Springtime is just around the corner which means the welcomed respite from the cold, pleasantly cool days, longer hours of daylight and beautiful blooming flowers. However, it also means the arrival of a number of common spring pests. Rodale's Organic Life handbook reported that carpenter bees, ants and ticks are among the most frequent spring invaders. Here's what you need to know about these bothersome invaders and how to keep them out.
The carpenter bee looks quite similar to the bumble bee and the two are often confused. As opposed to the furry abdomen and yellow markings, carpenter bees have bare, shiny black abdomens and are slightly larger than the bumble bee, according to the University of Kentucky Entomology. Also different are the nesting habits. Carpenter bees overwinter as adults and emerge in the mid- to late-spring. Male carpenter bees will often hover around homes, looking for females to mate with and although they can be aggressive, they are not harmful since they lack stingers. It is the female carpenter bee that you must be wary of as it can cause a painful sting.
Prevention: Carpenter bees prefer wood that is unpainted and weathered. One way to keep them away from the wood furnishing of your home is to coat window sills, eaves and door frames with paint or varnish. Keep garbage cans shut and away from your house.
Although ants aren't much of a problem or nuisance when they're outside, once they've found a way into your home it's a different story. There are several hundred types of ants and more than two dozen that have been classified as pests, according to the National Pest Management Association. Perhaps the most common pest there is, almost every homeowner will experience ants at one time or another in his or her life. Often thought of as harmless, ants are actually capable of damage, food contamination and even biting.
Prevention: Keep all food sources completely closed and sealed. Monitor all plants and tree branches near your home as this can be a means of entry for ants. If the situation gets out of hand, it is best to call your local pest prevention professional.
Ticks are one of the most well-known pests related to illness - Lyme disease. Tiny, small, black and blood-sucking pests, these ticks can really take a toll on one's health. When the weather starts to get warm again in the springtime and people begin to spend more time outside, they're more likely at risk.
Prevention: Rodale's Organic Life advised performing a full body check when you come inside, keeping your grass mowed, using insect repellent and installing a deer fence around your property to keep out the animals that ticks latch onto.
You probably already know that most people are repulsed by the simple sight of cockroaches. If you are personally dealing with a cockroach infestation, the feelings of disgust are probably even more intense. Unfortunately, the cold winter weather tends to be one of the reasons this pest ends up in your home in the first place, according to Any Pest. While you may know that you don't want to share your home with cockroaches this winter, there are a number of interesting facts about this pest that you've probably never heard.
Because of the high amount of traffic and the versatility of the facilities, pests are naturally attracted to long-term care institutions. Many nursing homes, rehabilitation centers and other care facilities include on-site kitchens and cafeterias as well as private rooms and common spaces. All of these places are susceptible to attracting pests because of the presence of food, water and viable habitats.
During the summer months, some people love to go camping with family and friends. Yet this fun trip can be ruined with a few unwanted visitors, most notably different types of bugs. Crawling spiders, hungry mosquitoes and buzzing flies can become annoying quickly. How can you avoid these pests when you're outdoors? Consider these tips to keep bugs out of your campsite.
Carpenter ants can chew through the strongest studs and stringers in a house as they hollow the wooden beams out for nesting. The resulting damage can weaken the home's structural support and require expensive repairs. Professional pest control workers can remove a colony of ants, but the best practice for homeowners is to learn the best ways to keep out an ant colony and prevent the problem before it begins.
As the weather cools, you'll probably see fewer pests than you did during the warmer months, but that doesn't mean they're all gone just yet. Some insects can actually come out in full force during the autumn, while others might seek refuge in your warm home. Here are some key tips to keep in mind as fall gets underway:
As the middle of summer approaches, you need to be vigilant about keeping your garden free of pests. Many insects breed during the summertime, which means they're on the lookout for great places to lay their eggs. For many bugs, that means near a source of food. In fact, some species of insects will lay their eggs inside budding vegetables and fruit so their larvae have something to eat as soon as they hatch. That's why you have to keep harmful bugs out without damaging the bugs that could help you, such as bumble bees.
You might have noticed that, with the exception of the kitchen, you find more pests in your bathroom than in the rest of your home. This is because insects and rodents see the bathroom as a convenient watering hole. Pests love leaky pipes and standing water because these offer them a hydrating oasis in the otherwise dry biome that is your house or apartment. And if your bathroom develops mold, all the better for pests, who may eat fungus or use it to lay their eggs.
The kitchen is largest gathering place for pests in a residential home. The reason is simple: pests can grab a bite to eat and take a sip of water while they're here. And when they find such a bountiful place, they will return home to their nests and report the finding - before you know it, your whole pantry is a buffet for ants! The problem could get even worse if a piece of food falls somewhere and begins to rot. Similarly, fruit and vegetables you bring into your home may be harboring unseen pests waiting to hatch.