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Avoid The Sting of Carpenter Bees With These Tips!

Spring is soon approaching, which means there’s a higher chance of a carpenter bee infestation in or around your home. We’ll help you avoid the sting of carpenter bees with these tips…

what are carpenter bees

WOOD is the main thing that attracts these bees. Their favorite kind of wood to attack is Redwood, Cedar, Cypress, and Pine.

Their FAVORITE nesting sites include eaves, rafters, siding, decks, and outdoor furniture. There are over 500 species of the carpenter bee. 5 of these species are in the US.

MOST IMPORTANTLY,   as much as wood attracts the bees, they DO NOT eat it! They just build tunnels for shelter to raise their young.

THEY ARE MOST SPRUNG IN THE SPRING!

  • The bees hibernate during the winter… the springtime is when they are out and about.
  • Male carpenter bees are harmless, but female carpenter bees can sting but only do so when provoked.
  • The BEST time to control carpenter bees is before tunnels are fully constructed.

Other Carpenter Bee Facts:

  • Female carpenter bees bore into wood, excavating a tunnel to lay their eggs.
  • The entrance hole is perfectly round and about the diameter of a small finger.
  • Carpenter bees do not eat wood, they create those tunnels or “entrance holes” for shelter.
  • There are over 500 species of the carpenter bee (5 of these species are in the US).
  • They are known for evacuating holes in wood and prefer unpainted, weathered wood.
  • They enjoy the nectar of flowers.
  • The holes may only appear an inch or two deep, the size can vary to as long as four feet. The more holes they create, the more susceptible you are to damage.

HOW TO MINIMIZE THE STING OF FUTURE CARPENTER BEE PROBLEMS 

  • Make your home inhospitable to them! They love unpainted, old wood.
  • Wood shingles, shakes, siding, eaves and shutters are all objects of attack.
  • Make sure to paint over the bare wood in your home or cover it up with finishes.
  • The bees will create these tunnels in the wood at any given opportunity.

Learn more about our pest control services here.

Sources: http://www.allisonpest.com/blog/2014/07/14/five-fun-facts-about-carpenter-bees/; https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef611 ; https://www.pestwiki.com/carpenter-bee-facts/; https://www.natureswaypestcontrol.com/learning-center/faq/carpenter-bee-facts/

 

DIY Pest Control Tips For The Holidays

Get your home ready for Christmas by making sure it’s PEST FREE. The holiday season can be a stressful time with baking, shopping, and decorating to prepare for your guests.

Keep reading for DIY Pest Control Tips For The Holidays.

Baking Christmas cookies?

According to a recent article from PestWorld, they encourage homeowners to make sure your festivities aren’t unknowingly attracting pests!

“While preparing for the holidays, it’s important to make sure your festivities aren’t accidentally attracting pests. Taking simple precautions while baking and decorating is a must to protect your home from pests.”

–Cindy Mannes, senior vice president of public affairs for NPMA

Baking and cooking during the holidays can attract Indian meal moths and merchant grain beetles, as well as other typical household pests, including Palmetto bugs, (aka American Cockroach), spiders, and ants.

DIY Tips To Prevent Pantry Pests

  • Store food in airtight containers.
  • Inspect boxes and bags for any damage before buying items at the grocery store.
  • Keep kitchen surfaces clean, mop floors regularly, and be sure to dispose your garbage in a sealed receptible.
  • Remove water dishes for pets at night.
  • Do not leave dirty dishes on the counters or in the sink.
  • Run the garbage disposal daily! This will eliminate food in the drain to keep pests out.
  • Clean surfaces in your kitchen to reduce grease on oven hoods and walls near stoves.
  • Wipe out the insides of cabinets regularly.

Decorating With Pests In Mind

This is for those who decorate their homes with fresh greenery like wreaths, trees, or garlands. These beautiful and classy decorations are great for the Christmas season, but can bring in lots of pests!

  • Before decorating, be sure to thoroughly inspect all live greenery for any pests or eggs.
  • Shake out all of the live greenery before bringing decorations indoors.
  • Place the greenery far away from the home when disposing of it to avoid attracting pests.
  • Do not place lights directly above the entry doors to your house. The further lights are from the door, the less likely pests are to fly in at night.

Before lighting up your fireplace…

  • According to Clemson’s home and garden information center, firewood brought into homes is a “classic route” for some beetle and ant species to enter the structure.
  • Other insects may also be brought into the home on potted plants that were moved indoors to avoid the cooler temperatures.
  • According to our sources, taking firewood or infested plant material back outdoors or removing pests like aphids around a Christmas tree typically does the trick to removing pests and does not require insecticide treatment.

Still Having Pest Problems?

Let our trained pest professionals come eradicate your pest problem to keep your home bug free during the holiday season, and throughout the year!

We offer quarterly, guaranteed pest control or a one-time interior, exterior treatment. Click here to learn more about our services and pricing.

source(s): https://hgic.clemson.edu/uninvited-holiday-guests/ ; https://www.pestworld.org/news-hub/press-releases/dont-let-pests-make-your-home-theirs-for-the-holidays/

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Oooh…That Smell…STINK BUGS!

Mar-mor-a-ted-what???

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) can become a serious nuisance pest when large numbers are able to invade your home in the fall.

The word marmorated  means having a marbled or streaked appearance; which is fitting since BMSB adults are about 1/2 inch long and have

shades of brown on both the upper and lower body surfaces.

BMSBs can be identified by looking for white stripes on the antennae, alternating bands of brown and white on the other edges (lower left and right) of the abdomen; and faint white bands are also on the legs.

Where did they come from?

The BMSB (Halyomorpha halys), is a plant pest, that was accidentally introduced into the United States from Japan, Korea, and China. It first was seen in 2001 in Allentown, PA, but since, it has spread throughout the Mid-Atlantic States and is very slowly moving South.

 

Eat your Fruits & Veggies – Before they do!

The BMSB feeds on crops by sucking the juices out of the inside tissues with its straw-like mouth (stylets). This feeding not only causes direct damage to the crop, but pathogenic bacteria and yeast can be transmitted causing rot.

What to do and NOT to do

Yes

  • Perform a “light leak test” and seal up any cracks and crevices
  • Rake away all debris and edible vegetation from your home’s foundation to keep from attracting pests.
  • If your home has a fireplace, cap or screen the top of the chimney to keep out pests.
  • To get rid of dead (and alive) BMSB, hand-pick them up and toss them back outside. They may release the “stink” when they are threatened – so be gentle.

No

  • Don’t squish them – they release a very foul odor – kind of like the powerful smelling spice – coriander.
  • Do not leave a bunch of dead MBSB around as they will still stink and can attract other insect pests and they can stain surfaces.

 

 

 

Spiders, Spiders Everywhere!

Spider Facts:

Brown Recluse

  • There are currently over 3000 species of spiders in North America but thankfully in our service area we only have to be concerned about the Brown Recluse and the Black Widow.
  • Spiders have horrible eyesight. A spider is even unable to see a human until they are about a foot away from it!
  • Unlike other insects, spiders do not clean themselves, so spiders can crawl through the pesticide all day long and not die. This is due to the fact that pesticides work by having the pest crawl through the dried pesticide, get it on their feet, clean themselves, ingest the pesticide and die.

 

How to Prevent and Get Rid of Spiders in your Home

If your home currently has spiders or you would like to prevent spiders from entering, these few tips will help:

  • Vacuum up all webs along with the actual spider.
  • Perform a light leak test and seal all cracks and crevices around doors and windows.
  • Replace exterior white lights to yellow lights. This attracts fewer flying insects which will lead to fewer spiders.
  • Trim bushes around the house.

 

How to Perform a Light Leak Test

To perform a light leak test you must do the following:

  1. Wait until dark and then turn on all interior lights and close all blinds, curtains, shutters, windows and doors.

2. Go outside and see if there is any light “leaking” through.

 

If you have a spider problem, our Quarterly Pest Control Service guarantees spider control on the inside and within the treatment zone on the exterior, and we also have Spider Control service for yards, landscaping and other areas as well.

Don’t Let the Bed Bugs Bite

From left to right: Egg to Adult Full of Blood

 

Bed bugs (pictured left) likely get their name from their habit of feeding on humans while they sleep in their beds. They are found in virtually every place people tend to gather, including homes, hotels, schools, offices, retails stores, and even public transportation. The good news is bed bugs do not transmit diseases, but their bites can become red, itchy welts.

 

 

 

Signs of Bed bugs:

Bed bugs are about the shape and color of a very small to medium sized apple seed. This means that they are small but it is possible to see them without the use of a magnifier. Beside visual confirmation of a bed bug you can look for the following signs:

  • Black-rusty-reddish fecal spots sheets, mattresses and/or box springs
  • Pale yellow  skins that have been shed by growing bed bugs

 

 

Bed Bug Prevention:

There are a few ways you can help prevent your home from getting bed bugs.

  1. While traveling:
    • Upon arrival at destination:
      1. Place your suitcase in the bathtub (bed bugs have a hard time climbing up smooth surfaces).
      2. Inspect the mattress and box spring by gently peeling back the covers into the middle of the bed. Look for signs of bed bugs. Definitely check the seams and don’t forget those plastic corner guards – bed bugs LOVE those hiding spots!

 

  • Upon returning home:
    1. Place your suitcase in the bathtub and unpack it, shaking each item into the bathtub (bed bugs are hitchhikers and can be shaken off clothing easily, and bathtubs are usually light colored and bed bugs are darker colored, so you should be able to see them easily).
    2. If you have any suspect items, place them in the dryer on high-heat setting for 20-ish minutes (anything above 125 degrees Fahrenheit will kill all stages of bed bugs).

  1. While at home:
    • Never bring second-hand furniture, especially mattresses and box springs, into a home without thoroughly examining for signs of bed bugs.
    • Bed bugs like humans best, but do feed upon pets, so regularly check where pets rest and sleep.

Building Barriers: Clark’s Quarterly Pest Control Service

If you find yourself with some unwanted house guests this summer, we offer one-time or quarterly pest control treatments that can leave you with peace of mind that your home is protected against pests. If you already have pest control services and are interested in what makes them effective, look below for a brief description of our pest control services:

 

The interior and exterior of the home are treated to build up a barrier against pests during the initial service.  Once the barrier is established, the exterior treatment will cover 98% of covered pests from entering the home and is maintained quarterly. Your pest control is guaranteed between services and we will come back out if you experience any issues following the treatment.

 

For the interior treatment, the cracks and crevices along the baseboards are treated throughout the entire home. We place an insecticidal dust around appliances, in plumbing voids and around large pieces of furniture. If you have a garage, the corners and along the ceiling are spider brushed. A liquid treatment is applied to the cracks and crevices along the baseboards. Two monitors will be placed on either side of the garage door.

 

On the exterior, treatment includes spider brushing under the eaves and around the windows and doors. A liquid treatment is applied under the eaves and around the windows and doors as well. The perimeter of the home is treated 2 feet up and 3-5 feet out. An insecticidal bait will be placed in a around the exterior of the liquid treatment.

 

Did you know? If you already have termite protection with Clark’s, you can receive pest control at a discounted rate! Call us to start pest control service today at 866-781-4991 or email us at ClarksCSR@ClarksPest.com.

6 Ways to Say Goodbye to Mosquitoes

Not many things are more enjoyable than a southern summer evening outdoors. If your outdoor parties leave you with some unwanted mosquito bite favors, take a look at these 6 ways you can help prevent mosquitoes:

  1. Keep mosquitoes outside
    • To keep mosquitoes outdoors, use air conditioning or screens for windows and doors.
  2. Use insect repellent
    • The CDC recommends the following here:
      • DEET
      • Picaridin
      • IR3535
      • Oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE)
      • Para-menthane-diol (PMD)
      • 2-undecanone
  1. Eliminate standing water from the immediate area of your home
    • Certain species of mosquitoes breed in standing water which can be collected in receptacles such as unused plant pots, tires, children’s toys, buckets and trash cans. Ensure stagnant water is removed to reduce mosquitoes.
  2. Wear light-colored clothing
    • Did you know that mosquitoes can be more attracted to dark colors? They use visual cues to locate humans.
  3. Plant a garden
    • These plants naturally repel mosquitoes:
      • Citronella
      • Lemon Balm
      • Basil
      • Lavender
  1. Cover up
    • If mosquitoes are particularly bad, wearing long pants and long-sleeved shirts can reduce the likelihood of getting mosquito bites.

These tips in combination with our people and pet friendly treatments can keep the mosquitoes in your yard at bay.

How can we help?

For effective and safe mosquito control, we offer one-time or monthly mosquito treatments. We treat standing water that cannot easily be cleared such as bird baths, tree holes and flower pot saucers. In addition to treating small areas of standing water, we treat the bushes and foliage around the home to the perimeter of the yard on the front, sides and backyards where mosquitoes are found. Following our treatment, people and pests are to remain outside of the treated area for 30-60 minutes.

To learn more about our mosquito treatment options and pricing, give us a call toll-free today at 866-781-4991 or email us at ClarksCSR@ClarksPest.com. Contact Clark’s to help take back your outdoor living space!