Skip to Content
Call Now for Same-Day Service 314-970-5378

The Top Summertime Pests to Watch Out For

girls checking for insect bites

Mosquitoes: The Persistent Bloodsuckers

Mosquitoes are notorious for their relentless pursuit of human blood, but understanding their breeding habits and lifecycle can help in combating these pesky insects. Mosquitoes typically breed in stagnant water, making any standing water around your home a potential breeding ground. This includes puddles, bird baths, clogged gutters, and even plant saucers. Female mosquitoes lay their eggs on the surface of stagnant water, and within 48 hours, the eggs hatch into larvae. The larvae then go through several stages before becoming pupae and eventually emerging as adult mosquitoes. This entire lifecycle can take as little as 8-10 days, meaning that a small amount of standing water can quickly turn into a mosquito infestation.

To effectively reduce mosquito populations, it's crucial to eliminate their breeding habitats. Regularly check your property for standing water and empty containers that collect rainwater. Additionally, consider using larvicides in water that cannot be drained. These measures can significantly reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home, making your outdoor spaces more enjoyable during the summer months.

Health Risks and Diseases

Mosquitoes are not just annoying; they are also carriers of several serious diseases. In the United States, West Nile Virus is the most commonly reported mosquito-borne illness. Symptoms can range from mild flu-like symptoms to severe neurological issues, and in some cases, it can be fatal. Other diseases that mosquitoes can transmit include Zika Virus, which can cause birth defects if contracted by pregnant women, and Malaria, which, although rare in the U.S., is still a significant concern in many parts of the world.

Taking steps to protect yourself from mosquito bites is essential for your health. Use insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus when spending time outdoors. Wearing long sleeves and pants can also provide a physical barrier against mosquito bites. By being proactive, you can significantly reduce your risk of contracting mosquito-borne diseases.

Ticks: The Silent Threats

Ticks are another summertime pest that poses significant health risks. The most common types of ticks you might encounter include the Deer Tick and the Lone Star Tick. Deer Ticks, also known as Black-legged Ticks, are notorious for transmitting Lyme Disease. They are typically found in wooded and grassy areas. Lone Star Ticks, identifiable by the distinctive white dot on the back of adult females, are prevalent in the southeastern and eastern United States. These ticks can transmit several diseases, including Ehrlichiosis and Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI).

Understanding the habitats and behaviors of these ticks can help you avoid them. When venturing into wooded or grassy areas, wear long sleeves and tuck your pants into your socks to minimize skin exposure. Additionally, using tick repellents on both your skin and clothing can provide an extra layer of protection.

Tick-Borne Illnesses

Tick-borne illnesses can have serious, long-lasting effects on your health. Lyme Disease is perhaps the most well-known, causing symptoms such as fever, headache, fatigue, and a characteristic bullseye rash. If left untreated, Lyme Disease can lead to more severe complications, including joint pain and neurological issues. Other tick-borne illnesses, like Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, can cause symptoms ranging from mild to severe and can be fatal if not treated promptly.

Early detection and removal of ticks are crucial in preventing these illnesses. After spending time outdoors, thoroughly check your body for ticks, paying close attention to hidden areas like the scalp, armpits, and groin. If you find a tick, use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp it as close to the skin's surface as possible and pull upward with steady, even pressure. Clean the bite area with rubbing alcohol or soap and water to reduce the risk of infection.

Ants: The Unwanted Picnic Guests

Ants are a common sight during the summer, often making their way into homes and outdoor spaces in search of food. Some of the most prevalent species include Carpenter Ants and Fire Ants. Carpenter Ants are known for their ability to cause structural damage by hollowing out wood to build their nests. Fire Ants, on the other hand, are notorious for their painful stings and aggressive behavior. These ants build large mounds in open areas and can quickly swarm and sting when disturbed.

Identifying the species of ants invading your space is the first step in effective control. Carpenter Ants are usually larger and can be found in moist, decaying wood, while Fire Ants are smaller and build visible mounds. Knowing what you're dealing with can help you choose the most effective control methods.

Nesting and Infestation Signs

Ants are social insects that live in large colonies, and their nests can be challenging to locate. Carpenter Ants typically nest in damp, decayed wood, so look for signs of wood shavings or sawdust near wooden structures. Fire Ants build conspicuous mounds in open, sunny areas, which can be easily spotted. Other signs of an ant infestation include trails of ants leading to food sources, particularly in kitchens and pantries.

To prevent and control ant infestations, it's essential to maintain a clean environment. Store food in airtight containers, clean up spills immediately, and regularly take out the trash. Sealing cracks and crevices around your home can also prevent ants from entering. For more severe infestations, consider using bait traps or contacting a professional pest control service.

Wasps and Bees: The Stinging Menace

While both wasps and bees can deliver painful stings, they are quite different in terms of behavior, appearance, and nesting habits. Bees are generally more docile and are crucial pollinators. They have a fuzzy appearance and are usually seen around flowers. Wasps, on the other hand, are more aggressive and have a sleek, smooth body. They are predators and scavengers, often seen around food and garbage.

Understanding these differences can help you manage their presence around your home. Bees are beneficial to the environment and should be protected whenever possible. If you have a bee problem, consider contacting a beekeeper for safe removal. Wasps, however, can pose a more immediate threat, especially if they build nests close to human activity areas.

Health Risks and Allergic Reactions

Stings from wasps and bees can cause various health issues, ranging from mild pain and swelling to severe allergic reactions. For most people, a sting results in temporary pain, redness, and swelling. However, for those who are allergic, stings can trigger anaphylaxis, a life-threatening reaction that requires immediate medical attention. Symptoms of anaphylaxis include difficulty breathing, swelling of the face and throat, rapid heartbeat, and a drop in blood pressure.

If you or someone else is stung and shows signs of an allergic reaction, seek emergency medical help immediately. For non-allergic reactions, applying ice to the sting site and taking over-the-counter pain relievers can help alleviate symptoms. To reduce the risk of stings, avoid wearing bright colors and strong fragrances, which can attract these insects.

Flies: The Annoying Invaders

Flies are another common summertime pest that can be both annoying and harmful. The most prevalent types include House Flies and Fruit Flies. House Flies are larger and are often found around garbage, decaying matter, and food. They can quickly become a nuisance indoors, especially in kitchens. Fruit Flies are smaller and are attracted to ripened or fermenting fruits and vegetables. They can multiply rapidly, making them difficult to control once they establish a presence.

Understanding the types of flies you're dealing with can help you implement effective control measures. House Flies are best managed by maintaining cleanliness and using fly traps, while Fruit Flies can be controlled by properly storing fruits and vegetables and using vinegar traps.

Health Concerns and Disease Transmission

Flies are not just a nuisance; they can also pose significant health risks. House Flies are known to spread various diseases, including Salmonella, E. coli, and Cholera, by contaminating food and surfaces with pathogens they pick up from decaying matter. Fruit Flies, while less harmful, can still contribute to the spread of bacteria and other microorganisms.

To minimize health risks, it's essential to maintain proper sanitation. Keep your kitchen clean, store food in sealed containers, and dispose of garbage regularly. Using screens on windows and doors can also help keep flies out of your home. For persistent fly problems, consider using insecticides or contacting a professional pest control service.

Paske Pest Control & Wildlife Solutions Is Here for You This Summer & Beyond

Summertime pests can turn your outdoor enjoyment into a nightmare, but you don't have to face them alone. At Paske Pest Control & Wildlife Solutions, we specialize in comprehensive pest control services to keep your home and yard pest-free. Our experienced team is equipped with the latest tools and techniques to tackle any pest problem effectively. Don't let pests ruin your summer— contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards a pest-free home. Your comfort and safety are our top priorities.

Call Paske Pest Control & Wildlife Solutions now at (314) 970-5378 or send us a message online