Pest End - Page 2 of 26 - Pest Control for Residential and Commercial Properties

Blog

Most Despised Pests

It is no secret that bugs, critters, and pests are despised by almost everyone. There are many, many reasons why these pests have become unwanted including behaviors such as: biting, stinging, invading living spaces, tunneling within woodwork, or even damaging the structural integrity of a home. What are the most despised pests? Here are the top five that homeowners commonly name.

 

  1. Termites – Although these small pests are helpful to our ecosystem when it comes to breaking down decaying plant matter, don’t forget that a colony of termites can severely damage wood structures including your home! Termites win a high ranking in the “Most Despised List” due to the financial impact these colonies can cause. Latest statistics put annual damage between $1-2 billion!
  2. Bed Bugs – These blood feeders rank high on the list due to the fact that they not only hitchhike their way into your home and take over beds, furniture, carpeting, and upholstered items, but they also suck your blood while you sleep, leaving itchy bites and rashes. Bed bugs are hard to remove if a comprehensive treatment program is not taken, and can haunt you in your sleeping hours!
  3. Mosquitoes – These buzzing, biting, nuisance pests can be found just about anywhere. Along with being a royal pain when you are trying to entertain outdoors, these pests can carry diseases that can impact your health for months and even years to come in the form of West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis. Be sure to protect yourself and your property every mosquito season.
  4. Wasps and Hornets – While bees are an important part of our ecosystem and are needed for pollination and the strength of our environment, some bees are more aggressive and pesky than others. Wasps and hornets make our list of the most despised pests due to their aggressive nature and tendency to attack when they fear their nest or colony is in danger.
  5. Cockroaches – Fear and revulsion of the dreaded cockroach is a story that is as old as time itself it seems. Cockroaches have been around forever and harbor a stigma that the area where they live and scavenge is unclean and unliveable. This is not the truth at all. The cockroach makes our list this year due to that stigma and creepiness factor.

 

Do you have any of these “Most Despised Pests” making inroads at your home or on your property? 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. Our sister company Pro-Tech Lawn Care can also help with pests outside your home and in your trees and gardens.


Bed Bug Prevention

Last week we examined the common and not-so-common places that bed bugs can infest. We discussed the higher frequency of bed bugs being found in mattresses, box springs, and bed frames. We also looked at other locations that may provide food and shelter such as: buses, taxis, libraries, movie theaters, airplanes, schools, and retail stores. Given this alarming information, what can you do to prevent bed bugs from hitching a ride and setting up shop in your home?  Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers who can catch a ride right into your home. In order to prevent this, here are a few precautionary steps to take to ensure that this does not happen.

  • Launder clothing and baggage immediately after traveling to a hotel. Even the highest quality hotels can harbor these pests.
  • When traveling, check your mattress and other furnishings before you sleep the night in the room. Educate yourself about the physical indicators of bed bug infestations. Also keep your clothing and baggage up off the ground and away from furnishings. If you suspect an infestation, contact the management of the establishment and inform them of the problem.
  • Keep clutter to a minimum. Bed bugs rely on hiding places, so the less that is cluttering your home, the fewer places they will find safe haven.
  • If you enjoy shopping at second hand stores for furnishings, rugs, or clothing, be sure to inspect all items before you bring them into your home. This includes pulling out drawers of dressers and checking the undersides.
  • When using shared laundry facilities, be vigilant. This may include transporting items to be washed in plastic bags.
  • Cover your mattress in a safe plastic encasement. While this can help prevent an infestation, it will not stop it once the infestation has begun.
  • Check all used items that enter your home. This includes old computers, appliances, clothing, and gaming systems where bugs can easily hide.
  • If you are moving, do not use the moving blankets that are provided by the company. Either supply your own or require that they be cleaned prior to your move.
  • Be wary of public places that could harbor these pests. When changing at a clothing store, keep your clothes off the floor. When using public transportation, check out the seat and surrounding area.
  • Seal your home so that bed bugs can not enter or at least travel from room to room.

If you suspect that all of your vigilance has failed and that you do have a bed bug problem, seek professional help to eradicate the problem quickly and discreetly. Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321.


Bed Bugs, Not Just for Beds!

For years we have been warning our clients about bed bugs in mattresses, box springs, and bed frames. We have discussed the “hitchhiker-like” nature of these creatures and how easily they can cling to an item that you are carrying and make their way into your home. Still, many people are unaware that the term bed bug is a complete misnomer due to the fact that they are not only found in beds but in some pretty common places that we all frequent. Read on to learn about the other locations you should be wary of in regard to bed bugs.

To understand where bed bugs hide, you need to know a little about their behavior and physiology. Bed bugs are fairly small at a quarter of an inch long for adults and 1-5 millimeters for the nymphs. That means that crevices, corners, nooks and crannies are all fair game for hiding spots. In addition to size, bed bugs are stealthy creatures that feed on human blood in a “hit and run” pattern. They come out (usually while you’re sleeping) only to feed. Right after their feast, they scurry back to their hiding places until it’s time for them to make another food run. Being fairy close to their meal is, therefore, important. Bed bugs will stay within 5 feet or so to their food source (you).  As an infestation grows, they do tend to spread further away from the main feeding area, though.

Within Your Home

While bed bugs are most commonly found in places like your bedroom, specifically in and around the mattress, box spring, and bed frame, they can hide in other places within your home. This includes: luggage, walls, clothes, furniture, dressers, couches, pillows, carpets, pet beds, curtains, wall sockets, the laundry room, and even behind wallpaper. According to a study of infested living environments conducted by the University of Kentucky, this was the breakdown of the most frequent places where bed bugs were found to be hiding:

  1. Box Spring (34.6%)
  2. Couch and/or Chair (22.6%)
  3. Mattress (22.4%)
  4. Bed Frame and/or Head Board (13.4%)
  5. Other (3.1%)
  6. Walls and/or Ceilings (2.3%)
  7. Baseboard (1.4%)
  8. Dresser and/or Night Stand (0.2%)

 

Out and About

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most common locations of infestation outside of your home are places like apartments, dorm rooms, and shelters. There have been locations in the news recently that add some rather alarming locations to that list. Some recent reports put bed bugs in places like: movie theaters, libraries, trains, buses, taxis, retail stores, schools, day care centers and, most alarmingly, medical settings.

Bed bugs are not just for beds anymore. Do you know what to look for and how to prevent an infestation from happening in your home? Stay tuned for next week’s blog about bed bug prevention. If you suspect you have an infestation, call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321.

 


Squirrels 101

Squirrels may be fun to watch with their crazy antics and fun jumping maneuvers, but boy can they be a major pain if they find their way into your home! Fall can be an especially trying time for homeowners plagued by a horde of squirrels because this is the time that these critters are stocking up on food and looking for a safe place to spend the winter. The combination can lead to headaches for homeowners, so here is our quick guide on squirrels to help you out.

What do squirrels eat?

Squirrels are omnivores, which means that they eat both meat and plants. Many homeowners long believed that their garbage was safe because there were no nuts hiding inside the barrels. Once you have seen a squirrel climb up a tree with a piece of pizza between their front teeth you will know that your garbage is fair game. Keep your garbage, pet food, and grill drippings clean and secure.

Where do Squirrels nest?

Most of the time, these frisky creatures live in tree cavities where they can easily access the food and water in their environment. Unfortunately, during the colder winter months, they sometimes attempt to enter structures that can provide higher levels of protection and warmth. Inspect your home annually to ensure that there are not access points for these critters to enter your home, including the chimney cap, vents, soffits, and gaps in the siding.

What are common squirrel behaviors?

Squirrels are tricky in that they can outsmart many animals and even seem unafraid of humans. They are, however afraid of owls, so some homeowners attempt prevention by placing a plastic owl around the yard. In addition, squirrels give birth to their young about once or twice each year. The number of newborns can vary depending on the species. If you begin to notice droppings, chew marks, and messes in your attic, garage, or crawl spaces, then you may have a squirrel problem.

Do you have a squirrel problem that you need fixed? Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321.

 


Rodent Awareness: The Danger

Last week, we examined the red flags and prevention techniques to avoid a rodent infestation in our blog Rodent Awareness Week: Red Flag and Prevention Techniques. This week we are examining why being vigilant against an infestation is a smart idea. The health and safety of the people living in your home is vitally important. Let’s examine the danger of having these pests living in the same space as humans.

The Risks

Rodents pose a number of health risks to you and your family. Our nation currently faces a growing level of mice and rat infestations in our cities and towns. More than 1/3 of American homeowners (37%) have seen a rodent in their home in the past year. Rats and mice are known to spread more than 35 diseases. These diseases can be spread to humans directly, through handling of live or dead rodents, through contact with rodent feces, urine, or saliva, and through rodent bites. In addition to contracting diseases from touching or living around these rodents, diseases can be spread from the mites, ticks, and bugs that feast on rats and mice.

The most common danger of having a rodent infestation is the spread of food-borne illnesses like Salmonella, as rodents contaminate surfaces throughout the house and will look to get into your kitchen cabinets and food prep areas. Other diseases include:

  • hantavirus,
  • salmonella,
  • allergies & asthma,
  • tularemia,
  • plague,
  • rat bite fever,
  • lymphocytic choriomeningitis
  • leptospirosis

These diseases put you and your family at serious risk for falling ill. Along with this worry, rodents can track in other pests from outside like fleas and ticks. This opens up your family to a variety of other disease and risk factors. Needless to say, rodents are dangerous to your home and your loved ones, and should be handled by professionals. If you suspect a rodent infestation, call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321.


Rodent Awareness Week: Red Flags and Prevention

The crisp autumn air has settled in for good and we are all seeking the warmth of our homes or even a cozy fire. Autumn has signaled that the colder, harsher weather of winter is yet to come. Rodents, while unable to read a calendar, also know that winter is just around the corner by these environmental changes. That means they, too, are beginning to plan for the harshness of a New England winter. That is why this time of year, specifically the third week (or so) of October, that we observe “Rodent Awareness Week.”

 

Unlike many pests that have an active season and a dormant season, rats and mice are active all year long. However, there is usually an uptick in rodent infestations as temperatures cool every fall and winter. It is this time of year that nature has signalled to these rodents that they need to find shelter to survive the winter. The cold temperatures and varying degrees of precipitation require that these pests find not only shelter but access to food and water, too. Your home may make a perfect location!  

 

Red Flags

Many homeowners don’t quite know what to look for in regard to signs that they may have a growing rodent problem inside their home or around their property. Here are a few red flags to be aware of.

  • Droppings – Mice and Rats leave droppings wherever they are inhabiting. Mouse droppings are small, less than one quarter inch, and pointed on both ends. Rat droppings are half an inch or longer.
  • Odor – Mice and rats also need to urinate and can leave a musty smelling, pungent odor after urinating the same spots time after time.
  • Rub Marks and Runways – Mice and rats leave oily rub marks along their common walkways. Common rodent pathways or runways are generally along interior walls, building foundations, ledges, pipes, electrical wires, conduits, tree branches and fence rails.
  • Gnawing Indications – Do you see insulations, storage containers, or other clutter in your garage, attic, or basement that appears to have been gnawed? This is a sure sign that you have some pests. You may also notice shredded paper, string, and other items that these rodent have made into nests for their young.
  • Noises – Many homeowners notice noises especially at night of scratching or scurrying. This may also be an indicator as these creatures are nocturnal.
  • Unusual Pet Behavior – If your dog or cat seems to be barking or pacing around walls, outlets, or other areas, they may be trying to tell you that there are mice or rats in your home.

 

Prevention

There is no 100% sure fire way to stop these creatures from entering your home but here are a few ideas to help you prevent an infestation.

 

  • Clean Up – Keep clutter to a minimum in the less frequented areas of your home such as: the attic, garage, or basement. The fewer places there are to hide, the better.
  • Seal up openings that lead into your home. Mice can fit into a space the size of a dime! Inspect under doors, around windows and especially near utility vents.
  • Replace broken windows.
  • Avoid using mulch adjacent to the foundation.
  • Keep bushes and trees trimmed back from your home.
  • Do not store firewood within the immediate vicinity of the house.

Prevention also means taking action as soon as you suspect a problem. Our experts can determine the extent of the problem and create a plan of treatment. Call Pest-End Exterminators at 1-800-287-4321, 603-382-9644, or 978-794-4321.


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.