Here are a few facts to help homeowners protect themselves from stinging insects over the next few months:
- Stinging insects send more than 500,000 people to the emergency room every year. They can swarm and sting en masse, which can be life threatening especially for anyone who has an allergic reaction.
- Unlike some stinging insect species, wasps are known for their unprovoked aggression. A single colony of wasps can contain more than 15,000 members, so an infestation should not be taken lightly.
- Common nesting sites include under eaves, on ceiling beams in attics, garages and sheds and under porches. Some stinging insects can build their nests in the ground, including yellowjackets and velvet ants (which are actually a species of wasps). Over-seeding the yard provides more coverage and discourages these pests from nesting around the property.
- Painting or staining untreated wood in fences, decks, swing sets and soffits will help keep stinging insects such as carpenter bees out. Carpenter bees create nests by drilling tunnels into soft wood, which can severely compromise the stability of a structure over time.
- Only female carpenter bees have stingers. Female carpenter bees will only sting if threatened, but reactions to these stings can range from mild irritation to life-threatening respiratory distress.
To learn more about bed bugs click on the image below. When it comes to bed bug control remember to Just Call Hulett!
Northern Arizona researchers Kasey Yturralde and Richard W. Hofstetter tested four different products, none of which successfully drove away bed bugs.
With bed bugs bunking just about everywhere these days, people battling the bloodsucking insects may be tempted to try their hand at driving them away. But ultrasonic bug zappers, which retail for less than $25, aren’t the solution, say entomologists who tested some of the devices.
Northern Arizona researchers Kasey Yturralde and Richard W. Hofstetter tried out four different ultrasonic devices available on Amazon: one designed specifically for bedbugs and three that claimed to repel insects and small furry mammalian pests.
Their simple experimental design consisted of two 5-gallon buckets lined with sound-muffling insulation that were connected by a tube. An ultrasonic device was placed in one bucket, and eight to 10 bed bugs were placed in the tube.
More care was given to how the bedbugs were housed in the lab. The researchers kept them in large jars, like those used for canning, which were placed in bins full of soapy water. And every lip or edge over which a rogue bed bug would have to crawl was covered in a slippery substance a little like liquid Teflon, Yturralde says, to keep them from escaping.
In test after test, the bed bugs showed no preference for either bucket. None of the four devices drove the bed bugs away.
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From the West Nile virus and Yosemite Hantavirus outbreaks to Lyme disease and the plague, it could be argued that 2012 was the year of pest-related infectious diseases. But, there were also some weird and wacky pest stories that grabbed headlines over the past twelve months. Here’s the list of the top five pest stories of 2012, as ranked by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA):
West Nile Virus (WNV) Outbreak: The mosquito-borne WNV outbreak became the second-worst in the history of the country. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were 5,387 cases of WNV disease in people, including 243 deaths in 2012.
Hantavirus and the Plague: Ten people fell ill and three died from exposure to deer mice infected with Hantavirus after staying in tent cabins at Yosemite National Park. A Colorado girl was also infected with the Bubonic Plague, a rare disease that wiped out one-third of Europe in the 14th century.
Acorn Crop Boosts Ticks: This spring, the tick season was heavier than in previous years due to an increase in 2010’s acorn crop and a decrease in the white-footed mouse population this year. These strange events forced many ticks to find new warm-blooded hosts – humans, which caused a surge in Lyme disease.
Spider Calls Woman’s Ear Home: One of the strangest and most unusual stories of 2012 has to do with a spider that was recently removed from a woman’s ear canal after doctors found it living inside for five days.
Termite Species Re-Identified: An aggressive termite species was recently re-identified in Broward County, Fla. Native to the Caribbean, tree termites — once thought to have been eradicated in the United States — can cause widespread property damage in a short period of time. This species is being carefully watched by experts because it’s difficult to control with existing treatment methods.
For more pest news or to locate a qualified pest professional, visit www.pestworld.org.
The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry’s commitment to the protection of public health, food and property.
Bedbugs, Spiders, Bats and Other Pests Give Homeowners Nightmares During the Halloween Season
This Halloween, vampires, ghosts and goblins will not be the only ghoulish creatures haunting the night; bedbugs continue to make a startling resurgence in U.S. residences, spider infestations are up, and wildlife pests such as bats plague homeowners across the country.
Scary movies aren’t the only thing giving homeowners nightmares this season. As temperatures begin to plunge, pests everywhere begin to seek respite in the very areas you want them the least – your home.
Pests such as bedbugs are actually very similar to one of our favorite Halloween characters – the vampire. A nocturnal creature, bedbugs are bloodsucking pests. As they bite human skin, they inject an anesthetic-like liquid that numbs the skin and allows them to bite undisturbed. In fact, humans don’t usually wake up when they are being bitten; however, they do find themselves scratching circular, red, itchy welts in the morning.
Luckily, a bedbug bite doesn’t transform you into a bedbug; the way a vampire bite makes you a vampire. In fact, the only good news about bedbugs is that their bites do not transmit disease to humans.
Other ghoulish pests cannot make the same claim. Bats are the culprits behind 72% of rabies cases in the U.S. between 1990 and 2002; and various species of spiders found in the United States pose serious health threats and require vigilant control procedures.
“Homeowners have an easy way of waking up from this type of house nightmare,” commented National Pest Management Association Vice President of Public Affairs Missy Henriksen. “Pest professionals have the training and expertise to assist homeowners through this type of home horror.”
For further information on these nightmarish pests or to find a pest professional in your area, visit bugs.com and www.pestworld.org.
While rodents are unwelcome house guests, the real concern is that these pests can cause property damage and carry disease. Rodents such as mice and rats spread salmonella and Hantavirus by contaminating food and preparation surfaces. They can also chew through wood and electrical wires, in some cases sparking house fires.
It’s much easier to prevent a rodent infestation than to remove them after they’ve turned your home into their new residence. Here are a few steps homeowners can take to keep their homes rodent-free:
- Seal cracks and holes on the outside of your home to help prevent rodents from finding easy entryways.
- Keep shrubberies cut back from the house and store firewood a good distance away. The NPMA recommends that you tore firewood at least 20 feet from the home and five inches off the ground.
- Rodents can hide in clutter, so keep areas clear and store boxes off of the floor.
- Keep food in tightly sealed containers and clean up crumbs and spills.
- If you find rodent feces, hear sounds of scurrying in the walls or observe other signs of an infestation, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the pest problem.
For further information on rodents or if you have other questions related to your pest control needs, visit www.bugs.com
LONDON (The Associated Press) – There’s a bug problem at the Olympic Stadium.
Thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of bugs descended on the stadium Wednesday evening. They caused a nuisance for fans, stadium workers and maybe even track and field athletes.
Hulett Environmental reminds people to take extra precautions to guard against stinging insects
The late summer and early fall are popular times for people to flock outdoors to enjoy the summer sun. Unfortunately, it is also the most active and aggressive season for stinging insects including wasps and yellow jackets, warns Hulett Environmental Services a pest management company servicing Florida.
“Whether completing home maintenance projects or attending a holiday cookout, anyone spending time outside during the warmer months is likely to encounter stinging insects,” said Greg Rice, Marketing for Hulett Environmental Services “These pests are known to dole out painful stings, which can be life-threatening to people who have an allergic reaction.”
In fact, the National Pest Management Association, a nonprofit organization committed to the protection of public health, food and property from household pests, reports that stinging insects send more than half a million people to the emergency room every year.
“It is important that people don’t provoke stinging insects by swatting at them. Instead, they can take a few extra precautions to prevent an unwanted encounter with these pests,” added Rice. Experts at the NPMA and Hulett offer the following tips to avoid being stung:
- Ensure all doors and windows in your home have screens that are in good condition.
- When dining outside, keep food covered until ready to eat.
- Remove garbage frequently and keep trashcans covered.
- Wear shoes, especially in grassy areas.
- Overseed grassy areas to get better coverage, as this will deter ground-nesting insects.
- Paint/stain untreated wood.
- Avoid wearing sweet-smelling perfumes.
- Do not swat at a stinging insect as it increases the likelihood of an aggressive reaction.
- Seek immediate medical attention if stung, as reactions can be severe.
- Do not attempt to remove a hive or nest on your own.
For more information on stinging insects, visit www.bugs.com
What are some examples of summer pests?
There are many different types of summer pests although some of the most prominent home invaders include ants, cockroaches, and termites. Of course outdoors will bring us a different set of pests – mosquitoes, ticks, and flies are some of the most prevalent.
Are these pests dangerous?
Summer pests are much more than a nuisance – consider these statistics:
- Termites destroy more homes each year than fires and floods combined; they cause over 5 BILLION dollars of damage.
- Stinging insects send 500,000 people to the emergency room each year.
- Recent medical studies show that cockroach allergens trigger asthma attacks in children.
Should we expect more summer pests than usual in our area this year?
We should expect an average amount of pests – comparable to last year – this summer. A good indicator of pest pressure is winter moisture. We didn’t have a terribly wet winter this year, so we should have an average summer for pests.
How can a homeowner get rid of summer pests once they are inside their home?
The best way to eliminate summer pests once they ALREADY infest your home is to call a pest professional.
What steps can homeowners take to reduce the likelihood of summer pests inside their homes?
There are many steps homeowners can take to reduce the likelihood of occasional invaders:
- Keep all kitchen areas clean (including floors). Kitchen appliances should be kept free of spills and crumbs. Clean shelves regularly and store foods such as cereal, flour, and dog food in resealable containers.
- Periodically sweep and vacuum floor areas in the kitchen, under furniture, and around dining areas. Pay particular attention to pet food and water dishes.
- Keep garbage areas clean. Garbage should be stored in sealed containers and disposed of regularly.
- Seal cracks, crevices, and other gaps around doors and windows. Doors and windows should always be kept closed or well screened.
- Check pipes and pipe areas around the house for leaks, cracks and gaps and seal and patch any problems if necessary. Leaky faucets should also be fixed.
- Keep basements, attics, and crawl spaces dry. If you have mold and mildew in your home or office crawlspace, it’s a symptom of an excess moisture problem.
- Inspect boxes, grocery bags and other packaging thoroughly. Insects have also been known to come in on potted plants and in luggage.
Do you have any good rules of thumb for dealing with summer pests?
- When it comes to your home – the cleaner the better. Many summer pests are attracted to food and water sources left out around your home.
- Standing water attracts thirsty pests. Try to remove all stagnant water sources in and around your home.
- A safe bet about pests – there is almost always more than one. Pests breed extremely quickly. If you notice cockroaches or termites in or around your home, chances are great that there are many more where they came from.
Tell me a little bit about ants…
There are as many ways to control ants as there are species of ants! Different species eat different things – making it almost impossible to inspect a single area and control the ant population. The best strategy homeowners can employ when attempting to control ants is to clean, clean, clean. Kids are home more in the warm weather so wipe down counters, regularly remove garbage, clean up grease spills, remove empty soda cans and mop the floors.
Tell me a little bit about cockroaches…
Cockroaches enjoy damp, dark places with a plentiful food supply, They like to hide during the day, often behind kitchen appliances or in cupboards. Inspect these areas vigilantly and clean regularly.
Tell me a little bit about mosquitoes…
Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water that collects in ditches, birdbaths, flowerpots and old tires. Check those areas and remove the standing water to help eliminate the threat.
Tell me a little bit about termites…
Termites build mud tunnels on the foundation of a home for covert access to wood. They can also be found by looking for broken-off wings .