Orkin » Ask The Orkin Man Articles http://www.orkin.com Fri, 21 Nov 2014 21:45:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0 Bee Control http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bee-control/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bee-control/#comments Thu, 05 Dec 2013 14:59:32 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19183 Question: Bees are starting to go under the siding of our home. How much do you charge to spray for them? Answer: If these are bees (honey bees) then it will take more than simply spraying – the entire nest … Continue reading

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Question: Bees are starting to go under the siding of our home. How much do you charge to spray for them?

Answer: If these are bees (honey bees) then it will take more than simply spraying – the entire nest will have to be removed; if these are yellow jackets, the same procedure will be necessary. Consider contacting a local beekeeper to relocate the nest. A beekeeper can assess the situation and, if it’s a honey bee nest, determine if it is feasible to remove the nest. For more information on honey bee nest relocation, contact a local bee keeper or an apiary society .If a beekeeper can’t remove the nest, contact your local Branch office to help with this.

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Where Do You Place Cockroach Baits? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/where-do-you-place-cockroach-baits/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/where-do-you-place-cockroach-baits/#comments Tue, 03 Dec 2013 19:16:15 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19179 Question: I have roaches and I was wondering about the bait you use, where does it have to go…we just remodeled and dont want the bait in our new cabinets? Could they put the bait on a paper towel or … Continue reading

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Question: I have roaches and I was wondering about the bait you use, where does it have to go…we just remodeled and dont want the bait in our new cabinets? Could they put the bait on a paper towel or something?

Answer: Only small amounts of bait are used and it is usually placed in cracks and crevices where the cockroaches are already hiding; it will not damage the new cabinets.

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Are Mice Attracted to House Plants? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-mice-attracted-to-house-plants/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-mice-attracted-to-house-plants/#comments Tue, 03 Dec 2013 19:15:05 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19178 Question: Are mice attracted to – or feed from – common houseplants? We have a mouse problem in our workplace and our HR department wants all employees to remove their plants, citing that they attract mice. I believe it is … Continue reading

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Question: Are mice attracted to – or feed from – common houseplants? We have a mouse problem in our workplace and our HR department wants all employees to remove their plants, citing that they attract mice. I believe it is the fact that most employees eat at their desk and store food in their cubicles. Can you please advise on this?

Answer: You’re the one that is correct…..and they are the ones that are wrong. There would be nothing about common houseplants….any potted plant indoors….that would be attractive to mice…..but food stored in cubicles would be the first place mice would go.

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Bed Bugs in Clothing http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-in-clothing/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-in-clothing/#comments Tue, 03 Dec 2013 19:06:08 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19176 Question: So I had the Orkin Man to my apartment on Saturday and they determined we have bed bugs. I am currently scheduling an appointment to have this problem taken care of. I have followed the preparation sheet but there … Continue reading

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Question: So I had the Orkin Man to my apartment on Saturday and they determined we have bed bugs. I am currently scheduling an appointment to have this problem taken care of. I have followed the preparation sheet but there is no information concerning the clothes in the bedroom. I was told to move everything away from walls and vacuum and to box up any clutter. What do I do with the clothes?? Do they remain in the room? And if so should they be boxed/bagged?? Or do I remove them from the room?

Answer: To reduce the potential for bed bug infested clothes re-infesting the room, it is best if you remove the clothes and wash them all…or dry clean…if washing, use hot water and use high heat in the dryer.

Question: I have bed bugs! I don”t believe I have an infestation, and my furniture and apartment have been sprayed multiple times, but I am throwing much of my furniture out anyway, and moving out.

My question is this—I need to wash all of my clothing so that I can take them with me without the risk of bringing the bed bugs. How can I do that? I know they need very hot water. Will a normal wash and dry at a laundromat do? Is there any way to treat (spray, fumigate…) the clothes before washing them?

ANSWER: Regular washing and drying of the clothes at high temperatures will be fine, no treatment of clothing is needed.

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Tiny Black Worms in the Shower http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-black-worms-in-the-shower/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-black-worms-in-the-shower/#comments Tue, 03 Dec 2013 18:59:11 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19175 Question: We have these tiny little worms in the shower on the ledge under the shampoo bottle. They are black in color and when I pick up the shampoo they all begin moving. My husband cleans out our drains often. … Continue reading

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Question: We have these tiny little worms in the shower on the ledge under the shampoo bottle. They are black in color and when I pick up the shampoo they all begin moving. My husband cleans out our drains often. Their is nothing to pull out of the drains you can see straight through. I clean again and again but they come back after several days. I scrub my shower tile grout with a toothbrush and bleach every other week. Why do we have these worms? And what are they? How can we get rid of them?

Answer: I think these are the larvae of drain flies / moth flies…but it seems you are doing everything right to get rid of them, so I’m lost as to what to recommend. The only possibility is that you have indeed eliminated the breeding locations, but there are still some of the adult flies around and they continue to lay eggs. make sure the windows are closed, and remove that shampoo bottle (put it somewhere other than the shower when not in use), the objective would be to remove all possible breeding sites.

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Worms In Cats Bedding http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/worms-in-cats-bedding/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/worms-in-cats-bedding/#comments Tue, 03 Dec 2013 18:57:54 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=19174 Question: There are tiny worms in my cats bedding. The cat has been tested for parasites and does not have any. What could they be? Answer: These are probably the larvae of fleas….it would be best to wash the bedding … Continue reading

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Question: There are tiny worms in my cats bedding. The cat has been tested for parasites and does not have any. What could they be?

Answer: These are probably the larvae of fleas….it would be best to wash the bedding and use a flea control product….the on-animal products are the most effective.

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Ants flying out of heating and cooling ducts http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/ants-flying-out-of-heating-and-cooling-ducts/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/ants-flying-out-of-heating-and-cooling-ducts/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:57:51 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18968 Question: I have these (what looks like) flying ants that just started coming out of my heat and cooling ducts. I spray with RAID bug barrier but it doesn’t seem to do the trick. There are so many I can’t … Continue reading

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Question: I have these (what looks like) flying ants that just started coming out of my heat and cooling ducts. I spray with RAID bug barrier but it doesn’t seem to do the trick. There are so many I can’t seem to kill them fast enough. Please help.

Answer: Probably these are not flying ants, but termites….it would be best to have the house inspected by a professional pest control company to make certain what they are and where the infestation is located.

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Spraying for Bed Bugs Did Not Work http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spraying-for-bed-bugs-did-not-work/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spraying-for-bed-bugs-did-not-work/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:56:33 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18967 Question: I moved into a duplex unit that I found out later had been sprayed 4 times before I moved for bed bugs, the latest a week before. After a week or so of moving in I started noticing bites. … Continue reading

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Question: I moved into a duplex unit that I found out later had been sprayed 4 times before I moved for bed bugs, the latest a week before. After a week or so of moving in I started noticing bites. I had my side of the duplex sprayed twice and did all the steps to get rid of the problem.

The gentle man who sprayed told me the spray was good for three months, well it’s been four months. I always thought the neighbors had them from seeing bites but they denied it…Anyway, four months later after being sprayed I found a bed bug on my bed. I am going to be sprayed again, but if the neighboring unit has them am I looking at being sprayed every three months…

Answer: Okay…a few things to start: bed bugs are not easy to control and simply spraying will not do it, if the company only sprays and has little experience in bed bug control, it is not going to happen, no spray last three months, no matter what it is or what the pest is, nothing last three months, unless every unit is treated (or both units) at the same time (at the same time…!), then you will simply chase them from one to the other, there is never just one….baby or not.

A thorough treatment of both units by a company that has experience in treating bed bugs is necessary, and the second treatment is done within 10 days; more than simply spraying will have to be done…dusting, maybe some traps to monitor for bed bugs, treating in wall voids of the bedroom, and discarding the infested couch.

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Mice in the Oven http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/mice-in-the-oven/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/mice-in-the-oven/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:55:30 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18966 Question: If mice have entered your stove/oven and you see droppings or feces inside the stove, what do you recommend? How do you make sure their is no infestation, or that they have been removed? Is it safe to use … Continue reading

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Question: If mice have entered your stove/oven and you see droppings or feces inside the stove, what do you recommend? How do you make sure their is no infestation, or that they have been removed? Is it safe to use oven? Do you do that cleaning service?

Answer: If there is a mouse infestation….and it may not be in the stove, but near the stove, the best thing to do is set mouse traps….set a lot of mouse traps and keep them set until you catch all the mice. The local Branch office can help with this problem, but they do not provide cleaning service.

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Fast Moving Bugs in Bathroom http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/fast-moving-bugs-in-bathroom/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/fast-moving-bugs-in-bathroom/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:46:27 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18964 Question: I have these bugs in only the bathrooms. They don’t look like cockroaches but they move fast. I want to know what they are? Answer: Well, they may be silverfish….these are difficult to control, but you can try using … Continue reading

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Question: I have these bugs in only the bathrooms. They don’t look like cockroaches but they move fast. I want to know what they are?

Answer: Well, they may be silverfish….these are difficult to control, but you can try using some sticky traps where you have seen them.

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Termites are back after spraying http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/termites-are-back-after-spraying/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/termites-are-back-after-spraying/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:44:33 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18962 Question: Hi. I had my house sprayed two years ago after a termite infestation. They were gone the next “season” but now they’re back. I know I have a serious problem, but my question is…when I see a few in … Continue reading

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Question: Hi. I had my house sprayed two years ago after a termite infestation. They were gone the next “season” but now they’re back. I know I have a serious problem, but my question is…when I see a few in my house, they’re swarming. But how long do swarms last before I can relax and at least not have to worry about seeing them flying around in my house? Do swarms last 3 days, a week, 2 weeks? I’d love to know. This gives me the creeps! Thanks You! What is the duration of a termite swarm?

Answer: There may be some confusion here….but houses are not ‘sprayed’ for termites, the ground around the perimeter is treated. This provides control for 10+ years. I don’t know what was done at your house, but if you are having swarms every year or so, then the problem is not solved and the termites are still there and still damaging the house. It doesn’t matter how long swarms last, what matters is that the problem has not be controlled (spraying will not control termites) and it needs to be before any further damage is done.

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What should I do with furniture and clothes after pest treatment? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-should-i-do-with-furniture-and-clothes-after-pest-treatment/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-should-i-do-with-furniture-and-clothes-after-pest-treatment/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:43:35 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18961 Question: What should I do with furniture and clothes after pest treatment? HELP! You guys confirmed our WORSE nightmare(bed bugs). I want to prep the house right prior to treatment. I need to know if everything besides the furniture needs … Continue reading

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Question: What should I do with furniture and clothes after pest treatment?

HELP! You guys confirmed our WORSE nightmare(bed bugs). I want to prep the house right prior to treatment. I need to know if everything besides the furniture needs to be removed?

Tell me what to do with the clothing I’m gonna save. After we take it to the laundromat prior to treatment can we bring some back in after you treat? What do we do about school bags? paper books? Can crayons, pens etc be in the house when you treat? can the tv, vcr, dvd’s and other electronics be left in the house while you treat?

Answer: Depending on where the infestation is….bedroom most likely…don’t move the furniture out of the infested room…after the clothes are cleaned you can bring them back. All the other stuff will not be infested, so no need to anything with them.

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How long will a flea treatment continue to kill fleas http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/how-long-will-a-flea-treatment-continue-to-kill-fleas/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/how-long-will-a-flea-treatment-continue-to-kill-fleas/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:42:27 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18960 Question: How long will a flea treatment continue to kill fleas? Answer: If carpet was treated, the residual activity would be about 2 weeks.

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Question: How long will a flea treatment continue to kill fleas?

Answer: If carpet was treated, the residual activity would be about 2 weeks.

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Is it normal to see dead bugs showing up for several days after a pest control treatment http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/is-it-normal-to-see-dead-bugs-showing-up-for-several-days-after-a-pest-control-treatment/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/is-it-normal-to-see-dead-bugs-showing-up-for-several-days-after-a-pest-control-treatment/#comments Wed, 23 Oct 2013 14:33:05 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18958 Question: Is it normal to see dead bugs showing up for several days after a pest control treatment? If so, does that mean there is an infestation problem? Answer: Yes, it is normal to see dead bugs showing up several … Continue reading

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Question: Is it normal to see dead bugs showing up for several days after a pest control treatment? If so, does that mean there is an infestation problem?

Answer: Yes, it is normal to see dead bugs showing up several days after treatment, that means it is working.

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Best solution to protect my dogs from flies? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/best-solution-to-protect-my-dogs-from-flies/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/best-solution-to-protect-my-dogs-from-flies/#comments Mon, 01 Jul 2013 12:50:29 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=18684 Question: Hello! I’ve heard different answers to this question, but thought I’d reach out to the experts.Is there any treatment your company can provide to get rid of flies? We have three dogs and they are being attacked by flies … Continue reading

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Question: Hello! I’ve heard different answers to this question, but thought I’d reach out to the experts.Is there any treatment your company can provide to get rid of flies?

We have three dogs and they are being attacked by flies all day. The best thing we can do to protect them is use Flys-Off, but it doesn’t help knowing flies carry so many diseases. Thanks!

Answer: If the dogs are being ‘attacked’ by flies these may be stable flies. The breeding sites for these flies includes accumulations of grass clippings and other decaying organic matter (but they do not usually breed in dog feces).

The best strategy would be to find out where they are coming from / breeding and changing that. This would work better than treating the dogs with the repellent that probably doesn’t work that well.

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Parasitic Wasps http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/parasitic-wasps/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/parasitic-wasps/#comments Wed, 05 Dec 2012 15:46:15 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13597 Question: I was doing laundry in my basement yesterday and I felt a bee crawling up my leg! I freaked! Well today I went into the basement and saw another one! These are big fat bees! The second bee I … Continue reading

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Question: I was doing laundry in my basement yesterday and I felt a bee crawling up my leg! I freaked! Well today I went into the basement and saw another one! These are big fat bees! The second bee I found was on the ground as well. It seemed weird to me. Is this something I should be worried about? If so, do you come and do free estimates?

Answer: Probably what you have seen are parasitic wasp. There are many species, some brightly colored, and most with a long ‘egg-laying’ spine (ovipositor) at the end of the abdomen.

These are beneficial insects because they are parasites of other insects. They lay their eggs on or in the bodies of lawn grubs, garden caterpillars, and other insects that may be around the yard and garden. The developing wasp larvae (and sometimes there are many of them in the grub or caterpillar) eventually kill the host.

Unlike their social wasp cousins, parasitic wasps are solitary. They do not form large colonies or nests. They pose no threat to people or pets. Most are small and usually go unnoticed. Some parasitic wasps are attracted to lights and may find their way indoors. Some are parasites of wood-infesting beetle larvae and the adult wasp may emerge from firewood kept indoors in the winter, they are also harmless to people and pets.

Parasitic wasps require no control measures. They do not sting people and are not threatening. They rarely occur in large numbers, except for some of the wasps that are parasites of white grubs in lawns, and they remain for only a day or two.

Related question asked to the Orkin Man

Question: Can you also give me some advice on the blackish wasps that are everywhere!

They have 2 long legs it looks like they fly around everywhere. We tried to find the nests but cannot seem to find them. I went out last night to watch where they were flying home but they just disappeared.

Thank you again I think this site is a wonderful idea,as I have tried to look things up on the internet,but there is so much information to try to figure it out and really you are still only guessing.

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Brown Bugs with Prongs Pointing from their backs http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/brown-bugs-with-prongs-pointing-from-their-backs/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/brown-bugs-with-prongs-pointing-from-their-backs/#comments Fri, 16 Nov 2012 19:59:52 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13535 Question I have been seeing these brown bugs and am not sure what they are. They are brown, skinny and have prongs pointing straight out the back of them. I have seen in the bathroom, one in the kitchen and … Continue reading

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Question I have been seeing these brown bugs and am not sure what they are. They are brown, skinny and have prongs pointing straight out the back of them. I have seen in the bathroom, one in the kitchen and one in the dining room. Could you tell me if you think they are roaches or waterbugs? I have looked at the pictures and am not sure if they really look like either.

ANSWER What you have are earwigs.

Earwig populations have been on the rise across the country for several years now, and this year seems to be no exception. Earwigs can be a genuine nuisance both indoors and outdoors. These insects have a threatening look, but are generally harmless. They are predators of other insects, but will also eat plant material.

Earwigs are not easily controlled outside or removed from indoor sites, such as bathrooms and kitchens, or any place that has an availability of water. Indoors you can vacuum them from the cracks and crevices they hide in during the day. It is usually best to vacuum them at night when they are active. Check the door thresholds and windows at ground level; they can and do enter through these routes. They can collect in mail and newspaper boxes and come in with the morning paper and the mail.

Outdoors, eliminate as much of their hiding places as possible. These include  pavers, firewood, landscape timbers , and other items they can get under. Reduce outdoor lights as they can fly towards light.  If not able to move the lighting the use of “bug lights can help.   Spraying for them outdoors may be helpful, but you will have to directly contact them with the spray. The best control method outside is to eliminate their harborage, or hiding places, and maintain the area around the home as dry as possible.

They look worse than they actually are. They will not bite or sting, and do not actually infest houses (nor do they crawl in ears!). They are usually found near water or in humid areas of the house, so start with the kitchen sink and wet places near lights that are on during the night. As occasional invaders it is best to keep them outside the home where they belong.

Related Questions

I have a big earwig problem. What are some strategies to use to help control them before I call for an estimate?

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Small Worm Coming Out of the Ceiling http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-worm-coming-out-of-the-ceiling/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-worm-coming-out-of-the-ceiling/#comments Fri, 16 Nov 2012 18:48:13 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13533 Question: We have a small worm coming out of the ceiling? what is this thing? They have built webs all around the upper trunk of the tree. We had them before, but they were lower in the tree, therefore, we … Continue reading

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Question: We have a small worm coming out of the ceiling? what is this thing?

They have built webs all around the upper trunk of the tree. We had them before, but they were lower in the tree, therefore, we could spray. One of the branches of the tree was beginning to die until we sprayed. What would you recommend?

ANSWER Maybe what you have in the tree is the fall webworm. The large white moths of the fall webworm lay their eggs in July and the eggs hatch in about ten days. The caterpillars spin large webs within which they feed. The full-grown caterpillars are about 1 inch long, pale brown, and clothed in white hairs. Once they complete their feeding they leave the webs and from cocoons on the tree trunk, limbs or any secluded place. They pass the winter as a pupa and emerge in late spring or summer.

There is little you can do to control them once the webs have been formed. Liquid insecticide may not penetrate the webbing very well. You can try to remove some of the webs in the afternoon or evening and then spray the leaves that are enclosed. This will leave a residue on the leaves and kill some of the caterpillars on contact. Inspect and remove as many of the cocoons as possible to reduce the population for next year. Check the trees early next year (mark your calendar) so that you can spray the webs when they are just formed. If you decide to spray the trees you can seek help from an Arborist or contact you local Department of Agriculture Extension Service for some recommendations.  If deciding to do it yourself, read, understand, and follow the label for any product you decide to use.

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Georgia scorpions versus Arizona scorpions http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/georgia-scorpions-versus-arizona-scorpions/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/georgia-scorpions-versus-arizona-scorpions/#comments Fri, 16 Nov 2012 16:43:11 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13531 Question: I live in Georgia and have seen a few scorpions in my house. They are small and I was wondering if the scorpions are dangerous? I used to live in AZ and know that the scorpions there are really … Continue reading

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Question: I live in Georgia and have seen a few scorpions in my house. They are small and I was wondering if the scorpions are dangerous? I used to live in AZ and know that the scorpions there are really dangerous. I’m not sure how they are getting and I was wondering what or if there is anything I can do about them?

ANSWER They are not dangerous, not more than a wasp sting and they were not dangerous in Arizona either. There is just one dangerous species in North America, it is the Bark Scorpion.  It has very potent venom.  For the most part, the worse result of a scorpion sting would be an allergic reaction to the venom, much like a bee or wasp sting for some people. 

If you are having issues with scorpions, call your local Orkin Branch office and a highly-trained Orkin Pest Specialist will visit your home and conduct a thorough inspection.  The Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized treatment plan that best suits your needs.

Learn more about different types of scorpions and characteristics of poisonous scorpions in the Orkin Pest Library.

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What beetle looks like a small crab? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/beetle-that-looks-like-a-small-crab/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/beetle-that-looks-like-a-small-crab/#comments Fri, 16 Nov 2012 16:39:43 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13529 Question: We have a bug/beetle that looks like a small sand crab and can fly. I was wondering what that is? I don’t know where they are coming from, but I do see them inside and outside of our house. … Continue reading

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Question: We have a bug/beetle that looks like a small sand crab and can fly. I was wondering what that is? I don’t know where they are coming from, but I do see them inside and outside of our house.

ANSWER: What you have may be a pseudo scorpion. A bad name for this animal, since it has no relation to scorpions! Pseudo scorpions are predators on mites and small insects. They will not bite people or pets. They live in wooded areas and they are usually brought into house on the fur of pets or the pant cuffs of people who have been in the woods.

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Do Ant Bites Have Venom http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/do-ant-bites-have-venom/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/do-ant-bites-have-venom/#comments Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:21:53 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13058 Question: When an ant bites you is there something that injects you with it or is it just their claws? Answer: Most ants simply bite…no venom injected; fire ants can both bite and sting, and with the sting they can … Continue reading

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Question: When an ant bites you is there something that injects you with it or is it just their claws?

Answer: Most ants simply bite…no venom injected; fire ants can both bite and sting, and with the sting they can inject venom.

More Information about Ant Bites:

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Best Time to Have Ant Control Inspection http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/best-time-to-have-ant-control-inspection/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/best-time-to-have-ant-control-inspection/#comments Wed, 17 Oct 2012 20:18:28 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13056 Question: I think we have carpenter ants. Is it better for us to wait until spring time to have this evaluated since the ants have disappeared with the fall weather? Is it possible to ever completely get rid of a … Continue reading

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Question: I think we have carpenter ants. Is it better for us to wait until spring time to have this evaluated since the ants have disappeared with the fall weather? Is it possible to ever completely get rid of a ant infestation?

Answer: It would be best to start now….things are not going to better in the spring. Yes, but it is possible to get rid of ants, but it does take time.

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Identification of Velvet Ant http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/identification-of-velvet-ant/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/identification-of-velvet-ant/#comments Wed, 17 Oct 2012 19:46:49 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13050 Question: Orange and black furry ants! what kind are these, are they dangerous, and how do i get rid of them? Answer: What you have found is often called a velvet ant (but it is not an ant) or a … Continue reading

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Question: Orange and black furry ants! what kind are these, are they dangerous, and how do i get rid of them?

Answer: What you have found is often called a velvet ant (but it is not an ant) or a cow killer (and they don’t kill cows). This fuzzy or furry insect may be yellow, orange, red, or white, often with black bands. They are usually found one at a time and not in large groups.

The velvet ant is actually a female parasitic wasp (Family Multillidae). The males look more like wasps (they have wings) but are rarely seen.

The velvet ant walks on the ground looking for ground nesting wasps, such as yellowjackets. The female velvet ant then crawls inside the wasp nest to lay her eggs. The eggs hatch and feed on the other wasp larvae! Velvet ants are not common, but during this time of year many people notice them, and become alarmed. These wasps can deliver a painful sting, so it is best to leave them alone.

A garden insecticide can be used to get control if it seems there are several of them in the yard. Otherwise they can be left alone, since they are helping to control some of the ground-nesting wasps in the area.

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Pest Control for Japanese Beetles http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-for-japanese-beetles/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-for-japanese-beetles/#comments Wed, 17 Oct 2012 19:33:31 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13048 Question: Do you provide pest control for Japanese Beetles? Answer: The local Branch office may be able to provide this service, but you’ll have to call them directly. The best control for the adults is to spray the trees they … Continue reading

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Question: Do you provide pest control for Japanese Beetles?

Answer: The local Branch office may be able to provide this service, but you’ll have to call them directly.

The best control for the adults is to spray the trees they are attacking early in the morning. Even a blast of water from a hose would help discourage them from staying there; insecticides will have to be applied every few days to keep them off. These beetles are susceptible to most garden insecticides. It is best to use a product that is recommended for treating ornamental plants, because these formulations will not harm the plants.

Traps may be used to supplement insecticide treatment, but will rarely protect plants from Japanese beetle attack. Research with ornamental plants (roses) showed that the traps did not provide sufficient protection.

Treat the turf grass in mid July, or when you think the adults have been out for about three weeks; this gives them time to lay eggs, the eggs to hatch and the first stage grubs to be near the surface of the soil so that they will be killed by the application of an insecticide. Use granular or liquid insecticide-but for year you may have to ‘water it in’ to get some results. Control too early in the spring (before eggs laid) or too late in the fall (grubs too big or not near the surface) will not be effective.

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Carpet Beetle Larvae Found in Basement. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/carpet-beetle-larvae-found-in-basement/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/carpet-beetle-larvae-found-in-basement/#comments Wed, 17 Oct 2012 19:10:56 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=13045 QUESTION: I am hoping that you can help me identify a bug that I found in my basement carpet the other day. The best description that I can give is that it took the shape of a seed and it was red … Continue reading

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QUESTION: I am hoping that you can help me identify a bug that I found in my basement carpet the other day. The best description that I can give is that it took the shape of a seed and it was red in appearance. It was hard like a shell, and when I broke the shell it oozed a clear liquid, and you could see ridges in the shell that resembled a worm. There were no legs, but it was burrowed in the carpet. I would appreciate any help that you can give me.

Thank you!

ANSWER: It is possible that what you have found may be a Carpet Beetle larva. Without the specimen, it is difficult to narrow down what it truly is, so the best guess is based on your description. The varied carpet beetle and the furniture carpet beetle larvae have quite prominent hairs. The black carpet beetle larvae have hairs but they are not as prominent. This may have been what you observed.

Carpet beetles are considered to be a fabric pest, but adults are often found inside, feeding on flower pollen. Carpet beetle larvae will often feed on dead animal materials, hair, fur, hides and horns, as well as woolen materials.

For questions and a comprehensive inspection of your home by a trained Orkin Pest Specialist call your local Orkin Branch Office.

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Is it possible to have a tick infestation in your home? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/is-it-possible-to-have-a-tick-infestation-in-your-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/is-it-possible-to-have-a-tick-infestation-in-your-home/#comments Wed, 19 Sep 2012 12:50:51 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=12941 Question: Is it possible to have a tick infestation in your home? My dogs have ticks despite being on monthly flea and tick medication. We have also noticed some ticks occasionally in bed, but nowhere else in the house, other … Continue reading

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Question: Is it possible to have a tick infestation in your home? My dogs have ticks despite being on monthly flea and tick medication. We have also noticed some ticks occasionally in bed, but nowhere else in the house, other than on the dogs.

Question: Very much depends on what tick (species) you are finding on the dog … see the descriptions below.

Ticks in the house can create some concern, but there is little chance that they will live there. Ticks brought into the house on pets or people’s pants may drop off and crawl around for a time. They may be looking for a suitable host to take a blood meal. After they feed they will drop off and shed their skin to develop to the next stage. The final stage for females is the egg-laying stage, and they usually prefer to lay eggs on the soil surface.

The brown dog tick is a species that is known to lay eggs indoors and for the small nymphs (called seed ticks) to crawl around and infest small animals (house pets). These ticks can be identified by the lack of any white markings on their body.

The ticks that do not reproduce indoors, which include the American dog tick, and the lone star tick, have white markings on their back. The American dog tick has an irregular pattern of white. The lone star tick has one prominent white spot in the middle of the back (nymphs and adults have these).

If you suspect you are having tick issues, call your local Orkin Branch office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a thorough inspection and assess the extent of the problem. Based on the findings, your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized, scientifically proven treatment for your home that best meets your needs.

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What’s the best/worst environment for bed bugs? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bug-environment/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bug-environment/#comments Tue, 07 Aug 2012 13:58:00 +0000 http://www.orkin.com/?post_type=atom_article&p=11448 Question: What is the absolute worst case scenario for bedbugs? ANSWER: Bed bugs are small, flat, brownish or mahogany-colored insects. Some people say that an adult bed bug resembles an apple seed. Bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood … Continue reading

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Question: What is the absolute worst case scenario for bedbugs?

ANSWER: Bed bugs are small, flat, brownish or mahogany-colored insects. Some people say that an adult bed bug resembles an apple seed.

Bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood but will feed on blood of other animals if necessary. They are active at night. During the day, bed bugs hide in cracks and crevices near their feeding site. Since they usually feed on people who are sleeping, bed bugs are most common in areas where people sleep.

View pictures of bed bugs and a bed bug infestation.

Similar to cockroaches and crickets, bed bugs’ life cycle consists of a three-stage process. The stages are egg, nymphal and adult.

Bed bug nymphs, or immature bed bugs, shed their skins about five times as they develop. The nymphs must feed every time they shed their skin. Both males and females must feed on blood.

Depending on the temperature and the amount of food available, a bed bug can develop from an egg to an adult in as little as 21 days.

The “worst case,” for you would be the “best case” for bed bugs. For bed bugs the ideal environment would be a place where food is always available and the temperature is always between 65° and 85° F. The bedroom of most homes provides this ideal environment.

Under these conditions, a female bed bug can lay between one and five eggs every day. The average female bed bug can produce up to 400 eggs during her lifetime.

Since the eggs can develop into adult bed bugs in about three weeks, it is easy to see how a few bed bugs could multiply quickly and become a serious infestation.

So, for a worst case scenario, the residence would have multiple people who travel frequently and could bring bed bugs home. There is clutter that would allow bed bugs multiple places to hide. The temperature would be within the range of 65° and 85° F. The residents sleep in multiple places such as in beds, easy chairs and sofas.

View our bed bug infographic titled From the Bed and Beyond, to get insight into bed bugs’ potential reproduction under ideal conditions.

Find out more about bed bugs in Orkin’s Pest Library.

If you have any questions as to whether or not you have been subjected to a “worse case scenario,” contact Orkin. A scientifically trained Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a comprehensive inspection of your home or place of business. Upon completing the inspection and assessing the results, your Orkin Pest Specialist will be able to recommend a thorough treatment to control a bed bug infestation.

 

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Do you have pet-friendly pest control? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-and-pets/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-and-pets/#comments Fri, 10 Feb 2012 12:28:37 +0000 http://orkin.cloudapp.net/?post_type=atom_article&p=208 Question: Are your methods safe for household pets? Question: We were told by the original person who came to see what service we need that we would have to be out of the house a minimum of four hours, that … Continue reading

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Question: Are your methods safe for household pets?

Question: We were told by the original person who came to see what service we need that we would have to be out of the house a minimum of four hours, that our cats had to be out too, and that our fish probably wouldn’t make it. I just wanted to make sure that what he said is true.

ANSWER: You do NOT have to be out of the house, the pets need only be kept from treated surfaces until they (the surfaces) are dry … and cover the fish tanks/bowls.

Pesticides for household insects are designed to be applied at low concentrations, usually less than 1 percent. These concentrations are high enough to be effective in killing small insects, but pose no threat to people or pets.

Generally, the droplet size of household application equipment is large enough so that the material does not remain in the air for very long and there is little opportunity for exposure through breathing. Treated surfaces usually dry quickly, so there is little chance for exposure from them. The residue that remains on the surface will be toxic to insects, but presents no threat to people. It usually does not last very long, but long enough for the target insects to contact it and die. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maintains a website that may be helpful. The web address to the site is: www.epa.gov/pesticides

The best strategy to keep pets safe is to keep them off any treated surface until it is dry, and this may take 1-2 hours. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will perform the service in the safest manner possible and follow all the label directions regarding the application of the materials. These services, which are backed by science, have been custom developed to meet your needs.

If you have questions ask the Orkin Pest Specialist at the time of the service. If you are not satisfied, contact your local Orkin Branch Office and ask to speak with a member of the management team.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

  • Question: I have carpenter ants and I’m afraid to use any pest control services because I have an exotic bird, 3 cats and many lizards and other reptiles. Do you offer pet-friendly control options?
  • Question: Will the poison put down for mice harm my cat if the cat gets hold of the mouse once it is dead? ANSWER: The amount of bait eaten … and then metabolized by the body of the mouse … is small, and it is not enough to threaten a cat that eats the mouse (which rarely happens).
  • Question: I recently adopted a five-month-old kitten. Are the chemicals you use safe for them? Also, what precautions should we take before the house is treated for pests? ANSWER: Treatment for any pests in the house will not threaten the safety of the kitten.
  • Question: When you spray homes, do I have to get my pets out of the house? ANSWER: You don’t have to, but it can be helpful.

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Does Orkin pest control spray contain any phosphates? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-phosphates/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pest-control-phosphates/#comments Fri, 10 Feb 2012 12:26:16 +0000 http://orkin.cloudapp.net/?post_type=atom_article&p=207 Question: I am having high levels of phosphate in my swimming pool, and am not sure what is causing it. It could be my lawn spray company. But, wanted to know if my monthly Orkin pest control spray contains any … Continue reading

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Question: I am having high levels of phosphate in my swimming pool, and am not sure what is causing it. It could be my lawn spray company. But, wanted to know if my monthly Orkin pest control spray contains any phosphates. If so, I would have you spray a little further from my pool. Thank you.

ANSWER: There are no current household insecticides that are based on phosphates. To my knowledge, certain fertilizers contain phosphates, but I would ask your lawn maintenance company.

For additional information you can also contact your local Orkin Branch Office.

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I have a small, black, cricket problem in my home. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-black-cricket-problem/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-black-cricket-problem/#comments Tue, 06 Dec 2011 21:44:58 +0000 http://821c49fb-4f1f-4685-bb7c-ce3bceec410a Question: I have a problem with small black crickets. I was wondering if there is anything that I could do to stop them from entering my house. I do not know how they get in here, but I am sick … Continue reading

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Question: I have a problem with small black crickets. I was wondering if there is anything that I could do to stop them from entering my house. I do not know how they get in here, but I am sick of them.

ANSWER: Probably what you have are field crickets (Gryllus pennsylvanicus). They are the shiny black species that often come in during the fall. . They can be a problem throughout the house by their chirping (the males) and just being there! They have been developing all summer and have become adults in the last few weeks and are looking to mate, lay their eggs in the soil, and die after the first few frosts.

Field crickets migrate to the edges of houses and will enter through doors and windows. Remember that they can fly and will fly to light outdoors and will fly to lights at night.

Control of these insects outdoors is not easy. Perimeter treatment of the house may be effective in reducing their numbers for only a few days. You may kill a lot of crickets, but it seems there are more where those came from, and the site will soon be repopulated. In fall, as night temperatures decline, the house foundation and siding traps some of the daytime heat. The heat is detected by crickets, and they are naturally attracted to it in the evening.

For a customized cricket control program, contact your local Orkin Branch Office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will assess the situation and develop a comprehensive control program backed by science to best meet your needs.

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

  • Question: I’ve been having a problem with crickets for about six weeks now. They seem to be mainly in my bedroom, which makes it impossible for me to sleep, as I am a light sleeper. I have located and disposed of four so far; they are very small. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Would I have to sign a contract to have Orkin treat my home for this?
  • Question: Can you spray the outside perimeter of a building for crickets at this time of year?

Read more about cricket control in our Pest Library.

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What is the cost for getting rid of ticks? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-tick-treatment/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-tick-treatment/#comments Tue, 06 Dec 2011 20:04:49 +0000 http://c161944e-fb1c-4e97-a8f2-c3a86dc6b9bf Question: How much does it cost to get rid of ticks? What does Orkin charge to inspect a two-bedroom apartment?     Answer: When a tick is found on a pet or human, the tick most likely came in from … Continue reading

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Question: How much does it cost to get rid of ticks? What does Orkin charge to inspect a two-bedroom apartment?

 

 

Answer: When a tick is found on a pet or human, the tick most likely came in from the outside, perhaps attached to the host animal or person. These blood-sucking pests are known to spread disease.

Treatment of ticks requires treatment on the outside of a structure. Depending your state rules, exterior applications will vary. Your local Orkin branch can conduct a comprehensive inspection by a trained Orkin Pest Specialist. The results of the inspection, and further actions, will be discussed at that time.

Call your local Orkin Branch for more details, or go to www.orkin.com/locations/.

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Are silverfish bugs poisonous? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-silverfish-poisonous/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-silverfish-poisonous/#comments Fri, 02 Dec 2011 17:30:10 +0000 http://c5f94a2e-f073-4729-b792-a71dbc8b0be7 Question: Are silverfish bugs poisonous?   ANSWER: No. They are not poisonous. Generally, they are harmless. People just consider them a nuisance and don’t want them around. Silverfish do not carry diseases. They will not bite you, and they typically … Continue reading

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Question: Are silverfish bugs poisonous?

 

ANSWER: No. They are not poisonous.

Generally, they are harmless. People just consider them a nuisance and don’t want them around.

Silverfish do not carry diseases. They will not bite you, and they typically keep to themselves and stay out of your way.

Related Information:

 

Get more information on silverfish control in our pest library.

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What is the cost for flea treatment? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-flea-treatment/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-flea-treatment/#comments Tue, 29 Nov 2011 02:34:30 +0000 http://53573ec3-65be-472e-9b92-7d39bb29d809 Question: What is the cost for flea treatment? ANSWER: Fleas can inhabit outside areas as well as interior of homes and businesses. Inspections will include interior and exterior areas of your home or place of business. A comprehensive inspection by … Continue reading

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Question: What is the cost for flea treatment?

ANSWER: Fleas can inhabit outside areas as well as interior of homes and businesses. Inspections will include interior and exterior areas of your home or place of business.

A comprehensive inspection by a qualified Orkin Pest Specialist will confirm that insect bites or visible insects are in fact fleas. This inspection will determine the extent of the infestation and will include areas that you may not think as being points of entry for fleas, such as attics and crawl spaces, as often fleas may come into your home or place of business on wildlife and rodents. Finally, a treatment regimen including product application and possible follow-up visits will be established.

Depending on the results of the infestation, the cost of the treatment will be determined. Keep in mind that control of flea infestations is a complex treatment that will require your cooperation as well as treatments and follow-ups.

Contact your local Orkin Branch to set up the inspection of your premises by a scientifically trained Orkin Pest Specialist.

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Can I pretreat a concrete slab for termites? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pretreat-concrete-slab-for-termites/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/pretreat-concrete-slab-for-termites/#comments Thu, 10 Nov 2011 18:53:50 +0000 http://d26200d9-7ee0-46e2-ab7f-a567a5c5e32a Question: I am building a new home, it will be a conventional concrete slab with brick siding. Do I need to pretreat the slab or do anything during construction to prevent future pests? ANSWER: Treating houses during construction, when the … Continue reading

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Question: I am building a new home, it will be a conventional concrete slab with brick siding. Do I need to pretreat the slab or do anything during construction to prevent future pests?

ANSWER: Treating houses during construction, when the foundation and the soil and/or gravel that forms the bed of future concrete slabs are exposed, is the best time to apply chemical protection against subterranean termites. The foundation block and the footing for the block or poured concrete wall are treated on the outside and inside. Sometimes the wood sill plate and joists for the flooring are treated (usually with a different insecticide).

This treatment is called ”pretreatment” or “preconstruction treatment” by pest control operators and is done routinely by professional companies. It will need scheduling in advance. There may be a second treatment when the foundation has been backfilled and the final soil grading has been made. If you need to get this treatment done for your new home, call the local Orkin Branch Office. An Orkin Termite Inspector will meet with you to discuss the protocols and timing of this treatment.

Read more about termites and Orkin termite control.

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Do you have anything to get rid of squirrels in the attic? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/do-you-have-anything-to-get-rid-of-squirrels-in-the-attic/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/do-you-have-anything-to-get-rid-of-squirrels-in-the-attic/#comments Wed, 09 Nov 2011 21:05:52 +0000 http://2b27d448-51c0-4af2-98e2-43acac4a3df9 Question: How do I get whatever it is out of my walls? I haven’t seen them and can’t find where they enter. I just hear them running around and chewing on stuff. ANSWER: This could be a squirrel, but it … Continue reading

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Question: How do I get whatever it is out of my walls? I haven’t seen them and can’t find where they enter. I just hear them running around and chewing on stuff.

ANSWER: This could be a squirrel, but it could also be a rodent like a roof rat.

Squirrels are difficult to control, whether inside or outside the house. When squirrels get into attics they have to be live trapped, and this is not easy. This is because squirrel control typically involves/requires cages, then sealing the attic so they can not return.

Rodents like roof rats will tunnel through insulation and even chew through electrical wiring.

In any case the best course of action is to determine what is in your attic. An Orkin Pest Specialist can look at the droppings and determine whether or not they came from a rat or a squirrel. The Pest Specialist will also look for other signs of infestation by either animal. Your Orkin Pest Specialist can identify points of entry and make recommendations on how to keep them outside of your attic.

In some states controlling squirrels requires a Wildlife Control (trapper) license. Many of our Orkin branches have Specialists licensed to do this work. As part of a consolidated group of Pest Control companies, your Orkin Pest Control branch could also recommend one of our sister companies that does Wildlife Control.

In any case the first step is to call your local Orkin Branch Office and set up an inspection for your home by a qualified Pest Control Specialist.

picture of squirrel
Squirrel Illustration

Related Questions:

The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

 

Question: I have a crawl space above my house that sounds as if squirrels or something may have gotten in there. I can’t be sure if they’re squirrels or mice, but I assume squirrels because I hear a lot of scurrying around up there (particularly at night) and sometimes I hear gnawing, but no squeaking. I live in an area that has quite a few trees and have seen squirrels on leaping on roofs around the neighborhood. Although I’ve seen little burrow holes around the house foundation, I’ve not seen any signs of rodents, like droppings, food, etc. What would you recommend as the best course of action for treating these pests? I don’t want to lay out poison as that will cause a horrible odor of decay when they die and the location and removal of their remains would be difficult.

Question: Do you have anything to get rid of squirrels in the attic?

Question: Are squirrels considered rodents when they are in the attic and eating away at my house, and does Orkin treat for them?

Question: We have just found a squirrel in our home and have at this time got rid of the little creature, but I am wondering if you have a treatment to keep them out of my home. Also, do you inspect to find out where they are entering my home?

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How do I treat for cigarette beetles in a restaurant? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/treat-cigarrete-beetles-in-restaurant/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/treat-cigarrete-beetles-in-restaurant/#comments Wed, 09 Nov 2011 20:45:50 +0000 http://9e06acab-72b0-45da-a57f-96a71b55b9f8 Question: How do I treat for cigarette beetles in a restaurant? ANSWER: You would not actually treat for them … that is use insecticides. You would have to figure out what they are infesting and then remove that material. It is … Continue reading

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Question: How do I treat for cigarette beetles in a restaurant?

ANSWER: You would not actually treat for them … that is use insecticides. You would have to figure out what they are infesting and then remove that material. It is important to also rotate the stock, inspect product coming into the restaurant and not accept open or broken packages. If you are able to, put some of the foodstuffs into your walk-in freezer for at least 24 hours to kill them.

This small, brown beetle is a commonly found around food storage areas. The grub stage can feed on a great variety of food materials, including spices, flour, noodles, bird seed and tobacco.

When it comes to any other treatments, the best thing to do is contact an expert. Call your local Orkin Branch Office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your business and conduct a thorough inspection. Once the inspection is complete, the specialist will make recommendation on how to remove infestations and prevent new ones. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized solution, backed by science, that best meets your needs.

picture of cigarette beetle
Illustration of Cigarette Beetle

More Information:

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Can you spray for termites? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spray-for-termites/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spray-for-termites/#comments Mon, 24 Oct 2011 18:40:32 +0000 http://965136e1-203a-4430-83bf-cecfb8bf1b51 Question: My neighbor just told me that he has termites. He found out because of a hole in his foundation. In working on that they found the termites. He’s going to get sprayed next week. Does the spraying kill the … Continue reading

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Question: My neighbor just told me that he has termites. He found out because of a hole in his foundation. In working on that they found the termites. He’s going to get sprayed next week.

Does the spraying kill the termites? What can/should we do to prevent the termites from coming over to our home?

ANSWER: Termites don’t create holes in the foundation, and spraying will not solve the problem … so, I’m not sure what is going on at the neighbor’s. Termites are out to destroy your most valuable possession, your home. Termite work is not a project for a do-it-yourself person, no matter how handy that person may be. This is a job for a professional Pest Control Operator. Call your local Orkin branch office today. A highly qualified and trained Orkin Termite inspector will come to your home and complete a comprehensive inspection, looking at conditions that are attractive to termites, entry points, construction issues that could result in termite infestations, and so on. Once the inspection is complete, the Orkin Termite Inspector will develop a customized treatment plan, whether it is corrective or preventive, based on extensive knowledge and science to protect your biggest investment.

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How do I get rid of spiders outside? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-spiders-outside/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-spiders-outside/#comments Mon, 24 Oct 2011 18:34:40 +0000 http://5f6247bb-a04b-427f-8fbd-23cd304c2768 Question: What is the best way to get rid of spiders outside. Is there a spray we can use? ANSWER: Spiders are not easily controlled, whether inside or outside the house. They are often abundant around the outside of the … Continue reading

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Question: What is the best way to get rid of spiders outside. Is there a spray we can use?

ANSWER: Spiders are not easily controlled, whether inside or outside the house. They are often abundant around the outside of the house, especially around outdoor lights. Insects are attracted to outdoor lights at night, and spiders are there to hunt for insects. Spiders are predators of insects. This is their food, and this is where they will be most abundant and active. A program to reduce the spiders around the outside of the house should begin by reducing the presence of insects around the outside of the house.

When spiders occur outside the house in large numbers, such as on the siding or on the ornamental shrubs, try to reduce the use of outdoor lights. The most common spiders around the outside of houses are wolf spiders. These are the large and often ”hairy” spiders that are hunters and do not make webs. Next in abundance would be the web-making or orb-weaver spiders. Orb-weaver spiders are often bright yellow and black.

Spraying outdoors to control spiders is usually not effective. Web removal and elimination of their food source, insects, is a much better way to resolve these issues.

Call your local Orkin branch office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and conduct a thorough inspection inside and outside. Upon assessing the situation, your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized treatment plan that is backed by science and fits your specific needs.

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Does Orkin exterminate for moles? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/exterminate-for-moles/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/exterminate-for-moles/#comments Sun, 23 Oct 2011 17:56:38 +0000 http://6907ae96-3383-4e0b-b382-9a23fd3edd57 Question: Do you exterminate for moles? I have tried practically every product possible and the moles are still wrecking my lawn. ANSWER: Yes, Orkin provides mole control. Read more about controlling moles. True moles (Family Talpidae) comprise several species of … Continue reading

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Question: Do you exterminate for moles? I have tried practically every product possible and the moles are still wrecking my lawn.

ANSWER: Yes, Orkin provides mole control. Read more about controlling moles.

True moles (Family Talpidae) comprise several species of underground dwelling mammals. They are responsible for most of the complaints from homeowners, golf courses, parks and other owners of landscaped yards and gardens. Moles are not rodents. They are actually insectivores and are closely related to shrews. The mole’s primary diet consists of earthworms, grubs, ants and other arthropods and animals found in the soil. They may also eat seeds and vegetable matter but do not eat bulbs or roots.

Moles have two types of runways (tunnels). They have subsurface runways that they use for feeding just below the soil. These are the ones seen as ridges through the lawns. They also have deeper (3 to 12 inches below the surface) main runways.

Trapping with spike traps is in reality the most reliable control method for moles. It must be done carefully and with great attention to detail. Well-placed traps can often yield good results within a day. There are baits that can be used also. Your Orkin Pest Specialist can assess the situation and customize a solution, based on science, to resolve the problems in a way that best meets your needs.

Call your Local Orkin Branch Office to get additional details on this service.

 

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Bed bugs or rat mites? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-or-rat-mites/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-or-rat-mites/#comments Sat, 22 Oct 2011 16:30:55 +0000 http://b2d41a60-f85d-4aaf-b14b-e4f125d9372c Question: Several months ago we found rat droppings in one of our crawl spaces. We had pest guys come out, and they closed up a few possible entry points in our roof. I don’t know how long the droppings were … Continue reading

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Question: Several months ago we found rat droppings in one of our crawl spaces. We had pest guys come out, and they closed up a few possible entry points in our roof. I don’t know how long the droppings were there, or when the rats came through. In the summer we occasionally get lots of bites on us, and then it seems to stop during the colder months. This year we are getting lots of bites on us. We have found and identified rat fleas in our house (mostly catching them in our bed), which could definitely be the source of our bites.

However, I’m wondering if we could also have rat mites? If so, do they tend to die and not be a problem with the rats not here, or will we need to have the house treated to kill them? Also how do we tell if we have rat mites?

ANSWER: According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the one type of rodent mite that will readily bite people is the tropical rat mite (Ornythonyssus bacoti). Other types of rodent mites that will bite people are the house mouse mite (Liponyssoides sanguineus) and the spiny rat mite (Laelaps echidnina). If you suspect that you may be suffering from these very tiny insect bites, you need to seek medical assistance, as they are a public health issue. Structural pest control specialists will not be able to assist you in this issue; a trained doctor is what you should seek out.

This being said, you could have bed bugs—and not rat mites. In some regions of the country the frequency of bed bugs has been increasing. While they are a nuisance and deliver some painful bites, bed bugs can be controlled with some careful cleaning and a little insecticide.

These small, reddish-brown insects hide during the day and emerge at night to take a blood meal from people sleeping. They will also bite other mammals. The bed bug takes 3 to 15 minutes to feed, and then it may not feed again for 2 to 3 days. The bite produces a hard swelling and is whitish in color; it usually is irritated and continues to bleed. It may turn into an itchy rash in a day or so.

Check to see that there are no new or recently abandoned bird nests close to the room (check the attic). There are ”cousins” to bed bugs that live in these nests (or are associated with bats) and can move from there to feeding on people.

If in doubt, contact your local Orkin Branch, and a trained Orkin Pest Specialist can assist you in conducting a thorough inspection of your home to make sure you do not have a bed bug infestation, and, if you do, develop a comprehensive treatment plan for bed bugs.

picture of bed bug
Picture of Bed Bug

Here is more information on getting rid of bed bugs.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: What are rat mites? Do they bite? I have 10 bites on my body after sleeping on the couch.

ANSWER: You may have bed bugs. In some regions of the country the frequency of bed bugs has been increasing. While they are a nuisance and deliver some painful bites, bed bugs can be controlled with some careful cleaning and a little insecticide. Check to see that there are no new or recently abandoned bird nests close to the room (check the attic). There are ”cousins” to bed bugs that live in these nests (or are associated with bats) and can move from there to feeding on people.

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Question: I have no signs of bed bugs but have heard of rat mites. What are rat mites?

ANSWER: Rat mites will leave the host or the nesting site once the host dies or abandons the nest. If the nest is in close proximity to humans, the possibility of being bitten is greater.

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How do I get rid of grounding bees? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/getting-rid-of-grounding-bees/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/getting-rid-of-grounding-bees/#comments Thu, 20 Oct 2011 20:34:23 +0000 http://cee859ea-52e5-4e32-a9be-7eeaa4232ef7 Question: I was wondering if you have a solution for getting rid of grounding bees. They come out every spring for about a month.   ANSWER: The small bees nesting in the soil, and making the small holes in bare … Continue reading

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Question: I was wondering if you have a solution for getting rid of grounding bees. They come out every spring for about a month.

 

ANSWER: The small bees nesting in the soil, and making the small holes in bare soil, are solitary bees. They are sometimes called sweat bees because they are attracted to human perspiration. They do not live in large colonies, but each female makes her own nest and rears a few larvae in galleries in the soil. These bees often occur together in large numbers, and give the appearance that there is one large colony. They are not usually aggressive, but they may sting when the nest site is approached.

To control these bees in a lawn or other outdoor recreation area, you can increase the thickness of your turf or cover the area with mulch or gravel. These bees prefer soil that is dry and bare. Other treatments may be available, and your Orkin Pest Specialist can discuss these with you. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a very thorough inspection of your property and develop a customized and proven treatment strategy that is backed by science. Call your local Orkin Branch Office to set up a visit by your Orkin Pest Specialist.

Read more about bee control.

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How do I kill or prevent scorpions? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/kill-or-prevent-scorpions/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/kill-or-prevent-scorpions/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 20:50:58 +0000 http://c6d82ecb-c453-48b6-baf5-ce87b20b6fd8 Question: I moved from Wisconsin to Phoenix, Ariz. Scorpions are the “norm” in Arizona. How do I kill them? ANSWER: Scorpions are difficult to control and difficult to keep out of houses. You can start with reducing the vegetation that … Continue reading

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Question: I moved from Wisconsin to Phoenix, Ariz. Scorpions are the “norm” in Arizona. How do I kill them?

ANSWER: Scorpions are difficult to control and difficult to keep out of houses. You can start with reducing the vegetation that is around and close to the house. Scorpions can use this vegetation as a hiding place. They also hide under rocks and bury themselves in loose sand. Care must be taken when working outdoors, it is best to wear gloves!

There is little that you can spray around the outside or inside of the house to get control. They are most active during warm periods when temperatures are above 75 degrees F. Most insecticides may not last long enough to have a long-term impact on scorpions. Indoors they move around so much that there would be few predictable places to spray.

There is no easy way to keep them out of the house. The first step is to seal the door thresholds. Indoors, you can use a black light to periodically inspect the house. Scorpions glow a yellowish green under black light. You can use an aerosol or a vacuum to pick up the scorpions once you locate them with the light.

There are some venomous scorpions that occur in the southwestern United States and Mexico. The species that are the least dangerous produce a local swelling, or red spot on the skin, much like a bee or wasp sting. The species that is the most venomous is the Baja California bark scorpion (Centruroides exilicauda) as opposed to the Arizona bark scorpion (Centruroides sculpturatus) which is not considered to be as dangerous. These two variants of the bark scorpion are considered to be medically significant. The location of the sting may become quite painful. In case of a scorpion sting, no matter which one, see a physician immediately.

picture of scorpion

Read more about controlling scorpions.

Related Questions:

The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: Hi. I’m in Oklahoma City, Okla., and I would like to know if you take care of scorpions? I also would like to know if there is any house sealing treatment that you offer to stay protected from those? My house is a new one, and in a new neighborhood, and I already found three scorpions in the house in the last three months. Any advice?

Question: We have seen a few scorpions in our house in the past, but recently I have found several. Is there something I can do to prevent them from getting in? Also, I find them in locations not near a door or window. Could I have some living in our home?

Question: Why am I seeing scorpions in my house?

Question: I have a house in east Texas that is infested with bark scorpions, and I have an absolute phobia of them. Can you eradicate them?

Question: Why am I seeing scorpions in my house?

ANSWER: It may be a seasonal thing.

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How do you exterminate for carpenter bees? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/exterminate-carpenter-bees/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/exterminate-carpenter-bees/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 19:31:14 +0000 http://0fe38a9b-e790-460b-8ba8-cb1c792df9b0 Question: How do you exterminate for carpenter bees? Can you get rid of the bees, and what is the cost? Do you have a guarantee? ANSWER: These bees are not easily controlled. These are solitary bees that will “drill” through … Continue reading

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Question: How do you exterminate for carpenter bees? Can you get rid of the bees, and what is the cost? Do you have a guarantee?

ANSWER: These bees are not easily controlled. These are solitary bees that will “drill” through wood to create chambers in which they can lay their eggs. Pricing will vary, depending on the treatments that are required. Call your local Orkin Local Branch Office and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, do a thorough inspection and assess the situation. After completing the inspection and assessment, your Pest Specialist will customize a scientifically proven treatment plan which will best fit your needs. At that time, pricing and guarantees will be discussed. At Orkin we are not satisfied until you are satisfied.

 

To learn more about controlling bees you can go to Controlling Bees.

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What is making the high-pitched chirp I hear at night? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/high-pitched-cricket-chirp/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/high-pitched-cricket-chirp/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 18:50:32 +0000 http://e51efa34-d5b8-482a-a6d6-593df6c77775 Question: Last night my I heard a sound in my living room that I thought was a smoke detector battery going dead. It was sort of high pitched and electronic sounding. After waking my daughter and following the sound we … Continue reading

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Question: Last night my I heard a sound in my living room that I thought was a smoke detector battery going dead. It was sort of high pitched and electronic sounding. After waking my daughter and following the sound we discovered that it was coming from an insect that looked like a roach with wings. It was less than an inch and brown.

We knew the noise was coming from the bug because it stopped when we killed it. Have you any idea what kind of bug it is?

ANSWER: Well, it could have been one of several crickets. It would be difficult to give you a definite identification without a specimen and an inspection of your home. This is exactly what an Orkin Pest Specialist can do for you. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, conduct a thorough inside and outside inspection, make an assessment of the situation and develop a customized treatment plan based on science that best fits your need. Call your local Orkin Branch Office today.

Read more about crickets.

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Brought home bed bugs from hotel. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-from-hotel/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bed-bugs-from-hotel/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 01:52:09 +0000 http://86ccc558-c3a8-4f6a-8ee9-8d622b53e4e2 Question: I have a suspicion that I brought home bed bugs from a hotel I was in for work a week ago. I woke up the last morning in the hotel with several bites on me. I figured they were … Continue reading

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Question: I have a suspicion that I brought home bed bugs from a hotel I was in for work a week ago. I woke up the last morning in the hotel with several bites on me. I figured they were spider bites. But then after being home over the last few days, my husband has been getting a few bites in the night as well, and I feel like I’ve gotten new bites since I was in the hotel last week. I do not see any visual evidence of bed bugs. I haven’t seen any “live” bugs crawling. I’ve looked everywhere. Do I need to have someone come and fumigate?

ANSWER: Yes, the best way is to contact your local Orkin Branch office and set up a comprehensive bed bug inspection. Bed bugs are flat insects and can crawl in very tight spaces. Often we do not see them because they are in hiding during the day and only come out at night to feed, on you! Bed bug control is very difficult and time consuming. It is often better to let a professional who has received extensive training handle this job. When it comes to bed bugs, you do not want to miss any of them during treatments.

Your Orkin Pest Control Specialist has been trained to recognize the signs of bed bug infestations while conducting a very thorough inspection. The Orkin Pest Specialist will then develop a detailed treatment plan upon analyzing and assessing the situation in your home.

Read more about getting rid of bed bugs.

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Can you remove a bird nest in an exhaust vent? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/remove-bird-nest-in-exhaust-vent/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/remove-bird-nest-in-exhaust-vent/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 01:41:29 +0000 http://6e98bc6b-9ddf-4dbd-8593-d84f0595ca65 Question: We have a bird nest in our exhaust vent. They came through by opening the flaps from the outside. It is on the first floor and is the exhaust fan for our bathroom. Can you guys remove them? If … Continue reading

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Question: We have a bird nest in our exhaust vent. They came through by opening the flaps from the outside. It is on the first floor and is the exhaust fan for our bathroom. Can you guys remove them? If so, how much?

ANSWER: Bird work is a specialized service. The cost is determined by what the extent of the labor is. Bird nests may have bird mites them. They could also have soft ticks, and we know it does have bird droppings. All of these present a health hazard.

Call your local Orkin Branch Office and consult with them as to the possibility of removing the nest from your home and providing you with a solution for any bird control problems you may be experiencing.

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When is tenting necessary for termite control? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/when-is-tenting-necessary/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/when-is-tenting-necessary/#comments Tue, 18 Oct 2011 19:15:38 +0000 http://e42747ca-991f-4129-8ebe-043ce8e1233c Question: When is tenting necessary for termite control? If it is necessary, do we have to empty the house of all contents and for how long? ANSWER: It is used for some severe and widespread infestations of drywood termites, even … Continue reading

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Question: When is tenting necessary for termite control? If it is necessary, do we have to empty the house of all contents and for how long?

ANSWER: It is used for some severe and widespread infestations of drywood termites, even then there are other methods that could be used, depending on the extent of the infestation. IF tenting is necessary, that is fumigation. You will need to leave the home. There are items that can stay; others need to be sealed. Your Orkin Termite Specialist in charge of the fumigation or your Orkin Termite Inspector will have a checklist and procedures they will share with you.

Read more about termites and termite control. For additional information, call your Local Orkin Branch Office.

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Should I move an ant nest? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/moving-an-ant-nest/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/moving-an-ant-nest/#comments Tue, 18 Oct 2011 19:10:30 +0000 http://964a42c9-61b5-4d3a-9d2a-a04ec4fd8724 Question: I have an appointment scheduled for tomorrow to have Orkin investigate a carpenter ant problem. I believe I know a potential source of the ants: a stack of decayed timbers beneath my porch. I would like to try moving … Continue reading

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Question: I have an appointment scheduled for tomorrow to have Orkin investigate a carpenter ant problem. I believe I know a potential source of the ants: a stack of decayed timbers beneath my porch. I would like to try moving them, but if I do uncover a nest, would this cause them to scatter and spread to more places? Or should I be patient and consult with the Orkin technician?

ANSWER: This may be the nest site; moving the wood will be fine, as a matter of fact the Orkin Pest Specialist will include moving the firewood as one of the recommendations. Carpenter ants will form satellite nests though, and this may not be the main nest. One of the satellite nests may be in your home.

It is best to still have the Orkin Pest Specialist come and conduct a thorough inspection of your home. A customized treatment plan backed by science will be developed which will include recommendations on the removal of conducive conditions to the ants. For more information on the process call the local Orkin Branch Office.

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Is there a natural organic ant killer? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/natural-organic-ant-killer/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/natural-organic-ant-killer/#comments Tue, 18 Oct 2011 18:57:06 +0000 http://0b5198cd-f44b-4ba8-8e98-9e234ec5a7a2 Question: I have pets, and we have an ant infestation. Would you have a natural organic ant killer?   ANSWER: Orkin Pest Control uses a wide variety of products that are “green” in their basic makeup. However, I do not know … Continue reading

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Question: I have pets, and we have an ant infestation. Would you have a natural organic ant killer?

 

ANSWER: Orkin Pest Control uses a wide variety of products that are “green” in their basic makeup. However, I do not know about any truly effective “organic” products against ants. It would depend on your definition of “organic.”

Ant control, and any pest control for that matter, depends a lot on your actions. It is not all about treating with products or materials. The first steps are to follow the recommendations by the Orkin Pest Specialist regarding the elimination of conducive conditions to ant infestation. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will inspect your home thoroughly, identifying the issues that may be attracting the ants to your home, such as spilled pet food, pet dishes with water, etc. Upon assessing the situation, the Specialist will develop a scientifically based treatment plan that is customized to meet your needs. The first step in all of this is to call your local Orkin Branch office to set up the inspection.

Read more about ant control and ants.

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Are millipedes an indication of a water problem? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/millipede-water-problem/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/millipede-water-problem/#comments Tue, 18 Oct 2011 18:09:15 +0000 http://6190e163-40fb-4cdf-8ac4-cb65fe3b3432 Question: Hello. I recently bought a townhouse (no basement) and I have killed 12-24 “wire bugs” or millipedes in the past week. I’ve only seen them on the main floor at night. My neighbors in the same structure all have … Continue reading

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Question: Hello. I recently bought a townhouse (no basement) and I have killed 12-24 “wire bugs” or millipedes in the past week. I’ve only seen them on the main floor at night. My neighbors in the same structure all have the same problem, but they have never looked into the cause of the problem. Is this something that I will just have to live with?

The man at the local hardware store said that these bugs can be an indicator of water damage and rot to either the foundation or walls. Is this true?

I’d like to know if this is just a nuisance or an indication of a larger problem. Because I just bought the place and moved in, I do not know if there has been previous water damage.

ANSWER: The local hardware store fellow is … mostly wrong.

Millipedes live outdoors in moist and decaying organic material, such as dead leaves, flower garden mulch, even the thatch layer in turf grass  These small animals usually go unnoticed outside. Sometimes millipede populations increase rapidly, or their environment gets too wet, and they start to migrate to get away from these conditions. Millipedes usually move to the sides of houses (where it may be warmer and drier); they sometimes come inside under door thresholds and around windows at ground level.

The best control is to remove as much of the moist mulch around doors as possible. This reduces their breeding sites and the favorable areas for them, and make certain the door thresholds are well sealed. These animals don’t infest houses; in fact, they die soon after they enter because the environment is too dry for them.

Second Question: So, let me make sure that I understand correctly … There is no reason to be concerned about water damage to either the foundation or the walls, simply based on the presence of these millepedes. Is that correct? You state that the problem is most likely the presence of decaying, moist material outside near the house. All around the foundation it is clear of organic material … the only thing next to the foundation is rocks and concrete.

Could they be coming in through the floor vents? I seem to see them in the vicinity of the floor vents. If so, what should I do about that? Is there something I can spray along the baseboards (both inside and outside) to reduce their presence there?

SECOND ANSWER: They are not an indication of problems in the walls; not sure about the floor vents, maybe it is simply humid there. These are coming from the outside, probably not inside.

A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist can come to your home and conduct a very thorough external and internal inspection. After assessing the situation, your Orkin Pest Specialist can make recommendations on ways to prevent the millipedes from entering your home. The Specialist will also develop a customized treatment plan based on science to best meet your needs. Call your local Orkin Branch Office today to set the inspection up.

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: Do you take care of millipedes?

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What bug has an orange stripe and long nose? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bug-with-orange-stripe/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/bug-with-orange-stripe/#comments Tue, 18 Oct 2011 17:40:29 +0000 http://5f638369-51cb-4c81-96c1-510ad3719e40 Question: I found a bug in my bedroom. It looks sort of like a tick. It has six legs and out of the middle tip of the head it has one appendage about 1/16″ long with 2 antennae. The bug … Continue reading

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Question: I found a bug in my bedroom. It looks sort of like a tick. It has six legs and out of the middle tip of the head it has one appendage about 1/16″ long with 2 antennae. The bug is about 1/4″ long by 1/8″ wide. The color is grayish/black with a thin orange stripe toward the back end.

My bug has a more rounded body, kind of egg-shaped like a tick. The orange stripe is at the end of the bug and only about 1/64″ and goes from left to right. Also, there is a round long nose coming out the head with the antennae coming out the right and left side of the nose.

ANSWER: Without a specimen, making an accurate diagnosis would be hard. From the sounds of your description this could be a weevil. The large weevils (beetles with a long nose or snout), such as the strawberry root weevil, are sometimes found indoors. These beetles live outdoors and feed on plant leaves, but they can come indoors when populations become large and they start to move around. They can find openings around doors and windows to get in. While they pose no threat to humans, pets or home furnishings, they can be a threat to plants. When infestations are severe, plant damage is likely to occur

The most common species are strawberry root weevils (even though you don’t have strawberries), black vine weevil and the Asiatic oak weevil (which actually does feed on a variety of trees). The most common hosts for these weevils include azalea, holly, privet, rhododendron, yew and other ornamentals.

To ensure a proper diagnosis of the pest in question, contact your local Orkin branch and set up an inspection with a highly-trained Orkin Pest Specialist.

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There are little black bugs crawling in my bathroom. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/little-black-bugs-in-bathroom/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/little-black-bugs-in-bathroom/#comments Wed, 05 Oct 2011 15:41:46 +0000 http://f77241be-bdce-4cfb-89b9-a66b65d52d7d Question: I found little black bugs crawling in my kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. They were also in my cabinets attacking the brown sugar and in the bathroom closet attacking the mouthwash and cough medicine. Are these ants? I have been … Continue reading

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Question: I found little black bugs crawling in my kitchen, bathroom and bedroom. They were also in my cabinets attacking the brown sugar and in the bathroom closet attacking the mouthwash and cough medicine. Are these ants? I have been spraying inside and it is helping some, but I am still getting them.

Also, I have bad insulation that got wet and moldy that I am in the process of removing. Could they be living in there, or would they be more likely to be in my crawl space or outside in my aluminum siding? How much do you charge to come out after the free inspection?

ANSWER: The small black ants you have seen could be ”odorous house ants.”

This being said, ant species identification is critical when it goes to controlling them. Applying the incorrect treatment to ants can actually turn a bad situation into a worse one. While these ants we may think are attracted to sugars and sweets like that found in your mouthwash, cough medicine, and even toothpaste, it could also be another species. The key here is to properly identify the ant and come up with the correct treatment. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist can do this for you. Once the assessment is complete, a customized treatment backed by science will be developed and implemented.  Call your local Orkin Branch Office today for assistance.

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Can Orkin control fire ants? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/orkin-fire-ants/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/orkin-fire-ants/#comments Wed, 05 Oct 2011 13:59:35 +0000 http://b23eb905-8822-4bc8-a70a-61ee036ba7ae Question: Can Orkin control fire ants? How often does a property need to be treated? ANSWER: Fire ants are difficult to control for several reasons: the colonies are often very large and extend under the ground a great distance. Colonies often … Continue reading

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Question: Can Orkin control fire ants? How often does a property need to be treated?

ANSWER: Fire ants are difficult to control for several reasons: the colonies are often very large and extend under the ground a great distance. Colonies often have multiple queens, so they can recover if a part of the colony and a queen or two have been killed, and they often occur in large numbers, so that when you have eliminated one colony another will likely move in to occupy the space.

There are a variety of products that can be used inside and outside for control of these ants. Because fire ants can be sometimes a danger to humans and pets, it is a good idea to consult with professionals regarding ways to control them. Call your local Orkin Branch office to set up an inspection of your property. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and conduct a thorough inspection inside and outside. The Orkin Specialist will develop a customized treatment plan backed by science that best meets your needs.

picture of red fire ant
Red Imported Fire Ant

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: I have ants. I called about what I can do, and they told me that I could get an initial visit done, and then an additional three visits to control them. Do I need all four visits? ANSWER: Ant control is usually not done with one application. It may take three or more, depending on the infestation.

 

Question: I live in north Texas. My yard has ant mounds all the time … I believe they’re fire ants. I tried killing with stuff bought from Home Depot. It seems to get rid of that mound but another one shows up again later. How can I totally get rid of ant mounds?

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I Am Having Trouble With Earwigs. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/trouble-with-earwigs-at-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/trouble-with-earwigs-at-home/#comments Thu, 29 Sep 2011 18:24:12 +0000 http://ebb2d107-0796-433a-8917-7aefde4f254c Question: I am having trouble with earwigs getting into my home, and they are driving me crazy. Can you tell me if you can get rid of earwigs. ANSWER: Earwigs in and around the house are not easy to control for … Continue reading

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Question: I am having trouble with earwigs getting into my home, and they are driving me crazy. Can you tell me if you can get rid of earwigs.

ANSWER: Earwigs in and around the house are not easy to control for several reasons: there are a lot of them, so whatever you kill (outdoors) will likely be replaced by others; you have to actually contact them with the insecticide spray (liquid or aerosol will work) to get results, you cannot expect to get control by spraying surfaces that may crawl on.

earwigWhile they look dangerous, and the large pincers on the males (females have small ones) look threatening, they are not aggressive. In spite of their common name, they do not enter ears at night. They are predators of other insects, but will also eat plant material.

Call your local Orkin branch office and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, inspect and develop a customized treatment plan, which will include exterior perimeter services, to control the earwigs and other pests that will best fit your needs.

Related Questions:

The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

  • I have a big earwig problem. What are some strategies to use to help control earwigs before I call for an estimate?

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I’m trying to identify a hard, diamond-shaped bug. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/hard-diamond-shaped-bug/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/hard-diamond-shaped-bug/#comments Fri, 23 Sep 2011 20:14:35 +0000 http://81512bd5-5b11-4735-b8db-8749ecd62316 Question: I’m trying to identify a bug I never seen before till the past year. The bug is a grayish-brown color, shaped like a shield or diamond shape. The bug has a hard shell-like back and is about the size … Continue reading

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Question: I’m trying to identify a bug I never seen before till the past year. The bug is a grayish-brown color, shaped like a shield or diamond shape. The bug has a hard shell-like back and is about the size of a dime or nickel. The bug also is very loud when it flies, and also has a strong odor when killed.

ANSWER: Probably what you have is one of the common species of stink bugs. They can be pests in the fall when they enter houses. They are nuisances during the winter and spring before they leave to return to the outdoors. There are several species that have become pests in the last few years, possibly because their numbers have increased in some regions of the country.

Adult stink bugs spend the winter in protected places. They often find shelter around the outside and inside houses. Box elder bugs and lady bugs also do this.

They don’t sting or bite, and they don’t reproduce in the house. They are just a nuisance and they stink. The ”stink” they make is from a small gland on the abdomen. It is for defense purposes!

These insects can be removed from indoors with a vacuum cleaner.

Make sure exterior doors close tightly. Replace any missing weather stripping. Repair any damaged screens on attic and crawl space vents.

Exterior treatments to discourage them from moving into the house can be performed.  Call your local Orkin Branch Office and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and develop a customized treatment plan based on science that best fits your needs.

picture of stink bug
Image of a Stink Bug

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What kind of roaches are white in color? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-kind-of-roaches-are-white-in-color/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-kind-of-roaches-are-white-in-color/#comments Thu, 17 Feb 2011 19:44:46 +0000 http://8f763e67-f0a3-4cc9-9799-305a0a11d8a8 Question: What kind of roaches are white in color? ANSWER: Actually, there are no white cockroaches. What you found was a cockroach that had just shed its skin (molted) in the process of growing larger or advancing to the adult stage. … Continue reading

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Question: What kind of roaches are white in color?

ANSWER: Actually, there are no white cockroaches.

What you found was a cockroach that had just shed its skin (molted) in the process of growing larger or advancing to the adult stage. In the process of shedding the old skin, the new skin appears white. It takes about 6 hrs for the new skin to ”tan” (a chemical process) and become hard and brown; then the cockroach will look like all the others in the population.

If you are seeing “white” roaches, you have a rather extensive problem. You have a mature population, and the time for action is now! Call your local Orkin Branch office and have a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist conduct a thorough inspection of your home, assess the situation and develop a customized treatment solution that best fits your needs.

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Does Riddex really work for mice? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/does-riddex-work/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/does-riddex-work/#comments Thu, 10 Feb 2011 14:33:23 +0000 http://9521a24f-fd1f-4df5-bc24-600340cd7d04 Question: Does Riddex really work? How much to tent house? ANSWER: It may work, but the jury on ultrasonic plug-ins is still out, as they say. There are many testimonials out there that say the product works, and some state it does … Continue reading

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Question: Does Riddex really work? How much to tent house?

ANSWER: It may work, but the jury on ultrasonic plug-ins is still out, as they say. There are many testimonials out there that say the product works, and some state it does not. Personally, I would not trust the health of my family due to a rodent infestation to a plug-in ultrasonic device.

I would at least consider calling the local Orkin Branch Office and having a highly trained and qualified Orkin Pest Specialist come to my home and conduct a thorough assessment of my property and look for rodent entry points, conditions that are conducive to rodent infestations, and develop a customized treatment strategy that fits my needs.

When it comes to tenting your home, it is a rather expensive proposition. It requires great degree of knowledge and special licensing due to the gas being used. Once again, contact your local Orkin branch office to discuss.

Read more information on getting rid of mice.

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I found a scorpion on my kitchen floor. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/scorpion-on-kitchen-floor/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/scorpion-on-kitchen-floor/#comments Thu, 10 Feb 2011 14:24:08 +0000 http://b9aa0c28-42cd-48b1-8209-55be5edcc97d Question: Hello! If I come face to face with a scorpion on my kitchen floor, how do I kill it? Do scorpions move fast? Thanks for the help. ANSWER: These arthropods are active at night, they are hunters, but they do … Continue reading

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Question: Hello! If I come face to face with a scorpion on my kitchen floor, how do I kill it? Do scorpions move fast? Thanks for the help.

ANSWER: These arthropods are active at night, they are hunters, but they do not move that fast … and it is not going to chase after you.

Since they are predators, the reason they are hanging around your home is because they have found good living conditions or there are other insects that they are looking for as food. Call your local Orkin branch office and set up a visit by a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist who will inspect your home and develop a customized treatment plan that best fits your needs.

scorpions on gravel floor
Scorpions Crawling on Gravel

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How far from the house should firewood be? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/firewood-distance-from-house/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/firewood-distance-from-house/#comments Thu, 10 Feb 2011 14:19:58 +0000 http://fe006fee-c4fb-48c5-bf39-34d6b02add56 Question: How far away from the house does firewood need to be? ANSWER: Firewood storage creates a condition that is conducive to attracting termites, other insects and rodents. When it is next to the foundation of the home, it is particularly troublesome, … Continue reading

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Question: How far away from the house does firewood need to be?

ANSWER: Firewood storage creates a condition that is conducive to attracting termites, other insects and rodents. When it is next to the foundation of the home, it is particularly troublesome, as you are putting the termite’s gourmet dinner next to your home. I recommend that you keep your firewood at least five feet or more away from the foundation of the home. Firewood should also be stored in racks above the ground.

Call your local Orkin branch office, and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and conduct an inspection. The inspection will assess the presence of pest attractants around your home, and recommendations on how to correct or eliminate these conditions will be reported to you.  Your Pest Specialist will also develop a customized treatment plan that best fits your needs.

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What made the mounds of dirt in my flowerbeds and lawn? White grubs? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-grubs-in-the-flower-beds-lawn/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-grubs-in-the-flower-beds-lawn/#comments Wed, 09 Feb 2011 20:20:15 +0000 http://b3680e18-2f2d-48ae-989c-280011099a4a Question: In the flowerbeds, under the porch and along the edge of the lawn, there a piles of loose dirt that some type of bug left behind as it’s burrowed into the dirt. These little piles or mounds of dirt are … Continue reading

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Question: In the flowerbeds, under the porch and along the edge of the lawn, there a piles of loose dirt that some type of bug left behind as it’s burrowed into the dirt. These little piles or mounds of dirt are everywhere. I’ve also noticed that we have a lot of hairy caterpillars, which we didn’t have until just recently. I don’t know if one thing has anything to do with the other. Do you know what these could possibly be? I live in Kansas.

ANSWER: The possibilities are earthworms, sometimes grubs (June Beetle, Japanese Beetle, and other beetle grubs) will make these mounds, and skunks looking for grubs can make them … those caterpillars are not involved.

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How Do I Kill House Lizards? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/how-do-i-kill-house-lizards/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/how-do-i-kill-house-lizards/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:55:43 +0000 http://4d1bb371-cc00-4a52-b915-756908d9a704 Question: How do I kill house lizards? ANSWER: Small lizards are common pests in houses and buildings that are surrounded by vegetation or are close to areas of dense (sometimes shaded) plants. They are pests simply by their presence indoors. They do … Continue reading

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Question: How do I kill house lizards?

ANSWER: Small lizards are common pests in houses and buildings that are surrounded by vegetation or are close to areas of dense (sometimes shaded) plants. They are pests simply by their presence indoors. They do not live in or infest houses, but come in from surrounding vegetation to find insects (food).

Usually they are following the insects that are attracted to outdoor lights, which often attract moths and many other insects. Of course, they don’t bite people or animals, and would eventually move out of the house, except for those that get lost indoors.

The best control strategy is to keep them out by keeping doors and windows closed or screened. Reducing the vegetation around the house and limiting outdoor lights at night may also be helpful.

Call your local Orkin branch office and ask to have an Orkin Pest Specialist come to your home and develop a customized treatment plan to take care of the lizards’ food source, the insects flying or crawling around your home. Once the food sources are gone, the lizards will be too.

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Do I have to live with wire bugs in my basement? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/wire-bugs-in-my-basement/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/wire-bugs-in-my-basement/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:52:41 +0000 http://53a96305-0149-430e-b2d6-5c85d181fb49 Question: Hello. I recently bought a townhouse (no basement), and I have killed 12-24 “wire bugs?” or millipedes in the past week. I’ve only seen them on the main floor at night. My neighbors in the same structure all have the … Continue reading

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Question: Hello. I recently bought a townhouse (no basement), and I have killed 12-24 “wire bugs?” or millipedes in the past week.

I’ve only seen them on the main floor at night. My neighbors in the same structure all have the same problem, but they have never looked into the cause of the problem. Is this something that I will just have to live with?

The man at the local hardware store said that these bugs can be an indicator of water damage and rot to either the foundation or walls. Is this true? I’d like to know if this is just a nuisance or an indication of a larger problem. Because I just bought the place and moved in, I do not know if there has been previous water damage. The townhouse is 15 years old in Eagan, Minn.

ANSWER: The local hardware store fellow is … mostly wrong.

Millipedes live outdoors in organic material that is mostly moist and decaying: dead leaves, garden mulch, sometimes turfgrass.

Their numbers can increase quickly if their environment gets too wet. Then they may move somewhere drier or warmer, such as the sides of houses. They can get inside homes by going under door thresholds or around windows.

Be sure to remove any moist mulch near doors. Be sure that doors are sealed tight. The good news is that they usually die after they enter your house because it is too dry for them.

For further assistance, contact your local Orkin Branch Office to set up an inspection by a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized treatment plan backed by science that best meets your needs.

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Will spraying for spiders in the basement be harmful to humans? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spiders-in-the-basement/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spiders-in-the-basement/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:43:03 +0000 http://3b85d873-45f0-4eb6-9d59-34bde22b152b Question: Our basement has no windows. Our granddaughter who will be living with us wants to have her bedroom in the basement, but we have spiders. If you come to spray for them will the chemicals be harmful to her?   … Continue reading

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Question: Our basement has no windows. Our granddaughter who will be living with us wants to have her bedroom in the basement, but we have spiders. If you come to spray for them will the chemicals be harmful to her?

 

ANSWER: Spiders are not easily controlled inside the house. There are certain times of the year when these animals are more active and abundant than other times, and these times are usually the spring and fall. They are most often seen at these times because the males are moving around in search of females, or the webs become abundant near lights. Spiders are also predators of insects. The most effective control method is to limit their primary food supply.

The best option for the safe application of any pesticide is to allow a professional to do it. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist can assess the situation and develop a customized solution to your problem. The solution will be based on the science of pest control and is implemented by a specialist who will take all necessary precautions and follow the label directions for any product that may be used in the treatments. The key step is to eliminate the food sources and webs. Your Orkin Specialist will help you with this. Call your local Orkin Branch Office today and set up an appointment for a visit by an Orkin Pest Specialist.

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I have stink bugs all around my house. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/stink-bugs-in-my-house/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/stink-bugs-in-my-house/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:35:56 +0000 http://0844054a-b952-4e7b-b479-7d7b52b60f1d Question: I have stink bugs everywhere outside my house, and they are starting to come in my house. What can I do to get rid of them? ANSWER: Stink bugs can be pests in the fall when they enter houses and … Continue reading

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Question: I have stink bugs everywhere outside my house, and they are starting to come in my house. What can I do to get rid of them?

ANSWER: Stink bugs can be pests in the fall when they enter houses and during the winter and spring before they leave to return to the outdoors. There are several species that have become household pests in the last few years, probably because their numbers have increased in some regions of the country. These insects can be removed from indoors with a vacuum cleaner. They don’t sting or bite, and they don’t infest the house.

For additional treatments call your local Orkin Branch Office. An Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized solution, backed by science, that best meets your needs.

Related Information:
Diamond-shaped bug
Stink Bug Control

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: Hi, I first noticed the stink bugs last fall when they were swarming in my yard. I had the door open and about 50 flew in. I vacuumed like crazy, but I continued to see a few over the winter. Now, I am vacuuming up 10-20 every day. I see them outside on my soffits. We have lived here 20 years, and it is the first time I have encountered this is problem. I read online that sprays do not deter them after about two weeks. Can you give me more information? Thanks.

Question: Does ORKIN treat for “stink bugs” (mid-sized, shield-shaped beetle bugs that give off a stink when scared or squashed)?

Question: Do you have a solution for stink bugs?

Question: How to get rid of stink bugs?

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How much does it cost to get an exterminator for spiders? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-exterminator-for-spiders/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-for-exterminator-for-spiders/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:30:39 +0000 http://75d7c707-8002-4de1-9820-c1ee55d854f6 Question: I live in a house built in 1951 and a big spider problem—I hate spiders! How much would it cost? Would it be effective to spray something to keep them out? I would probably need a one-time-only service, the … Continue reading

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Question: I live in a house built in 1951 and a big spider problem—I hate spiders! How much would it cost? Would it be effective to spray something to keep them out? I would probably need a one-time-only service, the house will be torn down/rebuilt in January.

 

ANSWER: It is difficult to determine the size or extent of an infestation without a comprehensive inspection of your home. The most effective control programs limit the spiders’ food supply. Since most spiders prey on insects, outdoor infestations can be addressed by simply reducing the use of exterior lighting. Spraying outdoors to control indoor spiders is not effective, if for no other reason than most indoor spiders don’t come from outdoor habitats. There are many species of spiders that only live indoors.

The local Orkin branch can provide the most current information on treatment costs. Call them and ask for an inspection. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will gladly inspect your home, assess the situation and develop a treatment plan to help control the spiders and, most of all the insects, they prey on.

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What is a leopard slug? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-is-a-leopard-slug/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/what-is-a-leopard-slug/#comments Thu, 03 Feb 2011 15:22:30 +0000 http://2fe3f552-be95-44aa-8fc7-b32ed495be41 Question: What is a leopard slug? ANSWER: It is one of the large species of slugs (Limax maximus) and gets the name from the dark spots it has on the body. It is also known as the great grey slug. It … Continue reading

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Question: What is a leopard slug?

ANSWER: It is one of the large species of slugs (Limax maximus) and gets the name from the dark spots it has on the body. It is also known as the great grey slug. It is widely distributed but is considered to be indigenous in western and southern Europe.

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Why so hard to kill black fleas? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/black-fleas-hard-to-kill/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/black-fleas-hard-to-kill/#comments Wed, 02 Feb 2011 18:17:15 +0000 http://4d9790a3-0ba7-4dd9-a064-88583f4d887a Question: I have black fleas in my house. I have tried sprays, foggers and everything else. Nothing seems to work. Why is it so hard to kill these fleas? ANSWER: Without any specimen handy, it would be extremely difficult to diagnose … Continue reading

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Question: I have black fleas in my house. I have tried sprays, foggers and everything else. Nothing seems to work. Why is it so hard to kill these fleas?

ANSWER: Without any specimen handy, it would be extremely difficult to diagnose what insect or pest you could have around your home.

If in fact they are fleas, flea treatments are not an easy job. While you may kill some adults with “bombs” or foggers, there may be some larvae left in the carpets and cracks and crevices. Additionally, the pets need to be treated. Even if you do not have any pets, fleas can be a problem.

Humans and pets can bring fleas in from the yard outside, so yard treatments may have to be done. Lawns should be kept trimmed low.

Inside vacuuming is the best way to get rid of eggs, larva and adults, but it is imperative that you discard the bag and not leave it in your unit. Concentrate on areas where pets, if you have them, like to lie around. Speaking of pets, take them to your vet to get a flea treatment. After the initial treatment from the vet, continue on with topical or oral flea treatments on a scheduled basis.

Another issue is that you may have wildlife, rodents, feral cats, etc. coming into areas of your home. This may include raccoons, squirrels and other wildlife coming into your attic. If this is the case, you will need to eliminate that source by preventing their entry into your home through an exclusion program or trapping the animals. Even an infested animal that came in your home and died will be a huge problem, as fleas will jump off and look for a live source of food.

Contact your local Orkin branch, and an Orkin Pest Specialist can come to your home and conduct an assessment of the problem, making recommendations on how to best proceed with treatments around your home.

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I have tiny white bugs in my bathroom. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-bugs-in-bathroom/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-bugs-in-bathroom/#comments Wed, 02 Feb 2011 18:13:33 +0000 http://8edf7297-5a1f-459d-a993-e2b47511faf3 Question: I have these very tiny white bugs in my bathroom. They stay in large groups and seem to move fairly quick. You can’t see them unless you focus your eyes directly on them, yet from a distance they look … Continue reading

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Question: I have these very tiny white bugs in my bathroom. They stay in large groups and seem to move fairly quick. You can’t see them unless you focus your eyes directly on them, yet from a distance they look like sawdust or dust. I looked online, and they are not termites, clover mites, house mouse, mites or silverfish. No one seems to have an answer on what they are. Please help me to identify these so I may get rid of them. I’m in Florida and it’s winter

ANSWER: Probably what you have are psocids (soo-cids) or book lice (an unfortunate name, since they are neither lice nor always associated with books). They could also be springtails, but only by a thorough inspection and identification of the specimens would we be able to give you a definite answer.

These very small, pale yellow to brown insects live in humid areas such as bathrooms and kitchens, but they can occur in other locations in the house (especially in humid weather). Most of the time they are wingless, but sometimes you can encounter winged forms. They feed on microscopic mold and fungi, and some are associated with stored food materials which may also have some mold. There are a few psocids that are associated with cereals and are not usually found in humid areas. They may be found in quite dry kitchen cabinets.

The best control in the kitchen and kitchen cabinets is to remove everything from the cabinets, vacuum them very well (no soap and water), then use a hair dryer to dry out the site, then replace the stuff. Soap and water usually makes a paste and the paste hardens in cracks and crevices and prevents further cleaning, but leaves a residue that can be food for insects.

In the bathroom you can turn up the heat and close the door and leave it for a day to dry the place out, and you will kill the psocids.

For the ones in other places in the house, or when you find them on pieces of furniture, the best control is to dry out whatever or wherever these insects have been found. This may mean turning up the heat, taking items outside to dry in the sun, whatever it takes to lower the humidity in the environment they are in.

Your local Orkin Branch Office can help you with this issue. Call them and an Orkin Pest Specialist will assess the situation to make sure you have psocids or maybe springtails. A thorough inspection may be the only way to tell. Your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized solution, backed by science, that best meets your needs.

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

  • Question: The last two days I have noticed microscopic insects in my bathtub. I have no idea where they are coming from, and they are not in the outside areas. Looking at them with a lens, they look like clear ants, but I’m unsure. I don’t know if they are coming from my walls because I am regrouting the tub area. Can you help?
  • Question: I have found hundreds of small salt-grain-sized bugs in my house all over, what are they?
  • Question: I have recently discovered that there are very small white-colored bugs in my bedroom. They are as small as a dot. I am wondering if you know what they are and how to get rid of them in a safe way without disrupting furniture, electronic equipment.
  • Question: My apartment complex provides regular pest control services about every 2-3 weeks. Yet I constantly find these bugs on my walls and counters (mostly in the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen). They do not fly, they are about a half inch long with antennae, and when I kill them with a tissue they become almost translucent although when they are all on the wall or whatever they appear to be brown. They seem to show up in areas that have been dark for awhile (e.g., inside cabinets, closets, dark bedroom or bathroom) but no matter how often I have pest control (and it is Orkin) they never seem to go away, yet I never have any other bug issues. I live in northern Florida.
  • Question: I periodically see these little brown bugs ( I think they have six legs) in different areas of my home, bathroom sink, shower, living room floor, kitchen sink. They seem to go near food. I saw the first one around a year ago. I do not see them often, although I have seen two in the last three days. Do you have any ideas what they could be?
  • Question: We have bugs in our apartment since a hurricane. I do not know if they are ants or termites. The are very small and move VERY fast!! They are dark in color in the front and lighter in the back. They seem to be around water, sweets and our bed. Can you please help us figure out what these are? We have used ant spray to kill them, but they keep coming around. We have reptiles in the apartment and a cat, so we do not want to fog the apartment.
  • Question: We have tiny bugs that look like brown dots near the windows and in the tubs and sinks. They invade in the springtime and this year they are worse than ever. What are they, and can we keep them from coming back?
  • Question: Can you identify this insect? It is tiny, tiny. It is only noticed when there are a number of them on the counter. Individually, they are specks. When found on the counter or in the kitchen sink they are dead. We have closed all holes under the sink, but the insects still appear.
  • Question: Hi! There are hundreds of beige specks by my kitchen sink. I clean them and they reappear.

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I have a vole problem in my back yard. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/vole-problem-in-backyard/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/vole-problem-in-backyard/#comments Mon, 31 Jan 2011 14:45:03 +0000 http://396ee6e9-d7ca-40fd-8e2e-3388c0f94836 Question: Hello. I have a serious vole problem in my back yard. They tunnel under my lawn, eating the grass and roots, plus it is hard to see them under the snow. Can you help? ANSWER: Voles (primarily the woodland … Continue reading

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Question: Hello. I have a serious vole problem in my back yard. They tunnel under my lawn, eating the grass and roots, plus it is hard to see them under the snow. Can you help?


ANSWER: Voles (primarily the woodland vole) are small rodents that are similar to mice. However, they are quite different from mice and moles (which also tunnel underground). Voles are grayish-brown and about 5-6 inches long. Unlike the house mouse, voles have a blunt nose, short furry ears, and small eyes.

Voles live outdoors in shallow burrows in the soil; they feed on the roots and tubers of trees and plants, and can cause extensive damage to plantings and orchards. They are sometimes found in sheds and in basements, but do not naturally infest houses. Vole populations peak in natural cycles every few years, and during this time they can be very abundant. They prefer grassy areas or areas with heavy mulch and ground cover. They travel in above-ground runways and underground burrows.

Controlling these animals is not easy, but the best a homeowner can do is make their yards less attractive to the voles. Keeping the lawn mowed, having little or no dense groundcover, like creeping junipers, and keeping the lawn weeded are some natural controls that can be done. Snap traps or glue boards at the entrance of burrows can also be done.

Due to the difficulty in controlling the voles, it is often best to seek professional help. Call your local Orkin branch office, and an Orkin Pest Specialist will assess your situation, recommending a customized treatment plan to control these critters.

 

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Avoid bringing roaches when you move. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/avoid-bringing-roaches-when-you-move/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/avoid-bringing-roaches-when-you-move/#comments Mon, 31 Jan 2011 14:40:43 +0000 http://76c6dc04-0350-43e6-a204-73772887f994 Question: Hi. I am moving from a roach-infested apartment into a new apartment. I want to be sure that I do not take any roaches or roach eggs with me when I move. Can you tell me what I need … Continue reading

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Question: Hi. I am moving from a roach-infested apartment into a new apartment. I want to be sure that I do not take any roaches or roach eggs with me when I move. Can you tell me what I need to do in order to ensure this doesn’t happen? Thanks.

ANSWER: You can avoid taking cockroaches with you when you move by doing some simple things to control them now, and when you get to where you are going.

Before you move and as you pack, you should inspect your items for any presence of cockroaches. As you pack your checked items, remove them from your current apartment. You’ll want to launder your clothes and linens, shake out shoes and electronics, vacuum everything as you pack. If you are washing your laundry in a place outside of the apartment, pack it there. Do not take it back to the infested apartment to pack.

It is preferable to use plastic bins with lids that can be sealed, as opposed to cardboard boxes. Cardboard boxes provide great places for roaches to hide within the manufactured structure of the box. Also, if you use boxes you obtained from outside sources, say a supermarket or store, you have no guarantee that the boxes aren’t already infested. Stick with plastic bins with lids.

If the infestation is very large, it may be best to discard small electric and electronic appliances such as coffee pots, alarm clocks etc. These provide excellent hiding places for roaches, and it is virtually impossible to treat the appliance with any treatment product. If you are set in taking these with you, thoroughly inspect them, seal them in clear plastic bags and keep them there until it is time to unpack. Check them before taking them out of the bags (this is why you want clear bags).

Do the same for computers, televisions, audio and video equipment, etc. Inspect them before bagging, and inspect before taking them out of the bags.

Make sure you wash and dry all pots, pans and cooking utensils. Pack them immediately after drying. Check any food items and discard anything that is suspect.

If you are taking plants with you, inspect them! Look at the dirt in the pots for signs of movement, check the leaves, stems and the pots themselves. If you are unsure about them, it is better to discard the plants rather than using them as a transport for roaches to your new place.

Again, the moving preparations are rather lengthy and involve a lot of work on your part, but checking your items, cleaning them, packing them correctly and discarding suspect items will go a long way to preventing the hitchhikers from moving with you to a new home.

When you get to the new place, inspect the apartment before moving anything in. You should be aware of signs and evidence of cockroach infestations from your previous apartment.

Inspect items as you unpack them. If you used boxes, discard them quickly. Check the clear bags where you may have packed any electronics for signs of roach activity inside the bags.

Continually check your apartment for evidence of roach problems, and ask your property manager to make sure it is being treated on a regular basis. If your new complex does not have a current service, Orkin will gladly work with them to come up with a scheduled treatment program for the apartment complex.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: We moved into this duplex and no one lives in the other side, and I know for a fact that we didn’t have these at the place before this place. I have bought boric acid for cockroaches, but it seems like ever since I put this down, I am seeing more and more. What can I do?

Question: I was wondering if cockroaches are a problem in Wheaton, Ill?
I am moving to that apartment building. It’s a first floor apartment. Are cockroaches more likely to get in on the first floor?

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Can you get of rid of moles in my yard? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-of-rid-of-moles/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-of-rid-of-moles/#comments Mon, 31 Jan 2011 14:25:23 +0000 http://e59826e2-5029-490a-81d7-b38a3f230757 Question: Can you get rid of moles in the yard? ANSWER: Moles are small rodents that can damage turf grass. Those tunnels just under the surface of the lawn are made by male moles establishing a territory and looking for females. The … Continue reading

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Question: Can you get rid of moles in the yard?

ANSWER: Moles are small rodents that can damage turf grass. Those tunnels just under the surface of the lawn are made by male moles establishing a territory and looking for females. The females spend their time deeper in the soil in small cavities. Both males and females eat earthworms, insects and some other soil arthropods.

Moles dig two types of tunnels: deep tunnels and surface tunnels. The deep tunnels (maybe 24 inches down) are used as runways and for nesting; they may be marked as “mole hills” of pushed-out dirt. Surface tunnels are runways which can be followed as raised ridges on the ground. Only a few of the surface tunnels will be active.

Moles in the lawn or garden are difficult to control, and there are a great variety of remedies. The home or hardware store will probably have several mole control products available. The most effective mechanical method I am aware of is the spring-loaded spikes that are placed over the surface tunnels. Fall is a good time for control, especially after a rain when mole activity is high.

The shallow, surface tunnels are easy to find and the ones to use for the spike traps. Look for a relatively straight ridge running along the soil surface. Poke your finger into these runways in a few places; if the moles repair the holes in a few days, then the runways are active.

The spike or harpoon traps can be effective if you first collapse a section of an active runway with your hand, make it about half the original height. Set the spikes on the runway so that the tips just touch the collapsed runway. The trap will be sprung when the mole works to reestablish the runway. Move the trap in 3-4 days if there is no activity.

For additional help call your local Orkin Branch office. They can assist you in the control of this pesky yard mammalian pest.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: I have moles or gophers in my back yard. They have made tunnels and hills all over my yard last night. How can I get rid of them? Please help, my yard is being destroyed.

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Can you use moth crystals in luggage for bed bugs? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/moth-crystals-in-luggage-for-bed-bugs/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/moth-crystals-in-luggage-for-bed-bugs/#comments Fri, 28 Jan 2011 17:01:11 +0000 http://c11a33e0-8b2b-4901-80db-87851ec2fc8e Question: My mom lives in New York. My children recently visited her. After their arrival, my mom informs me that she has bed bugs. My children have since returned. Should I get someone to come to my house to inspect … Continue reading

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Question: My mom lives in New York. My children recently visited her. After their arrival, my mom informs me that she has bed bugs. My children have since returned. Should I get someone to come to my house to inspect for bed bugs? Do you think they traveled with us to Virginia? How can I find them? I am scratching because of the thought, but no one else seems affected. I’m petrified of a possible infestation. What should I do?

ANSWER: It is possible that you brought them back. They would hitch a ride in luggage and material that were next to the bed or in the room that was infested.

Some people have said that placing some moth crystals in the luggage you used is very helpful. Personally, I would not want the inside of my luggage smelling like mothballs. Also make sure the label states that it can be used in that manner. If you live in a hot climate you can put the luggage in black plastic bags, seal them and leave them in the hot sunlight for a week; this may work as well and be safer than the mothballs.  The only way to be sure that your children did not bring any back is to be vigilant and set up an inspection by an Orkin Certified Bed Bug Specialist by calling your local Orkin Branch Office. Should there be any evidence of bed bugs, the inspector will set up a customized treatment plan for your that is backed by the latest scientific advances in bed bug control.

Your mother should consider getting rid of these pests before it gets worse. I would recommend that she contact her local Orkin Branch Office and set up a bed bug inspection by a Certified Bed Bug Specialist. The inspector can provide a customized treatment plan backed by the latest scientific advances in bed bug control that best meets her needs.

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White flies in hotel bathrooms http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-flies-in-hotel-bathrooms/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/white-flies-in-hotel-bathrooms/#comments Fri, 28 Jan 2011 16:31:08 +0000 http://856f67e6-3bcf-4576-8451-2ea439c79507 Question: Dear Mr. Orkin Man Today I visited a hotel in Dubai and noticed that they have a problem with flies. The flies are white in color and they seem to be “oozing” from the drain pipes in almost all … Continue reading

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Question:

Dear Mr. Orkin Man

Today I visited a hotel in Dubai and noticed that they have a problem with flies. The flies are white in color and they seem to be “oozing” from the drain pipes in almost all the bathrooms. Could you please tell me what species of the flies and what methods of control are used?

Your early response will be appreciated greatly.

ANSWER: There are several species of flies that can breed in drains in bathrooms. These include moth flies (sometimes called drain flies), phorid flies, house flies and some other species of small flies. None of these flies are white … so I don’t recognize what you have coming out of the drains … unless you are referring to the maggots—these would be white. The maggots will be eating the gunk that is in the drain, but, when it comes time to pupate and later become adults they will leave the wet environment for dryer areas to do this.

The best solution to this problem is to first physically clean the drains—remove as much of the organic material as possible; then use a biological drain cleaner on a regular basis (every two weeks). Your local Orkin Branch Office can talk to you about a drain program using our bacterial cleaning agent.

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What communicable diseases can a mole carry? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/diseases-mole-carry/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/diseases-mole-carry/#comments Wed, 15 Dec 2010 13:36:17 +0000 http://98890f13-5559-4213-8978-3671b160789a Question: What communicable diseases can a mole carry? I had one bite or scratch my dog’s nose. ANSWER None that I know of.

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Question: What communicable diseases can a mole carry? I had one bite or scratch my dog’s nose.

ANSWER

None that I know of.

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Termite tube hanging from ceiling? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/termite-tube-hanging-from-ceiling/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/termite-tube-hanging-from-ceiling/#comments Wed, 15 Dec 2010 13:32:42 +0000 http://2745f5f8-9f33-4c65-a83a-071dfc5355ed Question: In my living room I noticed a couple of months ago a tube hanging from the ceiling. It was about 2 inches long and maybe 1/4 inch wide. The best way to describe it is to say the tube … Continue reading

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Question: In my living room I noticed a couple of months ago a tube hanging from the ceiling. It was about 2 inches long and maybe 1/4 inch wide. The best way to describe it is to say the tube looked exactly like cigarette ashes. There was also a pin-sized hole where the tube was hanging. Yesterday I noticed in the same spot a tube hanging that was about 5 inches long and about 1/4 inch wide and looked the same way. I have not seen any bugs. I checked the outside of the house to look for the mud tubes in case it is termites and saw a couple of lines on the base of the house. They weren’t tubes—they looked like mud lines—almost like they were drawn on the house with mud. Any ideas?  Thanks.

ANSWER: This is most likely an indication of a termite infestation. You should get the house inspected as soon as possible. Call your local Orkin Branch Office today to protect your most valued investment. A highly trained Orkin Termite Inspector will conduct a thorough whole-home inspection and develop a customized treatment plan, based on science, that best fits your needs.

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We have ants in sink and walls. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/ants-in-sink-and-walls/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/ants-in-sink-and-walls/#comments Wed, 15 Dec 2010 13:28:06 +0000 http://2242db8e-3dca-42bb-bd11-02077104f6a1 Question: We have ants. They come up out of the sink only if something besides water is poured down the drain. How to stop this? Also, we have them coming out from the plug-ins. does that mean they are in … Continue reading

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Question: We have ants. They come up out of the sink only if something besides water is poured down the drain. How to stop this? Also, we have them coming out from the plug-ins. does that mean they are in the wall?

ANSWER: You may possibly have an infestation of Pharaoh ants.

Pharaoh ants (Monomorium pharaonis) are a common household pest which is difficult to control. They can infest the entire house, but their preference is for kitchens and bathrooms and other high-moisture locations. Standard spray treatments are not effective or even advisable.

The best control strategy is to use baits and be patient. The baits take time, and there are likely many small colonies throughout the house. The baits will have to be located in many places, and the ants will have to be attracted to the baits. The use of liquid baits is best, but gel formulations will work well also. Remember when treating with a baiting program, patience is the key. Do not try to “help” your specialist by treating with insecticide sprays, as the problem will get worse. Spraying the areas with cleaning solvents will also have an adverse effect and contaminate the baits applied by your Orkin Pest Specialist.

Call for a comprehensive evaluation of the problem.  The proper diagnosis of this pesky pest ant problem and the correct treatment solution will prevent future headaches. Your Orkin Pest Specialist is trained to recognize issues related to these ants as well as other ants.

pharaoh ant picture
Pharaoh Ant Image

Related Questions

The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: We have ants, quite small in size, reddish/orange in color, back-most segment of it is of a lighter shade. The queens have the same basic coloring, and are of about 1/4 inch in length. I think these are pharaoh ants. What would you say they are, and what am I to do about them?

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What are these large black ants with wings? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/large-black-ants-with-wings/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/large-black-ants-with-wings/#comments Wed, 15 Dec 2010 13:24:49 +0000 http://a8e919a4-4327-4e90-ae21-42071a30cfd4 Question: I keep getting large black, look like big ants, some have wings, in my bathroom. They do not look like termites. They bite. One stung or bit me on the foot. They only seem to be in the 2nd … Continue reading

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Question: I keep getting large black, look like big ants, some have wings, in my bathroom. They do not look like termites. They bite. One stung or bit me on the foot. They only seem to be in the 2nd floor bathroom. Any ideas for me on what they are?

ANSWER: These are probably carpenter ants. Without a specimen it is difficult to make a proper identification, so I am basing my identification on your description. Most are large black ants, though some be red or a combination of red and black. Most will swarm in the spring. They feed on other insects and honeydew from aphids on plants.

carpenter ants in the ground
carpenter ants in the ground

Carpenter ants like to nest in wood that has been  damaged from moisture, though they do not eat the wood. If there is a nest in the house, it is because there is wood damaged from moisture somewhere in the home:

  • in the bathroom from a tub or shower that is not draining correctly or overflows often
  • a porch that holds moisture
  • a leaky roof leak
  • a wet door frame (rain)
  • a spout or gutter that does not work

Carpenter ants tend to be active inside in the spring. Look for them in the kitchen and other areas of the home in February and March. There may be a nest in the house. Later in the spring, they may go outdoors; however, this does not mean that they have been controlled. Sometimes the nest is outdoors and they are just foraging for food indoors.

Contact your local Orkin branch office to have a highly trained Orkin Inspector come to your home and help you to properly identify the ants and locate the nest. That would be the first order of business. Your Orkin Inspector will assess the situation and develop a customized treatment plan that best suits your situation.

close up picture of carpenter ant
Carpenter Ant Close-up

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Are you traveling for Labor Day? Do you know how to detect bed bugs? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-you-traveling-for-labor-day/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/are-you-traveling-for-labor-day/#comments Thu, 02 Sep 2010 15:15:03 +0000 http://c87c6c9f-12c4-4460-b6b4-f38779d034c3 Labor Day continues to be one of the major travel holidays in the United States as families take advantage of the last holiday of summer. With bed bugs being reported in hotels, cruise ships and even movie theaters, Orkin offers … Continue reading

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Labor Day continues to be one of the major travel holidays in the United States as families take advantage of the last holiday of summer. With bed bugs being reported in hotels, cruise ships and even movie theaters, Orkin offers a few tips to let travelers know what bed bugs look like and to help them know how to avoid bed bug bites.

Many people ask if bed bugs can jump, but they can’t. They are actually hitchhikers that hide in our belongings and then travel with us from place to place. Click here for a printable bed bug  guide with easy steps to help you avoid bringing bed bugs back home as a vacation souvenir.

For more facts and tips about bed bug detection, bed bug symptoms and how to get rid of bed bugs, visit our Learning Center.

If you suspect you may have picked up some of these hitchhikers in your travels, call Orkin for a comprehensive bed bug inspection and assessment and implementation of a treatment solution.

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How can I prevent summer bugs from ruining my backyard barbeque? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/summersafety/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/summersafety/#comments Fri, 11 Jun 2010 16:04:08 +0000 http://6867e3f4-78ca-43bd-989c-0ac6166b3f90 Summer is peak pest season, and some pests can do more than ruin your picnic or barbeque. Bees and wasps or fire ants and scorpions can bite or sting, causing pain or more serious allergic reactions for some people. Other … Continue reading

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Summer is peak pest season, and some pests can do more than ruin your picnic or barbeque. Bees and wasps or fire ants and scorpions can bite or sting, causing pain or more serious allergic reactions for some people. Other insects like mosquitoes and ticks can transmit harmful diseases like West Nile virus or Lyme disease, respectively, to you and your family members. While there may be no such thing as a bug-free summer, there are simple steps homeowners can take themselves—in addition to partnering with a professional—to reduce pest populations and summer pest threats. Check out this video with outdoor pest control tips, specifically for wasps and mosquitoes, from Orkin entomologist Shane Hill. There is a wide range of insects that can affect your outdoor plans.  Anything from bees, wasps and yellow jackets to fleas, ants, ticks and mosquitoes. They are all out there looking for an easy meal or a place to hide.

When outside, wear insect repellent and light-colored clothing. Around your house, perimeter services offered by Orkin can also help. For mosquitoes, Orkin offers a Mosquito Control service. The bottom line is there is help. Call your local Orkin Branch office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, inspect inside and outside, assess the situation and develop a customized solution based on science to match your needs.

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Does Spring Cleaning Help Get Rid of Bugs? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spring-cleaning/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/spring-cleaning/#comments Mon, 05 Apr 2010 19:21:33 +0000 http://2b6099c2-65f2-41f5-a60c-b5445669cd69 Next Video >> Does Spring Cleaning Help Get Rid of Bugs? Common spring cleaning chores like dusting, vacuuming and cleaning out closets can help reduce pests in and around your home. Dirt and dust can provide food for cockroaches (insects … Continue reading

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Next Video >>

Does Spring Cleaning Help Get Rid of Bugs?

Common spring cleaning chores like dusting, vacuuming and cleaning out closets can help reduce pests in and around your home. Dirt and dust can provide food for cockroaches (insects that eat just about anything). Plus, extra clutter can make it more difficult to find signs of pest activity.

For additional help with this call your local Orkin Branch Office.

To help get your home ready for spring, check out this video with pest control tips from Pat Wicker, Orkin assistant region service manager.

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When do termites start swarming in the spring? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/when-do-termites-start-swarming-in-the-spring/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/when-do-termites-start-swarming-in-the-spring/#comments Fri, 26 Mar 2010 13:32:38 +0000 http://83ddf4e3-9318-4c39-a9fe-15137b23bff6 Swarming termites in March isn’t really breaking news. In fact, it’s typical to see termite swarms in places like Florida in the spring—even as early as February some years. Because of the wacky weather this year, swarms have followed a … Continue reading

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Swarming termites in March isn’t really breaking news. In fact, it’s typical to see termite swarms in places like Florida in the spring—even as early as February some years. Because of the wacky weather this year, swarms have followed a roller coaster pattern, emerging when it’s warm, only to disappear from sight when the cold fronts come back through.

Few homeowners think about termites when it’s unusually cool, but they should. Subterranean termites are active year-round. Swarmers begin to emerge after the last winter freeze, when the temperatures rise to the low to mid-70s. Besides swarms, one of the other most common warning signs for termites is mud tubes, which are tunnels made out of soil that subterranean termites use to travel to wood sources around homes. Swarms will be occurring early afternoon and usually after a light rain.

If you live in Florida, Georgia or other parts of the Southeast, you should be on the lookout for signs of termites now. Homeowners in the Northeast, Midwest and Northwest also may begin to see swarms in the weeks ahead if spring temperatures rise to the 70s; however, there are steps you can take to help prevent and control infestations—before or after swarming takes place.

For more information on termites’ spring activity, click here.

If you suspect you may have had a swarm or see any signs that make you suspicious, call your local Orkin Branch Office. A highly trained Orkin Termite Inspector will come to your home and conduct a thorough whole-home inspection. The inspector will develop a customized preventive or corrective treatment plan, backed by science, that best fits your needs.

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How do you get rid of yellow jackets under your siding? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-yellow-jackets/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-yellow-jackets/#comments Sun, 21 Mar 2010 02:13:57 +0000 http://89445f9a-6365-490a-aab5-8a2bd42300cd Question: How do you get rid of yellow jackets under your siding? ANSWER: Yellow jackets are common in many different environments, from the home yard to wooded sites. These insects are predators of flies and caterpillars during the spring and … Continue reading

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Question: How do you get rid of yellow jackets under your siding?

ANSWER: Yellow jackets are common in many different environments, from the home yard to wooded sites. These insects are predators of flies and caterpillars during the spring and summer. In the fall they often prefer sweets and can be a pest outdoors around soft drinks. They are not easily controlled, especially after they have established a large nest under the siding of the house. These nests may contain hundreds of workers and they have the ability (and an attitude!) to sting many times. Control should proceed with caution.

First, you will have to locate the opening to the nest; you can do this by carefully observing (not too close) the coming and going of wasps in the area. Try to pinpoint the opening; you will have to be able to find it later, in the dark.

Yellow jackets are very aggressive. They will sting repeatedly and will put out an attack pheromone that alerts all their friends to come over and sting you too. This is a dangerous situation, and I would not recommend doing the control by yourself unless you are properly equipped. Call your local Orkin Branch Office. Have a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist come to your home and assess the situation. Your Pest Specialist will develop a treatment plan, treat the nest and kill these aggressive insects. Call now and set up an appointment for service!

yellow jacket thumbnail
Yellow Jacket

 

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I have small reddish-brown bugs in my kitchen. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-reddish-brown-bugs/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/small-reddish-brown-bugs/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 05:30:55 +0000 http://966c20bd-001c-4781-9b73-2489e48db10f Question: I began to see tiny, small reddish-brown bugs in my kitchen, mainly in opened sacks of flour etc. Now I’m starting to see them in my bathroom.  It appears that they like the bathroom cabinets which are on the … Continue reading

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Question: I began to see tiny, small reddish-brown bugs in my kitchen, mainly in opened sacks of flour etc. Now I’m starting to see them in my bathroom.  It appears that they like the bathroom cabinets which are on the opposite side of the kitchen. I do occasionally see them in my daughter’s room.

What exactly are these bugs? How do I get rid of them? They are starting to gross me out.

ANSWER: Maybe what you have is a stored product or pantry pest. In the flour it could be a confused or red flour beetle. It could also be another type of beetle, but the only way to be sure and properly identify the insect is with an inspection of the materials in our kitchen. They are common household pests.

Control of this stored food pest takes a little time. The first step is to locate the source of the infestation, the infested food, and discard it. This may mean taking everything from the cabinets and drawers. Finding the infested material is the key to getting them eliminated.

Once the cabinets are empty, vacuum them very well. This will remove any hidden insects and all debris. Replace everything, and vacuum again in about a week. Make sure all the cracks and crevices are clean of food scraps and flour. Inspect material at the grocery store to be certain it is not infested. Avoid buying packages that are broken or opened. Store foods in sealed containers.

Call your local Orkin branch office for a comprehensive inspection performed by a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist. Upon assessing the situation, a customized solution, based on science, will be developed to best meet your needs.

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I have tiny black ants in my kitchen cabinet. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-black-ants-in-kitchen/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-black-ants-in-kitchen/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 04:58:03 +0000 http://b5989498-7add-44cb-b716-7dda172b03a6 Question: I have tiny black ants in my kitchen. They are all over the sink, cabinet and floor. I have sprayed, cleaned, put cinnamon, boric acid, baking soda, ant hotels and still no effect. They return two days later in full … Continue reading

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Question: I have tiny black ants in my kitchen. They are all over the sink, cabinet and floor. I have sprayed, cleaned, put cinnamon, boric acid, baking soda, ant hotels and still no effect. They return two days later in full capacity. What can I do?

ANSWER: General ant control begins with the elimination of conducive conditions for ant infestations. Ants are in your home for the same reasons we go there. They are looking for food, water and shelter. The first step in controlling the ants is exercising a good sanitation program. Even an unseen cookie crumb will be enough to attract the ants. Once they find the food sources they will be trailing to it. Removing standing water, cleaning around cabinets, stoves, microwaves, washing dishes every time they are used and dumping the garbage cans on a regular basis are just a few of the steps a homeowner needs to take.

Ant control is difficult and takes time. Patience is essential. Ant control needs to be scientific. Call your local Orkin Branch Office and a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home and conduct a comprehensive inspection. Once a complete assessment is performed, your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop an customized solution backed by science to control the ants and meet your needs.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: We periodically have tiny ants. Specifically what chemicals would be used in and around our home?

Question: I have very tiny ants in the kitchen, about the size of a bread crumb or a poppy seed. I also find a lot of dead ones at one area in my basement, on the top of a tool cabinet. I have a cat and wondered how Orkin would handle this and if I would have to leave my home with the cat if treatment was required. Thank you.

Question: I have ants in my kitchen around the sink area. What type of treatment would you use to get rid of them, and would it require me to have to pack up all my dishes that are in close proximity to my sink?

Question: My house seems to be infested with ants—black, small in thousands! I have placed several ant traps and have used sprays, nothing seems to be working.

Question: How do I get rid of ants in my kitchen? I keep my sink and counters cleaned. Where are they coming from?

Question: What are some very effective at-home remedies to get rid of ants?

Question: I need a solution to wipe out leaf cutter ants completely.

Question: Live in New Jersey, tiny ants light in color getting into house going toward kitchen cabinets. Tried different products, little beads in bag around foundation, little plastic feeders. Nothing is working.

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Will flea control hurt my furniture? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/flea-control-and-furniture/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/flea-control-and-furniture/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 04:12:13 +0000 http://ca5b26e2-6cc3-4173-9040-10d712e5beff Question: I need flea and spider control. How will it affect my furniture? Do I need to be worried?   ANSWER: Your Orkin Pest Specialist will test the materials he may need to use on areas that are not visible before … Continue reading

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Question: I need flea and spider control. How will it affect my furniture? Do I need to be worried?

 

ANSWER: Your Orkin Pest Specialist will test the materials he may need to use on areas that are not visible before proceeding with the treatments. Treatments for fleas will need to be done on your pet by a veterinarian and on your home at the same time. Treatments around the house may also be needed. Call your local Orkin branch and set up an inspection by a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist who will inspect, assess the situation and develop a customized, scientifically proven control strategy that best fits your needs.

For Additional information on Orkin Flea Treatments  go to: Treating for Fleas.

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What are the big red spiders on my porch? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/big-red-spiders-on-porch/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/big-red-spiders-on-porch/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 03:09:21 +0000 http://87ad306d-85a4-4cd5-8f4d-a2e9e2ddf481 Question: What are the big red spiders that are outside and on my porch?   ANSWER: From your question, I am assuming that you are seeing these spiders in webs, maybe in plants around your porch. With this in mind, you … Continue reading

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Question: What are the big red spiders that are outside and on my porch?

 

ANSWER: From your question, I am assuming that you are seeing these spiders in webs, maybe in plants around your porch. With this in mind, you probably have an orb-weaving spider. It could possibly be a red orb weaver (Araniella displicata), which is a harmless spider. This is a large family of spiders, and several hundred species are found in the U.S. Almost all of these spiders spin a large and sometimes complicated web of concentric rings. They often locate the webs on the sides of houses or on trees and shrubs, especially near outdoor lights.

Orb-weaving spiders are often brightly colored and attract attention as they sit in or near their web. They are waiting for prey to become stuck and shake the strands.

Some of the most dramatic of the orb weavers are the spiders in the genus Argiope. These spiders are striped black and orange, or black and white.  They construct large webs that have a zig-zag pattern of silk in the center of the web. They are usually found hanging head down in the center of the web.

While orb-weaving spiders are large and look threatening, they are not aggressive to people. Certainly, you can be bitten if you try to handle one of these spiders, but they will usually try to get away from people. When their web is damaged, they will usually leave and rebuild it somewhere else.

Limiting the use of outdoor lights at night can help reduce the number of flying insects that gather there. These insects are the food for these and other spiders around the outside of the house. Changing porch lights to the yellow “bug light” bulbs may help. It is sometimes necessary to place curtains or shades on windows to reduce the amount of light that shines out to attract flying insects. While none of us really likes many of these spiders around our homes, outside they are being beneficial by preying on other insects that may even cause harm to your plants.

If you wish, call your local Orkin branch, and a trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, conduct an inspection of the inside and outside, and recommend a treatment plan to eliminate conditions and food sources that may be attracting these spiders.

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How do you get rid of fleas in home? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-fleas-in-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/get-rid-of-fleas-in-home/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 03:00:46 +0000 http://0f96e8ea-09a7-4a07-94af-847ba423178f Question: Our house is infested with fleas. What does Orkin do to get rid of them? Is there anything we have to do in preparation for your treatment? ANSWER: The best way to get rid of fleas is an integrated approach … Continue reading

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Question: Our house is infested with fleas. What does Orkin do to get rid of them? Is there anything we have to do in preparation for your treatment?

ANSWER: The best way to get rid of fleas is an integrated approach which first treats any pets in your household and then your house itself. Household flea control begins with treating the animal, then treating the house. Both steps have to be done and they have to be done together. At least the pet should be the first treated.

PET. There are some very effective on-animal flea control products. Some are available from the veterinarian and some are over-the-counter products. The pet or pets must be treated first before you can hope to rid the house (carpeting) of fleas. The pet’s bedding should be washed or replaced when the pet is treated.

HOUSE. Vacuuming the carpet can help to remove the eggs that drop there from the fleas on the pet. Vacuuming will remove a few larvae and the debris that the larvae eat. Vacuuming will cause the adult fleas to come out of their cocoons while the carpet treatment is fresh and effective. Outside some treatments may be necessary, including kennels where the animals may be kept. Make sure you keep your lawn cut short.

Continue to vacuum for several days after the carpet has been treated. It is normal to see fleas for a couple of weeks after the treatment. Make sure you remove and discard the bag from the vacuum cleaner every time you do this. Discard the bag outside the home.

Contact your local Orkin Branch Office. An Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a thorough inspection of your home, inside and out. Once an assessment is made of the extent of the infestation, your Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a treatment plan which is effective and scientifically proven, as well as customized for your situation. While discussing the plan, your Orkin Pest Specialist will provide you with instructions to help your prepare for the treatment.

Close-up Photo of a Flea: flea close up picture

Read more: More information on flea control

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: What pesticides do you use to treat a home for flea infestation? How exactly do you do it—what methods? What are the dangers of the chemicals to small children? I assume you would only come once. How much would that cost?

Question: We have had problems with fleas for some time now. We live in a home that was built in the 1800s. The house has wood floors that, from what I have read, harbor fleas. What would it take to treat our home? Would it require treating the yard as well? What’s the average price to treat this situation, and how often would treatments have to be applied?

Question: How do you eliminate fleas in our home with it being safe for my two infant children?

Question: Hello! Recently I noticed a flea in our living room. I only saw it for a second, but I’m positive it was a flea. Since then my two-year-old has been having bites on him (no one else in the family however has had any bites). I have been running the vacuum frequently. Is there anything I should be doing to prevent them from getting worse?  Can I use the flea powder you put on animals and sprinkle it on the carpet? Do you have any home remedies that might work? Am I suppose to throw away the vacuum bag after every use? The animals each have a new flea collar on. I didn’t think you could get fleas in the winter. We live in New York and have snow now. Any suggestions on how I can try to get rid of them would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

Question: My boyfriend and I are looking at a town home in Davison, Mich. The “model” that was shown to us had fleas in it. Is this a treatable thing, or would you suggest NOT moving there?

ANSWER: It is treatable, but probably something you want done before you get there. The best solution would be to remove and replace all the carpets, second choice is to have all (all!) the carpets shampooed—this will kill the flea larvae that are in the carpet.

Question: I unfortunately moved into an apartment that was infested with fleas. I don’t have any animals, and Orkin has treated the place twice. I’ve been doing a lot of vacuuming, and I haven’t seen a flea for a week. Does that mean that they’re totally gone now? When can I be confident that they are totally gone? Is it possible that there are still eggs in the apartment that could hatch weeks and months later, or can I assume that all the eggs have hatched by now?

ANSWER: There are no eggs that will hatch months later; if you’re still worried you can shampoo the carpets … this kills any larvae that are in the carpet. The issue is not with the eggs or even the larvae, but the pupae. The pupae can remain dormant close to a year. Fleas will often pupate in hidden locations like under carpet edges, tack strips, under baseboards, and so on. Using the vacuum cleaner will trigger emergence from the dormant pupa.

Question: How long will a flea treatment continue to kill fleas

Answer: If carpet was treated, the residual activity would be about 2 weeks.

Question: How much of the yard will the Orkin man treat for fleas? We have 1.16 acres…must all the grass be cut short in those areas?

Answer: Fleas do not usually live outdoors and surely don’t survive long outdoors; treating a wide area outdoors for flea control would be unnecessary…it is indoors that fleas survive.

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How do I get rid of earwigs in my home? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/earwigs-in-my-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/earwigs-in-my-home/#comments Sat, 20 Mar 2010 02:50:07 +0000 http://5f5219c9-0817-44dd-be2e-b6c58cde7e33 Question: Why do I have earwigs in my home? How do I get rid of the earwigs?   ANSWER: Earwigs in and around the house look dangerous, but they are not aggressive. In spite of their common name, they do … Continue reading

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Question: Why do I have earwigs in my home? How do I get rid of the earwigs?

 

ANSWER: Earwigs in and around the house look dangerous, but they are not aggressive. In spite of their common name, they do not enter ears at night. They are predators of other insects, but will also eat plant material.

Start by inspecting the outside of the house. Remove as many earwig hiding places as possible. Stack firewood on a rack and move it away from the house. Rake mulch and dead leaves away from the foundation—try to make a 12″ clear zone. It is sometimes necessary to have trees trimmed to allow more sunshine on the yard.

Make sure exterior doors close tightly and replace any missing weather stripping.

Indoors, eliminate any excess moisture and dampness in the home.

After eliminating these conditions that they find attractive, call your local Orkin branch office. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will come to your home, conduct a thorough inspection and, after assessing the situation, recommend a scientifically proven customized treatment plan that will best fit your needs.

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Are brown recluse spiders common in the home? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/brown-recluse-spiders-in-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/brown-recluse-spiders-in-home/#comments Thu, 18 Mar 2010 03:59:31 +0000 http://25e6a938-340e-482e-bc02-1082cdbdbb2b Question: How common are brown recluse spiders in the home?   ANSWER: They are not that common. There are several species of recluse spiders in the United States. They are found in almost every part of the country. However, other types … Continue reading

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Question: How common are brown recluse spiders in the home?

 

ANSWER: They are not that common. There are several species of recluse spiders in the United States. They are found in almost every part of the country. However, other types of spiders can deliver a similar bite, so the bite does not confirm the spider as a recluse.

Follow these simple guidelines for identifying a spider as a recluse. They are nearly uniformly pale brown to light brown spiders. Their legs are not striped and not especially ”hairy.”

The violin shape on the ”head region” is distinct. Some people call these “fiddleback spiders” because of this marking. The brown recluse, when full grown and legs extended, is about the size of a quarter.

picture of Brown Recluse Spider
Brown Recluse Spider

Recluse spiders, as their name suggests, hide during the day. They hide in places like closets, garages, crawl spaces and storage sheds. Of course, when in doubt it is always safe to be cautious. They are not aggressive animals and usually only bite when counter pressure is applied and the spider is trapped between a surface and the skin.

Spiders are predators. They feed on other insects. To achieve control of spiders will usually require controlling insects or other “bugs.” Call your local Orkin Branch to set up an inspection with a trained Orkin Pest Specialist. You will be provided with recommendations and a treatment plan to control, not just the spiders, but also the other prey they are feeding on.

If someone is bitten, watch them closely for a reaction. Seek medical attention and, if possible, try to take the spider for identification.

Related Information:

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I have a roach problem in my apartment walls. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/roach-problem-in-walls/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/roach-problem-in-walls/#comments Thu, 18 Mar 2010 03:35:31 +0000 http://bf9763cf-bdcc-48a4-a92e-f194c2e104b0 Question: Can you control a roach problem in a single apartment unit, if other apartments still have roaches?     ANSWER: That depends on the level of infestation … These pests can move from apartment to apartment. The small German … Continue reading

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Question: Can you control a roach problem in a single apartment unit, if other apartments still have roaches?

 

 

ANSWER: That depends on the level of infestation … These pests can move from apartment to apartment. The small German roaches can travel inside the walls and move from one unit to another. It is sometimes necessary to treat the voids inside of the walls to block their movements.

Depending on the situation, the Orkin Pest Specialist will determine which product is best to use in situations where it is suspected that cockroaches are inside the wall voids. Call your Local Orkin branch office today to set up an inspection of your home.

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Buying a home with roaches. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/buying-a-home-with-roaches/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/buying-a-home-with-roaches/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 04:20:56 +0000 http://f58d9014-41e5-49f5-8764-21a9b4eec224 Question: My husband I are currently looking for a home. We looked at one last night that we really liked; however, we saw two Raid cans in different rooms, all cabinets were open in the house, and we saw a … Continue reading

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Question: My husband I are currently looking for a home. We looked at one last night that we really liked; however, we saw two Raid cans in different rooms, all cabinets were open in the house, and we saw a few dead bugs which I think to be roaches. The house was “flipped” and is totally redone on the inside and out now. Should we be concerned? If a professional comes out to spray, will the roaches come back?

 

ANSWER: If it has been vacant for a while, the cockroach infestation may be gone, but to be certain it might help to consult with a professional Pest Specialist who can conduct a thorough inspection of the home and determine whether or not there may still be a problem. Your local Orkin Branch Office can set up a comprehensive inspection with a highly trained and well-equipped Pest Specialist. The Specialist will be able to check cracks and crevices and flush out any remaining cockroaches.  After assessing if there is any infestation, the Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a comprehensive plan to either treat an infestation or conduct preventive control of the home.

Among all the treatments that may be available to our highly trained Orkin Specialists will be the use of:

  • Cockroach baits
  • Crack and crevice treatments with liquids and aerosols
  • Use of insect growth regulators
  • Use of flushing agents and vacuum cleaners to quickly reduce the population
  • Use of monitoring devices to assess the population and treatment effectiveness

Remember, cockroaches reproduce rapidly. The longer you wait to call, the worse the problem will get. Call Orkin now.

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I’m thinking about buying a home with powderpost beetle infestation. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/home-with-powderpost-beetle/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/home-with-powderpost-beetle/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 03:58:43 +0000 http://f1aebce5-4297-4f78-881a-addcae5f4562 Question: I am thinking about buying a home that has an active powderpost beetle infestation. What are the costs and concerns of this type of pest?   ANSWER: The term “powderpost beetle” may refer to several different kinds of wood-infesting beetles. The … Continue reading

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Question: I am thinking about buying a home that has an active powderpost beetle infestation. What are the costs and concerns of this type of pest?

 

ANSWER: The term “powderpost beetle” may refer to several different kinds of wood-infesting beetles. The term is used for: 1) beetle species that only infest hardwoods (such as flooring, trim, or even ornamental pieces), or 2) for beetles that infest softwoods (such as wall framing and support joists).

The damage produced by these beetles may be small round holes (about the size of pencil lead). The first sign of an infestation is usually a small amount of powder, called frass. The frass appears in or around a piece of wood that has been attacked by the beetle larvae.

The appearance of the frass is a clue to the type of beetle that has been active inside the wood. If the powder is a little gritty when rubbed between your fingers, then it is a sign of anobiid beetle damage. If the frass is soft and not gritty, then it is a sign of lyctid beetle activity.

powderpost beetle image

LYCTID POWDERPOST BEETLES (Family Lyctidae). The damage from these small (1/8 inch) beetles may be found in various places in the house, such as kitchen cabinets, baseboard trim, hardwood flooring and in ornamental pieces of wood such as picture frames. They infest only hardwoods, and generally infest only new wood, usually less than five years old. They can reinfest the wood. The life cycle takes 1-2 years.

ANOBIID POWDERPOST BEETLES (Family Anobiidae). The damage from these small (1/8 inch) beetles may be found in floor joists in crawl spaces of houses, and sometimes in attic joists and wall studs. They infest primarily softwood, but will also attack hardwoods. Their life cycle is 1-2 years, and they will continually reinfest structural wood, sometimes causing structural damage.

CONTROL of these beetles begins with first determining that there is an active infestation. The holes and the powder that falls from the holes may exist for many years, but is NOT an indication that there are beetles alive in the wood at this time. If the infestation is active, there will be recent holes or the sound of feeding may be heard.

The treatment will depend on the severity of the infestation. The simplest treatment is to remove and replace the infested wood. Other options include application of liquid insecticide to the surface of the infested wood or injection of liquid  into the feeding galleries.

Pieces of furniture can be fumigated in a special vault or chamber. Tenting and fumigation of the entire structure is usually reserved for severe infestations. The insecticides used for control will work by killing the larval stage or the adult stage when it emerges from the wood.

It might be a good idea to call the local Orkin Branch Office. They will arrange to have an Inspector meet you at the house. The Inspector can identify the type of beetle that has been active. The Inspector can also determine if the infestation is still active and discuss a customized treatment plan backed by science that best fits your needs.

Related Questions:
The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: Is there information on your site about powderpost beetles or other wood drilling beetles?

Question: What are powderbore beetles? Are they health hazards? Do they infest food, if so, how do you know? What is the course and cost of treatment?

Question: I have a bookshelf constructed of antique wood. I am finding small pinholes with sawdust. Could you tell me what it could be?

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How do I get rid of fruit flies in my kitchen? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/fruit-flies-in-kitchen/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/fruit-flies-in-kitchen/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 03:44:53 +0000 http://6a864ede-27cd-411e-a97c-81b43a6fbc5d Question: Please help me find the right way to get rid of multiple “fruit flies” that are flying around my bedroom, bathrooms and kitchen. I am really grossed out by this! Just the right spray and instructions if you could? … Continue reading

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Question: Please help me find the right way to get rid of multiple “fruit flies” that are flying around my bedroom, bathrooms and kitchen. I am really grossed out by this! Just the right spray and instructions if you could?

 

ANSWER: What you have is probably the common species of fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster). They are the small brown flies that may be hovering in the kitchen or in the food pantry or closet. Check those potatoes for any rotten ones at the bottom. These flies are active nearly year round, but more so in the summer and fall.

The common fruit flies are light brown in color and with red or black eyes. They are attracted to and breed in overripe fruit and vegetables. In houses they are usually found in the kitchen, and sometimes around the sink or garbage container. They are attracted to the odors that come from the disposal or material in the sink or garbage.

Image of Fruit Fly
Fruit Fly Illustration

Control of these flies begins with removing the breeding material. Check around your kitchen for any piece of fruit that may have fallen and is rotting. The fermenting fruit is what they are looking for to lay their eggs. This will stop the breeding, but would not get the adults, since the adults can live for a week or so.

Call your local Orkin Branch Office for help. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a thorough inspection of your home.  Once complete, the Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized, scientifically proven treatment for this and any other pest found in your home.

Read more about Fruit Fly Control

More Fruit Fly Information:

Fruit Life Cycle

Fruit Fly Eggs

Fruit Fly Larvae

Fruit Fly Pupae

Fruit Fly Metamorphosis

Fruit Fly Reproduction Rates Data

Fruit Fly Food

Fruit Flies in Bananas

Fruit Fly Feeding Habits

Fruit Fly Genetics

Biology of Fruit Flies

Fruit Fly Length of Memory

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: I been noticing fruit flies in my kitchen. I am not sure what brought them in, but how do I get rid of them?

 

Question: How do you kill fruit flies?

Question: I have gnat-sized flying insects that appear at night when I turn on a lamp. They attach to the inside of the lamp shade. They appear to be slightly red in color. Any idea what they could be?

Question: I have a fruit fly problem but have very little money. Every time I think they’re gone they appear again. I used to work at a nursing home where a pest company had some stuff that we dumped down the drain. I think that might be what I need. Please help.

Question: We’ve recently been infested with fruit flies. We’ve owned this house for four years and had never had a problem until a month and a half ago. We’ve taken all garbage outside, closed all closeable drains and put out homemade traps (cider vinegar mixed with soap in bowls covered with cellophane with a small hole). The traps are effective, but the flies don’t go away. ANSWER: The adults will live for about three weeks, so if you have removed the source, the adults may still hang around. Check to make certain that there is not a stray potato, an apple or something that has gotten loose and rolled where you can’t see it. If this problem has gone on for as long as you say, there must be a breeding site somewhere in the house.

Question: I was wondering how to get rid of fruit flies. I was told that you can pour a 1/4 cup of bleach down the drain. I have tried that and still no luck. Do you have any other suggestions?

Question: Can dogs be infested with fruit flies? We have a fruit fly problem in our house but I also noticed my dogs have the black “flea dirt” on them which is adult flea fecal matter. I found two things on one of my dogs this morning which I thought was a flea but it had wings. This was in the bathroom when I was in the shower and I also noticed “fruit flies” flying around in the bathroom. Then I noticed the two flea like creatures on my dog. Just curious if they are fruit flies on my dogs or fleas? ANSWER: They would be fleas and not fruit flies.

Question: I have Orkin service … I am being bombarded with these little annoying flies in my kitchen. I have no idea where they are coming from. Is this something you treat or can you give me an idea on what to do?

Question: How do we get rid of fruit flies in a restaurant? No matter how much we clean we cannot get rid of them. We have set up traps and everything. Please help. ANSWER: You’ll have to do a thorough inspection and clean-up; if this is a persistent problem there is a breeding site somewhere (decaying fruit or vegetable). They may be coming from outside, but most likely inside.

Question: How do I get rid of fruit flies? I have no fermented fruit. I’ve cleaned the kitchen drain. I dispose of fruit peelings, etc. immediately. I’ve tried sprays but nothing seems to work. What can I do? I live in an apartment.

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Why are there maggots in my kitchen? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/maggots-in-kitchen/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/maggots-in-kitchen/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 03:36:56 +0000 http://f726c44a-4154-4d64-9ae1-9b00acc6e465 Question: We have found maggots in the corners of the kitchen floor. The home is only about 7 yrs old w/sound brick structure. No signs of anything to “feed off of” on the floor, under the windows or in the … Continue reading

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Question: We have found maggots in the corners of the kitchen floor. The home is only about 7 yrs old w/sound brick structure. No signs of anything to “feed off of” on the floor, under the windows or in the crawl space. Where could they come from and why are they here?

 

ANSWER: You may have maggots, like you think, and not see what they are feeding on. Maggots will leave their food source in order to pupate in a dryer environment. It could also be the larva from Indian meal moths that are looking for a place to pupate. There is really no way to determine the moth or fly the maggots or larvae belong to without a proper inspection. At this stage they could be phorid flies, Indian meal moths, or even drain flies.

Call your Orkin Pest Control branch office and set up an inspection of your home. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a thorough inspection and, after assessing the issue, develop a customized treatment plan that best fits you.

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: I have recently found a lot of caterpillars around my house within the last couple of days. What is the best way to get rid of them? Would it be best to bomb my house with some kind of pesticide or what? Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Question: We live in a first-floor condo and periodically we have outbreaks of what appear to be larvae on the ceilings. They are tiny white worms with a dark red head, about half an inch long. They seem to come from nowhere, about a dozen or so at a time, and will be scattered across the entire ceiling. Can you tell us what they are and if we need an exterminator?

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House is infested by rolly-pollies – what can I do to stop them? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/rolly-pollies/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/rolly-pollies/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 03:34:13 +0000 http://932e778d-10bc-4792-8844-7ff4258366ea Question: My side of my house is being infested by “rolly-pollies”. Is there anything you can do to stop them from coming into my house?   ANSWER  Sowbugs or pillbugs (rolly pollys) are not actually insects. They are related to crayfish. … Continue reading

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Question: My side of my house is being infested by “rolly-pollies”. Is there anything you can do to stop them from coming into my house?

 

ANSWER  Sowbugs or pillbugs (rolly pollys) are not actually insects. They are related to crayfish. There is a slight difference between sowbugs and pillbugs: sowbugs cannot roll up into a ball when disturbed, and pillbugs can.

They both live and breed in moist, decaying organic material and are usually found in areas around the perimeter of houses. A favorite location is under the bottom logs of the woodpile, under potted plants, or in wet mulch.
These animals usually remain outside, but may come inside when their habitat become too wet or even too dry. They enter under doors and around ground-level windows. They don’t reproduce in houses or basements because it is too dry and there is no food there for them. They are usually found dead just inside the door they have entered. This is often the case when the habitat is very dry, and they can not find a protected and humid harborage.

My guess is that your house has something favorable for them…thick mulch, leaves, moisture…if you reduce these, there should be fewer rolly pollys. Stack firewood up on a rack and move it away from the house. Rake mulch and dead leaves away from the foundation. Check exterior doors to be sure they close tightly. Replace any missing weather-stripping. Mke sure down spouts drain away from the foundation.

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My apartment is infested with spiders. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/apartment-is-infested-with-spiders/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/apartment-is-infested-with-spiders/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 02:55:13 +0000 http://57306b65-c05f-401b-a03a-11ab946105b8 Question: My apartment seems infested with different kinds of spiders. Can you treat all of them, and is it safe for my children after treatment? ANSWER: Spiders, like most arachnids, are predatory. The majority spin webs to capture prey, but some are … Continue reading

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Question: My apartment seems infested with different kinds of spiders. Can you treat all of them, and is it safe for my children after treatment?

ANSWER: Spiders, like most arachnids, are predatory. The majority spin webs to capture prey, but some are hunters. Their diet consists primarily of insects. Controlling a population of spiders is best done through reduction of food supply. Either by reducing the use of exterior lighting or changing bulbs to yellow “bug lights,” homeowners can decrease the number of insects in their surrounding areas.

A help in eradicating an outdoor spider problems is removing habitats friendly to insects—piles of wood and mulch, leaves and tall grass in unkept areas. Have the maintenance staff at your apartment complex make sure your doors are closing tightly and make sure the weather stripping is working properly. Also, an insecticide barrier around the building can help reduce the number of insects and, therefore, spiders you encounter.

Indoor spiders can be controlled by routine vacuuming. You must get the webs, egg sacs and spiders (when you see them). Small sticky traps designed for mice can work well, too.

The local Orkin branch office can arrange to have Orkin Pest Specialist  make an inspection. This will be necessary to determine the most effective treatment. Please contact them directly for more information or to schedule service.

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: What can I do to keep spiders out of my house and  kill them and the insects they’re eating?

Question: Why do I have so many spiders around my house and backyard? My walls and windows are always covered with spider webs.

Question: Does treatment for spiders kill the egg sacs? I do not know if that is what they really are or if they are old, but there appears to be egg sac-looking brown balls behind the fridge in my new apartment. An Orkin Man sprayed while I was away, and I didn’t think to ask about it in time.

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How much is the cost of an exterminator? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-of-an-exterminator/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/cost-of-an-exterminator/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 02:38:07 +0000 http://4886c633-c11e-4e42-91a3-f4e111117940 Question: How much is the typical cost of an exterminator?     ANSWER: The cost of pest control services or an exterminator  is varied. My recommendation is to contact your local Orkin Branch Office and request a comprehensive inspection of your … Continue reading

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Question: How much is the typical cost of an exterminator?

 

 

ANSWER: The cost of pest control services or an exterminator  is varied. My recommendation is to contact your local Orkin Branch Office and request a comprehensive inspection of your home by a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist. The specialist will assess the situation and develop a customized treatment plan, backed by science, to fit your pest control needs.

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What chemical does Orkin use for bed bug infestations? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/chemical-for-bed-bug-infestations/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/chemical-for-bed-bug-infestations/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 02:33:18 +0000 http://9c5ca4bf-739e-4d45-8e0c-e814c443abe4 Question: What chemical does Orkin use in treating a bed bug infestation? How often do you treat the apartment? What follow-up measures do residents need to take? How long do they need to vacuum, for example?   ANSWER: Bed bug treatments … Continue reading

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Question: What chemical does Orkin use in treating a bed bug infestation? How often do you treat the apartment? What follow-up measures do residents need to take? How long do they need to vacuum, for example?

 

ANSWER: Bed bug treatments are very involved and often involve more than one visit and a variety of treatment products. Call the local Orkin Branch Office and a certified highly trained Orkin bed bug specialist will conduct a thorough inspection and assessment of your situation. After this, the Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized solution for your problem. Besides discussing the treatment process, the Certified Orkin bed bug specialist will discuss any product or materials that will be used in the treatment.

The certified bed bug specialist has a variety of options available to treat for bed bugs. Treatments can include conventional treatments with pesticides proven to be effective against bed bugs or heat treatments. The most important aspect of all the service is a thorough inspection of your home to identify all the harborages. Follow-up visits to ensure the treatment’s effectiveness are also a crucial step in the treatment process. All that is needed is to miss one bug, and the problem will not go away.

Read more about controlling bed bugs.

You can find the local branch here www.orkin.com/locations/

 

 

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I have flying ants on my home siding and foundation. http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/flying-ants-on-home/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/flying-ants-on-home/#comments Wed, 17 Mar 2010 02:23:08 +0000 http://9428c8f6-ed8f-49f4-b466-a0854dfd493e Question: Hello, I’ve recently found some flying insects swarming my foundation and siding. I have also seen them in flowerbeds away from the house. They don’t look like anything on your charts of pests. They look almost like a flying … Continue reading

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Question: Hello, I’ve recently found some flying insects swarming my foundation and siding. I have also seen them in flowerbeds away from the house. They don’t look like anything on your charts of pests. They look almost like a flying ant. We live in Maine. (Are there termites in Maine?) Any advice?

 

ANSWER: Winged ants or flying ants may be seen almost any time of the year, but most often in the late spring and the summer.

Ant colonies commonly produce these winged reproductives (called swarmers, which are males and females). Their job is to fly out from the colony to start new colonies. The presence of swarmers is an indication that there is a mature ant colony close by or in the house. This can be problematic as the ants are looking for a place to establish a new colony. What could be more problematic is the presence of termite swarmers. While the incidence of termites in Maine may not be large, they do exist there.

Call your local Orkin Branch Office for assistance. A highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist will conduct a thorough inspection of your home looking for the source of the nest and any other nests or insect issues, including termites, around your property. Upon assessing the situation, the Orkin Pest Specialist will develop a customized, scientifically proven treatment plan that best fits your specific needs.

 

Related Questions: The Orkin Man used the information above to also answer the following questions submitted by Orkin.com users:

Question: What do I do for flying ants? They are in my skylights.

Question: There seem to be a lot of flying ants around the outside of my home. Is there anything I can do to correct this problem?

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We have tiny reddish-brown bugs in our bathroom. What are we dealing with? http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-reddish-brown-bugs/ http://www.orkin.com/ask-the-orkin-man/tiny-reddish-brown-bugs/#comments Tue, 16 Mar 2010 19:04:14 +0000 http://649524b9-8058-41ec-9196-40c604f911d7 Question: We’ve been having a problem with tiny reddish-brown bugs in the master bath of our brand-new home. They are heaviest on the tile closet floor, in the shower and around the toilet. They are very tiny, almost like fleas, but are … Continue reading

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Question: We’ve been having a problem with tiny reddish-brown bugs in the master bath of our brand-new home. They are heaviest on the tile closet floor, in the shower and around the toilet. They are very tiny, almost like fleas, but are reddish in color and do not fly. (We live in Missouri, and they started up in the middle of the summer.) Any ideas what we could be dealing with?

 

ANSWER: It’s hard to be sure from your description. One possibility is that they could be carpet beetle larvae or a stored (pantry) product pest. It could be another insect or pest. Having a specimen or conducting an inspection would give us a definite identification. It could possibly be carpet beetle larvae. They are brown and banded with brown and pale stripes. There are long ”hairs” at the tail end. They move slowly. People often find the molted skins of these larvae in cabinets and in closets. They are an indication of an ongoing infestation of carpet beetles. The adults are often seen indoors in the spring. Adults will usually be around flowering plants inside as well as outside since they feed on the pollen of the flowers.

larvae of carpet beetle

Carpet beetles are considered to be fabric pests. The larvae can feed on lots of different kinds of material. Thus, they can infest almost any place in your house. They often attack woolens, skins, leather, feathers. They can even live on dead insects.

Here are some things you can do just to try to eliminate some of the sources or conditions that are attracting them:

      • Vacuum thoroughly.
      • Dry-clean and store woolens in sealed containers or boxes.
      • Check leather items, dried flower arrangements and even silks—flowers and garments.
      • Throw away any infested packages.

 

For additional help and proper identification, your best bet is to call the local Orkin Branch Office. They will send a highly trained Orkin Pest Specialist who will conduct a comprehensive inspection of your home. The Orkin Pest Specialist will assess the situation and develop a customized solution, backed by science, that best meets your needs.

 

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