- What is the difference between the Africanized honeybee and the common European or Italian Honeybee?
- Are all ants the same? Does one treatment cure all ant problems?
- Is there a difference between a field cricket and a house cricket?
- Do I have to treat under my mobile every month?
- Do pigeons carry disease? What is the pest form of pigeon control?
- How come I cannot keep scorpions from entering my home? Also, do they ever leave, or do the stay around forever?
- What are those bugs called that look like a scorpion, but without a tail? Are they dangerous?
- What are those things that are tiny and black and jump around like flees?
- I have a new home in escrow, should I have it inspected for termites? Do I need service to maintain a clean bug free home?
- What can you tell me about ticks?
- True or false: Human Lice are not a pest control problem but a medical problem?
- What is a bed bug?
What is the difference between the Africanized honeybee and the common European or Italian Honeybee?
All three physically look alike to the trained eye. Only an entomologist with a microscope and a scalpel can tell the difference between the species-it’s their behavior patterns that give us an insight as to which species we are dealing with. Africanized Bees are more aggressive and produce great quantities of honey. Hence, their reason for being developed. Remember, the Africanized Bee is not found naturally in nature, but is a hybrid bee created in a laboratory. Sound, motion and even the carbon monoxide from your breath easily agitate Africanized Bees and they prefer to nest in the ground. Once a hive is agitated, they will attack in great numbers. Each time an Africanized Bee stings, it releases a pheromone that tells the rest of the colony where to attack.
The Africanized Honeybee is now in Mohave Country-a dog was killed in Lake Havasu last week-and has become a part of our everyday lives. So the important question is: What should you do if you see a bee hive or swarm? Call a professional that is trained in the disposal and eradication of Africanized Bee. An untrained technician or beekeeper can cause more harm than good.
Are all ants the same? Does one treatment cure all ant problems?
Ants are like people: they come in different colors, sizes and have different habits in nesting and feeding. One treatment does not cure all your ant problems and in some cases, the wrong treatment can hurt more than it can help.
Identification is the first step in treating for ants. You must know what spices you are dealing with before you can render proper treatment. For example, Harvester ants build their galleries deep in the soil, whereas the Little Black ant does not. Treatment by liquid means would do nothing but temporarily relief a Harvester ant problem in contrast to eradicating the Little Black ant mound. But what about baiting?
Baiting is a very effective means of controlling an ant problem. But once again, identification and time of year plays a key role in this form of treatment. A Southern Fire ant will feed on a sweet or protein based bait, but (yes, the infamous “but”) baiting the colony in the spring with a sweet bait will be less successful than if you would use a protein based baits. Why? Because the spring is the time the colony starts to reproduce and need more protein.
Choosing the wrong treatment can also be very detrimental to ant control. The Pharaoh ant infests structures like homes, hotels and hospitals. Foraging workers make up only 5 percent of the colony. If you use a liquid means to try to control these ants, you will kill the foragers, but you will also stress the colony when those workers don’t return. The colony, which is multi-queen, will bud, or separated, and instead of having one colony, you now have two. This will keep occurring unless the ant is properly identified and a baiting program initiated-this program can take anywhere from one month to a year.
Ants are good for the environment. They help till soil, keep certain bug populations down and act as the Mother Nature’s garbage disposal. But when they enter the home, they are a nuisance and can carry disease. Proper identification and treatment by a trained professional is the first, and best step in ridding yourself of these pests.
Is there a difference between a field cricket and a house cricket?
There are 25 different species of field crickets. Both house and field crickets have long, slender antennae that are much longer than the body. The field cricket is usually black, but like the house, cricket may be yellowish-brown to straw color. The field cricket is much larger ranging from ½ inch to 1 ¼ inches long. The house cricket is 7/8 inches long.The major difference besides size and color are that house crickets prefer to live outside when warm, moving indoors when it gets cooler. In contrast, the field crickets can move indoors during middle to late summer. The female field cricket lays about 150 to 400 eggs in firm moist soil, whereas her sister will lay 700 to 750 eggs in cracks and crevices and other dark areas including behind baseboards. Both will damage vegetation, furniture and clothing if left unchecked. Remember: Jimminy the Cricket might be cute and cuddly, but crickets are closely related to the roach.
Do you have to treat under your mobile every month?
Yes and no, so let me explain. During your initial service (first service) you should have underneath your mobile home treated to do away with any infestation or wanderer that might be there. But that is it. Why? Two reasons. The first reason is safety and health. Most mobile homes have their ventilation systems underneath. If there is a slight crack or slit in the duck work, the chemical could very easily get inside your home. Also, natural evaporation can bring the smell and odor into your home.Secondly, a good perimeter treatment around the home will eradicate anything that gets underneath your mobile home, and anything underneath that comes out will also fall victim to the treatment. Why? There is a chemical barrier around the home and anything coming or going will have to cross that barrier and will eventually die. If your Pest Control Company is doing a good job, then there is no need to treat under the home with pesticides. Remember: “More chemical doesn’t always make the job better!”
Do pigeons carry disease? What is the pest form of pigeon control?
Yes, pigeons can transmit a variety of different diseases to humans. Ornithosis is a disease similar to viral pneumonia in symptoms and is caused by a virus-like organism; salmonellosis, a type of food poisoning is also associated with pigeons; cryptococcisis is a fungus organism that can cause chronic cases of meningitis, which can be fatal in severe cases. Legionaries’ Disease is also associated with pigeons. These are just a few maladies that are associated with pigeons, and other birds.
There are many different types of control, but the best type of control is exclusion. Exclusion prevents the pigeons from roosting on your home, thus, preventing contact with them and their fecal matter.
Why is it so difficult to keep scorpions from entering a home? Also, do they ever leave, or do the stay around forever?
These are two of our most popular questions and can be answered quickly. Scorpions for the most part are nomadic, which means they wander the desert looking for food. Once an ample food source is found, they may or may not stay in one place for a period of time, but eventually, they will continue their quest and leave. Unfortunately, most people don’t want to wait that long.
There is no chemical out on the market that can kill a scorpion instantly unless the invader is spotted and chemical application is conducted at once and directly on the insect. This case is few and far between. In most cases, a chemical barrier is placed around and inside the home. This has a two-fold purpose: 1) To eradicate the scorpion’s food source. 2) To eradicate the scorpion. So how long does it take for a scorpion to die once they cross the chemical barrier?
This depends on a lot of variables: what kind of chemical was applied; how long ago it was applied; what the weather conditions were during application; how hot it has been since application; the size of the scorpion; how much time the scorpion stayed in contact with the chemical and so on. But you are not helpless.
Once the scorpion crosses the chemical barrier, it will die; it just might take some time. Also, by ridding the home of its food source, scorpions are less likely to hang around.
If stung by a scorpion, see your doctor immediately.
What is those things that are tiny and black and jump around like flees?
Those little annoying creatures are called Springtails. This name comes from the fact that they have a spring like structure that allows them to jump. Springtails are found worldwide with over 675 spices found in North America.These insects inhabit only moist and damp areas because they loss water from their bodies rapidly through cuticles where they breath. Most species of Springtails live in the soil in great numbers-up to 50,000 per cubic foot. They enter the home looking for moisture if the moisture is low in the natural habitat. They can also be brought into the home in potted plants and are attracted to bright lights. Springtails feed on decaying vegetation, fungi, bacteria, pollen, algae, lichens, arthropod feces and carrion.Control: Dry out the area of infestation. The Springtails will either die or leave.
I have a new home in escrow, should I have it inspected for termites? Do I need service to maintain a clean bug free home?
It is always a good idea to have your home inspected for termites considering they cause an estimated $1 Billion in damages to homes throughout the country. Mortgage companies and escrow companies will want this inspection if the house is being financed and usually they or the realtor will set this up with a licensed party. But even if you are not buying a home, an annual termite inspection is a good idea-it will help protect your greatest investment. A monthly maintenance program is a great idea to help keep your home insect free. Most chemicals only remain active for about 25 days thus leaving your home defenseless against infestation. A monthly maintenance program will flush out and eradicate any insects from their harborage areas. If the right treatment and chemical is used, it will also keep any new insects from re-infesting those harborage areas. This is why it’s important to know what type of treatment and chemical your pest control company is using. Old generation emulsified concentrates like Diazinon 4E and Malathion do have a quick kill, but in the long run, the Ultra-Violet Light and Arizona heat will break this chemicals down quickly leaving your home vulnerable for re-infestation. There are new generation of chemicals that are of a polymer base resulting in a slower breakdown and a longer lasting residual, especially in the Arizona climate. Remember: Being an informed consumer makes you and happy consumer.
Jennifer asked: “What can you tell me about ticks?”
Of all the different species of ticks, the Brown Dog Tick is one of the most widely distributed ticks in the world. A female tick may lay as many as 5,000 eggs. The eggs hatch in 19 to 60 days and wait for a host and may live without feeding for eight months. After engorging, they drop off their host and molt into eight legged nymphs, which in turn molt into adults after another feeding cycle. Ticks can complete their life cycle in two months, but can live for up to 1 ½ years without feeding.
A common place ticks may be found are by Oleander trees and in the trees foliage. Once ticks have been discovered, your pet must be treated in conjunction with your home and lawn. Ten days later, your home should be treated again. Remember: Don’t use your fingers to pull ticks from your pet because you may detach the body, but leave the head-this can cause an infection in your pet. Light a match, blow it out and then touch the match-head to the tick. The tick will release its grip and you can remove it without injuring your pet.
True or false: Human Lice are not a pest control problem but a medical problem?
It is true, human lice are considered a medical problem. The reason is because these lice essentially spend all of their time on the host-head, crab/pubic and body louse. Human lice can only survive for a short time off their host, 48 hours for head lice and 24 hours for crab/pubic lice and a few days for body lice, those that are removed or fall off the host have almost no chance to infest a new host. Because of these characteristics, residual pesticide treatments are not likely to be a control method; also there are no pesticides labeled for application on humans or their clothing. Best-bet, consult you doctor. Remember: Only the body louse is a vector for human diseases: typhus, relapsing fever and trench fever.
What is a bed bug?
A bed bug is and ecoparasite that primarily feeds on humans, but will also feed on poultry and other mammals when a human meal is not available.
Bed bugs get their name from the fact that they hide in the cracks and crevices around your bed during the day only to come out at night, feeding on the blood of its victims. Bed bugs feed for approximately 3 to 10 minutes injecting an anticoagulant mixed in with their saliva into the bite wound. About 80% of all bite victims have an allergic reaction to the saliva, which causes redness and some swelling. Swelling might be severe and extend beyond the immediate bite area in highly sensitive areas. Bed bugs are also known to carry 25 different disease organisms. Some diseases are plague, relapsing fever, tularemia and Q fever. Remember: To find out if you’re a victim of bed bug bites, place a white sheet on the bed and if you see little red specks in the morning, something is using you as a meal.