Pests exist worldwide and are a dangerous hazard to our sanity and the sanctity of our homes. Not only can certain types of pests cause significant damage to your house, but a few are known to carry unwanted diseases too. So the first step to finding a way to eliminate them from your home is to know precisely what you’re dealing with.
Luckily for you, we’ve compiled an easy guide to help you identify what pests are stirring up trouble in your local neighborhood in Virginia Beach.
Ants are one of the most common and invasive home pests. What can start as one or two can quickly multiply by thousands. Their small size means they can get into almost everything.
They’re averse to sugar and will find gaps in your kitchen. Once they find a food source, getting rid of them will seem almost impossible.
Although various ant species exist, you can quickly identify them. They’re usually small and dark, with three distinct body parts: a head, thorax and abdomen.
The most common pests found in the Virginia Beach area are:
- Carpenter Ants
- Ghost Ants
- House Ants
- Fire Ants
Carpenter Ants have a horrible habit of building nests under floorboards and wall panels; they chew through wood to create complex tunnel systems, which can eventually lead to the structural decay of your home if left unattended.
Certain species of ants, like the Fire Ant (also found in Virginia Beach), have a nasty bite and/or sting. These can cause allergic reactions in some but are an unpleasant experience we can guarantee you won’t want to deal with.
Wasps are a pinched waist aggressive insect type that packs a powerful sting. They can be found in small hives, but these numbers can increase drastically, creating a significant problem for you and your family.
Like most insects, they have three distinctive body parts. The thorax has a pair of translucent wings attached. Most common wasps have black markings and bright colors on their body, usually yellow or orange.
Their nests are usually built in pre-existing gaps, so having wasps around your home may indicate a broken roof shingle. Also, if left alone, the nest can cause some damage to soft building materials like wood and drywall.
A major concern for homeowners is being stung. It can be incredibly painful and can cause an allergic reaction in people and pets that could lead to a costly trip to the doctor. In addition, wasps are unpredictable, and the slightest change can trigger an unwanted attack as the insects try to protect their home.
Termites are one of the most detrimental pests to homes. A termite infestation can destroy foundations, walls and rooves and cost homeowners thousands in damages if not managed quickly. These burrowing insects have powerful mandibles that chew through wood to create a network of tunnels. You can often tell if you have a termite problem by the remnants of their efforts in the form of wood grain, mud tubes and sagging in your floors.
They are tiny insects and usually light in color with dark faces. However, their appearance can vary depending on their role in the colony. In some cases, they have wings as well.
Colonies can reach hundreds of thousands and have a set hierarchy around a queen. Each insect can live for up to two years, constantly reproducing within this time. And so, their population increases exponentially once the colony settles.
It is estimated that termites cause billions of dollars in damages across the US annually, and extensive problems lead to dangerous structural instability in homes.
Rats and mice are dangerous to have in your home. Not only can these furry creatures bite, but they are notorious carriers of disease. In addition, their occupation of your home can usher in other pests like ticks and fleas.
Common pest-type rodents usually have a dark brown to black fur color with a bald tail, ears and feet. Do not mistake them for domesticated rats with various coat colors and markings. Mice are, of course, small, usually about 1 foot, not including their tail. Rats are significantly larger and can grow to 3 feet in length.
They are highly intelligent, and a determined rodent will even burrow through your sewerage to gain access to your home. They cause heinous damage and often build their nests in the soft insulation of drywall or any dark and quiet space they can find. Rodents scavenge and will soon make their way to your kitchen, where they’ll chew through the plastic to get into containers and bags, and some have even been known to find their way into fridges as well.
Some of the most common diseases associated with rodents are:
- Rat-Bite fever
Cockroaches are a nocturnal insect that dwells in built-up areas. They are commonly found in kitchens and bathrooms where the network of drains allows access to the home. While the insect itself is relatively harmless, they are undeniably gross.
These oval-shaped insects are a dull-copper color and flat. Some do have wings and can fly. They are expert climbers and can attach themself to any flat surface, including ceilings.
Fortunately, cockroaches are not vectors for disease, but because of the highly unhygienic habits of these insects, they carry contaminants that can cause illness.
Because of this, they often cause concern when coming into contact with any food or preparation surface. In addition, cockroaches have been known to find their way into closed containers and fridges; and they are capable of chewing open bags.
Strangely enough, cockroaches are also associated with allergies and asthma. This is because enzymes in their saliva and feces can produce mild to severe allergic reactions in people, depending on their sensitivity to it.
Now that you’ve determined the pest in question, you can start to eliminate the problem. Contact our team at Universal Pest, who will advise you on the best and most efficient way to protect your home and loved ones.