WHERE DO BUGS AND OTHER PESTS GO IN THE WINTER?

Mouse in Arizona House

Have you ever wondered where bees go in the winter? Is it any different than where wasps go? What about carpenter ants, flies, and ladybugs? Do they migrate, hibernate, or maybe even die?

It’s likely not something most people are overly concerned with, but it’s worth answering; what happens to insects during winter in the Arizona?

Insects, like animals, have all developed a means for survival, especially for recurring weather patterns like the cold winter season or the extreme heat of summer. While pest problems differ throughout the country for a number of reasons, it has been proven that climate plays a major factor.

Insects have a variety of ways to survive the frigid winter temperatures. Some survive as eggs, larvae or pupa, while others make it through as adults.

There are a few types of pests, like spiders, cockroaches, and rodents, that will simply move indoors, but for the most part, insects typically have three distinct survival strategies:

  • Migration: Like birds and humans looking to escape the harsh northern winters, insects also participate in migration or the seasonal movement from one region to another. The distance traveled varies with each species. seeking warmer temperatures. The most well-known insect migration is that of the Monarch Butterfly. Monarchs whose habitat is east of the Rocky Mountains in North America, fly south each fall, gathering in central Mexico’s Oyamel fir forest for the winter. Those west of the Rockies migrate to Santa Barbara, California.

  • Overwintering: This is a process by which some insects actually pass through or wait out the winter season. Overwintering occurs in places such as beneath leaf litter, inside buildings, or even under the bark of trees. All sites provide a shelter from frigid temperatures. Some insects that use overwintering to survive through winter are bees and box elders. Activity by species that overwinter almost completely halts until conditions prove to be suitable after winter subsides.

  • Hibernation: Typically associated with large land mammals, the period of time spent in a dormant state of being is referred to as hibernation. Hibernation is an extended period of time that one remains inactive through the unfavorable conditions of winter. Ladybugs, wasps, and some mosquitoes find protected areas like under bark or leaves, inside hollow trees or even in crevices of rocks to hibernate in until warm weather activates them. Another form of hibernation is forming a cocoon. For example, moths that form cocoons in the fall need that period of winter cold, since they likely won’t complete their development in a warmer climate.

There are many possibilities when it comes to insects surviving harsh winter weather, depending on the specific species and where they are located geographically. The alternative to the above-mentioned measures is literal death. Some insects do actually die in the winter, like crickets, but they leave behind eggs that will replace the since-dead mature adult one the weather returns to its warmth.

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Bed Bug Prevention Tips to Help Avoid

Arizona Bed Bug

The holiday travel season has arrived.  Which means millions of Americans are gearing up for time spent with their families. However, before hitting the road to enjoy some rest and relaxation, we encourage travelers to learn how to avoid bed bug infestations.

According to the NPMA’s 2015 Bugs Without Borders survey, 75 percent of pest control experts reported rendered bed bug treatments at hotels or motels.  Bed bugs are excellent hitchhikers and are easily transported, hiding behind baseboards, wallpaper, upholstery, furniture crevices, and even suitcases or shoes.

How To Keep Bed Bugs Away

If you are planning to stay in a hotel or motel his holiday season, utilize our infographic and keep these bed bug travel tips in mind:

  • Pull back the sheets and inspect the mattress seams for telltale stains or spots.

  • Put suitcases in the bathtub and inspect the entire room before unpacking (be sure to check behind the headboards and seams of any chairs/couches)

  • Use a large plastic trash bag or a protective cover to store your luggage during your stay. Do not place luggage on upholstered surfaces

  • If any pests are spotted, notify management and change rooms or properties immediately. If staying in a hotel, be sure your new room is not adjacent to the possibly infested room.

  • Vacuum your suitcase when you return home

  • If any pests are spotted, notify management and change rooms or properties immediately. If staying in a hotel, be sure your new room is not adjacent to the possibly infested room.

If you’re concerned about bed bugs in your home or business, contact us today for an inspection.

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Roof Rat Control in Paradise Valley Homes

Over the last five years roof rat sightings have increased in the Paradise Valley area as well as South Scottsdale, Fountain Hills and Central Phoenix. Many residents in the area are alarmed when hearing this due to the damage of their Valley homes.

Roof rats start to look for warmth and dry havens in the attics of many Valley homes, sometimes chewing through wiring and also cause damage to citrus and fruit trees. While Roof rats do not carry diseases they are a pest that can cause damage through this busy holiday season.

You can usually tell if there are roof rats by doing an inspection of your property. Look for citrus that is hollowed out, along with cylindrical droppings, gnaw marks on your house or trees, live or dead rats and rodent odors.

Also inspect your attic and garage for signs of roof rat invasion. If you store a motorhome or boat on your property, also check to see if roof rats are living there and gnawing on the hoses and wiring. Roof rats will gnaw on anything to keep their front teeth from growing too long.

Roof rats can squeeze through a hole the size of a quarter. Usually you can tell if your attic has been invaded by checking your insulation for nesting. Also look for gnawing on any exposed wiring. Many times people first realize they have roof rats when they hear them at night in their attic or garage.

If you find evidence of roof rats living in your house or on your property call Bug Guardian Pest Prevention Today!

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