You Find Just One In Your Home?


If you’ve found a mouse in your house, you might be wondering: are there more?

It all depends. Chances are that if you see one mouse in an active part of your home during the day, that you only have one mouse in your house at that given moment. This is because the mouse may have been trying to escape a predator and found an escape route through your home.

But this is not always the case. When you do see a lone mouse running through some part of your house, you should do a thorough search to see if there are more than one hiding out or making their own home in a dark corner of your house.


Is It Possible To Only Have One Mouse In The House?

The good news is that yes, there is a possibility of only having a single mouse in your home. It does happen from time to time, but do not count on it happening in your home. You may be the exception to the rule.

There is a way to tell approximately how many mice your home has welcomed. Check out the mouse droppings you see on your floor, counters, or furniture. If you find only 5 or 6 mouse droppings, that is a good sign, as that few droppings will tell you that there is only one of those rodents scouring about indoors.

On the other hand, if you see a lot of droppings, and those are not hard to miss, then you know you have more than just one mouse. Exactly how many you have will be hard to tell as you do not know how many droppings each mouse has left behind.

Now, if you saw a mouse at night and in a very obscure location inside your home, chances are you do have more than one mouse living with you. Mice moving about at night and acting normally indicates there is a colony of them somewhere in your home.


Does Finding One Mouse Mean An Infestation?

Yes and no. That is the best answer that can be given as it is hard to tell how many mice are living in your home without spotting the nest.

Sometimes, one mouse simply means there is only one mouse in your home. Other times, a single mouse represents a whole colony and that colony is full of female mice reproducing on a regular basis. One mouse could be the start of a colony and infestation or it could not be.

Even if you only have a few mice in your home, it only takes them 5 to 8 weeks to reach reproduction maturity. Once that happens, they will start reproducing at larger numbers and adding to your mouse problem.

With an average litter of 6 to 8 little mice pups, and the possibility of 5 to 10 litters per year per female mouse, one mouse in the house is enough to raise an alarm and see how big the problem is.

Don’t forget that each litter can start having their own babies after 5 to 8 weeks. If you let the problem go on, it can add up into a very big mice problem for you and your family.



Common Signs You May Have A Mouse Infestation

The good news in all of this is that you will see the signs left by mice telling you that you have an infestation. The large number of mouse droppings is just one sign and it will not be the only sign you will see.

Here are some more signs to let you know that you have a rodent problem in your home:

– You often hear scratching or squeaking sounds coming from inside your walls, ductwork, crawlspace, or other hidden areas.

– There will be gnaw marks on your baseboards, drywall, furniture, electrical wiring, and just about any other place the mice may visit.

– You may smell an ammonia-like odor in different parts of your home where you did not use ammonia for cleaning. That smell comes from mouse urine which is either normal bathroom relief, or the mice have decided to divide your home up into their own personal territories.

– There will be holes in walls, corners, cabinets, baseboards, and other easy-to-chew spots. These holes tell you the path the mice are using to go to their feeding sites and back to their nests.

– You find nesting materials that have dropped on your floor, counters, etc., as the mouse carries them to their nesting site inside your house structures. Those nesting materials can be cloth, fiberglass, paper, cotton, cardboard, and more.

When you see these signs, they tell you two things. One, that you have a mouse problem, and two, the mice have an easy access point into your home that needs to be sealed.


If you’ve seen mice in your home, even if it’s only a single mouse, it’s important to call a pest control expert. This is because there is a high chance of having a larger infestation. These rodents carry various diseases and contaminate food storage, thus, eliminating them as soon as possible should be your priority.

American Pest Control offers a wide range of services for rodent trapping, removal, and control in Northeast Georgia. One of our experienced technicians will thoroughly inspect your house, checking for evidence like mouse droppings, gnaw marks, or nesting materials. He’ll also make exclusion recommendations to prevent more mice from entering your home. So pick up your phone and call us today!


Should You Be Worried About Stink Bugs In Your Garden?


Stink bugs are tiny insects that can be annoying as they produce a foul odor whenever they feel threatened. During the warmer months of the year, stink bugs live outside. As soon as their eggs hatch in summer, the little bugs come out, ready to invade your property and attack your garden. In the fall, you’ll be able to see many more adult stink bugs in your garden, and even in your house where they’re trying to find a place to hide for the winter.

So, should you be worried about stink bugs in your garden? The answer is a resounding “yes” as they lower the quality of your crops and can wipe out other decorative plants as well.

The insects are herbivores that destroy the vegetation and crops in your garden. Using their sharp mouthparts, they perforate and suck out the juice from the inside of roots, leaves, fruits, and stems of plants in order to extract nutrients and feed themselves. They will also inject digestive enzymes that dissolve the seeds. Besides, they also leave their waste on both fruit and foliage.

In addition, the stink bugs can carry viruses that they later spread to the vegetation. But they can cause even more havoc to your fruit plants by spreading yeast spot infection, which is responsible for significantly reducing crop yield and causing cosmetic damage to the fruit.

If stink bugs numbers go unchecked, eliminating them will be a difficult task. Hence, you should embrace the use of proper pest control methods to keep their numbers in check as soon as possible.

Keep reading to find out more about the harm that stink bugs cause in the garden and what to do about the infestation.


What Attracts Stink Bugs To Your Garden?

Fruits, ornamental plants, nuts, and even weeds can be the key attraction of stink bugs in your garden. When irrigating plants and grass, or settling into a flower bed, these are the two main routes through which the insects enter your garden. The bugs thrive in sucking the life out of your plants, which results in the slow death of the plants.

The bugs are likely to choose your garden as their next home for a couple of reasons. They usually forage on ripe berries and second leafy vegetables. The presence of fruit trees with ripe fruits serves as an invitation to these shield-shaped bugs. Besides, shrubs, vines, and ornamental plants are also very enticing to the bugs.

Warm weather offers the insects a thriving environment, causing them to multiply. During winter, they are not active and tend to hide in crevices in the attic and walls of your house, where they can find the much-needed warmth. As long as the temperatures remain low, you do not notice their presence in your yard.

However, when winter is over and temperatures rise, they slowly find their way into the garden to feed. Whenever they are gathered in their numbers, they release a pheromone, i.e. a special chemical that draws more of these insects into your garden or home. Thus, when you notice them on your property, take action before their numbers increase exponentially.



Where Do Stink Bugs Lay Eggs In Gardens?

Adult stink bugs do not lay eggs until spring, when there is sufficient food and warmth for their eggs to hatch later in summer. While they feed on fruits and foliage, they lay their eggs on the back or underside of the leaves.
During spring, adult stink bugs find their way out and feed on all the available plants, particularly on fruits and any foliage they come across, where they lay their eggs.
After a few weeks, the nymphs hatch from the eggs. Immediately after hatching, the insects are driven by hunger into nearby plants. The young bugs will develop for the rest of the summer as there is enough food to eat.
The sharp mouthparts are essential in piercing the skin of fruits and plants to extract the juice. However, the stink bugs tend to leave their toxic saliva behind, which is responsible for killing plant cells.


How Do You Know If You Have A Stink Bug Infestation In The Garden?

Stink bugs are difficult to identify as there are many species that significantly vary in appearance. Nonetheless, adult stink bugs have a shield-shaped body that grows up to 6 inches long and equally wide. They have a mottled tan or cream green color, with some species having colored markers.

Nymphs tend to be smaller in size and vary in color from red, black, brown, and green. Depending on the species of the stink bugs, their eggs may differ in color, but tend to look like tiny barrels or small pistachio nuts.

The first thing that signals a stink bug infestation is when you notice them in large numbers in your garden or see lots of nymphs on fruits. Furthermore, you are likely to detect an infestation by noticing wide-ranging destruction of the plants and crops, thanks to their piercing.

Stink bug infestation kills seedlings, wilts leaves, cause stunted growth in plants, and they create pits and spots on fruits. Fruits tend to drop prematurely, become deformed, or may even fail to form.


Should You Eliminate Stink Bugs?

The worst problem with stink bugs is that they are destructive to fruit trees, ornamental plants, and other vegetation in the garden. But they do not pose a direct threat to people or cause structural damage to houses.

However, they can be a nuisance to people and pets. They have glands that give off a strong foul odor when squashed, disturbed, or when they feel threatened. It’s a natural way of protecting themselves against predators.

Also, they can be factors in the spread of certain plant diseases as they travel from one plant to another.


Finding a large number of stink bugs in your garden is a telltale sign of an infestation. Once the infestation is already underway, eliminating stink bugs can be quite a challenge. Thus, it is important to apply professional control methods to ensure these pests are effectively removed and prevent them from invading your garden again in the future.

Our expert team at American Pest Control in Atlanta will examine your property and come up with a strategic plan to keep these bugs at bay! Call us today for more information on stink bug control or request a free pest inspection.



Are House Spiders In Georgia Dangerous?


Most of the house spiders that are common in Georgia do not pose much danger to humans. They sometimes venture indoors by accident and usually wander around the house looking for an ideal place to live where there is food and water. Also, most of them are not deadly or aggressive to humans. Instead, they try to stay out of the man’s way as much as possible.

However, the Brown Recluse and the Black Widow spiders, commonly found in Georgia, are two of the few species that are dangerous to people. Some other house spiders can bite in defense but shouldn’t cause any serious issues for you.

The state of Georgia has a warm and humid climate that is a haven for nearly 40 different species of spiders. These different species of spiders might find their way into your house, and while they are typically peaceful, there’s still a lot we don’t know about them.

Besides the aforementioned Black Widows and Brown Recluse, some of the most common house spiders you might encounter in your Northeast Georgia home, include the False Black Widow spider, Brown Widow, Wolf spider, Daddy Longlegs, Hobo spider, Jumping spider, Yellow Sac spider, Orb Weaver spider, Crevice spider, Domestic house spider, Lynx spider, Trapdoor spider, and Yellow Garden spider.

Keep reading to find out more about the common house spiders in Georgia!


Is It Safe To Handle A House Spider?

Whenever you come across a spider in your house, there’s always the urge to kill it. Even though the house spider is not likely to pose a threat, still, it doesn’t look nice at home.

There are different ways you can get rid of a spider in your house. If your only issue is that it is in your room and you are not scared of it, then take the time and carefully capture it. Once you do this, you can then release it outside, some distance away from your house. This way, both parties are content and happy.

It is usually safe to handle a common house spider with proper care, as most of them are not poisonous and rarely bite. However, make sure to check whether your spider is venomous before handling it. You can research online or call a pest exterminator such as American Pest Control who will be happy to offer advice and, if need be, help you safely remove the spider from your house.



Can A House Spider Hurt Or Kill You?

Most common house spiders are harmless and they are not willing to hurt you. We as humans are more of a threat to house spiders than they are to us.

However, as mentioned earlier, it’s also essential that you learn what type of spider is in your house. By finding this out, you can know whether it is venomous or not. Only a venomous spider can really harm you and even lead to death due to the venom they release.

If you come across a venomous spider, trap it and kill it outside your house. This way, you get rid of the spider, and when you do, be on the lookout for more spiders as there might be others lurching at you in the house.


Do House Spiders Bite Humans?

The chances of a house spider biting a human are minimal and this is not something that happens frequently. The only way it can bite a human is if it’s provoked, and even then, the bite happens if you press it on your skin or try to squash it. Feeling the need to save itself, it does everything possible to survive, thus the bite.

If a house spider bites you, the chances are that the reaction you get is going to be barely noticeable. However, those individuals who are sensitive to insect bites can get red bumps on the bitten area of the skin or even a serious allergic reaction, and once this happens, they should seek medical attention immediately. You should also take a picture of the spider that has bitten you and show it to your doctor. Doing this allows the doctor to easily know the kind of treatment and medication to give you.



How Do You Know If A House Spider Is Poisonous?

If you’re wondering if the spider you spot in your house is poisonous and dangerous, there are some ways to find it out:


Their habitat

Spiders that are poisonous prefer to find a habitat in areas where people don’t look into or visit frequently.

These creatures tend to hang out in undisturbed corners and edges, crevices, mailboxes, sheds, garages, and also in basements or cellars. So check the dark sites on your property regularly to make sure this is not happening.

They build their webs in recessed areas and once you come across these webs or the spiders themselves, contact a pest control professional to have them removed.


Body markings and colors

Typically, poisonous animals are brightly colored by nature and, in the case of spiders, they possess a few distinct colors and markings on their body.

For example, the female Black Widow is the most easily recognized poisonous spider due to its shiny black exterior, bulb-shaped abdomen, and striking red hourglass-shaped markings on the underside.

On the other hand, the Brown Recluse, which is another poisonous spider found in Georgia, is more difficult to identify because of its dull color.

These are the features that enable you to know what spider is poisonous and which is not.


If you are unsure or worried about the spider in your home being dangerous, call our expert team at American Pest Control to discuss the removal of this pest. Also, if you have a persistent spider problem, get in touch with us today and we can help you handle the spider infestation in your Northeast Georgia home as well as offer a prevention solution.



Can Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Cause Damage In Your Kitchen?


The sawtoothed grain beetle is one of the most famous grain pests. It has a brown, flat, slender body that measures about one-tenth to one-eighth of an inch in length. It owes its name to the peculiar structure of the thorax, which has six sawtooth-like projections running along the sides of the middle part of its body.

But as innocent as they look, if sawtoothed grain beetles get into your kitchen, they can cause a considerable amount of damage. Thus, it’s important to eliminate them as soon as you notice any signs of infestation.

Keep reading to learn some helpful facts about these common kitchen and pantry pests.


Where Do Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Come From?

It is believed the sawtoothed grain beetle originated in Suriname. They usually find their way into goods during production in warehouses, or when they are being transported to stores that sell the goods.

When there are beetles on the shelves of grocery stores, they continue to breed and infest the products. As the beetles are quite small, they might be overlooked when they’re crawling on the products that you purchase and take home. And you may not even realize the pests are there until you start to see the damage they are causing.

Also, if you live on or near a farm, you may have an abundance of sawtoothed grain beetles indoors. They are common in farming areas because the grain is an easy source of food for them. The sawtoothed grain beetles can get into your house through the smallest crevices and cracks.


What Do Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Eat?

The name of this pest means “rice-lover from Suriname.” In your kitchen, though, they will feed on more than rice. They will attack, both in their larval and adult stages, all foods of vegetable origin.

Besides all sorts of grains and such grain products as flours being their favorite, they can also eat sugar, breakfast foods, table and dried fruits, tobacco, dried meat, spices, pasta, yeast, nutmeat, pet food, bird seeds, fish food, popcorn, raisins, macaroni, stock and poultry feeds, copra, candies, and even chocolate. The best way to look at it is, if food is accessible to these beetles, they will probably eat it.

Boxed foods and foods in plastic bags are not safe from these pests either. They can chew their way through these packages to get into the contents. You can only keep food safe from the beetles by storing it in solid, airtight plastic or glass containers. Otherwise, your cabinets will be an ongoing source of food for the sawtoothed grain beetles, and they will continue to reproduce.



Are Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Harmful?

These pests do not cause direct harm to humans or pets, meaning, they do not sting or bite, and they do not transmit or carry harmful diseases.

The harm they cause is related to the food and its packaging that they destroy. They can get through paper, cardboard, plastic, cellophane, and even foil. You may find packages that have been ruined and the food inside is infested with sawtoothed grain beetles. This results in the inconvenience and expense of replacing food. Obviously, you should never eat food that has been infested with any type of pest.

A good rule of thumb is if you see one beetle, there are other beetles and their eggs that you do not see. If you notice any torn food packages in your cabinets, check to see if there are any beetles. As the eggs are nearly invisible, it is a better idea to consult with a pest control professional who can check thoroughly for a possible infestation.


Where And When Do Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Lay Eggs?

On average, sawtoothed grain beetles live between 6 and 10 months, although they can live much longer than that. During a beetle’s life span, the female can produce between 43 and 285 eggs.

Female beetles usually lay their eggs in April. While the eggs take 3 to 5 days to hatch, the larvae themselves are harmful. They move around freely and can feed on any food they find on their path. In fact, a larva can cause more damage than an adult beetle. The larvae are much smaller and harder to detect, and they spend more time inside food packages.

Sawtoothed grain beetles can lay eggs in small cracks, crevices, and holes. However, if you have an infestation in your kitchen, they can lay the eggs in your food! If you open a package, you may find the beetles have laid eggs inside it. This can mean individual eggs or batches of eggs in the food you were going to eat.

It can also mean an increasing number of beetles as they breed rapidly. When this occurs, they will spread to other packages and foods in that particular area.


Do Sawtoothed Grain Beetles Fly?

Unlike many pests that can take over your kitchen, sawtoothed grain beetles cannot fly. While they do have wings, their body structure prevents the beetles from flying. So you do not need to worry that when you open your kitchen cabinet, a beetle will suddenly fly out at you. It is the way they can destroy your food and food packages that should be your concern.


Sawtooth grain beetles can be a persistent and destructive pest once they’re established in your kitchen and pantry. To break their life cycle, you need to first remove contaminated food and then proceed with a treatment. If your sawtoothed grain beetle infestation has got out of control, it’s best to get in touch with an expert.

Our team at American Pest Control in Georgia has all the experience needed to completely eliminate the infestation through our effective and affordable pest control services.


Why Do You Get Moths In Your Pantry?


Pantry moths are deplorable home companions and a nightmare in the pantry. While these little guests come out of the blue uninvited, there are reasons why they’re persistently ubiquitous in most home pantries.

In essence, you get moths in your pantry because they are attracted to the food that is stored there. Moths fancy dried processed food, including cereals, grains, bread, pasta, and flours, and since the pantry is the perfect storage place, you’ll mostly find them around there.

Moths are most destructive during the larvae stage and they bore through food and thin plastic. However, it’s hard to find them exposed to light due to their nocturnal nature, and larvae will bury inside dried food granules, only coming out at night when it’s dark enough for an open feast.


What Do Pantry Moths Eat?

Regardless of their stage of growth, pantry moths munch on any dried, starchy food items in the pantry. They bore through thin plastic and paper during their larvae stage to access dried, processed food.

You’ll also be surprised to find them in tightly sealed containers with dried food, where they’ll render it inconsumable.

Adult pantry moths usually lay eggs in open containers, and even after eliminating them, they leave behind eggs that hatch inside the sealed food packages.

The biggest downside for an infestation of these tiny creatures is that, in addition to degrading food, they also carry viruses and bacteria that can affect the health of humans and their pets.


What Are The Typical Signs Of Pantry Moths?

When pantry moths show up, they leave a clear trail behind. Whether you do regular pantry inspections or you occasionally scan through, it’s easy to spot the signs of a pantry moth infestation from afar.

Since every creature that feeds, must defecate or secrete, these insects are not an exception. From a closer look, you’ll notice your food clamping together, mainly when dry. Moth secretions are sticky, and they glue dry food particles together, forming clamps of varied sizes.

Besides, an unpleasant odor will top up the mess, and the food would be almost vile to eat. Another significant tell-tale sign of a pantry moth infestation is a trail of webs along with the corners of your pantry and a few toppings on the food.



Are Pantry Moths Harmful?

In addition to degrading food and making it unfit for consumption, moth secretions are a suitable breeding ground for bacteria that cause many diseases in humans.

Pantry moths also carry viruses that contaminate food, making it unhealthy to consume.

But the moths themselves are not harmful to people or pets. However, since they are ideal carriers of viruses and bacteria, it classifies them as both destructive and harmful. Pantry moths also cause losses for degrading fresh food purposed for long-term storage. For this reason, they can be harmful to your budget as they will force you to replace it with a fresher stock.


How Long Do Pantry Moths Live?

It’s challenging to agree on the exact lifespans of these tiny insects. However, pantry moths live through phases and undergo a complete metamorphosis spanning 7 to 12 weeks on average.

An adult pantry moth lives between 5 to 25 days maximum and can survive without food for two weeks. Moths in the house will consistently reproduce in areas with sufficient food and enough closure, unlike in the wild where breeding is seasonal. Thus, don’t expect them to go away after the lapse of their lifespans.


Where Do Pantry Moths Hide During The Day?

Pantry moths are nocturnal and typically come out at night to feed and mate. You’ll also spot them on LCD screens with blue light at night since it appeals to them. It, therefore, begs the question why are pantry moths out of sight during the day and where do they hide in your house?

Since they are active only after dusk, they usually find refuge in darker and shaded places in your home. They will perch on higher walls and ceilings, under furniture, and inside cabinets. They also hide in the webs they form on corners of your pantry and wait until it’s all dark and safe to emerge.


How Many Moths Is An Infestation?

Conventionally, it’s not typical for pantry moths to create an infestation in a home when conditions don’t favor them. However, the proximity to food sources makes it ideal to set up camp in your house.

Typically, a pantry moth infestation comprises 5 to 9 pantry moths, and any higher numbers define a severe infestation. Even if the problem doesn’t seem widespread, you shouldn’t be blind to the threat of pantry moths in your home. To prevent their populations from spreading further, inspect your home – or precisely, your pantry – and eliminate them immediately by killing them or using repellents.


If you’re already dealing with a serious moth infestation, your best bet is to call in the pest control professionals.

Our exterminators are specially trained to find even the smallest entry ways and hiding places for various pests in your home. If you live in the Metro Atlanta area, contact our team at American Pest Control for help to eradicate your pantry moth infestation.

We’ve made it easy for you – it’s convenient to schedule your free inspection by either calling or emailing us, or filling out the contact form on our home page, and one of our friendly customer service representatives will be happy to assist you!


How Do You Know If You Have Fleas In Your Yard?


Your yard can get a flea infestation, especially in the areas your pet loves visiting. But it could be challenging to figure out if and when there are fleas present in the yard. Pets, wild animals, and other pests like rats can infest the yard space with fleas.

So for example, if your pet keeps scratching themselves or is restless, they could have fleas that they might have acquired from the yard.


Here are some signs that indicate there could be a flea infestation in your yard. Keep reading to find out more!


Can Fleas Live In Your Yard And What Attracts Them There?

Fleas are parasites that are fully capable of surviving outside. They can thrive in the yard as they are attracted by the pets who love playing there. They would be looking for new hosts, and the animal’s fur is ideal for the fleas to take a ride on.


These insects may be also attracted to the wood and debris laying around in your lawn as it is a great breeding ground for them. Wood piles that are improperly stacked in the backyard can draw fleas as they create clutter that attracts them. Thus, it is wise to keep your lawn tidy and free from debris that might host fleas.


In addition, overwatering the lawn might attract the fleas as they thrive in a moist environment. The grass at the bottom might not be exposed to the sun, thus becoming a perfect breeding ground for fleas.


How Did Fleas Get In Your Yard?

Mostly the fleas could infest your garden because of the wildlife spreading them. If wild animals such as raccoons, porcupines, rats, and mice access your yard, they might bring the fleas and leave the eggs or mature insects on the grass.


Also, if your neighbor’s backyard has grass infested with fleas, these pests might climb over in search of new hosts. If your pet gets the fleas when they go out for a walk, they might also leave flea eggs in the house and yard.



Do Fleas Live In Grass, Dirt, Or Garden Soil?

The fleas live in the grass, especially in the lower areas that are close to the soil and not exposed to the sun. The flea eggs can get attached to the grass at the bottom and hatch into mature fleas.


Fleas love moisture and could do well in the garden soil that’s moist and warm as they wait for a new host. If the grass, dirt, and soil are located in the shade, these areas could harbor fleas as they fear too much sunlight. Thus, it is wise to let the sun into every corner of the yard to keep fleas at bay.


Where Do Fleas Like To Hide In The Yard?

When outdoors, these insects prefer to live in the shade rather than in the sun. Thus, the fleas will hide and can be commonly found in dark areas of the yard which are not lit by the sunlight as they thrive in darkness.


Also, if you don’t mow your grass often and it becomes too long, the lawn would host fleas as they could lay their eggs at the base of the grass leading to more infestation. The ideal grass height could also attract spiders and ants that prey on the fleas, which as a result can reduce the infestation.


Again, as already mentioned, fleas would hide in the warm and moist grass, soil, and dirt as they do well in a warm and moist environment, and they could also hide in the yard clutter that doesn’t have access to the sun.


If you are still not sure where to look for fleas in the yard, you can wear white long socks and walk around the yard, alternatively, hang white socks above the grass, especially in places where your pet loves to visit. The fleas will jump onto the white socks, thinking this is a new host. This way you will easily spot the fleas as they become visible on the white socks.


What Time Are Fleas Most Active?

During the day, fleas avoid the sun so they are most active at sunset and least active at sunrise. At dusk, the pests would lay more eggs, respire more, and move around in the yard more.


Although the fleas are not completely inactive at any time of the day, they have increased activity at dusk and night. However, they could still produce feces and eggs throughout the day but not as much as they do at night.



How Long Can Fleas Survive In Grass?

Fleas can live in the grass without a host and undisturbed for about two to three months, depending on the condition of your yard. However, the female fleas might not lay eggs without a host, but after finding a host, they could lay many eggs within 48 hours.


They are hard to get rid of as they can survive for such a long time in the yard and house, and the few you see on your pet could be the tip of the iceberg. Thus, a long-term and simultaneous flea elimination strategy may be necessary.



Fleas are not only irritating but are also a source of diseases, so if you suspect a flea infestation, it’s best to involve a professional flea exterminator to eliminate the problem in your yard.


Contact American Pest Control in Athens, GA, as our pest control exterminators are highly trained to deal with flea infestations. They can identify the source of the infestation, eradicate the fleas, and advise you on how to avoid such infestations in the future. They will use also products that are safe for humans and pets.


Will Cockroaches Leave Your Home If There Is No Food?


Cockroaches are notorious pests, infesting households and different businesses, and scavenging for whatever food products they can find. These resourceful insects have a high survival prowess that keeps them for long without eating. In general, they feed on anything digestible and can stick around your home even if there’s no food available.


They usually find their way out in the complete absence of food, but such a situation would be highly unlikely because they can still survive on starchy substances around your home’s periphery. Besides, other survival techniques, including cannibalism, make them less prone to hunger and starvation.


The question of whether these pests leave your home when there’s no food in sight depends on whether there are any other sources available. Technically speaking, these insects feed on whatever they are able to digest. Things like human hair, cellulose-based paints, paper, cardboard, and wallpaper paints are their great food sources.


Can A Cockroach Survive Without Food And How Long Can It Live Without Food?

Cockroaches are one of the most invincible insects on the planet, if not the most. They can survive long enough without food but less without water.


When food is unavailable, they minimize their activities and use their body energy for basic survival functions. Since they are cold-blooded, the temperatures around them drive their body’s functions, and you’ll see them being active when the temperatures are high. Naturally, under these circumstances, they become more active while consuming less body energy. However, these insects hibernate during the cold weather to save their energy reserves, especially if food isn’t available.


Cockroaches can go for up to a month without eating. Therefore, don’t expect them to bid goodbye in a few weeks after you resolve to subject them to starvation.


This period can even be extended if they apply their survival techniques, including cannibalism. Females usually produce unfertilized eggs, which they feed on in case of starvation. Besides, they also feed on their nymphs, making them stay longer in a home even if food isn’t available.


However, one thing is for sure. They will eventually leave if their survival techniques reach a dead end, but don’t expect that anytime soon.



What Do Cockroaches Eat In Your Home And What’s Their Favorite Food?

Cockroaches feast on anything they find that is digestible and organic. This natural temperament makes them one of the most resourceful insects among the wider pool. While they consume every organic material, their most favorite meals include decaying food and waste.


Here’s a breakdown of what meals cockroaches can survive on in your home.


Decaying food
As mentioned above, decaying food pieces found in garbage cans and kitchen corners are a cockroach’s favorite meal. It contains all the important nutrients they need for their body nourishment, including starch, protein, sugar, and even water-based fluids.

Cockroaches also explore areas outside a home to feed on decaying plant matter. This habit makes them more lethal as they only use a home for shelter if there’s no food inside.


Cellulose-based paint and other starchy substances
Since cellulose-based paints are the new norm and most people are turning their attention towards them due to their sustainability and affordability, this increases the amount of food for the roaches.

In addition to these paints, cockroaches can feed on other starch-based substances, including paper, cardboard, paper bags, human hair, and glue.


Pet potties or litter boxes at home are a cockroach’s food haven. Since they can’t differentiate between what’s disgusting and appalling and what’s not, they regard human and animal waste as excellent meals. Feces are organic substances that meet all their nutrient requirements and are great food sources for these insects.


Human food
The dry and uncooked food items you store in cabinets and drawers provide meals for cockroaches. These pests can tear through plastic, paper, and foil to reach stored food.

However, water would need to be available as well since they can’t digest and process dry food alone. Water forms an essential part of their diet, and if not available, they won’t make it past a week or even days.


What Do Roaches Feed On If There’s No Food? Do Cockroaches Eat Their Dead?

In the absence of food, roaches usually turn to other organic sources for survival. As pointed out earlier, they’ll feed on anything digestible or starch-based, including paper, hair, feces, and decaying plant matter. However, if water is absent, these insects won’t survive longer than a week.

In cases of extreme starvation, cockroaches usually turn against themselves and feed on others of their type. They attack and kill the weakened ones to nourish their own bodies. Besides, females can lay up to 300 unfertilized eggs, which they largely use as meals. Adults also resolve to eat their nymphs in situations that prompt them to do so for survival.


Finding out that you have a cockroach infestation in your home or business can be very disturbing. These pests breed rapidly, and are difficult to locate, eliminate, and control without the help of a professional cockroach exterminator.

So if you suspect you have an infestation on your property, contact our local pest control experts at American Pest Control in Athens, GA, for a quote or to schedule a free inspection.



Protect the Ones you Love!