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In Florida, mosquitoes have quite a presence, especially during peak mosquito season. These pests are most active in warmer months, ruining our summer fun outside. But just because these pests are active does not mean you are not able to avoid them. Check out our top three ways to avoid mosquitoes while outside.
When spending time outdoors, it’s important to utilize mosquito repellent containing DEET. These repellents will help protect you from mosquitoes biting your skin. Sparingly spray the repellent on your skin, covering any exposed areas while outdoors. In addition to using repellent, wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and avoid perfumes to reduce the chance of getting bitten.
To avoid mosquitoes during your backyard BBQ’s or picnics, it is always best to keep your yard well-maintained. Mosquitoes need only ½” of water to breed. Ensure that you fill any holes or hollow trees from gathering water. Equally, make sure gutters are clear of debris to avoid pooling water, correct any drainage issues, and eliminate any other sources of moisture – like toys and other containers that collect water.
Mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Consider having a party or outdoor event before sunset instead of in the middle of the day. Placing citronella candles throughout your yard can also help minimize mosquito activity and reduce mosquito bites.
If you’ve noticed more mosquito activity this summer, reach out to your local South Florida mosquito control company to schedule a thorough property inspection and a comprehensive mosquito control plan, consisting of monthly mosquito treatments.
Ants are a major nuisance, infesting our kitchens, pantries, bathrooms, and more! Once an ant infestation occurs, it can be difficult to eliminate them. There are many different species that live in the South Florida area, all of which are attracted to different factors. Check out our list of popular South Florida Ants and how you can prevent them below.
Also known as sugar ants, ghost ants are known to invade your home, building their nests either inside the home or outside of your property. These pests are lighter in color and translucent, measuring around 1/16” as an adult. Ghost ants prefer sweet foods that are high in protein, often eating fruits such as honeydew.
You can often find multiple ghost ant colonies close together. These pests tend to build their colonies around flowerpots, under piles of wood, or any undisturbed place that is warm and damp. If they’ve infested your home, they tend to hide behind cabinets and baseboards.
Fire ants are one of the most aggressive ant species in South Florida. These ants will bite, which can be very painful and leave a raised welt on the skin. Fire ants can reach up to 1.4 inch in length and are reddish-brown in color. While they prefer high-protein foods, they will feed on plants and animal matter.
These ants will bring multiple colonies to your property, creating mounds outside in sunny warm areas such as patios, sidewalks, driveways, and other open areas on your property. Fire ants are also attractive to shiny or reflective objects, often invading vehicles and swimming pools.
Harmless to humans, crazy ants are considered the more erratic ant species, getting their name from their erratic patterns of movement. These ants are dark brown to black but can range from reddish-brown to grayish colorations. Many can recognize them from their long antennae and legs. These ants prefer to eat sweeter food courses, such as honeydew in the spring and fall months. In the summer, they tend to feed on seeds and insects for protein.
These ants are highly adaptable, living in both wet and dry habitats. Their nests are typically in the soil, under leaf piles, in shrubs, and in the cavities of trees. They will enter homes, usually right after a rainstorm. Once inside, they can be found in walls, floor voids, and near hot water pipes and heaters.
Avoiding ants can seem impossible, especially during the summertime. Consider these ant prevention tips to help deter ants away from your property:
Having an ant infestation is a nuisance to any homeowner, as it can be difficult to control them once they’ve found their way inside. These pests tend to infest areas such as the bathroom and kitchen, searching for a place to nest and a food source. Ants are sneaky pests, often finding their way inside our homes without us even knowing. Check out the top 3 ways you attract ants inside and how you can prevent them in the future.
Ants are very small, making it easy for these pests to get through the smallest hole or gap. Your home’s doors, foundation, windows, and even utility lines can have holes or gaps, creating a way inside for ants. Foundation gaps that aren’t solid concrete blocks can lead to spaces for ants to enter. Likewise, ants will enter through doors or windows that aren’t sealed properly. Take some time and inspect the home’s interior and exterior for these openings.
Did you know ants can travel inside your floors? These pests often establish routes underneath carpets, tiles, and hardwood, making it difficult to spot them entering! Ants will often utilize subfloors, which are made up of pieces of plywood that provide enough space for ants to get inside. Often, these pests will enter through the floors when they’ve spotted a food source, such as leftover crumbs on the floor.
Many times we can bring these pests inside our homes by mistake! Ants can gain access inside by homeowners bringing in a toy or yard item that was left outside long enough for an ant colony to establish inside it. Plants can also carry ants inside when we bring them into our homes for the winter. Other items ants have hitchhiked on include used furniture or appliances, storage boxes, hoses, and even groceries!
There are many opportunities for ants to get inside the home, but with some DIY preventative measures in place, you can help prevent a major infestation. Here are some easy tips on preventing ants:
If you notice an ant problem bigger than you can handle, contact your local pest control company, where they can identify entry points and recommend a treatment and prevention plan.
Ants are known for being annoying and persistent, especially when taking over your yard. It’s important to know what type of ant you’re dealing with to determine how to get rid of them outside your home. Removing them from your yard will lessen the chances of seeing them inside your home. We have broken down the most common ants found in the South and how to remove them from your yard.
These bright or dark red ants love the warm climates of the South. They’re one of the smallest ants around but can be found in very large groups. Since they love the warmth so much, you’ll see fire ants building large underground nests in the sunniest parts of your yard.
They typically don’t become household pests, but because of their sting and the large groups they are found in, they deter families from enjoying time outside. They are known to attack in groups and their sting can become very uncomfortable.
These types of ants can be red or black and can often be mistaken for carpenter ants, although they are much smaller. They only have two parts to their body instead of the usual three. Often found in driveways, along sidewalks, or in other concrete structures, pavement ants can eventually become house pests.
They become house pests due to their continuous search for food and shelter. If they end up inside your home, that usually means there is a nest nearby. They aren’t as aggressive as the fire ant, but they can bite.
If the problem of ants has become more than you can handle, be sure to reach out to your local pest control company and they’ll be able to come up with the best plan of action to rid your yard of ants.
While most snakes you encounter are harmless, many of us still don’t want to come across one in our yard or home. While our first instinct may be to run, most snakes are actually beneficial to have around – they help keep other pest populations under control (rodents, frogs, etc.).
Snakes will come into your yard in search of 2 things: shelter and food. Snakes will seek out shelter to have a place to rest, breed, and hunt. Common places snakes are found include overgrown grass, dense brush or shrubs, leaf piles, rock piles, compost, or areas with moisture like underneath bird baths, around leaky faucets and hoses, or near ponds or swimming pools. Snakes will also come looking for food. Snakes love to eat rodents, moles, frogs, fish, snails/slugs, and other small insects.
If you prefer not to encounter snakes around your home, here are 7 natural ways you can keep snakes away.
Snakes will come around looking for food so if your home provides them with that, you’ll be more likely to encounter them. Getting rid of these food sources will encourage snakes to move along in search of something to eat. Make sure common pests that snakes like to eat are kept under control. Scheduling routine pest control can help with this.
Snakes are also attracted to areas with a lot of moisture. Eliminate standing water in your yard where possible. Repair leaky faucets and replace leaky hoses. Keep pools, ponds, and other water features maintained. If using sprinklers, make sure they are running in the morning so the water has time to soak in or evaporate before it gets dark. This helps keep soil in your yard from being too wet.
Snakes will look for places around your home to hide so they can breed and rest. Get rid of coiled hoses or use hose boxes. Avoid using rock piles in your landscaping, if possible. Store firewood in boxes or elevate it when possible. Keep your grass mowed and dense brush cleared out. Seal off or add fencing to any open areas under sheds or other buildings. If you are using snake-proof fencing, make sure it is made of steel mesh or plastic sheeting, it is at least 3 feet high and 4 feet deep, it is flush with the ground, and it is angled outward.
Some plants are known to repel snakes. Try to incorporate these plants into your landscape design where possible. Common snake-repelling plants include marigolds, lemongrass, Mother-in-Law’s tongue, wormwood, onion, and garlic.
Gophers, moles, and voles dig burrows across your yard. Once they’ve been eliminated, these old gopher holes and burrows can remain on your property. Snakes will commonly use them for shelter as they provide a great place for them to hide, rest, and breed. Fill in any of these holes and burrows with dirt or gravel. This will help deter snakes from using them.
Snakes have a few natural predators that can help keep them away. Common snake predators include cats, raccoons, pigs, turkeys, guinea hens, and foxes. Keeping any of these animals around your home will help deter snakes from coming near. You can also buy fox urine and sprinkle it around your property to help deter snakes, as well.
There are several natural products that are known to repel snakes. These natural snake repellents can be used around the perimeter of your property, around pools, along the edges of ponds, and anywhere else you have noticed snake activity.
Despite our best efforts, snakes can still make their way into our yards and homes. If you have a problem with snakes, contact your local pest control company who specializes in snake removal who can help you properly identify the type of snake you have (venomous vs nonvenomous) and help safely and humanely remove it from your property.
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The summertime should bring activities such as lounging by the pool, having picnics, or enjoying our yards, not dealing with summer pests! Most active during warmer months, stinging pests can pose a health threat to your family. Check out our list of common South Florida stinging pests to lookout for this summer.
Paper wasps are semi social insects, meaning they live in colonies containing workers, queens, and males. These pests are reddish-orange to dark black with a long and slender body. Paper hornets tend to nest in round, upside-down paper combs, attached by a single stalk to a horizontal surface, often resembling an umbrella. These pests will typically build their nests underneath objects such as porches, decks, or soffits. Paper wasp nests house egg-laying females, the queen, and subordinate females who function as workers. Paper wasps will sting, with some people allergic to their venom.
Also, a social insect, yellow jacket nests contain female workers, males, and reproductive queens. Yellow jackets are black and yellow, often getting mistaken for bees. These pests will construct their nests into several layers made of tiny bits of wood fiber chewed into a paper-like structure. Yellow jacket nests will only produce males when it’s time for them to breed, then they die off. Their nests are large, often built underground or in hollow logs, tree stumps, between walls, and inside recycling bins where a food source is found. If threatened, yellow jackets will alert their nest to attack the nearby offender, painfully stinging them.
There are several species of hornets including the bald-faced hornet, European hornet, and the giant hornet. These pests can be beneficial to homeowners as they will control common household pests. Though, they will quickly become a nuisance if they build their nests throughout your property. Common areas where hornets build their nests are hollow trees, attics, porches, and inside of walls. These pests will sting to protect their colonies, repeatedly stinging during an attack.
If you’ve noticed these stinging pests around or inside your home, it’s best to reach out to your local South Florida pest control company to inspect and safely remove them.
Cockroaches are common household pests that are found worldwide. While they don’t bite or cause structural damage to homes, they can be harmful to your health by contaminating food and other surfaces and triggering allergies and asthma in those affected. Roaches can get into the cleanest of homes in their quest for food, water, and shelter which they need to survive. Once inside, roaches will seek out warmth, moisture, and darkness, often being found in kitchens and bathrooms.
How do they get inside? Roaches have become very resourceful when it comes to getting into places. They can crawl through small holes or cracks in the exterior of buildings, flattening themselves into the smallest spaces. They will also squeeze through openings around doors and windows or sneak through when they’ve been left open too long. They will hitch a ride (or even lay their eggs) on bags, luggage, backpacks, used furniture, used appliances, packages, and even groceries that you bring unknowingly into your home. They can also come in through pipes or other holes in walls (especially shared walls like those in apartments).
If you have the makings of a cockroach infestation, try some of these cockroach prevention tips to help get them under control.
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Encountering spiders isn’t on everyone’s list of daily things to do. The good news is that the chance of encountering a spider that is harmful to you is slim, but it’s still possible. A common one that you want to avoid is the brown recluse spider. How can you identify the brown recluse compared to other, less harmful varieties of brown spiders? Read below to learn more about these feared spiders and how you can prevent them!
The brown recluse is ¼” to ¾” in size and some can grow larger in size. They are typically light to medium brown and have markings on their backs, with a black violin-like shape pointing to the rear of the spider.
The brown recluse is known as a recluse for a reason; they don’t tend to make it known they are nearby. These spiders will typically seek out environments that are warm, dark, and dry.
This can include an array of places, such as:
Although not aggressive, they will bite when they feel trapped. Most people are bitten by a recluse when they unknowingly reach inside a shoe, piece of clothing, or a box. They will bite if they feel provoked, but their bite is the biggest reason why brown recluse spiders are so feared.
If you are bitten, it can take a few hours to notice its effects. When a brown recluse bites, it injects its venom, causing necrosis and an ulcerating sore. Once the venom takes effect, you may experience restlessness, insomnia, and fever. The sore can leave an open ulcer, even exposing the muscles or bone. If you think you have been bitten by a brown recluse, you should seek medical attention immediately.
If you encounter a brown recluse on your property, call your local pest control company to seek professional assistance. If you see one, it could mean an infestation is occurring.
Purchasing and owning a home is a serious investment for every homeowner. Ensuring that it’s aesthetically pleasing, in good repair, and healthy is at the top of our minds. The last thing we want to deal with is a pest infestation, though it’s likely to happen from time to time. While spotting one or two pests is not usually a big deal, if the problem becomes bigger than we can handle, it could be time to call an exterminator. Check out our top 5 signs that it’s time to contact your local South Florida pest control company.
Finding rodent droppings is one of the first indications that a rat is inside your home. Rat droppings are found in dark, undisturbed places in the home, including basements, attics, or crawlspaces. If these creatures find their way inside, they can cause serious destruction, such as chewed electrical wires that can lead to house fires. They’re also known to carry diseases, putting your family’s health at risk.
Nests are usually found in basements, attics, or even old cabinets. Pests such as mice, birds, or rats will nest in your home to find a safe place to search for a food source, keep warm, and breed. Finding a nest usually means that the pest population inhabiting your home is getting larger.
Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night to scratches, tapping, or squeaking coming from the walls or attic? No, you are not in a horror movie, it’s an indication of a rat, rodent, bird, or termite infestation. These sounds can follow with strange, alarming smells such as the pest’s droppings or urine.
If you start to notice your home or the items in your home are damaged, it’s a sign that pests have snuck in. Spotting chewing or gnawing marks on our furniture, clothes, or walls indicates that rodents such as rats or mice are inside. Ants and termites are likely to destroy wood throughout the home, affecting your home’s structural integrity. Other pests, such as bed bugs, will often eat our bedsheets and mattresses.
Many pests can be easily removed or controlled through some do-it-yourself pest control. But, sometimes, as much as we try to remove these pests ourselves, it might be time to call in the professionals for routine pest control service. Pest Control includes a thorough inspection of your home, pest identification, locating pest entry points, and ongoing treatment and pest prevention. Request a free pest control estimate now to get started.