Bed Bugs in Moving Vans

If you are planning on moving and will be renting a moving truck, you should be aware of the possibility that bed bugs could be found in the moving van transporting your household goods. Since these vans handle a high volume of items over periods of time, the opportunities for bed bugs to move from one household’s mattress to the truck and then to the next customer’s mattress or moving box is something to consider. Bedbugs, unlike most insects can survive for long periods of time without a meal making it possible for them to live in a moving van for many months if necessary before hitching a ride on the possessions of an unsuspecting customer.  Many moving companies now have their trucks inspected by bug-sniffing dogs with certification for these inspections, according to the American Moving & Storage Association. When thinking about Bed Bugs in Atlanta being on the rise, it would not be a bad idea to ask your mover or the truck rental company about their bed bug precaution methods.

Mild Winter Means More Insects

Summer is finally here and we are seeing an increase in customers looking for Pest control in Decatur and Pest Control in Atlanta in general. The mild winter has had a noticeable impact on the early emergence of and the increased numbers of insects. Insects such as Kudzu Bugs were noticed in late winter when temperatures were above average and they have since moved from primarily around homes and businesses to vegetation because of the heat and their natural patterns. Although most insects have the ability for a percentage of their population to survive a hard winter, a mild winter means that the natural population reduction that would normally take place during the winter is affected by the warmer than usual weather. We have gotten numerous calls about fleas, spiders, mosquitoes, large roaches, and even ticks, as early as March. Remember that insects have the same basic needs as we do being food, shelter, and water. With it being hot outside, insects tend to move inside with us where it is cooler. It is their basic survival skill, which preserves their populations.

Bed Bug Treatment for Customer Moving to Canada

A customer looking for Pest Control in Atlanta gave us a call last week with an interesting issue. She was moving to Canada and was required to bring proof of having her bed professionally treated by a licensed Pest Control Company for bedbugs before they would allow her to bring her bed into the country. It seems our Canadian neighbors aren’t taking any chances with unwanted visitors invading and potentially infesting their homes and businesses, especially if by taking this precaution can help to minimize that possibility.

Carpenter Bees

Carpenter Bees

 We had a mild winter and hot weather has come early in Georgia this year bringing the early emergence of numerous pests. Usually, in the late-spring and early summer, homeowners will notice large, black bees hovering around the outside of their homes. These are probably carpenter bees searching for mates and favorable sites to construct their nests. Male carpenter bees are very aggressive, often hovering in front of people who are around their nests. The males are harmless because they do not have stingers. Female carpenter bees can inflict a painful sting but usually don’t unless they are handled or disturbed while provisioning their nests. Carpenter bees look a lot like bumble bees except they have a shiny black and bare upper abdomen. Bumble bees have a hairy abdomen with yellow markings.

Adult Carpenter bees hang out in tunnels over the winter and emerge in the spring. After mating, the fertilized females excavate tunnels in wood to lay their eggs in a series of small cells. Each cell has a ball of pollen deposited for the larvae to feed on, emerging as adults in late summer.

Since they prefer bare wood to nest in, the best way to deter them is to paint exposed wood surfaces. Stains are not as effective but will give some level of repellency instead of the wood remaining bare. Treating the nesting sites can be a little tricky, but this can be done effectively and safely with the right materials and methods. Always use caution when getting close to their nesting area and when working with wood that Carpenter bees may be nesting in.

Kudzu Bugs

Kudzu Bugs

 Over the past couple of months with the warm weather arriving early, our office has been swamped with calls about a mysterious and unusual bug that hangs out on the outside of buildings and has been sighted inside of our homes and businesses.

Megacopta cribraria, also known as the Kudzu Bug, was first found in Georgia in the fall of 2009 and has been spreading like wildfire. They prefer to feed on kudzu roots as well as soybean crops but will also eat other plants including wisteria, green beans, and other legumes. In 2010, according to UGA entomologists, they reduced the soybean crop by 19 percent and they saw a 32 percent reduction in kudzu growth in plots monitored in Athens, Ga!

They are a nuisance to home and business owners as they tend to cluster outside of structures and fly around and land on us. Oddly enough, they prefer white or very light surfaces to hang out on. It is best to vacuum them up if you find them indoors, as they omit an odor and can cause staining when crushed. Outside perimeter treatments have also been effective at controlling these guys, but they are very persistent.

The latest hope of UGA scientists is that the release of a tiny wasp, which is a natural predator of Kudzu bugs, will be an effective way of controlling the spread of our invader from Japan! We’ll keep you posted.

3 Steps to Eliminate Ants

Not all homes or communities have ant problems. However… after serving hundreds of homeowners in metro-Atlanta over the past 21 years, I’ve seen some ant problems that would make the most enthusiastic nature lover cringe!