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Do Swarming Termites Mean Infestation?

 

At certain times of the year, typically during the warmer months, termite colonies produce swarmers, which are the winged adult termites that fly off to start their own colonies.

Termite swarmers can be a real nuisance, especially when swarming occurs indoors. The swarms are usually active during the day, therefore, it is simply nature’s reminder that there are termites nearby.

Termites are known to be one of the most destructive pests that infest a property. They feed on wooden elements in the house, causing significant damage to the structure. However, it is important to remember that the flying termites are not those colony members that consume the cellulose contained in the wood and wreak havoc on your home.

In fact, the culprit causing damage to your house is the worker termite. The swarmers only depend on the workers for food and eat the digested wood that they provide to them. However, there is a danger that one day the offspring of the swarmers will become the worker termites within the newly established colony. Over time, it will continue to cause destruction in the structure of your home, if left untreated.

 

Why Are Termites Swarming Outside And Inside?

The swarming termites outside or inside are most likely to come from an underground nest somewhere on the premises. If you see most of them outdoors, then the nest is probably in your yard, in a location such as under an old tree stump or wooden landscape elements. But if most of the insects are found indoors, then there is quite likely an infestation in or underneath the building.

An established termite colony produces swarmers that will leave the nest after the original colony becomes overcrowded or due to a lack of suitable food. Male and female flying termites are known as alates and they leave their existing colonies to reproduce and form a new colony elsewhere. They are ready to reproduce and expand, so swarmers on your property are a sign that the termites are currently reproducing.

The vast majority of the termite swarmers that pest control professionals find inside homes originate from outside of the house.

In addition, warm and humid weather with a lot of rain may attract termites. Also, the heat in your home can also attract flying termites if it’s too cold outside for them, which makes it a great place for them to reproduce and create a new colony.

So if you see a swarm of termites with wings indoors or in your yard, it can be an indication that there is a large colony nearby that wants to expand.

It is quite common to see either a termite swarm inside of a house structure or just a few alates that accidentally ended up inside. If the termites are swarming inside your house or you have noticed their discarded wings around doors and windows, it’s a clear sign that your home may have been already infested.

Swarmers inside a house usually gather around windowsills, glass doors, and light fixtures as their instinct is to fly toward the light. The insects are looking for a way out in order to create another colony. Nevertheless, most of the swarmers found inside your home will not survive to start a new colony outside, but it does mean that there is probably an infestation.

 

 

 

Should You Worry If You See Swarming Termites?

Typically, flying termites are most visible during their swarming season, but these pests do their damage all year round. Once the swarmers have made their way inside and you notice remnants of swarmers indoors, you should be concerned about the likelihood of an active infestation inside your home.

Also, seeing a swarm of flying termites outside your house should alert you that a current colony is thriving and an infestation is nearby. There is likely to be a significant termite activity close to the house, for example, in neighboring trees or some wooden structures.

However, spotting swarmers only outside does not necessarily indicate that there is a major active infestation inside your home, in most cases it means that these pests are present nearby. But it could be the first warning sign.

For this reason, it’s important to inspect your entire property for other tell-tale signs of an infestation if you see a swarm inside or close to your home. You need to be proactive to prevent termite damage. If you do not take care of this in time, you can quickly have a serious problem with these pests invading your home.

 

So, if you believe you may have termite activity, make sure to call our team of termite control specialists at American Pest Control in Athens, GA, and request a free inspection as soon as possible.

Our experts will inspect and verify the source of the swarm and recommend a suitable treatment plan to best target any termites found in or around your home, and keep these destructive pests away.

 

Safe And Easy Rodent Prevention In Home

 

Rodents are not just a nuisance, they can severely affect your and your family’s health, and cause serious damage to your house. This is why prevention is critical in protecting homes from a rodent infestation.

While it can sometimes be impossible to avoid pests such as mice and rats from your home, there’s a lot you can do to make it less inviting and avoid infestations. The safest and easiest way to control a rodent infestation in your home is to prevent it from happening.

Don’t let this wildlife become a real problem! Keep reading as we cover some general rules for preventing and controlling the presence of rodents.

 

There are two main steps to rodent prevention in home – removing the attraction and stopping them from entering.

In general, a tidy and regularly cleaned house doesn’t have much appeal to pests. It is therefore crucial to maintain all areas inside and outside clean to discourage mice and rats. The most common causes of rodent infestations are due to spilled food, water sources such as leaks, sanitation issues, and access to pet food.

The best solution to deal with pests is to completely eliminate them from your premises. Even if you currently don’t have a problem, measures must be taken to ensure that rodents are not able to enter your house.

Let’s take a look at exactly how to keep rodents out of your home.

 


  • Eliminating Sources Of Food, Water, And Shelter

Rodents just like all pests are attracted to available sources of food and water, as well as places that are comfortable for them to hide and build nests. Rodents are constantly on the hunt for food, water, and shelter, so denying them those necessities will deter them from entering and setting up a camp in your house.

 

To avoid attracting rodents, you should:

– Clean your house regularly, including in hard to reach places such as under and behind furniture and equipment.

– Store food at least 6 inches off the floor and away from walls.

– Keep food preparation surfaces, floor, and garbage areas clean.

– Dispose of trash frequently, regularly, and carefully as not to create any spills. Keep trash in a plastic or metal container with a tight lid and remember to clean the garbage bin with soap and water on a regular basis.

– Clean up any spilled food immediately and keep surfaces clear of crumbs.

– Don’t live dirty dishes and cooking utensils out in the sink, wash them soon after use.

– Cover leftovers or keep them in plastic, metal, or glass containers with tight lids.

– Seal opened food packs and store all open dry foods in airtight containers, for example glass storage jars.

– Eliminate sources of water by fixing dripping taps and covering toilets.

 

 

– Do not leave pet food or water bowls out overnight and put it away right after use. Keep animal feed and seeds in a tightly sealed plastic or metal container.

 

– Outdoors, seal up potential nesting sites and food sources.

– Clean up garbage, brush, and weeds in your yard to prevent rodents from finding shelter. Keep grass and shrubs around your house well-trimmed.

– Keep compost bins at a distance of 100 ft from the house. Use a solid, undamaged plastic or metal garbage can with a securely fitted lid.

 


  • Rodent Exclusion By Blocking Entry Points

Eliminating access points for rodents will help keep them out of your house. This could include:

– Keep the doors closed as often as possible. Make sure all external doors fit their frames tightly, without leaving any gaps. If there are any badly fitting doors, attach brush strips to them.

– Check for holes or any small openings inside or outside your house.

– Fill cracks and patch any holes you find in walls, floors, ceilings, and around floor drains in the basement or laundry room. Remember that a mouse can squeeze through a tiny space the width of a pencil, which is 1/4 inch in diameter.

– Seal cracks and fix gaps on the exterior of your house, including entry points around pipes or cables, with suitable rodent resistant material such as concrete.

 


  • Proper Home Ventilation

Ventilation and dry air indoors are essential, so be sure to open windows whenever possible.

Refrain from blocking up the air vents. But if you’re concerned about mice coming in through this route, cover the vents with fine wire mesh. This will keep the pests out but still allow air to circulate.

Also, keep the attic, basement, and crawl spaces well-ventilated and dry.

 

 

Rodents are always seeking food and shelter, and your home offers the perfect environment. That’s why you need American Pest Control!

Our team in Athens, GA, is committed to providing excellent services that protect your home against rodent infestations, prevent these pests from getting into your home, and keep your home safe and healthy all year round.

Don’t wait until you have a rat or mouse problem! Call our qualified rodent control experts now for additional advice and treatment if necessary.

 

Do Roof Rats Come In The House?

 

If you’ve noticed damage to the upper levels of your house, or have been hearing scratching sounds that come from the ceiling, or even started seeing small animal droppings in your attic, then you most likely are dealing with a common pest problem for homeowners in Georgia – roof rats.

The roof rats have become a major pest for homes in the Northeast Georgia area. Coming into our homes, the roof rats will continue to be a part of our environment while causing serious problems and lots of damage to the home, especially as we head into the winter months.

These rodents love to escape the cold weather by hiding in our homes during the winter. And in the spring, they find the attics a great place to store food. Therefore, it’s important to take all necessary steps to ensure your house is properly sealed to prevent damage to the roof and ductwork.

Read on to find out more about why and how these annoying critters keep coming into your house.

 

 

What Makes Roof Rats Come In The House?

It is definitely frightening to think that rats could be in your home, crawling right above your head. As these are wild animals that don’t belong in your home, you should know what attracts them in the first place to be able to prevent them from invading your property.

 

  1. Easy access

Roof rats don’t wait to be invited into your home. If there is a crack or a hole in your house that is larger than half an inch, the rat will be able to squeeze itself through.

 

  1. Warmth and shelter

Just like other wildlife, roof rats enter homes for the same reasons, namely food, water, and shelter. Rats need shelter, particularly during those winter days to avoid the worst of the cold. All rodents are warm-blooded animals, so it’s their natural instinct to start looking for some warm, cozy place to call home before the winter sets in.

 

  1. Food sources

Apart from shelter, food is one of the main things that can attract rodents. As roof rats aren’t picky eaters, all types of food will attract them to your home. For example, meat, vegetables, milk, as well as fur, leather, and soap, anything that’s in your garbage can is good for them.

If you have any uncovered bins without lids or unsecured food in your home, such as pet food, bird seed, or even grass seed, roof rats can easily sniff them out.

 

  1. Water source

Rats need water daily, and if they can’t get it outdoors, they will be looking for it indoors. Therefore, if you have a leaking pipe somewhere, dripping sprinkler heads, a pet water bowl kept outside, or even a birdbath, then rats will see the water source and stick around for easy hydration.

 

  1. Indoor plants

Rats, and particularly roof rats, seek out fruit, therefore, indoor fruit plants and nut trees will attract them inside. Besides, rats frequently take advantage of the large, potted plants you keep in your home as a safe place to hide indoors.

 

 

 

 

How Do Roof Rats Get Into The House?

Our homes offer many inviting entryways for wildlife. Roof rats usually enter houses from the roof or from access points near overhead utility lines, which they use to travel from one place to another.

If your roof is damaged and has broken or missing shingles, this makes it easier for rats to access your home.

This wildlife is skillful at climbing trees, which makes it a common way for them to climb into the attic. Roof vents and soffits are also smart ways for these rats to enter the house. Chimneys and drainage pipes are yet another entry point for roof rats.

You can often see roof rats walking along fence tops, power lines, or telephone lines, and burrowing under house foundations.

Roof rats prefer to occupy the upper, elevated parts of buildings, which is why you typically find them in attics and top floors of the house.

 

 

What Are The Main Signs Of Roof Rats In The House?

Aside from actually seeing a roof rat indoors, the most obvious sign is droppings found around your home. Their droppings typically have pointed ends.

Animal noises at night on the roof and upper floors are often a clear indicator of the presence of roof rats in the house. Therefore, if you hear scratching or scuttling sounds in your attic or ceiling, the roof rats must be scurrying about.

Other signs include greasy marks or streaks, urine, gnaw marks on wires and roof lines, or tracks on the floor as they venture down to feed or find food.

 

Eradicating roof rats can be a difficult and time-consuming task. For this reason, your best option is to contact your local pest control experts in Northeast Georgia for help.

American Pest Control exterminators are licensed, highly trained, and experienced to rid your home of unwanted winter guests such as roof rats. So don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and call us now!

 

Is It Normal To Have Stink Bugs In The House In Winter?

 

You can find stink bugs in your house in winter. This is because stink bugs require a warm environment to stay active and alive during the winter season. They’re typically active outdoors in the warmer seasons, therefore, you can find them in your home during winter. However, they do not reproduce inside the home during the winter.

Stink bugs like to spend the winter under bark and on tree branches or in crevices near the ground or wall. They are active and often spotted when temperatures begin to warm up in springtime as they prepare for a new season of life by munching on plants.

Stink bugs are a type of insect (Hemiptera) that feed on plants and fruit. The common stink bug is an unwanted pest in homes during colder months because they need a place to stay warm, just like people do! They are coming indoors looking for warmth, and it may be difficult to tell them from other insects that may be found around your home at this time of year, such as earwigs or ants.

 

Do Stink Bugs Hibernate In Winter?

Stink bugs remain dormant in the winter, just like many other insects do. The period during which stink bugs are active depends on their location. In warmer states, they reproduce all year round. But in most areas, they spend the winter hidden under stones, planks, weeds, and ground cover. In general, they will synchronize their dormancy period with local weather conditions and other insects as an act of survival.

Stink bugs survive the winter by going into a physiological state referred to as diapause. This is when their metabolism slows down and their activity drops sharply. They are still able to move, but only barely. This is part of what makes it harder to spot them on your own during this time. In the spring, the adult stink bugs become active again when they come out to feed on plants. This is also when they lay their eggs on plants.

 

Where Do Stink Bugs Nest In The House During Winter?

Stink bugs will move into homes in the fall and winter, but only if suitable conditions exist. Since these insects love warm temperatures, they will usually invade your home at this time of year. Otherwise, they could freeze outdoors in wintry climates.

However, they must make sure that the place they are in before the diapause is safe for their survival during the time of dormancy. Therefore, they must hide in places like cracks and crevices as they look for a warm location.

 

 

The following are places in your home where stink bugs could nest during winter:

 

– Inside the furniture

Stink bugs can harbor during winter in chairs and sofas. For this, you need to check the underside of the furniture that is standing on the floor, under carpets, or in fitted sheets. You can see if there are droppings or spots where there are chew holes that appear irregularly.

 

– Inside doors and windows

Stink bugs may enter houses from external openings of doors and windows because of high temperatures and too much light inside. As a result, they can be found hiding in cracks and crevices, as well as inside door and window frames.

 

– Inside walls and ceiling voids

Stink bugs enter homes in the wintertime and can be found under caulking, under floors, but also in pipes, walls, or ceiling voids. There are also some spots where they may have crawled inside the ventilation system to find a safe and warm nesting place.

These pests can also enter homes through cracks that are found in walls. Check behind the wall if there is any damage around the edges of the wall where it meets the foundations or shelves.

 

Are Stink Bugs Dangerous When They Live In Your House?

Stink bugs are not dangerous creatures. Unlike the average stink bug in warm weather, during the winter they are usually inactive and do not sting or bite.  Besides, they do not transmit pathogens or bacteria, therefore, they are harmless.

They may appear creepy because of their size and appearance, but they should not be feared as they don’t cause bites or stings. Just remember not to squish them or touch them directly as they release awful-smelling liquid when they are disturbed or feel threatened. However, if you find one inside your home during winter, you can simply consider them a nuisance insect.

 

What To Do If You See Stink Bugs In The House?

Stink bugs can be found in and around homes at different times of the year, especially in winter when they like to hide in many different places.

The following are tips on what to do when you notice stink bugs and ways of eliminating them:

– Keep your home clean and dispose of any food waste on time.

– Remove the clutter around the house.

– Spray pest repellent to keep them away from your house and as soon as you detect them indoors.

– Use glue traps or sticky posters to trap them outside your windows and doors.

– Seal the cracks and crevices where they may enter your home to prevent them from coming back. If you see them coming in, seal up the places where they are entering so that you can eliminate them effectively from your home.

 

If you are having problems with stink bugs in your home in the fall or winter, and don’t know what to do, don’t worry! The team at American Pest Control are professional pest control and removal exterminators in Athens, GA. They provide the best quality service to help with your pest infestation problem. So call today and let the experts take action!

 

 

Why Do I Have Weevils In My Pantry?

 

If you’ve ever found tiny brown bugs in your flour, rice, or other dry goods, you’ve probably had a run-in with weevils. These pests are small but mighty, and once they infest your pantry, getting rid of them can be a real challenge.

So why do weevils end up in your food in the first place? And how can you prevent them from coming back? Keep reading to find out.

 

Where Do Stored Product Weevils Come From?

The weevils are destructive pests that are most often brought into homes in infested food products. For example, if you buy a bag of rice from a store that’s already infested with weevils, those bugs will likely hatch and lay eggs in your pantry. Once the eggs hatch, the larvae will start to feed on any other dry goods they can find, and before you know it, your entire pantry is infested.

Another way they can make their way into your home is by hitchhiking in on other insects. For example, if you have an infestation of flour beetles, those beetles may also bring weevil eggs into your pantry. Once the eggs hatch, the weevils will start to multiply and can quickly become a real problem.

You might also bring them into your home unknowingly if you purchase infested food from a farmer’s market or roadside stand. It’s important to inspect any dry goods you buy from these places carefully before bringing them home, as they may be infested with weevils or other pests.

Finally, if you live in an apartment or condo, your neighbors’ weevil infestations can quickly become your own. These pests can easily travel through walls and floors, so even if your pantry is clean, you could still have an infestation if your neighbors have one.

 

Where Do Weevils Live?

Weevils prefer dark, undisturbed places where they can find plenty of food. That’s why pantries and kitchen cupboards are such popular breeding grounds for these pests. Once weevils have infested an area, they’re tough to get rid of because they reproduce quickly. A single female weevil can lay up to 300 eggs at a time, which will hatch in just a few days.

If they are not in your pantries or kitchen cupboards, you may find them in bags of flour, rice, or other dry goods. You may also get them in bird seed or pet food, dried fruit, spices, or even the occasional piece of furniture.

 

 

 

How Can You Prevent A Stored Product Pest Problem?

The best way to prevent a stored product pest problem is to inspect all food items before you bring them into your home. Don’t buy the product if you see any signs of infestation (for example, small holes in packages or tiny bugs crawling around).

In addition, it’s always a good idea to keep your pantry clean and organized so that you can spot an infestation early on and take care of it before it gets out of control.

Use tight-air containers to store dry goods like flour, sugar, and cereal.

Keep all food items off the floor, and don’t forget to vacuum and clean under appliances and other hard-to-reach places regularly.

Try to buy only the dry goods you’ll need for a few months to rotate your stock and avoid keeping food in your pantry for too long. And if you end up with an infestation, carefully clean your pantry and all food items before restocking it with new products.

 

What Should You Do If You Have A Stored Product Pest Problem?

If you think you might have a stored product pest problem, you should first check all of the food in your pantry for signs of infestation. If you find any infested products, throw them away immediately. Then, take a close look at your other food items and pantry staples to see if they show any damage.

If you find that your pantry is infested, it’s essential to take care of the problem right away. Otherwise, the infestation will only get worse, and you’ll waste a lot of food.

There are a few different ways to get rid of weevils and other stored product pests. If there are signs of weevils in your pantry, you can try using a vacuum cleaner to suck them up or place infested food items in the freezer for a few days to kill the pests.

However, if your infestation is particularly bad, you may need to call in a professional pest control company to help you get rid of the pests for good.
Our expert team at American Pest Control in Northeast Georgia can assist you in completely ridding your home of weevils to ensure that your kitchen is safe for food preparation. The exterminators will work quickly and efficiently to remove the pest problem with minimal disruption.

 

 

Can Roaches Get In Through Your Air Conditioning?

 

Cockroaches are some of the most common bugs that can make their way into an air conditioning unit. And if they do, they are likely to cause many serious problems.

The damage they might cause to your air conditioner can be costly. Some of the damage done to the AC unit could involve wires that are eaten through, filters or air intake vents that are blocked by the nests, or contamination due to droppings and shed skin.

The growing roach population can eventually spill out into your main home, spreading its colony into the walls, ceiling, and vents. Therefore, it is important to remove any cockroaches from your air conditioning system as soon as you spot them.

 

 

How Do Cockroaches Get In Through Your Window Air Conditioning?

As roaches can squeeze through the smallest gap, they can get into the AC unit as well. It is very easy for roaches and other insects to find their way into your AC system and then your home.

The appliance itself is appealing to these pests. Because the window AC is exposed to the outside world and because of the specific design of the unit which serves as a highway, cockroaches can easily get in through into your home.

Aircon vents on the exterior of the home give them an easy access point into your home because the exterior vents connect to the air ducts inside. Once they get in, air ducts let these insects work their way through the entire house unnoticed.

Cockroaches can come through a window AC usually due to its seal not being tight enough. Even though the AC unit has accordion-style fins on either side to help seal it, these are almost never airtight. The unit itself has large holes to let the air through but can also potentially let a bug through.

Cockroaches can also enter the AC system through the condensate drain pipe. The water from your air conditioner drain pan may attract roaches as well. The unit expels water to the outside of your house, which creates moisture that could draw the insects in.

 

 

 

Can Cockroaches Live In Air Conditioners?

Cockroaches like the AC units as they provide an ideal living space for them. AC units and HVAC systems offer a nice, cozy home for critters.

Pests are always in search of water and food, and the AC unit may have a food source inside it. The appliance works by sucking in air from the inside of a house. If the air filters are not cleaned regularly and contain dirt that gets trapped in the filter, they can offer food to cockroaches. Roaches are omnivorous, which means they can consume almost any organic matter. Your dirty air filter may contain dust, hair, and dry skin, to name a few.

AC units also provide a moist environment and an open source of water.

The air conditioning process generates heat, which cockroaches are attracted to. During the cold months, these pests can gain more energy from the generated heat. In hot weather, roaches will seek out your air conditioner as a comfortable place to cool off from the extreme heat.

The interior of the appliance is secluded and dark, which makes it a safe haven. Cockroaches love dark and enclosed spaces and they can find plenty of them inside the AC unit. If your AC is more active, it provides better, more consistent shelter.

As the units are usually connected to thermostats, the temperature is not being changed manually too often. This is convenient for the pests as this way they won’t be disturbed, allowing them to roam and reproduce freely.

Under such favorable conditions, you can expect the cockroach population to explode.

 

 

 

Will A Cold AC Kill Roaches?

In general, cockroaches don’t like the cold at all. They are cold-blooded creatures that don’t thrive too well in extremely cold conditions.

They always slow down at cooler temperatures and may even go into a hibernation-like state if the temperature drops below freezing. In that case, they will starve and eventually die. That’s why they prefer to nestle in the warm areas of the AC unit.

Therefore, if your air conditioner is set below 77°F, it is too cold for roaches and they will head off to seek a warmer place somewhere else. Since they hate cold air, it’s advisable to set your thermostat to cool below 77°F. Lower indoor temperatures will help repel cockroaches. Turning up the AC may not reduce your electricity bills but at least your home will be cockroach-free.

Also, if you notice an increase in roach numbers, you may want to turn up your AC to get rid of them. In such a case, know that a cold AC unit that’s set at 20°F for 1 hour will kill them because it shuts down their entire system.

 

There are different methods of dealing with cockroaches in your AC unit and keeping them from coming into your home. The easiest solutions involve installing air vent filters and mesh screens that cover the entire vent, sealing any visible cracks along the ductwork, caulking all the gaps, clearing any water leaks, and keeping the AC tuned up and regularly cleaned.

 

If you need professional help to handle cockroach infestation in your Northeast Georgia home, contact American Pest Control today. Our knowledgeable team will provide more information on the roach and pest control services we offer. Call us for a free quote or inspection.

 

Why Do You Keep Finding Mosquitoes In Your Home?

 

Most often you’ll be swatting mosquitoes away when you’re staying outside, trying to enjoy your time in your yard on a summer evening. But it can also happen that you encounter these pesky insects inside your home.

Mosquitoes are considered one of the most irritating pests during the warmer months. Typically, they can be found in places with high humidity and they survive by sucking blood from humans and animals.

When you’re relaxing at home after a long day of work or sleeping at night, the last thing you want to worry about is being bitten by one or several of these insects. If you suddenly keep finding a lot of mosquitoes inside your home, it can leave you asking where they are coming from. So it’s probably time to start an investigation.

Keep reading to learn more about what brings mosquitoes to your home and how long they can stay there.

 

 

Where Are The Mosquitoes In Your House Coming From?

If you’re wondering why the mosquitoes have come into your house, the answer is that they are typically looking for water. There’s a high chance of increased mosquito activity if your house is near standing water or has sites with a constant water source like clogged rain gutters or old tires collecting rainwater.

House plants are also known to draw these pests inside the house. Flower vases and plates under flower pots are notorious for having mosquito larvae develop in them.

These insects are also looking for warm, dark places that have plenty of moisture. They also seek shelter from wind and adverse weather conditions and therefore, may fly into the house in search of shelter and shade.

The main way they get inside is by sneaking in while you are entering or exiting your house. Mosquitoes can always find a way to slip into every small entrance. They will actively seek cracks in windows, doors, and any openings that are large enough for them to fit through. Then, they might get trapped inside the house.

When at home, these bothersome creatures can commonly be found in kitchens, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and basements. Outdoors, you may find a mosquito nest buried in the grass, leaves of plants, flower beds, overgrown shrubberies, and similar places. To take the necessary steps to eliminate mosquitoes, first conduct a survey of your property and see if you can find any of these areas.

 

 

Do Mosquitoes Live Inside A House And How Long Can They Live?

The next question you might ask yourself is how long can adult mosquitoes potentially stay alive indoors.

The lifespan of a female mosquito depends to a great extent on the level of heat and moisture in their surrounding environment. After the female mosquitoes are done with their blood-sucking rampage, they can live indoors for quite a long time.

While the average mosquito lifespan is from four days to a month, or two months under ideal conditions, most female mosquitoes that feed daily can survive for around two or three weeks inside the house. Even though most mosquito species won’t last that long, it can still seem like an eternity when dealing with these irritating bugs.

On the other hand, when you’ve got a male mosquito in your home, it will only live between 6 to 9 days. But these are not to be feared as male mosquitoes will not bite you.

That said, mosquitoes can live, breed, and lay their eggs in your home. They will hide in dark, humid places such as under sinks, under furniture, in showers, or in closets. Once a female mosquito bites, it can start laying eggs indoors. Given the proper circumstances, it can lay up to 300 eggs at a time. The larvae will begin to develop in standing water. Therefore, a single mosquito making its way indoors could quickly become a big problem.

 

Mosquitoes in the home are not only annoying but can be very dangerous as they transmit diseases like malaria and dengue. Unfortunately, if they take up residence in your house, getting rid of these unwelcome guests may take some vigilance and know-how. Therefore, your best option is to seek the help of a knowledgeable specialist.

Contact us today for more advice on how to get rid of mosquitoes in your home and learn more about the safe and effective mosquito control services we offer.

When you call American Pest Control to rid your Northeast Georgia home or business of mosquitoes, you are really dealing with seasoned and licensed experts on the subject. Our technicians are passionate about customer satisfaction and always go above and beyond to ensure that, when they leave, your home is completely mosquito free.

 

How Do You Know If You Have Bed Bugs Or Fleas?

 

Bed bugs and fleas are two tiny, blood-sucking household pests that are tough to deal with. If you experience an infestation in your home, you might be wondering which bug you have as they both are so similar.

Read on as we illustrate the major similarities and differences when it comes to bed bugs vs fleas.

 

APPEARANCE

Both bed bugs and fleas are insects with a reddish-brown color and no wings. Fleas cannot fly but only jump from one person or animal to another, while bedbugs do not fly nor jump.

Even though both species are small in size, they are still visible to the naked eye. You’ll notice that fleas have longer, more narrow bodies, while bed bugs are wide, oval-shaped, and flat. Bed bugs will turn dark red or brown in color when filled with blood.

 

HABITAT

Fleas and bed bugs are both annoying household pests that can be difficult to get rid of. They can find shelter in your bed, in cracks and crevices, behind pictures, in closets, in clothing, along floorboards, or in any dark area of your home. Fleas may also nest in carpets, rugs, pet beds, or upholstered furniture where they can stay warm.

 

ACTIVITY

Fleas and bedbugs are considered nocturnal creatures, which means they are mainly active at night. However, they can bite you at any time of the day or night. Fleas are most active at dusk and least active at sunrise. Bed bugs come out to bite strictly while you’re asleep.

 

 

BITES

Bed bugs and fleas have some important similarities, but it’s the differences between them that set them apart. And the most distinct difference comes down to their bites.

Both pests feed on the blood of humans, and both leave bite marks that itch and may become infected. However, bed bugs feed solely on humans, while fleas prefer to feed on animal hosts.

Flea bites are small red bumps that are more likely to happen on the lower body, for example on the feet or around the ankles. Bedbug bites can appear on any part of the body, mainly on the legs, arms, or back. Furthermore, in contrast to bedbug bites, flea bites often appear in clusters on the skin and have a dark red spot in the center. You may notice that your flea bites are surrounded by inflamed skin.

Bedbug bites look similar to that of a flea, or a mosquito. The marks will appear in a straight line or may be random, with a red and slightly swollen, itchy skin area that’s irritating to the touch. Bedbug bites can cause anxiety, insomnia, and skin problems if someone is allergic to them.

 

FEEDING

Although a flea can live for as long as 100 days, if it is without access to blood in your home, it has a relatively short life span of just a few days. On the other hand, bed bugs can live even more than a year without feeding on blood from a host, but ultimately this depends on the temperature and humidity in their surrounding environment.

 

How Do You Know If It’s A Bed Bug Or A Flea?

You should precisely inspect the room for signs of bedbugs or fleas.

Check your bedsheets to see if there are any tiny black specks. These might be flea feces, or flea dirt, which look like sand and contain digested blood. You may also notice fleas hopping on your carpet, curtains, or furniture. If you have a dog or cat, check for multiple dot-like insects in its fur. Your pet will also be scratching, biting, or licking themselves excessively.

Bed bugs can leave blood stains on your mattress, sheets, pillowcases, or pajamas. These are dark or rusty spots of bedbug waste. You may find bedbug fecal spots, shed skins, or egg shells in areas where they typically like to hide. Also, you may smell a foul, musty odor coming from the scent glands of bed bugs.

 

 

Which Is Worse Bed Bugs Or Fleas?

Bed bugs and fleas are equally bad because they are very difficult to eliminate. Both will make you uncomfortable in your home, leaving you with sleepless nights.

However, because fleas can transmit serious diseases such as the bubonic plague and typhus, this makes fleas worse pests. Fleas can also live on various animals and then travel and spread diseases to humans. Therefore, fleas appear to be somewhat more dangerous than bedbugs.

Bed bugs and fleas can go unnoticed for long periods as they are experts at hiding, and once they start to lay eggs, these pests can be very challenging to eradicate. By the time you realize and catch them, you will have a problem and you’re likely to have a serious infestation in your home.

In addition, DIY methods usually fail to work effectively and permanently. So if you suspect you have fleas or bed bugs, it’s best to call in a pest control company to address the issue professionally.

To protect your family and home against the common infestations of bed bugs or fleas, get our experienced pest control team on your property. Contact American Pest Control in Northeast Georgia today for a consultation or to request a complimentary inspection.

 

 

Why Does Your Yard Attract Ticks?

 

There are many factors that cause ticks to be attracted to your yard.

Ticks love semi-darkness and high humidity, and will favor places with dense vegetation. So if you have a large yard, you might be struggling with an explosion in tick numbers in certain areas. With a severe infestation, the average residential lawn in the US can host even over 250 ticks on a quarter of an acre.

The weather is another important factor. Even though the peak season of tick activity begins in spring, the warm winters, high temperatures, and a mild climate in Georgia cause these loathsome pests to stay active all year round.

Keep reading to learn more about what kind of environment ticks thrive in, and what you can do to keep the lawn ticks away.

 

 

What Causes Ticks In Yard?

A tick infestation can easily start on your property as it only takes one tick. You or your pet might bring the pest into the home or yard after coming into contact with a tick in a wooded or bushy area. The tick can attach itself to your body and bury itself into your pet’s fur.

Sometimes humans and animals act as hosts for ticks, which causes tick-borne diseases a serious health problem.

 

– Weather Conditions

Tick activity goes up as soon as the temperatures rise. A consistent temperature of 70-90°F will cause an increase in tick breeding and population.

On the other hand, extreme heat will cause ticks to die, particularly when high heat is combined with dry and sunny weather.

All species of ticks thrive in darkness, and warm, humid, and rainy weather. They need at least 80% humidity most of the day to survive. Therefore, they tend to congregate in shaded, moist areas.

Ticks can become dehydrated and dry out during times of low humidity. This will cause them to become inactive, or go into diapause, a period when they stop developing due to unfavorable environmental conditions.

 

– Environment

The favorite hiding spots for ticks include areas with unmown tall grass with weeds, damp soil, and plenty of shade.

Even if your lawn is cut short, they may still hide in the outer areas, where they can find low-lying ground cover plants, foundation plantings, or low-hanging shrubs, and use them as shelter. In fact, over 80% of ticks reside in the outer 9 feet of the lawn.

Ticks are also commonly found in moist ground litter, leaf piles and brush, low tree branches, and among other yard debris. They can also be found in yards that are close to woody areas and forests.

As they usually live in areas around ground level, they cling to vegetation, ready to jump off onto their next prey.

 

– Wildlife

Wild animals such as deer, raccoons, and small rodents can bring ticks into your yard. Birds transport ticks as well. If you have a bird feeder or bird bath in your yard, it can attract ticks as the birds will bring and drop them off, letting them thrive on your property. This is especially true when the feeder is located in a damp and shaded area over the grass.

 

 

 

How Do You Tell If You Have Ticks In Your Yard?

Unfortunately, ticks are able to lay eggs just about anywhere. They have been found to lay their eggs in any warm, damp, and soft place indoors or outdoors.

Even though this tiny pest is no larger than 0.08 inches, each one can lay thousands of eggs.

But there are some simple ways that will help you figure out if there are ticks in your yard:

 

Tick dragging

Do a quick test, called a tick drag, to check if you have a tick infestation in the yard. Take a light-colored towel or sheet attached to a rod or stick, and drag it over the areas you suspect the pests might be hiding.

After pulling the towel through the yard, inspect it carefully for ticks. They will usually climb onto the towel, which helps in locating them. If you find any, transfer them into a sealed Ziploc bag and destroy them.

 

Use a flashlight to check for ticks

You can also inspect the yard manually using a flashlight. Check the following locations for signs of ticks:

– In areas of dense or tall grass.

– On trees and in landscaping bushes.

– Along brick, rock, or retaining walls.

– In piles of yard debris, firewood piles, and areas where leaves or other organic debris has accumulated.

– Places where your pets spend most of their time, such as outdoor kennels.

 

Inspect your pets

Check your outdoor pets for ticks after they’ve come back home. Run your fingers through their fur and press gently to feel for any hard bumps or a small mass that will indicate a tick. If you find ticks on your pet’s body, chances are they’ve picked them up in your yard.

 

 

 

How To Prevent A Tick Infestation In Lawn?

Here are some great ways to keep ticks out of your yard:

– Check for ticks regularly, as described above.

– Mow frequently. Cutting your grass more often and keeping it well-maintained and free of weeds, can help rid your yard of these pests. This is because ticks don’t tolerate dry conditions and short vegetation.

– Prune back any dead tree branches. Trim any tall plants and shrubs. The vegetation may rub against people or pets that pass by.

– Clean up lawn clippings and remove piles of old leaves.

– Put down a barrier of mulch or gravel around your yard. The barrier will make it harder for ticks to migrate from the surrounding wooded areas.

– Introduce animals that are natural predators of ticks to naturally prevent tick infestation in your yard. The animals that feed on ticks include spiders, ants, and birds, chickens, frogs, squirrels, lizards, guinea fowl, and wild turkeys.

Also, opossums are one of the top tick predators. Opossums can eat up to 5,000 ticks per season, killing over 90% of the ticks they come across.

– Additionally, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a one-time application of an acaracide tick pesticide, such as bifenthin, in the spring to greatly reduce the number of ticks in the yard.

 

Are ticks taking over your yard?

You don’t have to grin and bear it, hire an exterminator who can help eliminate ticks from your yard.

Contact us today – the team of tick control experts at American Pest Control in Athens, GA, are here to help! Using our professional outdoor pest control services is the best way to protect your yard from infestations of these harmful critters.

 

 

How To Know If Carpenter Ants Are In Your Walls

 

Carpenter ants get their name because they make their homes out of wood, just like a carpenter could do. But these insects actually live inside the different wood structures and products, and chew through them, too!

They don’t really eat the wood but once they enter the structure, they will gnaw on it to build a nest with its many pathways or galleries. They prefer wood that is damp, damaged by other insects, and contains decay fungi but they are also able to nest in dry and sound wood.

Damage caused by carpenter ants rarely threatens the structural integrity of a house. Nevertheless, this might be due to the early control measures taken in order to eliminate these pests before they cause serious damage. Most of us don’t like finding any insects in our homes, and carpenter ants are considered serious pests, whether or not they have caused structural damage.

Drilling tunnels in wood structures weakens the building over time. If not found and exterminated early enough, the carpenter ants can be very harmful to your wooden structures.

Keep reading as we cover in more detail whether carpenter ants can live in the walls and explain how to check for a nest in your house structure.

 

 

Can Carpenter Ants Live In Your Walls?

These ants like to nest in structural lumber such as wall voids and foam wall panels. However, apart from wood, carpenter ants can also readily infest other materials.

They are attracted to the warmth and moisture as well as the softness of the insulating material that’s in your walls. In fact, wooden structures and the foam or fiberglass insulation are the favorite nesting sites for carpenter ants.

Buildings with exposed hollow wooden beams arching overhead on ceilings and walls are particularly susceptible to infestations.

 

 

Where Are The Carpenter Ants Coming From?

The carpenter ant workers might tunnel under the foundations or patio blocks of your house.

Adjacent to a house, they might trail along the edges of your lawn, driveway, sidewalks, garden hoses, and landscaping timbers. Inside the structure, they follow the edges of floors, or cabinets and other furniture pieces.

Within the walls, they excavate through insulation, follow utility lines, and travel through voids on pipes and wires. Free branches or vines touching the exterior house walls usually provide a foraging trail or connection between parent and satellite ant colonies.

Trailing on structural elements is an adaptation that results from the natural tendency of ants to follow guidelines such as tree branches or the grooves and ridges in the tree bark. For this reason, all trees, stumps, and driftwood on your property, or any wooden objects used in landscaping must be carefully inspected.

 

 

 

How To Detect A Carpenter Ant Nest In The Wall?

Carpenter ants may build multiple nests in different parts of the house and outside. It is, therefore, necessary to look for nesting sites that could be created inside and outside your house.

If you see large black ants crawling around on surfaces, this could be a sign that a carpenter ant nest is in your home. Check any possible areas on the interior and exterior of your house where moisture may have gotten into the wooden structure.
Wet wood as well as leaky pipes and pipes covered in condensation are likely to attract the ants. By finding out the route to the water, you’ll be able to follow these insects back to their nest.

Remember that insulated spaces will be the favorite spots for carpenter ants to build nests because they retain heat and moisture, and are easy to excavate.

It is also helpful to knock on the wall to check if it sounds hollow. A wall made of solid wood sounding hollow can be a sign that it’s infested with termites or carpenter ants.

Even treated wooden structures or decorative landscaping timbers mostly have cracks and other tiny holes that provide easy access for the ants to the untreated interior wood for nesting. These nests are often overlooked by homeowners because the insects have deposited the sawdust under or behind the wood, or used the sawdust to line their underground foraging trails.

 

 

Signs Of Carpenter Ants In House Walls

In order to spot a carpenter ant infestation, there are various signs to look out for, such as:

– If you see the ants in your home as well as sawdust this indicates an infestation. If carpenter ant workers or alates appear within a house structure during the winter or early spring, then you can assume that there is at least one nest indoors.

– You may discover an infestation when sawdust from your decorative beams starts to build up on the windowsill.

– Sawdust piles of up to 10 inches in depth can accumulate along the walls of your basement or attic.

– An interior wall can buckle when you lean against it.

– You hear rustling noises in the walls or ceilings, mostly at night. You can actually hear the ants chewing on the wood as they build their nest.

 

 

So if you hear that faint rustling sound coming from your walls or inside the woodwork, it’s best to call a professional exterminator for advice and inspection.

Trying to find the carpenter ant nest on your own may not guarantee that you will find all the ants. But an experienced and knowledgeable pest control technician will know exactly how to get the job done right. After locating the nest, he will then drill small holes in the wall and spray an insecticide into the holes to exterminate these pests.

So don’t hesitate to get in touch with our expert team at American Pest Control in Athens, GA. Call us today for a free quote and inspection!

 

 

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