Arizona’s Worst Winter Pests

Winters in Arizona are mild, but the nights may get cold. Pest activity seems to slow down, so many homeowners are tempted to take a month or two off from regular extermination services. This is inadvisable, because some of the winter pests in Arizona will seek refuge in homes from the chilly nights. Certain pests may be more of a nuisance than others during the winter in Arizona.

Some of the Winter Pests in Arizona

Rodents

Rodents are year-round pests, but may become a particular nuisance during the winter. Rodents will seek out the warmth and shelter of lower traffic areas such as attics or sheds. Once rodents have entered the home, it can cause an infestation to develop quickly. Not only do rodents multiply quickly, the scent that rodents leave behind attracts other rodents. A professional pest exterminator can help to rodent-proof the home for the winter and the rest of the year.

Cockroaches

American cockroaches, German cockroaches, and brown-banded cockroaches all prefer the warmth and shelter of homes during cooler months. Any of these cockroaches may quickly cause a severe infestation, as cockroaches multiply extremely quickly and may be difficult to eliminate. Cockroaches are typically found in areas of the home that are used for food preparation or serving, but may be difficult to spot because of their nocturnal nature. A professional extermination service may be required to rid a home of a cockroach infestation.

Conenose or Kissing Bugs

Kissing bugs earn their name because they bite around the lips and face while homeowners are sleeping. These bugs may nest and lay eggs in small crevices around sleeping areas. These bugs often accompany pack rat infestations, as they are particularly attracted to pack rats. This makes these bugs more of a nuisance during the winter, as pack rats often move indoors. Eliminating a pack rat issue may not be enough to rid the home of a kissing bug infestation, however, as kissing bugs may begin to feed on pets or residents within the home. An exterminator will often inspect and treat the home for kissing bugs when pack rats have been found or if other signs of the bugs are visible.

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Pests Are Not a Treat

With the vanishing summer warmth and the approaching cooler, fall months, everyone gets ready for the fun holidays to begin such as Halloween and Thanksgiving. People decorate their homes with spooky things, kids plan their Halloween costumes and haunted houses open up everywhere. It’s easy to get sucked into the creepy spirit of spiders, witches and pumpkins popping up everywhere but the last thing you want is a real house of haunting spiders lurking around every corner. However, that is exactly what happens in the fall months as the weather turns chilly. Spiders seek warmth and protection, more specifically, a safe, cozy place to place their egg sac until it hatches in spring. Your home has all the necessities they need and they will stop at nothing to get inside. They won’t bother knocking and yelling “Trick-or-Treat!” either, they’ll just rudely waltz in and make themselves at home. Are you going to allow that?

Trick them, don’t treat them!

Bug Guardian Pest Prevention is experienced at hunting down the spiders and their eggs sacs. We know where they like to hide and our techniques will ensure that come spring, you won’t have a house full of unwanted baby spiderlings. Here are a few tips to decreasing spiders around your home during the winter:

1-Clear unwanted debris from outside your home
Spiders live love leave piles, wood piles or any other kind of pile you can think of. They live for clutter so de-clutter and remove all spider nesting spots.

2-Keep outdoor lighting to a minimum
Spiders don’t necessarily like outside light, but other flying bugs and flies do. Spiders will hang out where there is a decent meal and if you’re providing that with a well lit porch and patio, spiders will be frequent diners there.

3-Seal cracks in your home, windows, and doors
This is a given. If your home is sealed tight as a drum, you leave them outside and extremely disappointed.

Call the Bug Guardian Pest Prevention experts!

Last but not least, call in the professionals. We know how gross, creepy and annoying spiders are in your home and we want to help you make it a peaceful haven once again. Unless you’d like to invite them in to add to the spooky holiday spirit, spider control in Arizona is best left to the us. We use the best, most environmentally friendly methods of removing spiders. Our spider control is gentle for your family and loved ones, so you won’t need to worry about replacing scary spiders with dangerous chemicals. We have you covered! Give us a call today!

 

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Deal With Your Pest Control Now Before the Holidays

The holidays are coming and they’ll be here before you know it. If you’ve been meaning to get an exterminator into your home to diagnose your pest control issues, now is the time to get that taken care of. Our green pest control will not leave any telltale residues for your holiday guests to detect. If you’re planning on having out of town guests for the holidays you don’t want them sharing beds with pests of any type.

Once the leaves start to fall and Halloween comes and goes, everyone goes into holiday mode. The cooler temperatures tend to drive many different insects and critters into homes in search of a warm and comfortable place to spend the off-season months. No matter what they are and how they arrive, it’s imperative to get them dealt with before the holidays.

It won’t be long before you find yourself up to your elbows in seasonal preparations like decorating (inside and out!), shopping, baking, wrapping presents and neighborhood gift swaps. You want this time of year to be a celebration, not a battle with ongoing pest control issues.

Here are some suggestions to make your home less of a temptation for pests of any type.

    • Keep pantry foods in tightly sealed containers of plastic or glass, not paper.
    • Baking items that you will be keeping for an extended period of time are best kept in the refrigerator or freezer. This includes sugar, flour and spices.
    • Do not mix new product with old. Use up all the old flour and sugar and wash the containers well before pouring fresh product in.
    • Wipe countertops, cupboards and other kitchen surfaces often, including under appliances that sit out.
    • Check expiration dates and toss out anything past it’s sell by date.

Taking the above precautions should keep your pantry pests to a minimum and discourage new pests from moving in.

This is the time of year when you’re pulling out boxes that were stored after the holidays last year. During the past year it’s possible that rodents or other critters have set up housekeeping in your boxes. Be careful as you unpack to what you may uncover in the boxes. To avoid any nasty and unexpected surprises it’s best if you opened your boxes outdoors. When this holiday is over, repack all of your decorations into plastic storage bins.

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Look out For Scorpions This Halloween in the Valley

While you and your family are out Trick or Treating this Halloween in Arizona make sure to keep an eye out for Scorpions. While the temperatures in the Valley are slowly dropping they are still warm enough that Scorpions are out.

Arizona Bark Scorpions are at home in the desert and can usually be found near rocks, hiding under them or in crevices. However, these scorpions are also able to climb, so they will sometimes take refuge in trees or on rock walls. Bark Scorpions have also been found in people front yard’s and walls.

At night Scorpions can be difficult to see especially while you are keeping an eye out for your trick or treaters. It is best to avoid areas with new construction as you are more likely to see them in these neighborhoods.

If you are stung by an Arizona Bark Scorpion, seek medical attention immediately. Severe reactions to stings may require antivenin, which a doctor can administer. Expect pain and swelling at the site of the sting, and avoid drinking alcohol or taking any sedatives if you have been stung. An ice pack can also be applied to help ease the discomfort.

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Winter is Coming, Pests Want Inside

As the seasons change, the hot Arizona desert takes a change with cooler temperatures making Arizona a wonderful place to explore during fall and winter months. But even for the most enthusiastic nature and outdoors lover, even they don’t like nature waltzing into their homes to take up residence and neither do you. It’s one thing to admire a beautiful spider in its web or appreciate a vast ant hill, but it’s an entirely different thing to allow these exquisite pieces of nature to sleep next to you. That simply will not do.

Bug Guardian Pest Prevention appreciates nature too, so we only use the most environmentally friendly methods to remove infestations from your home. And as the months grow colder, this only increases their tenacity—they want inside! Your home offers the warmth and shelter they need. Here are the top 5 pests to watch out for as the temperatures drop:

1-Rodents

Rodents will stop at nothing to keep their families safe. They can chew through just about anything, thus it is vital to keep your home sealed tight. Regular inspections will insure that they haven’t chewed through anything to get inside.

2-Spiders

Homeowners often believe spiders “disappear” or die during the winter months. That isn’t the case. Maybe the female dies, but beforehand, she left you a gift—an egg sac with thousands of her offspring. She knew your house was warm and cozy. If you don’t call in Pointe Pest Control, you may not find the egg sac till it’s too late!

3-Ants

Like nearly all pests, ants are quite determined, little creatures who just want food. If the weather is inhospitable, they will move their colony somewhere safer, warmer and more accessible to food. If a scout ant has spotted your house, it won’t be long before his scent pheromone trail leads all his buddies inside your house.

4-Cockroaches

These pests definitely make this list. They want your kitchen, want your shelter and are assuredly one of the nastiest pests out there. Spreading disease and contaminating everything in their wake, it is definitely a homeowner’s nightmare to find an infestation of cockroaches.

5-Flies

In the fall, you’ll notice a surge of flies suddenly. The days are cool but as the nights get cooler, they want to prolong their short lives as long as possible. The frost kills them off but before they go, they want to get into your cozy house before the cold temperatures claim them.

Being extra vigilant with pest prevention and regular inspections during the fall and winter is important. It will minimize the risk of infestation once spring and summer hit.

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Arizona Commercial Pest Control Services

Commercial Pest Control

Pests are attracted to sources of food, water and shelter – three things that restaurants and commercial food facilities provide in spades. Without taking proper preventative steps, restaurants and food service facilities could see populations of rodents, flies, cockroaches, ants and more. Commercial pest control services are paramount to ensuring your business stays open and clean.

Many restaurants and food service facilities have already contracted with pest professionals to prevent infestations from occurring. A working partnership between facility managers and licensed, trained pest professionals is critical in controlling pest populations.

Licensed and professionally trained pest professionals for commercial pest control are best suited to keep health and property-threatening pests in check. Today’s pest professionals have the training necessary to identify pest problems and recommend the most responsible and effective pest management methods available. But, restaurants and commercial food facilities should train their internal staff to work as partners with pest professionals.  While these locations may receive regular service from their contracted pest management firm, internal employees can take steps every day to help reduce pest populations.

Are there steps a restaurant or food service facility can take on their own to prevent/control pest populations?

  1. Seal up any cracks and holes on the outside of the facility including areas where utilities and pipes enter.
  2. Make sure vents are screened and gaps around windows and doors are sealed.
  3. Keep tree branches and shrubbery well trimmed.
  4. Inspect boxes, bags and other packaging thoroughly to curb hitchhiking pests.
  5. Don’t allow food to sit on counters or shelves in open containers.  All food and water sources should be kept sealed unless currently in use.
  6. Clean all food spills regularly.
  7. Store garbage in sealed containers and dispose of it regularly.
  8. Replace weather-stripping and repair loose mortar around the basement foundation and windows.
  9. Never store food on the floor.  Always lift it up on shelves so that rodents and insects do not have easy access.
  10. Comply will all regulations regarding pests in food service facilities.
  11. A licensed and qualified pest professional is your best resource to ensure these steps are completed properly.

Bug Guardian Pest Control recommends that restaurants and food service facilities implement a regular pest control program.  This process involves common sense and sound solutions for treating and controlling pests. These solutions incorporate three basic steps: 1) inspection, 2) identification and 3) treatment. Treatment options vary from sealing cracks and removing food and water sources to pesticide treatments when necessary.

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Dangerous Spiders And How To Avoid Them

There are literally thousands of spider species in North America, all of which are important parts of a healthy ecosystem. While most pose no threat to humans and pets, there are a handful of species that are considered pests and can cause serious health problems or death. Here are some of the most common dangerous spiders and what to do about them.

WIDOW SPIDERS

Widow spiders can be identified by their messy, tangled webs. The black widow is the most familiar widow species and is typically found in the American South and Southwest.

All but the false widow posses the characteristic hourglass pattern on their undersides. Interestingly, only the females are dangerous. The small, drab-colored males are harmless. That said, any pest control company will tell you that the female widows bite can cause serious problems. These include severe pain, fever, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headaches and severe muscle cramps. In small children, the elderly and those with compromised immunity, the bite can be fatal.

RECLUSES

Brown Recluse Spider PhoenixThe most well-known species in this group can be identified by the telltale violin pattern on its head. These spiders are mainly restricted to the Southern states. However, there are other recluse varieties in many portion of the US that pose little or no threat. True to their name, recluses prefer to stay hidden and aren’t aggressive.

They’re wandering hunters, which means that they don’t spin webs. The danger of these spiders, while real, is dramatically over-blown. It’s common for people to mistake insect bites, MRSA and certain skin conditions as recluse bites, even when these cases occur outside of the spiders’ natural range. Even if you live in an area where the recluse population is abundant, few actual bites occur.

It’s best to take preventative measures instead of having to deal with one of these intimidating creatures in person. Avoid having piles of junk or clutter in your house or garage. Never stick your hand into boxes or anywhere where you can not see into the space. These are prime places where spiders take up residence. It’s best advised to not deal with these types of spiders on your own as they are no easy feat for the average homeowner.

Seek out professional help from a local company, if you are dealing with a spider situation in an outdoor garden or around the house.

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German Cockroach Prevention in El Mirage Restaurants

german cockroch removal

Your restaurant in El Mirage is important to you as well as the health and well being of your patrons along with your continued success. If at any point your restaurant becomes infested with Cockroaches it’s important to have infestation exterminated by a professional pest control specialist in a timely manner.

Cockroaches are attracted to warm, moist environments. They spend the daytime hours in dark areas such as under refrigerators, stoves, and false bottoms in kitchen cabinets, the backs of cabinets and between baseboards, floors, cabinets and walls. Cockroaches leave these areas at night to look for food and water. If you see cockroaches during the day this may be an indication of a larger infestation and should contact a Bug Guardian Specialist immediately.  By the point of a large infestation any do-it-yourself pest control attempts will be ineffective against a large population of cockroaches.

Cockroach Identification:

The only good cockroach is a dead one that’s why the first step to eliminating the cockroach infestation is to determine the type of cockroach present. At Bug Guardian we use our extensive knowledge of the preferences and habitats of each species to provide more accurate and effective control of the infestation.

Cockroach Removal:

The first step to any removal method is the sanitation of the area that the roaches are attracted to. Anything that can be done to eliminate the sources of food and water from the Cockroaches home will help to control the infestation.

Once sanitation is complete the next step is extermination of the cockroaches. This is done through the use of trapping, baits, insecticides, and dusts. A pest control technician will suggest which method is best for removal and go over your options.

After removal is complete we always suggest having a routine pest control maintenance plan to reduce the risk of infestation from cockroaches or any other pests.

At Bug Guardian Pest Control, our goal is to help you in the shortest time possible, while resolving your cockroach problems in the most cost effective manner. All of our technicians are professionally trained and our service is a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Call Bug Guardian today at (480) 345-2847.

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Bee Control Tips & Removal in Queen Creek

Springtime brings warmer weather and beautiful flowering plants to the desert landscapes in Queen Creek.  The splash of color and lovely scent of these flowers attract not only human attention but also hundreds of thousands of bees.  Although bees can be docile and help in the growth of plants, they can also swarm and sting when they feel threatened.  Bee stings can be potentially fatal if a person is severely allergic, not to mention painful and dangerous to children and pets.   A sad reminder of this occurred on March 12th in Florence, AZ when bees swarmed and attacked a child and four dogs, Three of the dogs did not survive.  So what should you do if you see a bee swarm, bee hive or honeycomb on or around your Queen Creek residence?  Let us help with some preventative tips and an explanation of the delicate bee removal process.

Tips for Bee Control & Removal in Queen Creek

  1. Prevent Bee Colonies From Settling In Your House

    • Bee hives can be found in chimneys, on roofs, on the high eaves of your house or outdoor buildings (like work sheds or garages), as well as barbeques, hot tubs or any hollow area. Close any openings that you can in the walls or roof and put tight covers on barbeque grills or hot tubs. Tight mesh over your chimney will also discourage any bees from settling in these spaces.
    • If you see a huge swarm of bees on or around your home don’t panic!  Save some money before calling bee removal experts and try to observe if they are flying into any space or if they are just a feral bee swarm, which is a bee colony that is trying to find a new home. These colonies  may merely rest for 24-48 hours before moving on.
      After 3 days, if there continues to be a lot of bees flying around your home then you most likely have a hive somewhere. If it is endangering any people or animals then you should call to have it removed.
  2. Removing Bee Hives or Colonies

    • Don’t think a colony of bees will just go away after a week or two! If bees have decided your home is a good place to make their new home then they start making a hive which, if hidden and undisturbed, can stay there for years.
    • Queen Creek has such mild winters that bees can swarm most any time of year, but are more likely to build new hives during early spring and through the summer.
    • If you encounter a hive it is not advised to approach the bees or to remove the beehive yourself as it is very difficult to determine whether they are docile honey bees or the extremely aggressive Africanized bee
    • Because Africanized bees (aka ‘killer bees’) have been known to attack even if loud noises come near their hive it is best to leave bee colony or beehive removal to the professionals that have special equipment and protective clothing that can handle getting into tight spaces with thousands of bees
  3. Safeguard from Future Bee Invasion

    • Once the physical hive is removed it is important to determine if there is any honey comb left behind and to ensure it is removed as well. Bee’s honey comb will start melting in our hot Arizona temperatures which creates a horrible stench, causes damage to drywall and stucco and also attracts ants, roaches and even more bees.
    • Discuss any follow-up action plans with your bee removal or pest control company and depending on your needs, keeping a certain level of monthly or quarterly pest control management may help avoid future issues.

This time of year bee swarms are very common and because the species are so difficult to differentiate, please don’t take any unnecessary risks. If you see a lot of bee activity over consecutive days and are living in Queen Creek or the surrounding areas please call a local bee removal or pest control company to help address your concerns.

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Reasons for pest control, warm weather brings out the critters

As the weather starts to warm up, critters of all kinds start coming out of the woodwork (sometimes literally) so if you need  additional reasons for pest control in your Phoenix area home, here’s some information we think you’ll find useful.

Did you know?Reasons for pest control-warm weather brings out the critters

  • A female House cricket produces an average of 730 eggs and these eggs hatch in 2-3 months.
  • 1 queen fire ant can reproduce 1,600 new fire ant workers every day.
  • Arizona contends with the most ant species of any other state.

How pests get in

They gain entry into your home easily as they are great at finding cracks around doors and windows or open spaces around cables or wires that were not properly sealed.   A tiny scorpion can fit through holes the size of a dime while ants and smaller creatures squeeze through much smaller holes.  A good rule of thumb to follow is that if you can see daylight coming through any areas around your doors, windows or foundation, then pests will find their way into your home.

 Your home is inviting

Pests come into your home because they like the environment-there’s water, food and it’s warm.  Your home is like a buffet to bugs with an unending source of food.  Pests will often follow other pests;  for example, scorpions and spiders feed on crickets so they often follow their ‘food source’ into your house and then you have not 1 pest problem, but several.

 But I only see a few. . .

These little creatures don’t need much space so they hide in little cracks and crevices and many times, you might not even know they’re there (at least not right away).  A few roaches (or ants or crickets) can grow into a full-blown infestation very quickly.   That’s why we recommend calling at the first sight of critters as if you can see 1 or 2, you can bet there’s many more you can’t see as your home is the perfect place for them to set up a nest and breed.

What can I do to prevent this?

There are many things you can do to discourage pests from coming into your home and it starts with your yard.  Weeds around your home are a great breeding ground for pests so use a weed emergent to kill weeds and keep them under control.  Trim shrubs and plants so they aren’t touching your house and keep your grass cut low.  Clean up dead plants, fallen branches and woodpiles and make sure you have no standing pools of water as water is like a beacon calling pests to the area.

 Seal up your home

Critters are small and do not need an invitation to come inside so do an inspection around your home to find any places where you can see daylight coming in as that’s their open door.  These areas need to be sealed and standard caulking will do the job.  There are also less obvious hiding places, such as the underside of the weep screed of your stucco siding- crickets like to live there because of the moisture.

We all look forward to warmer weather and unfortunately, so do the pests so that’s your reason for pest control in Phoenix.

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