Black Widow Spiders in Chandler & Gilbert: Separating Myths from Facts

Black Widow Spiders in Chandler & Gilbert: Separating Myths from Facts

You’ve probably heard of the infamous black widow spider and the fact that they live in our great cities of Chandler, Gilbert and Queen Creek. However, did you know that they are considered one of the most venomous spiders in North America? With these credentials it’s hard not to stomp on any spider you see but you may not have to. There are many true and false statements surrounding black widows so we’ve got a few tips to keep you from running any time you see a black spider.

Myth: Black widows are aggressive towards humans and pets

Fact: Scientists recently completed a study on animal behavior to test the outcome when black widows were poked versus when they were pinched. The findings show that these fierce sounding spiders are actually quite shy and only bite if really provoked. So only when the spiders feel truly threatened by a predator or say, accidentally being stepped on by a human, will the black widow try to bite. To help avoid threatening these little spiders, it is always a good idea to be careful where you step, wear gloves and close-toed shoes when working in garages or sheds. Also, be sure to wash all produce before consumption. It’s not common but black widows can accidentally come home in fruit from the grocery store as there were two reports of that occurring earlier this year.

Myth: Black widow bites are commonly fatal

Fact: Before the creation of antivenin, black widow bites were recorded as being fatal about five percent of the time but now they are rarely fatal to humans. According to statistics from Poison Control Centers, 23,000 black widow bites were reported between 2000-2008 but no one died from any of those bites. As long as you seek medical care after a spider bite, then proper procedures can be taken to ensure there are no fatal consequences. This is especially important for the elderly, immunocompromised and young children as their reactions could be more severe.

Myth: Black widows only like to spin their webs outside.

Fact: Although black widows would happily make their home in a woodpile, these spiders like to set up shop in any dark, secluded area. So that could mean closets, basements, corners of garages, cluttered areas or behind your favorite chair that has never been moved. Identifying traits of a black widow are their black, shiny color with the signature red hour-glass shape on their abdomen and they make messy webs that often have no pattern. To avoid being hospitable to black widows be sure to vacuum and clean all areas inside your home on a regular basis, especially dark corners or behind furniture that isn’t moved very often. Also, keeping your home free from other pests which are the spiders’ food source will help deter them. Take a look at our tips for black widow control and prevention and with regular pest control you should be able to keep your home free from these pests.

Now that you have some of the truths about black widows we hope you make the important decision to call a professional pest control company if you see these spiders. We travel throughout the Valley, including Queen Creek, Chandler, Mesa and Gilbert so don’t hesitate to contact us today!

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Protect Your Commercial Property with Bug Guardian

commericial pest control

One cannot emphasize enough the importance of pest control, exclusion services and pest management services for commercial establishments. The various properties in which these services are needed can range from hotels and motels to restaurants and food processing plants, manufacturing facilities or medical offices, multi-housing units or dormitories. However, they all share one widespread problem, which is, to find effective and successful treatment from pest invasions. Many commercial establishments have suffered great losses of product and revenue as well as damaged reputations because of infestations of pests.


The name that surfaces as the number one choice for pest protection services for commercial properties is Bug Guardian Pest Prevention. It doesn’t matter if it is a daycare facility, a school building, a hospital, public transportation vehicles or the local restaurant, Bug Guardian takes immense pride in being able to successfully manage all pest control needs.


The highly skilled professionals at Bug Guardian Pest Prevention will tailor specific services to meet the requirements and needs of each commercial facility. Comprehensive plans can be customized for each situation, utilizing the latest and most advanced industry tools available while being mindful of protecting the environment. The frequency of scheduling services will also be determined by the needs and conditions of any individual property. This may be adjusted or changed from time to time to ensure optimal satisfaction of results.


Commercial clients will enjoy the pest prevention and exclusion services with year-round protection. In the event of an emergency or need, Bug Guardian will respond at no additional charge. Some of the commercial pests for which Bug Guardian provides protection include bed bug treatments, mosquitoes, wildlife with exclusion, and deterrence techniques.


The condition of the exterior of a commercial property is also of immense importance. Weeds and other unwanted vegetation reduces value and gives an undesirable appearance.


These are just a few of the reasons why Bug Guardian is the best choice for optimal pest control for commercial facilities in Arizona. You have the assurance that Bug Guardian Pest Prevention will invest more training, more advanced technology and more innovative methods each year to not only solve your pest problems but to also keep any from reoccurring.

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7 Common Pest Myths

7 Common Pest Myths

Because pests are a nuisance to deal with, we’re quick to dismiss them without knowing much about them. This leads to pest myths that can spread around and provide false information. Our Lexington pest control company has found a few and busted them, such as:


Many people believe that daddy longleg spiders are poisonous and that the only reason they don’t harm humans is because their small fangs can’t penetrate our skin. In reality, daddy longlegs aren’t poisonous at all. In fact, they’re not even considered spiders (their bodies are shaped much differently and they only have one pair of eyes). They also don’t have any fangs, making the skin-penetrating part of the myth even more of a myth.


Unlike termites, carpenter ants don’t actually eat wood. Instead, they actually tunnel through it, leaving the wood debris behind outside of their nests.


There are more than 15 species of cockroaches, so it may not surprise you to find out that palmetto bugs are at least one of these species. The name “palmetto bug” is actually a general name given to many different cockroach species (and even some beetles) throughout the southern U.S. Most often, it’s American cockroaches (dark brown with a cream colored prothorax) that are called palmetto bugs.


It’s true that black widow spider bites are venomous; their venom can cause muscle cramps, chills, fever, nausea, head and stomach ache, and restlessness. However, if you seek professional care after a bite, it’s very unlikely you’ll die. It does happen, on occasion, but usually to small children or elderly individuals.


If you’re trying to catch a mouse, you might think cheese is what they’d want. While they like cheese, there are several other foods they like even better and are more likely to seek out: peanut butter, marshmallows, bacon, gumdrops, raisins, and sugary cereal are a few.


Bed bugs actually have nothing to do with how dirty a home or hotel is – they can be found anywhere.


If you’ve ever been stung by a bee, you know it hurts and you probably took a little comfort in the fact that the bee would die shortly after. This assumption isn’t entirely false, however, most species of bees and wasps don’t die after they sting someone. The only species that does is the honeybee. When honeybees sting humans, their stingers become stuck in our skin and when they fly away, they leave the stinger and part of their abdomen behind. Because of this rupture to their system, they die.

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9 Tips to Keep Ants Away

Fire Ants in Phoenix

Ants are far from arbitrary. If you are seeing ants in steady streams, it is because their scouts had already assessed your home as accessible, available, and an easy target.

Ants aren’t all that different from us. Like us, they are looking for food, shelter, and water. Remove their access to these resources in your home and you can greatly reduce their interest in making your home a permanent residence. Because like us, if they can’t find what they’re looking for, they’ll look for it somewhere else. And you want that somewhere else to be outside, in their natural environment. That is rule #1 in getting rid of ants.

1. Wipe up crumbs and spills immediately

Ants seem to start out on your floors and on your countertops. They are there because your crumbs and spills are there. Make a habit of sweeping up crumbs right away. Spills should be wiped up, and if sticky, should be cleaned with soap and water or another appropriate cleanser.

2. Keep food in sealed containers

Opened bags of chips, crackers, cereals, and other snacks should be rolled up tightly and kept closed with a clothespin or other similar device. Sugar and flour should be placed in airtight containers. Honey, maple syrup, and other sticky-sweet goodies should be stored in the refrigerator.

3. Dispose of garbage appropriately and regularly

Keeping food scraps in your household garbage is a huge no-no, especially in the summer. Invest in an outdoor composter and put raw food scraps in the composter, immediately. Raw food scraps include potato peels, banana peels, lettuce ends, carrot tops, and any other uncooked food. You can also toss your egg shells, coffee grinds and teabags into your composter. Make sure to keep your compost bin far away from home’s foundation. We like to use my grandmother’s method of eliminating cooked food scraps. In the summer, my grandmother would put cooked food scraps in a plastic bag and put this bag in the freezer until trash pick-up day. Any food scraps left in your regular trash are a homing beacon to hungry ants.

4. Keep pet food and water dishes clean

Your pet’s food bowl is easy-pickins for ants. Serve your pet only the amount of food that she will eat in one sitting. Any leftover dry kibble should be tossed or put back in the bag for tomorrow. Wet food leftovers should be treated like cooked food scraps (see above). Your pet’s water bowl should be cleaned regularly to avoid an accumulation of food residue or the stray bloated kibble. Your pet’s dry kibble bag should be kept in a airtight container.

5. Seal any cracks and holes on the outside of the home with silicone caulk

Silicone caulk is readily available at any of the big box home improvement stores. Your local hardware store is also likely to carry silicone caulk. Youtube can provide you with a quick tutorial, if you need one, on how to apply caulk to exterior cracks.

6. Repair holes or gaps in window and door screens

Big box home improvement stores sell screen repair kits, but truthfully they can often be a pain. Oftentimes, your local hardware store can be your best resource when you have a rip in a screen. Our neighborhood hardware store fixes screens for $2-$5 a screen. You take them out of the window, drive them down, and often can pick them up the next day.

7. Replace weather-stripping

Your doors and windows can provide easy entry for not only you and your expected guests, but also the unexpected and unwanted guests—ants. Inspect your doors and windows regularly and replace any loose or damaged weather-stripping. These materials are cheap and easy to use. In most cases, you roll it out, remove the backing, and just stick it on.

8. Repair loose mortar around basement foundation and windows

This is a task best left to the professionals. Surprisingly, masons are not as expensive as one might think. Look up a reputable mason, or get a good solid reference from a dependable source.

9. Keep tree branches and other shrubbery well trimmed and away from the house

This is another situation where you may want to call the professionals. We’ve all heard the stories about the neighbor who insists on cutting his trees himself, on a step ladder, with a chainsaw. Save yourself the trip to the emergency room (and the humiliation), and call a tree surgeon to trim your overhanging trees. You can likely take care of the low shrubbery yourself with a good set of hedge clippers.

Still have ants?

If ants persist, despite all your best attempts, a professional pest removal service will be your best bet. A good service technician can provide preventative pest control that can often be environmentally friendlier than you might think. Ants are smart and catch on pretty quick. Once they know your home is being maintained regularly, they will lose interest and look for their resources elsewhere.

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Why are Cockroaches So Hard to Control?

cockroach common pest

Cockroaches… the mere thought of them sends a shiver down most people’s spine. They get into food storage, reproduce at lightning speeds, and are really fast movers. It’s been said that cockroaches will survive Armageddon and anyone who has had to deal with a cockroach infestation wouldn’t doubt that. These critters have been around for millions of years, even outliving the dinosaurs. They are a resilient insect that has adapted to the ever changing environment of the Earth.

So what is the secret to their survival and what makes them so unique to other pests? Why is it so hard to control the cockroach population?

1. Cockroaches are lightning fast

Have you ever turned on the kitchen light and seen how fast cockroaches bolt into hiding? Or maybe you tried to hit one with a shoe but it was just too fast for you. Cockroaches can sense currents of air and use this for detecting any threat that is approaching them. It’s been reported that a cockroach can hit the ground running a mere 8 milliseconds from the time they feel a puff of air. They can hit 80 centimeters a second and reach three miles in about an hour. They also have this ability to switch directions at the drop of a hat.

Did you know: A newborn cockroach, the size of a speck of dust, can run nearly as fast as an adult?

2. Cockroaches are super resilient

As mentioned earlier, cockroaches have been around for a very long time. There are some cockroach species that can endure freezing cold temperatures. If a cockroach loses its head it can still continue to function for a week. This is because cockroaches have an open circulatory system, meaning they have no veins and their organs are all housed within the body cavity. This also means that they don’t bleed out when wounded.

Did you know: A cockroach breathes from spiracles found on the sides of their bodies and can hold its breath for about 40 minutes.

3. Cockroaches are small

At two in the morning an encounter with a cockroach may be seen as having come face to face with a massive bug. However, most cockroaches run as small at 5/8 of an inch up to 2 inches. Because of their nimble size they are able to hide in any crevices or cracks available to them.

Did you know: The male of the species has been known to be able to squeeze into a crack as small as 1/16 of an inch (the thickness, in width, of a quarter?)

4. Cockroaches will eat anything

Cockroaches are true scavengers. They favor sugary stuff when they can get it though. Being omnivores, they are attracted to a variety of food. A typical cockroach can survive without feeding for nearly a month. They can also go about 2 weeks without water. This is another reason for their resilience. They have been knows to eat things like glue, leather, and even soap to survive.

Did you know: When in nature the cockroach helps consume organic waste?

5. Cockroaches are fast breeders

A mother cockroach produces eggs which are protected in a capsule of her own making. One female cockroach can have from 6 to 40 eggs per capsule and can produce many capsules through their lifespan. Depending on the conditions of their habitat, a cockroach can take from 6 weeks to a couple of years to become an adult.

Did you know: One female cockroach, along with her many offspring, can have up to 30,000 babies in just a year.

It’s important to eliminate cockroaches from the home because they can pose health risks to people. They spread disease and can trigger allergic reactions in some, which can complicate things for those who have asthma.

Cockroaches are attracted to food and water and will overrun your home looking for these things. So it’s important to keep food and water sources sealed. If you have pets, don’t leave bowls of food out unless your beloved pet is actually using them. Use air tight containers for storing foods that would otherwise sit in bags in your cupboards, such as flours, rice, and cereals. Make sure you keep your counter tops and sink clean and clear of food and crumbs. Dispose of garbage right away and vacuum often. By practicing some good sanitation you can lessen the chance of a cockroach infestation happening in your home.

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