The Bug Doctor: Adam Villareal, owner and president of Insight Pest Solutions, entomology nerd, and family man. To help demystify the world of bugs, the Bug Doctor answers your questions during our weekly “Ask the Bug Dr.” blog feature. You can submit your bug and pest control inquiries for him on our Facebook page, by tweeting @insightpest, or commenting below.
What are the Most Common Household Pests?
These are the most common and feared household pest you may encounter.
German Roaches are the most common roaches. Although the most difficult roach to get rid of, they are one of the easiest to prevent. German Roaches do not come from the outside, they are brought in. They are the most common roach found in single and multi family dwellings, restaurants, and hotels. Unlike other roaches, these guys are not attracted to light. They like to nest in dark, warm, and tight confined spaces such as inside of appliances, electronics, kitchen cabinets, door hinges, and etc.
What makes these guys so difficult to get rid of is they reproduce so fast, they are very difficult to keep up with the population growth. The best way to get rid of German Roaches is to contact a professional. Remember, the longer you wait to contact a pest control company, the more expensive it usually gets to get rid of these guys.
American Roaches are the other roaches typically found in and around the home. American Roaches are much bigger than the German Roach and usually nest outside of the home during this time of year. The most common misconception is that people think because they saw a roach, there must be hundreds in the home. Not in the case of American Roaches. Large infestations are not common due to their large size and slow development.
Unlike the German Roach, American Roaches are much easier to control because they come from the outside and they don’t reproduce as fast as German Roaches. Having an effective routine exterior pest control service is the best method for control.
American cockroach. Photo credit: Mike
From experience, these are probably the most feared pest inside of the home. Spiders are usually found in cracks and crevices around the home, garage, shed, rocks around gardens, under decks, and under homes. Some spiders are considered beneficial due to them feeding on insects. Typically spiders will hang out nearby their food source. Most flying insects around the home are attracted to light and that’s where you usually find spiders such as around porch lights and windows. Spider webs are a good indicator that you have a bug issue. The easiest way to get rid of spiders is to get rid of their food source.
Ants are probably the most annoying pests we deal with in the warm summer months due to them mostly being found in the kitchen when found inside of the home. Depending on the species of ants, usually you can pick up their trail from the inside to their nest outside in the ground, under rocks, around trees, under mulch/pine straw, and even under trashcans. They feed on sweets and protein. They are usually attracted to the kitchen and restroom areas when found trailing in the home. Locating the source is usually the best method of control. Sometimes using the wrong type of product can make the ant infestation worse. Keeping shrubs, tall grass, tree branches, and gardens away from the home will help reduce potential entry points into the home for ants.
The most destructive rodent found around the home. They are known to travel from 9 to 30 feet away from their nest. Mice are very paranoid creatures and are known to carry diseases that will contaminate human food. They only need a 1/4″ of space to squeeze their way into a dwelling. If they can get their nose in, then usually they can get the rest of their body in too. Mice usually find their way into crawlspaces, walls, and attics. Exclusion and placing traps in proper places around the home is the best method of control.
Having a good Integrated Pest Management plan is the recommended method to control common household pests. Typically, keeping the perimeter and underneath the home dry, reducing lighting illuminating from the home by closing blinds and curtains before sunset, and having a routine pest control service will help reduce these infestations.
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