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Fall – Pests are On-the-Move

While most New Englanders see autumn as a time to enjoy the cool, crisp air and colorful show the leaves put on, many are preparing for the cold winter months that are just weeks away. Some homeowners stack wood, prep their yard, and  stock up on shovels and ice melt knowing that the harsh weather can strike whenever Mother Nature sees fit. Pests are doing similar preparations. They are on-the-move in the fall to find appropriate shelter, food, and supplies to overwinter or hibernate through what will be months of cold temperatures and dangerous precipitation. Let’s take a closer look at how pests are keeping busy in the fall preparing and how this can impact your home and property.

The shorter days and cooler temperatures are nature’s way of signalling to rodents, squirrels, and raccoons, among other pests, that, “Winter is coming, time to get ready!” According to the Humane Wildlife Control, “While raccoons, squirrels, and mice will slow down during winter, they do not hibernate and certainly do not travel south for winter. These species remain active and in the neighborhood year ‘round. The warmth and security provided by walls and attics make them ideal winter den sites. Their search for shelter often begins in fall and could lead them into your home where they cause can cause damage and create unsanitary conditions.”

Squirrels

Squirrels, especially in our area, are on the hunt for a safe haven to spend the winter, all while stocking up on food items. Maybe you have noticed the growing population in your area as females have had their two litters and the juveniles are in search of a place to survive the winter. Unfortunately, your attic may make a great hiding location. Check the fireplace, flue, and entry points that exist to your attic to be sure this is not the case.

Mice/Rats

As we have mentioned before, mice only need a space the size of a dime to make entry to your home. Seal up all foundation issues, vents, windows, and spaces under doors to stop mice or rats from making your home a haven this winter. The fall is an ideal time to take steps to stop mice and rats from entering and setting up nests in your home.

Raccoons

These masked bandits are among the cleverest in the wild. They can open garbage barrels, claw through openings, and find a way in to a property if there is something they want there. Instead of going out in the winter, raccoons will spend long periods of time in their den. Make sure they do not have a chance to set up their home in your attic, shed, or other area by inspecting this fall.

Have any of these critters started making inroads on your property this fall? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated.

 


Where do Pests Lurk?

Ever wonder where the pests go when the cold weather sets in? Do they fly south for the winter? Take a vacation? While that would be interesting, the reality is quite different. Pests are fairly ingenious in finding places to lurk that will not be noticed such as in attics, basements, crawl spaces, plants, standing water, food, and untidy spaces in your house. In order to be proactive against pests that often invade homes, it is best to find these hiding spaces and take care of them quickly. Here are a few places in your home to be on the lookout for pesky pests.

 

  • Trash Areas – Let’s face it, pests are looking for a free meal and a place to call home. Your kitchen garbage might be a pest’s paradise. Avoid harboring an all-you-can-eat buffet by emptying your trash often and washing out the barrel where sticky messes and crumbs can be a beacon for rodents, ants, and all types of pests.
  • Kitchen – The number one spot in your home for pests looking for a meal is, of course, your kitchen. Clean up pantries and wipe down counters after every meal prep. Sweep the floor and keep things as clean as possible. The fewer crumbs and drips available make your kitchen less appealing to pests.
  • Bathrooms – Pests are also looking for drops of water to survive. Check all pipes and fixtures to be sure they are not supplying water to pests in your home.
  • Indoor Plants – Believe it or not, pests can get a meal and water from overwatered indoor plants. Make sure standing water is not a problem around your plants.
  • Attics – These areas are warm and provide easy access to needed water and food in nearby kitchens. Check your attic regularly to be sure there are no droppings, nesting signs, or damage from rodents, squirrels, or raccoons that can find their way in. Keep the area clean so storage boxes do not become home to even the smartest of pests.
  • Basements – Many homeowners find that their basement is a common place to find all sorts of pests. This is because your basement is usually safe from harsh weather, has access to nearby food, and tends to be dark and dank – the perfect pest hotel! Clean up down there and keep areas clear so any signs of infestation – whether it is termites, cockroaches or rodents – will be noticed.

Do you have pests that lurk in your home even during the winter months? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated.

 


Fall Pests

Fall is one of my favorite seasons. The weather is near perfection, the flowers and garden are at their pinnacle and, of course, the leaves are putting on a fabulous color show! There are few things that can diminish the joy of this season for me. Fall pests, unfortunately, are one such thing that can be a nuisance this time of year. Here are just a few to be on the lookout for so they don’t squelch your fall fun.

Stink Bugs

Every fall, stink bugs begin to look for a warm, safe place to overwinter. For many homeowners, this place is inside the walls of their home. While stink bugs don’t usually cause much damage they can be offsetting with the smell that can emanate from them if you startle or squish them.

Lady Beetle or Ladybugs

Usually, the fall is when homeowners begin asking our pest specialists why ladybugs have begun to cling to the side of their home or their front door. They too, like the stink bugs, are looking for overwinter locations. Although these pests are considered a nuisance, they have the potential to stain clothing, curtains, and other fabrics with their droppings and emit a strong odor if crushed. Vacuum often and seal cracks around the home to prevent them from entering the home. Damaged screens on doors and windows should also be repaired or replaced.

Ants

Just like when they first appeared in the spring, these pests are a huge nuisance. They can cause food contamination and certain types, like carpenter ants, can damage the structure of your home. Talk to one of our pest specialists about treatment that is right for your property.

Rodents

Mice and rats are common invaders in the fall since they are getting ready to find safe havens from the cold that the winter promises to bring. Clean your gutters, store stacked wood away from your home, and seal up openings that could allow these critters entry to your home.

Bees

Many types of bees, like wasps, are more active in the fall as they are searching for carbohydrates to feed on. Be aware that just because the summer is coming to a close doesn’t mean you can let down your guard when it comes to entertaining outdoors. If you notice a nest or bees that are aggressive, call Pest-End for treatment plans.

Are you having trouble with any of these common fall pests? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated.

 


Cockroach Control

Cockroaches have long been a feared and loathed pest. While there are many types of cockroaches, today we will be discussing one of the more common, but not originally native to North America – the American Cockroach. Let’s examine how to identify, prevent, and control these cockroaches.

Identification

American cockroaches are reddish brown in color and have a yellow band behind their head. They are, on average, between 1.4” to 1.6” in length, but they can grow to exceed 2”. Males and females have wings and can fly short distances. They are oval in shape and have antennae and 6 legs. Look for a fast moving insect that leaves behind droppings that look similar to mouse droppings. In addition, look for egg capsules and be aware of a smell that many describe as musty.

Prevention and Control

Many homeowners find that cockroaches are difficult to eradicate. They have the ability to hide and avoid traps. Even when homeowners set up barrier exclusions, they still seem to be pervasive after treatment. One step that can help is keeping a sanitary environment where you have spotted the cockroaches or the signs of cockroaches. Sweep and wipe down the area thoroughly. We also suggest vacuuming and mopping often, as well as keeping crumbs and drips from surfaces.

A professional pest control company like Pest-End can recommend a treatment plan that is right for your home. Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated.

 


Fall Checklist for Pests

The weather is getting cooler and the days are markedly shorter. To most of us, this signals the beginning of that wonderful time of year when the leaves put on a spectacular show. To pests, though, the change in climate signals something entirely different. The changes that autumn weather brings signal to critters small and large that winter is around the corner and preparations should be made. Some pests overwinter, some hibernate, and still others find safe haven in structures like our homes! Here is a quick fall checklist to avoid pests this season.

 

  1. Eliminate entry points to your home. This means sealing up holes in window screens, gaps under doors, openings around utility vents, cracks in the foundation, and openings in soffits. Mice can get through a hole as small as a dime, so be thorough in your inspections.
  2. Keep wood piles at least 20 feet away from your home, especially if you do not use much throughout the winter. The longer the pile sits the more likely it is that pests will find a home in the wood.
  3. Trim back all tree and bush branches from your home as they serve as a bridge to get inside your home.
  4. Store and empty trash cans often, as they tend to invite wildlife to your property.
  5. Wash and clean the grill on your patio. The smell and grease drippings can attract all sorts of pests.
  6. Have pest control specialists regularly inspect and treat your home and property.
  7. Keep pet water and food bowls inside.
  8. Maintain a lawn maintenance program to ensure that pests do not overtake your lawn.
  9. Inspect trees and shrubs for any damage that may have been caused by pests.
  10. Begin harvesting and cleaning out your garden so pests do not see it as a free-for-all buffet.

 

Do you need help this fall managing pests? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated.

 


Forgotten Areas of your Home

Basements, garages, storage areas, and attics are often forgotten areas of the home. They become dumping places for seasonal items, broken tools, and off-season clothes. These forgotten areas can unfortunately become safe havens where pests can live, thrive, reproduce, and feed. These areas tend to have a steady temperature, moisture, humidity and, sometimes, a food source nearby that make the location a perfect place to spend the winter, nest, or raise a family! Here are some of the areas you may want to keep an eye on to avoid a pest infestation.

Attic

Pests can find entry points pretty much anywhere in your home, from the foundation to the gaps in the chimney cap. Since the attic is an area that people tend to only visit a few times a year, this area can be a safe place for critters to hide out for months at a time without being discovered. Rodents are especially capable of destroying insulation, chewing through walls, and potentially causing electrical fires if their teeth come in contact with electric wires that they attempt to chomp on. We suggest keeping storage and seasonal items in thick plastic containers that can not be chewed through and inspect the attic regularly for signs of infestations.

Basement

Basements tend to attract pests that are looking for damp, highly humid, and moist locations. Do not overlook this area that can also be forgotten for months at a time. Clean up storage items and inspect for gaps and openings in utility vents, the foundation, and basement windows. Replace loose mortar and weather stripping around the foundation and basement windows/doors.

Garage

Garages are great at protecting your lawn equipment, cars, and tools. But they are also good at harboring pests like rodents, skunks, raccoons, ants, and any number of pests that can make their way inside. We suggest closing the doors at night to keep out scavengers looking for a free meal, such as raccoons, skunks, and squirrels. Keep the area clean and organized so that if a pest does find its way in, you will know immediately instead of finding a nest under a pile of old bikes a month from now.

While forgotten areas of the home are common, don’t make harboring pests common. Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated for these small yet damaging pests!

 


Beetle Mania

Let the wild screaming commence because it is beetle mania time! Paul, John, Ringo, and George? No, no, no, not the once-famed British band, but rather the kind that crawls around destroying trees and lawns – Japanese Beetles, Asian Longhorned, and Emerald Ash Borer. Not the beetle mania you were hoping for I am guessing? Well, no one really wants to deal with lawn and tree pests, but your best chance at avoiding the destruction associated with these beetles is to learn a little about them and their behaviors. Let’s take a closer look at these three types of beetles in the hopes that a little information can help.

Japanese Beetles

The Japanese beetle is one of the most common lawn pests in New England. In fact, Japanese beetle grubs make up about 90 percent of the white grubs that live in Massachusetts lawns. These particular type of pest enjoy eating a wide variety of trees, fruits, shrubbery, and lawns. These flying pests eat away chunks of tree leaves and flowers. Often, they’ll leave nothing more than the skeleton behind. When a Japanese beetle infestation is severe, tree leaves may brown at the top of the canopy or leaves may drop prematurely. There are a variety of treatment options ranging from traps to chemical control that can be determined by one of our lawn specialists.

Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB)

This non-native beetle originated in China, Japan, and Korea, but since 1996 has made its way into our region probably through shipping containers. The ALB infests hardwood trees, such as maple, birch, horse chestnut, poplar, willow, elm, and ash. Signs that your trees are infested could include scars on the tree, holes about the size of a dime with round, smooth edges, or seeing the beetle itself. (see image) Early detection is critical to eradicating this beetle. Report suspected sightings by contacting the Massachusetts ALB Cooperative Eradication Program.

Emerald Ash Borer

The Emerald Ash Borer is one of the many destructive beetles that can be found in North America. This one is unique in that it is a highly invasive species capable of populating a large area in a short amount of time. The metallic green coloring makes this beetle easy to spot along with the distinctive and highly visible “D” shaped hole they create in ash trees. Areas that have been identified are quarantined to stop the spread of the beetle.

While this Beetle mania may not be the type you were hoping for, a little knowledge can go a long way to preventing the destructiveness of these pests. Have a beetle or pest problem? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected and treated for these small yet damaging pests!

 


Fall Pest Proofing

The calendar is about to turn to September, which means that New Englanders are getting ready to enjoy the cooler weather of fall, and the spectacular show the leaves will be putting on over the next few weeks. Avoiding or forgetting to care for your home during this time of year can mean an open invitation to pests and other wildlife to use your home as a safe and warm place to ride out the cold winter months. Here are a few ways to get your home ready for fall pest proofing.

Seal It Up

Start your pest proofing by taking a walk around the perimeter of your home. Search the foundation, vents, and even the chimney cap, if possible, to see if there are any cracks or openings where a pest could enter your home. Keep in mind that a mouse only needs about the size of a dime to squeeze into a home’s interior!

Windows and Doors

Do the same type of inspection on all of your windows and doors. Are there screens that need mending or doors that need to have a fresh coat of caulking or sealant? These small openings are a welcome sign to pests.

Ventilation

Many pests are attracted to places that have a high level of moisture, so keep your basement, crawl spaces, and attic well ventilated. Try using a dehumidifier in the basement or even the garage to keep the air as dry as possible.

Wood Storage

If you start using a wood stove or fireplace in the fall, be sure to keep the wood at least 20 feet away from the structure of your home. These piles of wood are an excellent place for mice, rats, and other pests to hide out, or, worse yet, hitch a ride inside.

Keep it Clean

Including areas inside and outside of your home, try to keep things clean so that dropped or spilled food items do not attract pests. This includes the trash area outside of your home. Wildlife like raccoons can be especially adept at opening barrels and making a mess.

Do you need help pest proofing your home or property? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected.


Most Feared Pests

Ask anyone about the pests they fear most finding in their home and you will get a huge variety of answers including: mice, rats,  bees, and even mosquitoes! Most pests can be prevented from entering your living areas, and if they do find their way in, they can quickly be exterminated with the help of professionals like our team here at Pest-End. Read on to explore the reasoning behind why people fear these pests so much.

 

Mosquitoes –

Believe it or not, mosquitoes are a highly feared pest in many regions of the world. Sure, they are annoying buzzing around, but what makes them so dangerous that they are feared world-wide? Mosquitoes earn the title of most dangerous and deadly pest on earth, not only for their annoying, itchy bites, but the transmittance of mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria and zika virus. The World Health Organization reports that a child dies from malaria every 30 seconds. Mosquitoes are believed to cause around 1 million deaths a year.

 

Rodents –

Mice and rats have long been a most feared pest. No one likes to find one of these long-tailed, dirty creatures scurrying around their home. Both mice and rats are known to carry diseases in their fur, skin, saliva, and excrement. In addition, a scratch or a bite from a rat can lead to a fever or diseases in both humans and animals. These are not just pests to be squeamish about but also to fear.

 

Bees –

With more and more Americans proving to be fatally allergic to bee stings, it makes sense that they are a feared pest. Some bees like hornets, wasps, and yellow jackets tend to be more aggressive than others like carpenter bees and honey bees. If you spot a nest at your home, call our specialists who can remove and prevent reinfestation.

 

Do you have an infestation of one of these most feared pests? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected.

 


The World’s Weirdest Pests

In our line of work we see a lot of weird pests. We are often asked about what the strangest pests and situations we have encountered. That got us thinking about some of the world’s weirdest pests. Here are a few of them and what makes them so different.

The Assassin Bug

The Assassin bug uses its straw-like mouth to inject prey with a toxin that liquifies their insides, which it then sucks back up through its straw mouth. That is so creepy!

The Australian Walking Stick

These woody-looking Australian insects give off a scent that smells like peanut butter to humans when they sense danger around them. These guys easily hide in trees because they look like the bark and branches they sit on.

The Titan Beetle

This species of beetle is one of the largest on record. The mandibles are so large and strong they can easily break a pencil in half!

 

Hercules Beetle

Another weird one is also in the beetle family. The Hercules beetle is a native to rainforests of Central America and are among the largest insects in the world. The most defining characteristic of this insect is the longhorn found in the male beetle.

The Giant Weta

Named one of the largest insects of the world, the Giant Weta can weigh as much as a golf ball. Native to New Zealand, these insects are known for their unique way of breathing through their exoskeleton instead of by using lungs.

 

Do you have pests in your home that are a little more common than the world’s weirdest ones listed here? We can take care of those for you! Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321 to have your home or property inspected.