1. How many kinds of ants are there?
There are approximately 10,000 varieties worldwide and about 570 of those reside in the United States.
2. Why do I have ants returning to the inside of my home after my service?
Perimeter treatments will help month to month to prevent ants from entering the home via the foundations and open areas. However, ant colonies are continually moving into the property and must be intercepted by regular treatments.
3. Which is better to control ants; spray or bait?
Both products have their place in the control of ant colonies. Baits work to control a greater variety of ants; however, the kill rate is slower. You cannot apply spray to any area in which bait has been placed or the ants will not take it. We now have new sprays available but there use is limited to where and how they can be used.
4. What can I do to help keep ants away?
Keep all food picked up and away from any ant trails (this includes garbage cans, dog food dishes, food containers, etc.) that will keep ants from taking the bait. Look for ant hills on your property prior to your service two sets of eyes are always better than one.
5. How do ants get inside?
Any opening into the structure will allow the ants to travel. However, the most popular ones are water pipes, electrical wires, doorways and windows. You can help keep ants out by making sure doors and windows are properly sealed. Also, dont leave hoses and working equipment in the yard after watering or gardening. The ants walk up the hose or equipment to find a way into the home.
1. How can I tell if my bees are Africanized?
It is virtually impossible to tell the difference between Africanized bees and Honey bees without a microscope. They are very similar to the naked eye.
2. My bees are calm and non-aggressive to anyone around. Do I need to worry?
It has been reported that over 95% of the bees found roaming through Arizona are now Africanized. You should ALWAYS treat a bee swarm or bee hive as aggressive and use extreme caution.
3. When does the Fire Department respond to a report of a bee swarm or bee hive?
The role of the Fire Department is to provide EMERGENCY response for LIFE THREATENING situations which involve bee attacks.
4. When did Africanized bees come to Arizona?
Africanized bees arrived in Arizona in the mid 1990s.
5. What experience do you have in bee control?
We have been in the Pest Control Industry in Arizona for over 30 years. We have provided over 50 emergency Bee Control services for the Fire, Police and City departments in the first half of this year alone.
6. Why do other bees come back to set-up in the same place?
If you do not remove the hive, the pheromones (scents) left by the previous bees will attract more bees thinking this is a good place to make a home.
7. When did Africanized Bees first come to the United States?
Africanized Bees first appeared in Texas in October, 1990; followed by New Mexico and Arizona in October and June (respectively), 1993; California in October, 1994; and Nevada in April, 1999. Note that the months followed the typical swarming seasons of spring and fall for bee activity.
8. How many confirmed deaths have there been in the United States from Africanized Bees?
Since their introduction to the United States there have been 14 or more deaths from Africanized bees over a period of several years. Stings from Africanized bees kill 2-3 people per year in the United States, a rate that makes them more dangerous than venomous snakes, particularly since, unlike snakes, they are found only in a small portion of the country.
9. How can you tell the difference between Africanized Honey Bees (AHB) and European Honey Bees (EHB)?
You may first want to look at the SIMILARITIES:
- Look the same
- Sting in defense of themselves or their nest
- Can only sting once
- Have the same venom
- Pollinate flowers
- Produce honey and wax
However, Africanized Honey Bees DIFFER in that they:
- Respond more quickly and more bees sting
- Can sense a threat from 50 feet or more from their nest
- Sense vibrations from power equipment from 100 feet or more from their nest
- May pursue a perceived enemy ¼ mile or more
- Swarm more frequently to establish new nests
- Nest in smaller cavities or sheltered areas
- Move their entire colony readily if food is scarce
1. Why have there been so many crickets lately?
Most entomologists suggest insect outbreaks are not only related to favorable weather conditions, but also to increases in food supplies and decreases in natural enemies.
2. How do I get rid of crickets?
The best way to control crickets is to keep them outside. Inspect the outside of your home and repair any cracks or openings in the foundation, walls, doorways or windows that would allow entry. Minimize hiding spaces by reducing grass, brush, wood piles or bricks next to your foundation.
3. How do I stop those chirping crickets I can't find in my home?
The best way to catch crickets in your home is to put a little cornmeal in the middle of a glue board (usually sold for catching mice) and place it in a secluded area near the chirping. Usually within a day or two, the cricket(s) will be caught on the glue board and can be disposed of.
1. Can I use water to get rid of gophers in my yard?
No. Flooding tunnels with water can cause the ground to collapse do to the tunnel damage beneath the surface.
2. Will devices that make noise really help keep gophers out of my yard?
Yes, the noise is very irritating to the gophers. Putting the devices in the right areas of the tunnel activity and moving them as needed is the equivalent of playing your least favorite music very loudly in your home 24 hours a day.
3. If I use gopher bait in the tunnels, do I need to worry about my animals in the yard?
Yes. Most of the time, the gophers will die in the tunnel and should not present a problem. However, if they don't, you want to make sure your animal does not get a hold of it. You also want to keep animals from digging in the tunnels that contain the bait.
1. What are dust mites?
Dust mites are microscopic mites that live on dead skin cells and scales shed by people and animals. They get the name 'dust mite' because their cast skin and feces make up a large portion of household 'dust'.
2. What is 'house dust'?
House dust is usually a combination of varying amounts of the following items: cigarette ash; combustion products; fibers (synthetic, wool, cotton, paper or silk); fingernail filings; food crumbs; glue; graphite; hair; insect fragments; soot; paint chips; plant parts; pollen; skin cells; etc.
3. My doctor said my allergies are caused by dust mites. How can I be allergic to something so small?
Allergic reactions to house dust are usually caused by a reaction to the allergens of the mites' cast skin and fecal material. Although microscopic, much of the visual dust you see contains a large quantity of this material.
4. How do I eliminate dust mites?
Elimination is virtually impossible. However, control can be obtained by: vacuuming affected areas (bedding, furniture and carpets) frequently; using a Hepa-filter air purifier; washing bedding and furniture covers often (dry at 140 degrees to kill mites); reducing humidity in the home to less than 70 percent. Avoid furry or feathered pets if possible.
1. There are so many types of flies, what kind are problems in homes?
Many varieties of flies are nuisance problems in our homes. Commonly found are house flies, stable flies, blow flies, face flies, cluster flies, fungus gnats, fruit flies, and drain (or sewer) flies.
2. I seem to get different flies at different times of the year. What can I do to keep the flies out of my home?
Sanitation and exclusion are the keys to reducing fly populations. Keep garbage contained and away from the home. Use screening on windows and doors that are open for air circulation. Flypaper and electrocution light traps help further reduce populations once sanitation and exclusion are in place. In addition, the following reduce harborage areas by type. Blow flies: seal garbage containers, remove pet manure promptly House flies: seal garbage containers, spot treat corners of rooms in nesting sites with residual insecticide Face flies: limit sources of cattle manure in pastures close to home Cluster flies: apply residual pesticide to the exterior of the building (particularly the south and west sides where entry is more prevalent) Fungus gnats: allow soil of houseplants to dry occasionally to reduce soil fungus growth, apply houseplant insecticides to plants and soil surface Fruit flies: eliminate overripe fruit and fermenting materials from home, ensure garbage disposals are cleaned regularly, poor boiling water down drains Drain flies: eliminate leaky plumbing, clean organic debris in plumbing with drain cleaner, pour boiling water down drains regularly (NEVER POOR INSECTICIDES DOWN THE DRAIN!)
3. How high can a housefly fly?
Interestingly, how high an insect will fly depends upon temperature. Generally speaking, insects can stay in the air if the temperature is above 50 degrees. If the temperature at ground level is 90 degrees, they can fly up to 6,000 feet. If the temperature at ground level is 70 degrees, the flying ceiling is about 3,600 feet.
1. I think I have mice, how can I be sure?
Inspect the areas of suspected activity with a black light. Droppings will be found in high activity areas. Talcum powder is also great to use to monitor where the mice are tracking.
2. I put out a mousetrap and it hasn't worked yet, what am I doing wrong?
You will want to use the traps in the areas that show activity. Place the traps 6 feet apart. If you suspect two or more mice, use 12 or more traps. Note: You will trap 90% of your mice the first night the traps and bait are used. The more traps you use in the right areas, the better your capture rate!
3. What do I put in the trap to attract the mice?
Mice are attracted to peanut butter, salami, fried bacon pieces and dental floss.
4. I swept up the mouse droppings; do I need to clean the area with anything?
YES! Mice and other rodents carry many diseases. Always wear rubber gloves to clean the droppings or traps and use a disinfectant to clean the areas.
1. My kitchen is clean! How did I get these bugs?
Insect infestations usually start from infested food or plant items brought in from other sources such as grocery stores, warehouses, etc.
2. What are these little bugs I found in my pantry cupboard?
A variety of insects are common in our pantries including flour beetles, saw toothed grain beetles, Indian meal moths, cigarette and drugstore beetles, dermestid beetles, granary and rice weevils and brown spider beetles.
3. What can I do if regular cleaning does not seem to help?
The following hints will help reduce and control pantry pests:
- Use dried food products within 2 to 4 months
- Use oldest products first
- For purchased items, ensure containers are not damaged and seals are tight
- Check foods in clear packaging for presence of insects
- Store dried food products in screw top glass, heavy plastic or metal containers to prevent insect entry or escape
- When possible, store dried foods in the freezer to prevent pests from developing
- Regularly remove food crumbs, pet food or bird seed debris to avoid accumulation of food sources for pests
1. How do I keep pigeons away from my bird feeders?
Unprotected bird feeders attract ALL birds. Try moving the feeder to a more enclosed protected area in which the smaller birds can eat comfortably and the access is too small for pigeons. However, if the birds are dropping any food outside the protected area, the pigeons will still be around.
2. How do I keep pigeons off my patio ledge?
Apply spikes to the ledge area. These will keep the pigeons from landing and creating a messy roosting area. You might also use the gel to keep pigeons from walking on the ledge. However, gel is usually only a temporary fix as it can get dirty and loose its effectiveness.
Pill bugs and Sow bugs
1. What are pill bugs?
Pill bugs and sow bugs are crustaceans are distantly related to lobsters, shrimps and crawdads. Pill bugs are sometimes referred to as 'roly-poly' bugs by kids because they roll into a ball when touched. Pill bugs (and the closely related sow bugs) are brown to purplish-gray in color remove and ? to ? inch in length. They feed on decaying plant material and are commonly found in gardens, mulch piles and other moist harborage areas.
2. How do I keep these pesky bugs out of my home?
The best way to keep pill bugs and sow bugs out of the home is to repair cracks or openings in the foundation or outer walls of the home. Keep mulches and plant material at least 6 to 8 inches from the foundation and allow materials to dry out occasionally. For bad infestations, use a granular or spray residual insecticide to establish a 3 to 5 foot 'barrier' strip around the foundation of your home.
1. Are water bugs and roaches related?
Yes. Water bugs are actually a kind of cockroach. Because they seem to like damp, wet locations, they have acquired the nickname "water bug". The proper name for them is "Oriental Cockroach".
2. Is it true that immaculate housekeepers never get cockroaches?
No. Two species of cockroaches (German and Brown Banded) move into homes through human activity and the cleanliness of the residence is immaterial. Immaculate homes however will rarely have severe infestations.
3. Can you bring cockroaches into your home in sacks of groceries?
Yes. You can bring German and Brown Banded cockroaches into your home in sacks of potatoes, cardboard boxes or groceries from infested warehouses or stores. You can also bring them home if you work in a cockroach infested building.
4. Is it possible to completely rid our home of cockroaches?
Yes. But it can take a lot of work to completely eradicate them, especially if the roaches are well established. Eradication can be more difficult in apartment buildings, but effective treatments should suppress the population.
5. Are all cockroaches the same?
No. Each species has its own preferred niche or living area inside the home. Knowing its habitat can be more effective in efforts of getting control.
6. Are insecticide treatments the basis for effective control?
No. The truth is that sanitation is the foundation for effective control. If good sanitation is maintained, baits and insecticide treatments are more effective.
7. What can you tell me about the roach's habitat?
Roaches have three basic living requirements: Food, water, and harborage (cracks and crevices). It is very important to reduce the availability of these items. Fixing drippy faucets and pipes, keeping infested areas as clean as possible, and caulking the cracks and crevices will discourage infestations.
8. Do insecticides pose a threat to humans?
Because the insecticide is placed in areas which minimizes exposure to humans and pets, this form of control is considered to be in the "least toxic control" category.
9. Are residual insecticides usually more effective in controlling cockroaches than surface sprays?
In general, over the counter aerosol sprays are convenient to use, but most do not have residual activity that controls the insect after the initial application. Crack and crevice treatments using residual insecticides and baits together are usually more effective in controlling cockroaches.
1. How can I keep my baby safe from scorpions at night?
Keep your baby's crib away from walls and put the legs of the crib in wide-mouthed glass jars. The scorpions cannot climb clean glass. This will help lessen the chance of scorpions getting in the crib.
2. Why are scorpions coming into my home?
Scorpions are attracted to moisture and temperature change in the air leaking around doors, windows, light, and vents. Weather striping calking and screening will help keep them out. Sometimes, scorpions are inadvertently carried inside in fire wood or other items stored outside.
3. How do I find scorpions if I suspect they are in my home?
Scorpions are nocturnal and hunt for food at night. You can locate them best at night in a dark room with a black light; even if they are several feet away from you. Their bodies are iridescent and show up best under a black light. See our photo gallery. Glue boards used for catching mice and rodents can also be used to catch scorpions.
4. How dangerous are scorpions?
All scorpions are assumed dangerous and poisonous. Stings occur most often because scorpions hide during the daylight hours in shoes or clothing and then sting the victim who tries to put on that object. In our area of the southwest, the most prevalent, smallest and poisonous is the Bark scorpion. These are lighter in color and range from 1 to 1 ½ inches long. The second most numerous is the Devil scorpion. These are from 1 ½ to 3 inches long with a broader, ridged tail.
5. What can I do to prevent scorpions from becoming a problem?
Remove trash and debris from the ground around the home; keep firewood and lumber on gratings above the ground; put a barrier strip of gravel around the foundation of the home; seal all openings or cracks in walls, foundations and ceilings; apply weather stripping around doors, windows, and vents; repair outside water drips in faucets, coolers and air conditioners.
Silverfish and Firebrats
1. What is the difference between a silverfish and a firebrat?
Both the silverfish and firebrat are very commonly found in households throughout the country. Both insects are slender, wingless and covered with scales. However, the silverfish are silver to pearly gray while the firebrats are mottled gray in color.
2. What attracts the silverfish to my kitchen and dining room?
Silverfish and firebrats are active at night, avoid sunlight and like moist, dark hiding places. Usually kitchens and bathrooms provide just the right atmosphere. Their favorite foods are materials high in protein, sugar and starch which include cereals, moist wheat flour, and paper with glue backing (including wall paper), book bindings, starched linens and rayon fabrics.
3. I have a terrible infestation, how do I get rid of them?
To control these insects, you need to change the environment immediately. Eliminate moisture from leaky water sources; put cereals and other sugar and flour foods in sealed containers; store starched cloth in sealed plastic; and clean and store books out the area for a period of time until control is achieved. Apply residual insecticides to provide 15 to 45 days of control in the areas where activity is seen. Also helpful is to use glue boards designed to catch mice in the corners of cabinets to 'catch' the insects as they scurry in the night.
1. What kind of spider produces cobwebs?
Cobwebs, as we commonly refer to them, are old and abandoned webs from any type of spider. The webs have collected dust and have become highly visible. You can remove them with the vacuum or wash them off.
2. What is an easy way to catch spiders if I can't find them in a web?
Glue boards used for catching mice and rodents can also be used to catch hunting types of spiders. Place the glue board in the areas of suspected activity.
3. How can I keep spiders off my porch around the light and doorway?
The spiders are attracted to an area by the insects they eat. You can change your light bulb to a yellow bulb instead of white to reduce the flying insects attracted to the area. Whenever possible, keep the light off.
4. How can I get rid of the spiders in my home?
Total spider elimination is not recommended and in most cases, not possible. Sanitation and exclusion are the two key words to spider control. Regular cleaning and grooming around the home and property is necessary to reduce the insect population that attracts spiders. To keep spiders outside, seal all openings in walls, windows, and doors with caulking or weather stripping. You can also screen exterior vents.
5. I want to vacuum the spider webs but I can't reach them. Any suggestions?
Try adding this extension to your vacuum cleaner hose. Buy a piece of PVC pipe that fits the end of your hose attachment. The pipe can be as long as needed to reach those out of the way places.
6. What is this 'recluse' I've been reading about in the paper?
This is a common name for a Brown Recluse spider. Their bites are highly toxic to humans and animals. The recluse gets its name from its shyness. These spiders hide in boxes, closets, clothes, crawl spaces, under wood or bark, stones and other 'hiding places'. Bites most often occur when the spider is startled and cannot escape. The recluse is brown with a fiddle shaped marking on its back. See our photo gallery for pictures.
Ticks / fleas
1. What can I do about fleas?
The type of preventative measures you choose depends on your specific pet or animal situation, i.e., does the pet live inside or outside or in a kennel, is the pet allergic to flea bites, does the pet have regular contact with other infested animals or areas? Remove the animals contact with the source first and then treat the infested animal and the infested living area.
2. How did my pet get fleas?
Animals become infested after contact with other infested animals or by walking and playing in areas frequented by infested animals.
3. Do fleas bite people?
Yes. Many species of fleas prefer specific types of animals. However, in the absence of a preferred host, any warm-blooded host will do.
4. Why do flea infestations happen and get out of control so quickly?
When the adult female has a host to provide blood meals, she may lay between 400 and 800 eggs. The larvae can survive anywhere in the home and feed on all types of organic material. Under optimal conditions, the flea can complete its entire life cycle in 14 days.
5. How do I kill the fleas without harming my pet?
All flea shampoos contain insecticides. A natural insecticide that is fairly effective is D-limonene (a volatile oil from citrus fruits). These are recommended as safe for kittens, puppies or homes with infants. Remember, however, to only use products on animals for which it is labeled.
6. Do flea collars really work?
Flea collars are not an effective means to get rid of fleas; they are, however, an effective method to prevent fleas. In conjunction with other treatments such as Advantage and Frontline, flea collars can be extremely valuable in keeping fleas off your pet.
7. What can I do in my home to get rid of fleas?
Wash pet bedding (and regular bedding if the pet sleeps with the family) in hot water. Vacuum carpets and floors thoroughly to pick up flea larva. If possible, steam clean the carpet area to remove any remnants of organic material that feeds the larvae. If youre pet lives outdoors, clean and wash bedding or kennel areas. Also seek assistance from a pest management professional to provide insecticide treatments to the areas where adult flea and larvae can hide.
1. Where do the questions and answers for this category come from?
From the makers of Termidor, a termiticide.
2. What is Termidor?
Termidor remains the leading liquid termiticide by providing 100 percent control of termites within three months or less.
3. What types of termites does Termidor control?
Termidor controls subterranean termites, including Formosan termites, which are the most destructive species in the United States. Formosan termites account for 80 percent of the $2.5 billion in annual destruction and control of termites in homes and buildings.
4. Throughout the years, other products have promised homeowners protection from termites. How can homeowners be sure that Termidor works?
Termidor has been used on more than 600,000 homes nationwide with unprecedented success. Through eight years of trials by the United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service, Termidor has been proven to provide 100 percent control of subterranean termites in all tests at all locations. In addition, more than 120 single family dwellings and apartments from New York to Hawaii have been treated with Termidor under state and federal Experimental Use Permit (EUP) authorization since 1997. All of these sites ranged widely in size, structure, climatic zone and soil type. In every dwelling, 100 percent control of termites was achieved within three months.
5. Where can homeowners buy Termidor?
Termidor is a product that is purchased and applied by licensed pest management professionals (PMPs) who have been trained as a Termidor-certified professional. Homeowners should request that their PMPs use Termidor in the termite treatment programs developed for their homes.
6. Where can a homeowner find a PMP who offers Termidor treatments?
Termidor is currently available to PMPs nationwide. Only PMPs who have been properly trained as a Termidor-certified professional have authorization to use and purchase the product. Homeowners are encouraged to call their local PMP to see if he/she is certified to use Termidor.
7. How fast will Termidor work once applied properly to a home?
Termidor has consistently shown exceptional results by providing 100 percent control within three months or less. That's significantly faster than termite baiting systems, which typically take six to 18 months to control termites.
8. How does a PMP apply Termidor to a home?
Only licensed PMPs who are trained as a Termidor-certified professional can apply Termidor to a home. Termidor is a liquid that is applied after it is diluted and mixed with water. The PMP will apply Termidor along the foundation walls of the home to create a continuous treatment zone. The application method is called trenching and Roding, and may sometimes require drilling holes into the concrete foundation of the home for maximum protection. A PMP may also need to conduct an interior treatment of the home, depending on the extent of the termite infestation and damage.
9. Can Termidor be used in both residential and commercial termite control?
Yes, a PMP may choose to treat most any type of structure that is at risk for termite damage. These structures may include residential homes, churches, office buildings and schools.
10. How long does it take to complete a Termidor application?
A Termidor application program at a residential location is typically completed by a trained PMP in a half day.
11. Does Termidor have or leave an odor?
No, Termidor is odor-free.
12. What makes Termidor different from other termite control options, such as baits?
Termidor remains the leading liquid termiticide by providing 100 percent control within three months or less. No other termite-control product can provide this type of assurance. Termidor works faster than termite baiting systems, which typically take six to 18 months to control termites. Termidor's active ingredient, fipronil, works differently to control termite infestation. Termidor's unique mode of action, known as the "Transfer Effect", controls termites by both ingestion and contact, which puts Termidor in a class by itself. Most termite products on the market are repellents. Repellents keep termites away from the treated area rather than killing them on site. Termidor is a non-repellent. Therefore, when Termidor is applied to the soil around a structure, termites are unaware of its presence and eventually contact or ingest the termiticide. Some termiticides rely on ingestion alone to kill termites. Termidor controls termites through ingestion and contact. Termites don't have to ingest Termidor to die from its effect. Termites can pick up Termidor on their bodies and unknowingly carry lethal doses back to their colony, killing others they contact on the way.
13. What will a Termidor treatment cost?
The cost of a Termidor treatment varies and largely depends on the agreement a homeowner has with his/her local pest Control Company. A Termidor treatment plan generally will cost less than a termite baiting system and will provide more effective, longer lasting control.
14. Is Termidor safe around children and pets? Does Termidor address homeowners' concerns for safety?
For starters, Termidor is one of the most thoroughly reviewed termiticides in history -- a fact that should provide an unprecedented level of confidence to homeowners. Termidor is registered with the Environmental Protection Agency and can only be applied by a PMP who has been trained in correct application methods. Termidor is effective at considerably low application rates. Most PMPs will apply the product so that the fipronil content is approximately 0.06%, which is much lower than termiticide application rates in years past. Besides its low application rates, Termidor also has other features to ease homeowners' concerns. For instance, Termidor bonds to the soil in which it is applied, so homeowners need not worry about leaching through rainfall or irrigation. In addition, Termidor's active ingredient, fipronil, has been used extensively on food crops around the world and on dogs and cats for flea and tick control since 1995.
15. My house was infestated by termites, just treated by Termidor last week, but swarms of flying termites appeared every night. Will the flying termites further reproduce anyway in the house and how to treat all these flying termites?
The termites are in the mating season. The treatment on your house will take care of the problem. You used a very good chemical. I hear that it could take up to 90 days.