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The pest control professionals from Premier Termite & Pest Control offer a high level of knowledge, which allows us to provide outstanding service to all of our customers.
Part of our expertise lies in understanding the different kinds of pest problems that are common in central Kentucky, and other surrounding areas. With this knowledge, we can effectively treat your problem and ensure complete eradication.
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Two of the most common ant problems in Richmond and other nearby areas are:
- PHAROAH ANTS: These ants are a light reddish brown color. They are very small and can live in almost any areas in or around a structure. They mainly nest under floors, behind baseboards, electrical outlets, in or around garbage cans or old trash. They usually prefer but are not limited to warm areas such as heat ducts, near furnaces, hot water pipes, and areas near moist conditions or sources of water. Most customers will notice these ants following distinct trails along their countertops, around windowsills, door casings, or along baseboards in their home.
- CARPENTER ANTS: These ants are usually a large black or blackish red color. Their antennae are long and elbowed. They normally nest in areas located in moisture-damaged wood. Unlike termites, they don't eat wood to consume it, rather they use their mandibles to tear into the galleries of the damp wood in order to live there. The workers forage for food indoors in the early spring and move outdoors to feed on insects. These ants are usually detected outdoors around damp mulch, stumps, fence posts, or moist wood. However, they can also use cracks or crevices of sound wood to nest. Indoors, most customers will notice these ants around doors, windowsills, baseboards or fireplaces.
These invaders are reddish brown to mahogany in color. They are flat and oval shaped. These insects are blood feeders. After feeding, they can become longer and more round.
Bedbugs usually hide in cracks and crevices during the daytime. They can hide in the cracks and seams of mattresses, couches or chairs with cushions, bedposts, and the upholstery of chairs and cushions.
In heavy infestations, our pest control professionals have found that bedbugs can spread behind wall coverings, pictures, medicine cabinets, and other dark isolated areas. In most cases, they are brought into a structure from used mattresses, furniture, or clothing. The first indication of having these creatures are the red bites they leave that itch.
These bugs are about ½ inch long and brownish black in color with 4 distinct red markings on the back. They primarily feed on juices they suck from the boxelder or other maple family trees. They are sometimes seen in large groups around the outside of buildings, behind shutters, along outside walls, or along the foundation.
They usually do very little damage indoors, however, they can stain curtains or other fabrics from their feces or if they are crushed.
These crickets are also known as the hump-back cricket due to their hump-back appearance. They are light to dark brown, and about ½ inch to 1 ½ inches long. They are sometimes mistaken for spiders due to their long legs.
They are most often found in crawl spaces or basements, but like any cool or damp areas such as cellars or closets. There will usually be a hundred together at a time, and they spread and jump rapidly with any movements or disturbances.
These bees are sometimes mistaken for the bumblebee, however, the abdomen of the carpenter bees is a shiny bluish-black whereas bumblebees' abdomens are hairy. Carpenter bees burrow into the exposed dry wood of structures. Infestations of these bees are normally detected by the large round holes (galleries) made by the female. Sawdust on the ground or around the area being drilled may also be detected.
Male carpenter bees can be annoying because they fly around the heads of humans, but they are harmless because they lack a sting. The females' stings are potent but they use it very rarely. In some cases, they can cause serious damage to the wood from their drilling. They usually affect wood siding, eaves, wood porches, fences, or any exposed wood structure.
House centipedes are 1-1/2 inches long. Their body is a yellowish-gray color. Their antennae are also very long and extend out in front of their bodies. This centipede is easily noticed by its 15 pairs of very long legs.
In the Richmond area, they prefer to live in damp locations such as basements, bathrooms, cellars, and closets, where they feed on other insects and spiders. They usually forage at night, but can be seen during the day moving very quickly across floors, occasionally getting trapped in sinks or bathtubs.
These reddish-brown bugs are very tiny, usually smaller than the head of a pin, and they move very slowly. They feed on plant and grass fluids found in yards. In the spring, their population increases rapidly, and mites leave the grasses and climb on houses, entering through windows and doors. They will also be found around sidewalks, driveways, and other areas outdoors where the moisture content is high.
They do not bite people or pets, however they can be extremely annoying, because they will be in very large numbers around windowsills, door casings, and baseboards. They do not cause damage indoors, but they will leave red stains when crushed on walls or draperies.
These insects are about 1 inch long, with a reddish brown color, and they have distinctive pinchers at the end of their abdomen. They are frequently found in large groups under debris, rocks, flower pots, and around the outside of structures. Indoors, they may be seen in kitchens and bathrooms, where the moisture content is higher. They feed mainly on plants such as flowers, but also on other insects.
Fleas are very small, wingless insects. The body is very flat and narrow. They are a dark brown color. They have very strong hind legs that enable them to jump up to 8 inches vertically, and up to 16 inches horizontally. This enables them to easily jump from their host to other surfaces. In most cases, the host is a cat, dog, or other blood host that they can feed off of.
Fleas lay their eggs on the host or into carpeting, or the host's bedding areas. Eggs on the host can also fall off onto the ground, floor, carpeting, bedding, or even cracks in the floor. A female flea lays a few eggs each day until she has laid between 200-400 eggs. With the right temperature and humidity, these eggs can hatch within 2-3 days. Within a very short time, you can develop a serious flea problem.
Adult fleas are the blood feeders. They inject irritating saliva into the skin, which causes the skin to itch. Many customers will notice bites around their ankles or on their legs or may notice adult fleas on white socks or pant legs as they walk around infested areas.
Foreign grain beetles
These very small reddish brown creatures are sometimes mistaken for a flea or a gnat. They are frequently a problem for new homes but not because of stored grain or other products. These beetles are fungus feeders. They feed on the molds and fungi that grow on poorly seasoned lumber. On new lumber, damp wood is often covered with mold or mildew which attracts these beetles. Eggs are laid on this food material and the larvae develop on the surface. During construction, this lumber is then covered with insulation and drywall.
In the heat and humidity of summer, the adults fly out of the wall voids and come out into the indoors around the windows, plumbing lines, cabinets, or light fixtures. Attics will usually have a very high numbers also. They will not bite, they are just a flying, crawling nuisance to homeowners. Foreign grain beetles can continue to fly out every year until the wood has completely dried out, eliminating the molds and fungi along with the beetles.
These familiar beetles can be yellow, red, or orange, with black spots on their wings. These beetles, although annoying, are not harmful to humans. Asian ladybugs are the most common nuisance, due to their invasion of buildings and structures in the fall months in preparation for proper protection through the winter months. They will usually make their way into structures around attic vents, window sills, soffets, or other exterior entry points.
Inside, they will nest in attic spaces. They can be a nuisance, crawling around windowsills, baseboards, counters, and furniture. Their secretions have been known to cause damage to rugs and furniture.
The house mouse is the most common rodent in structures. They generally will live outdoors in fields, around weeds or shrubs, near building foundations or in storage sheds, garages, or crawlspaces. They can feed on weed seeds, insects, or any other foods they can find. In the fall, when their food supply becomes scarce and the climate becomes colder, they will start moving into buildings, homes, or other structures for food and shelter.
Once inside, mice will set up their nests near food supplies. The mother prefers warm, protective areas for her and her young. They can nest in or behind walls, closets, behind or under cabinets, large appliances, storage areas, attic spaces, or even in furniture. They tend to love insulation, due to its favorable bedding for their young. They prefer to be in tight, dark, confined areas because this gives them a feeling of security as they are traveling and nibbling. Homeowners will usually notice mice droppings or even mouse fur as a first indication there are mice in their home. Mice tend to travel and eat mainly at night. Noticing mice in the day frequently could indicate a serious mice infestation.
These flying insects have white markings on their legs and wings. Mosquitoes are a huge nuisance to people. In the outdoors, mosquitoes tend to be in areas where there is a stagnate water supply. This is where they lay their eggs.
Mosquito bites are usually detected by small red bumps that itch. These bites can carry many diseases. Homes with a lot of shrubbery, damp or moist flowerbeds, gardens with dense moist vegetation, or any natural and unnatural water sources around the home can face potential problems in the spring, summer, and fall months.
Also referred to as sowbugs or rollie pollie bugs. These insects are about ½ inch long and are dark gray to brown in color. They curl up when they are touched or when they die. They usually stay in moist areas and feed on decaying materials.
There are many types of species of cockroaches, however the most common roaches that enter structures are the German, American and oriental cockroaches.
- GERMAN ROACHES: This is the most common of all roaches encountered in structures. These cockroaches can be easily distinguished by their two dark parallel lines on their head. Although adults will have wings, they do not fly. Adult females carry an egg capsule protruding from the rear of their abdomen. These egg capsules can carry up to 48 eggs. It usually takes about 20-30 days from the formation to hatching. These cockroaches are generous feeders. Mainly seen in kitchen areas of structures, they will also move to other areas of the structure when food becomes scarce or the population becomes large and stressed from the lack of food or water. They can easily travel below or above tiny cracks and crevices of counters, floors, walls, along water pipes, electric lines or anywhere to continue to search for food and water. Although they mainly travel at night, they can be noticed during the day. They can also be carried from place to place in cardboard boxes, used furniture, old clothing, grocery bags, or any other items that were in an infested area. In cases of roach infestations, it will require an extensive amount of cooperation of cleanliness and sanitation from the customer as well as intense treatments from the professional pest control technician in order to achieve proper pest control.
- AMERICAN ROACHES: These are commonly known as the waterbug. It is the largest of the common roach species. Their bodies are reddish brown with an orange-red colored head. They are commonly found around the outside of structures close to moisture. They are seen around sewer lines, near garbage, sump pumps, damp mulch or crawlspaces.
- ORIENTAL ROACHES: These cockroaches are also referred to as waterbugs, or black beetles. They are very dark brown or nearly black and have a shiny look to their bodies. They are also commonly found in and around areas of high moisture.
These are a small soft wingless insect with a silver color. They are usually hard to notice due to their intense quickness. Usually noticeable in bathtubs. They like to be in moist areas such as around water pipes, basements and under rocks outdoors.
Spiders all have 8 legs, which keeps these separate from all other indoor pests.
Customers usually notice an abundance of spiders in early spring around the outside of their structures in and around flowerbeds, shrubbery, mulch, soffet areas, brick, or vinyl siding. They like cool damp areas such as basements or crawlspaces, as well as warm dry areas, such as air vents, and upper corners of rooms.
There are two types of poisonous spiders in the state of Kentucky:
- BLACK WIDOW SPIDERS: The female is well known due to their shiny black abdomen with two red triangles also known as an hourglass shape on her underside. Their thick mass of web makes it easy to wait on and capture her prey. These webs are often found under boards, along foundation walls, around and behind shrubbery and where brick or wood siding extends close to the ground. A black widow spider bite feels like a sharp needle point puncture to the skin. The toxins from the black widow spider bite affect the nervous system. These toxins can be deadly. Immediate medical attention should be received upon being bit by a black widow.
- BROWN RECLUSE SPIDERS: The brown recluse spider is tannish to brown in color. Its back has a dark fiddle-shaped marking that begins at the eyes and runs down its neck, with the fat end of the fiddle beginning behind the eyes. This spider got its name due to its reclusive tendencies. It does not like to be out in the open around activity. It is an extremely good hiding spider. They like to stay in dark, secluded areas such as the corners of closets, inside shoes, behind baseboards, crawlspaces, garages, and basements. Unlike a black widow spider bite, the initial bite is not as intense. Within 8 to 12 hours of the initial bite, the pain can become quite intense. Immediate medical attention should be received upon being bit by a brown recluse.
These grayish white insects have a forked appendage attached to their lower back that causes them to jump when it's moved quickly. This causes them to jump or flip in the air. Sometimes mistaken for fleas, however, they are not blood feeders.
These insects are commonly found outdoors in moist areas. Indoors, they can be seen in the soil of potted plants, in bathrooms, around drains, in basements, and on damp walls. They do not cause damage but are often considered a nuisance due to the large numbers present when noticed.
There are four main ways that our pest control professionals can determine if your home may have termites.
- TERMITE DAMAGE: The appearance of termite damaged wood is hollow along the grain of the wood with signs of dried mud or soil along the wood galleries. Moisture damaged wood does not have this. The wood will also have a blistered or bubbled appearance and in some severe cases, can be tore out or crumbled with your bare hands.
- MUD SHELTER TUBES: These tubes are usually found along foundation walls, footers, inside concrete blocks, or they can also be between the brick and block, especially if the brick goes below the soil. They may also be visible anywhere where there is a concrete slab. Termites use these mud tubes to travel from their colonies to the structure.
- SWARMERS: These winged termites will swarm out of a structure in the early spring and summer. They do this in order to try to start a new colony. It normally takes a colony 5-8 years to reach winged reproducer size. Warm and moist climate and temperature and humidity usually determines when, and how long termites will swarm. These termites will swarm out of the structure, into the air, dropping their wings to mate in attempt to begin a new colony in the soil. The good news is almost no swarmers inside a structure will survive. But this is also the best indication that the structure has a termite infestation. Most customers will notice swarmers around window, light fixtures, doors, or even on the floor. This is due to their attraction to light. Another indication that these winged creatures are termites is that they will always swarm out by the hundreds, maybe even thousands at a time. Their bodies, although having 3 body sections, appear to have a head and one complete body section.They have 2 pair of wings, all being of equal length and double the length of their body. Their antennae are straight, not elbowed like ants.
- LIVE WORKERS: These are often seen in the mud shelter tubings or in the damaged infected wood. They are small white fleshy looking insects. Some people mistake their appearance for maggots or ants. If you notice any or all of these indications, it is always best to call and make an appointment so we can schedule an experienced technician to do a thorough inspection and assess the situation.