Common Pests

 
 

Cockroaches

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Cockroaches are one of the most common pest problems. Infestations are hard to get rid of because the insects hide in a host of areas, breed quickly, have a very high reproductive potential and may develop resistance to pesticides.

Cockroaches often taint food with E. coli and Salmonella bacteria, so it’s not safe to ignore these pests. Exposure to cockroaches over time can even trigger allergies and asthma.

Ants

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Poor sanitation is the primary cause of ant infestations. Leaving dirty dishes in the sink, food residue on countertops, crumbs on the floor and trash not frequently emptied provide food sources for meal-seeking ants.

One of the biggest problems related to ants in the home is food contamination. Ants carry bacteria on their bodies, which spreads when they crawl in pantries and across countertops. Only a few species are known to transmit diseases, but finding any type of ant in pantry goods or inside the home is an unpleasant experience that creates nuisances.

 

Scorpions

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Scorpions are found mainly in the South Western states of the U.S. The most well-known scorpion in Arizona is the bark scorpion. They can be found in tool sheds, block walls surrounding a foundation, under debris and anywhere inside the home looking for shelter.

Rodents

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Rodents are a group of nuisance pests that includes mice, rats, and squirrels. These animals can contaminate food, damage property, and spread disease. 

The pests are also hosts for fleas, which can spread plague and diseases like lymphocytic Choriomeningitis virus. This illness mostly affects those with weakened immune systems and may result in headaches, fever, and meningitis. It can also cause complications during pregnancy. It is not advisable to handle any wild rodent. They are equipped with large teeth and are capable of transmitting a variety of bacteria, viruses and diseases through their saliva, feces and urine.

If you locate a rodent within your home, it is best to contact a pest management professional for removal and identification. The presence of one rodent within a home could signal an infestation.

Termites

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While looking at a single termite, it certainly doesn’t look dangerous or menacing, but a whole colony of them can inflict serious structural damage on a home in a fairly short period of time. Termites are known as “silent destroyers” because of their ability to chew through wood, flooring and even wallpaper undetected. Each year, termites cause about $5 billion in property damage.

It is not always possible for an untrained individual to see evidence of termites; however, homeowners can sometimes identify a potential termite problem by looking for the following.

1. Soft wood in the home that sounds hollow when tapped

2. Darkening or blistering of wood structures

3. Uneven or bubbling paint

4. Small piles of feces that resembles sawdust near a termite nest

5. Discarded wings near doors or on windowsills indicating swarmers have entered the home

Bed Bugs

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Bed bugs are small, oval, brownish insects that live on the blood of animals or humans. Adult bedbugs have flat bodies about the size of an apple seed.

Bed bugs may enter your home undetected through luggage, clothing, used beds and couches, and other items. Their flattened bodies make it possible for them to fit into tiny spaces, about the width of a credit card. Bedbugs do not have nests like ants or bees, but tend to live in groups in hiding places. Their initial hiding places are typically in mattresses, box springs, bed frames, and headboards where they have easy access to people to bite in the night.