Termites -There are Several Types

Termites

There are three major types of termites found in the United States: subterranean, drywood, and dampwood. Formosans are considered a type of subterranean. There are over 2,000 different species, which all have distinct scientific name.

They range from 1/4 to 1/2 an inch in length. The queens and kings are larger, capable of reaching over one inch long. The workers are typically soft-bodied and pale-colored. Flying termites, also called reproductives, have two pairs of prominent wings.

Each type has its own dietary preferences. Subterraneans prefer softwoods, but may invade most species of wood. Dampwoods generally stay close to the ground, but will choose moist, decaying wood anywhere it is found. Drywoods are often found in attics and require little moisture in the wood they eat.

They are detritivores, or detritus feeders. They feed on dead plants and trees. They get nutrients from cellulose, an organic fiber found in wood and plant matter. Wood makes up the majority of the pests’ diet, although termites also eat other materials such as paper, plastic, and drywall. Most species prefer dead wood, but some termites feed on living trees.

Commonly, they live in wooden structures, decayed trees, fallen timber, and soil. Habitats vary among species as some require different amounts of moisture. The pests are found in greater numbers in tropical regions where living conditions for termites is optimal. Subterraneans are the most abundant variety and can be found throughout the United States. Both dampwood and drywood species are generally more localized in the Southern states.

Subterraneans homes are usually formed in soil. Within these mounds, they build elaborate tunnel systems and mud tunnels through which they access above-ground food sources. Drywood termites live within the wood they consume and oftentimes infest walls and furniture. Subterraneans are constantly forging tunnels under your ground around your home.

When a colony has matured, winged, swarming termites can be seen around windows and doors. Winged ones are highly attracted to sources of light and are most active in springtime. After mating, these  locate a new breeding site and create another colony, spreading infestations throughout multiple locations in the case of drywood termites. The swarming season in the Southern states is normally in May.

We at Southern Pest Control have been controlling termites in South Mississippi for over 38 years. Our technicians are well trained to handle all your termite problems. Please call us at 800 527-9832 to give you a Free Estimate to control termites around your home. Also, you can visit our website at www.southernpestcontrol.biz to learn more about us and meet our team.

Ants in the Fall

ants in the fall

Ants in the Fall – It’s that time of the year for pumpkin patches, college football, and hopefully some cooler weather. But it is also time for fall ant invasions! Cooler weather means it’s time for the ants creeping around outside your house to come knocking!

As the temperatures dip, the best line of defense to keep them from migrating into your home is to set up point-of-entry barriers. Treating the perimeter of your house offers the best autumn ant control, as well as pest control for other fall invaders.

Before they come marching to your door, stop them dead in their tracks with these simple tips for effective fall control.

  • First, understand the ant colony and its queen. 

To solve an ant problem, you need to first eliminate the ones you don’t see to get rid of the ones you do see.

It sounds strange, but it’s true. This is because the queen — the one who lays all the eggs — never leaves her nest. She just stays there, being fed by the workers (the ones you see) and continuing to reproduce more ants. So, you can spray and spray the ants you see, and she’ll just keep making more to take their place.

  • Watch the trailing ants.

So, although it may sound silly, the first step in controlling them is simply watching the ones that enter your home to see where they are coming from and going to. They will seek food, but once it finds food, the ant will return to its nest with the crumb, leaving a scent trail behind it. By doing so, the ant leaves a trail for its fellow worker ants to help in gathering the food.

  • Don’t spray them! 

As discussed in #1, the ants that you see are worker ants. Their job is to find food and take it back to feed the queen and her young, who are being groomed as the next generation of worker ants.

Because of this, these worker ants are your ticket into the colony. If you spray and kill these ants, the colony will simply send out more workers, and you’ll never reach the queen.

  • Hold off on cleaning

Although it is good to eliminate other food sources, you don’t want to mop away the ant’s odor trail yet. The trail will now lead the workers to your bait instead.

  • Be patient.

The ants will carry the insecticide bait back to the nest, but it can take several days to eliminate the colony, or even a few weeks if the colony is very large or it has several queens. You may even need to replace the bait station if they empty the food or liquid bait.

  • Keep it clean.

Sanitation is critical for the prevention and control of any pest. Like all living creatures, ants need water, food, and shelter for survival. Ants will leave the shelter of their colony to seek food and water. Don’t make it easy for them! Keep foods sealed, floors swept, and all surfaces cleaned.

We, at Southern Pest Control, hope that this information is helpful as we enter the Fall Season. Please remember when any pest control problem arises, our trained team of experts is ready to help. Please call us at 800 527-9832 if we can help. Please visit our website at https://www.southernpestcontrol.biz/ to meet our team and learn more about us. We have been serving the entire Gulf Coast Region for over 38 years.

Autumn Animal and Insects

Autumn Animals and Insects– Many types of mammals, invertebrates and amphibians sleep through the coldest months. Some species, like hedgehogs, truly hibernate. Others, such as frogs, enter a state of torpor from which they rouse easily to look for food or stretch.

Gardeners can help by ensuring garden wildlife has somewhere cool and dry to rest undisturbed until spring – here are tips you can do to help get wildlife through the winter.

For your Pond

Male frogs often spend winter in the muddy depths of ponds, breathing through their skin. But if the pond freezes over, gases caused by decaying plant material can get trapped and poison them. Remove debris from ponds now, and float a tennis or golf ball on the surface to prevent ice from sealing it.

Use Twigs

Put bundles of twigs at the back of borders, or in a plant pot on its side, where invertebrates and small mammals can shelter.

Use Plant Pots

Leave stacks of plant pots in a sheltered spot to offer shelter for bees and other insects needing a cool, dry place.

Remove Leaves

Remove leaves from paths or lawns but transfer them to a corner or beneath a hedge, where hedgehogs and other animals can crawl for shelter.

Inside Your Home

Like butterflies, ladybirds may choose to overwinter in your home and will be disturbed by the heating coming on. As they hibernate in large groups, it may be best to leave them alone and if you can, leave the room unheated. If not, using a dustpan and brush, tip them gently into an empty box and move them to the shed.

Nest Boxes

Birds don’t hibernate, and they require a lot of energy to keep themselves warm at night. Clear out nest boxes now so that birds can take shelter in them on cold nights.

We, at Southern Pest Control, hope that this information about autumn animals and insects is helpful as we enter the Fall Season. Please remember when any pest control problem arises, our trained team of experts is ready to help. Please call us at 800 527-9832 if we can help. Please visit our website at www.southernpestcontrol.biz to meet our team and learn more about us.

Biting Flies at the Beach

When vacationing this summer along the coast you may all of a sudden be attacked by biting flies. Many biting flies persistently attack man and animals to obtain a blood meal. The feeding activity of these insects is often very annoying and can result in injury or disease transmission. Biting flies of medical and veterinary importance include no-see’ums, black flies, stable flies, horse flies, and deer flies.

No-see’ums biting flies

No-see’ums are members of the insect order Diptera that undergo complete metamorphosis including the egg, larva, pupa, and adult forms. The adults are less than 1/16-inch-long, dark gray to black, and have one pair of spotted wings. Although no-see’ums breed predominantly in salt marshes, some inland species breed in tree holes and other fresh water areas.

The larvae of this pest are often found in mud, sand, and other moist debris surrounding the edges of ponds, springs, lakes, creeks, tree holes, or on slime-covered bark. In the water, larvae occur as free-living swimmers that are commonly found on floating twigs or leaf debris.

Black Flies

Black flies (Simuliidae)  are small, dark, stout-bodied insects with a hump-backed appearance that can be biting flies. Adult females are not host specific and feed on blood primarily during daylight hours. It hovers about the eyes, ears, and nostrils of man and animals, often alighting and puncturing the skin causing severe irritation.

The black fly life cycle begins when eggs are deposited on logs, rocks, or solid surfaces in swiftly flowing, oxygenated streams. Larvae attach themselves to underwater rocks or vegetation with a posterior sucker. The length of the larval period varies depending on the species and conditions within the larval environment. Adult black flies emerge after pupation and begin searching for new hosts. These pests are strong fliers and are known to travel seven to 10 miles from their breeding sites.

Stable Fly

The stable fly, also known as the dog fly, is a blood-sucking pest that closely resembles the house fly. It is similar to the house fly in size and color, but is easily recognized by its large, piercing mouthparts, which project forward from the head. Unlike many blood-feeding insects, such as mosquitoes, both sexes of the stable fly feed on blood.

The stable fly is a common pest of man and animals throughout the world. Stable flies are strong fliers that can travel up to two miles in search of a blood meal. Because they are persistent and easily interrupted during feeding, they often attack more than one host, increasing the potential for disease transmission. Although stable flies may be mechanical vectors of several animal diseases, they are not known to play a significant role in spreading human pathogens.

Horse Flies and Deer Flies

Horse flies and deer flies are closely related insects with similar life cycles. Both pests are strong fliers and only the adult female bites. They are daytime feeders that use large piercing mouthparts to lacerate host skin for a blood meal. While feeding, an anticoagulant is injected into the wound, increasing blood flow. These wounds can often serve as sites for secondary infections and many people are allergic to the feeding activities of these pests. In addition, horse flies and deer flies are important agents of disease transmission due to their intermittent feeding activity.

Most species of horse flies and deer flies have aquatic or semi-aquatic immature stages. Some will also develop in moist soil, leaf debris, or rotting logs. The eggs are generally deposited in layers of vegetation, objects over water, or other moist areas favorable to larval development. Five to seven days after hatching, the larvae travel to the water surface or other moist areas and begin to feed on organic matter.

We at Southern Pest Control hope that this information was helpful. Please call us at 800 927-527-9832 if we can help rid you of any unwanted pests. Our team of professionals are standing by ready to help. We have been servicing the Gulf Coast Region for over 38 years. Please visit our website at www.southernpestcontrol.biz to meet our team and learn about all the services we offer.

Ants and Summer Time

Ants are not generally considered dangerous pests, but they can pose significant health and cosmetic damage to turf grass. Controlling them in the lawn becomes important where their hill building causes root damage to grass and unsightly mounds. These colony insects settle in large numbers and build intricate labyrinths in grass root systems. Knowing how to control them in lawns begins with some information on these insect’s soil and location preferences and a concerted effort to destroy their nests.

The mounds and hills formed by ant colonies are not the only issue with these insects. Many species also have an interest in ranching and will “farm” aphids and mealybugs, protecting them and assisting their daily needs to keep a local source of honeydew. Honeydew is the substance secreted by aphids and mealybugs and is something of a delicacy to ants.  Having a colony of farming ants can mean real trouble for your veggies and ornamental plants, the food of choice for mealybugs and aphids. Controlling ants in the lawn is a good way to minimize the population of these pest insects.

Ants prefer dry, well-drained soil in an undisturbed, low traffic area. Lawn dwelling ants are generally not an issue because these are not the stinging sort but some species have a habit of undermining grass roots and can cause large dead patches in the lawn.

Spot control is the best method for killing ants. They tend to concentrate in a small area and spot application isolates the chemical zone and minimizes damage to beneficial insects who also call the grass home.

They can be a blessing and a curse, so consider the severity of the problem before determining what action you should take. Their activity is also a natural pest control and can increase the tilth of soil, acting as wild aerators to loosen the dirt around roots and enhance growth.

If ants are getting out of control in your yard, please call us, Southern Pest Control at 800 527-9832. We have been helping folks like yourself in the Gulf Coast area for over 38 years. Our trained professionals can solve your unwanted pest problems quickly and avoidably. Please visit our website at www.southernpestcontrol.biz to meet our and learn more about our services.

Plants Help Prevent Mosquitoes

plants help prevent mosquitoes

PLANTS HELP PREVENT MOSQUITOES -Summertime is time from fun in the sun, outdoor cooking and just relaxing next to the pool. But this hot time of the year also brings out that most hated insect in the South, the Mosquito.

In addition to spraying yourself down with whatever you can find to help, for a greener approach, try installing some of these mosquito and insect-repelling plants around your yard. These are some natural plants that can help greatly.

Here are 6 plants that can help repel mosquitoes.

Marigolds

Place potted marigolds near mosquito entry-points, such as doors and windows, or on a deck or balcony where you spend a lot of time outdoors. They also deter insects that prey on tomato plants this is a bonus for gardeners.

Not only do they make your landscape more attractive, but marigolds also have a distinct smell that repels mosquitoes.

Citronella

Citronella is one of the most common ingredients in insect repellents, due to its strong smell, which masks mosquito attractants.

The perennial clumping grass grows 5 to 6 feet and can be planted in the ground or kept in large pots.

Citronella plants thrive best in full sun and areas with good drainage.

Catnip

While Catnip does repel mosquitoes in proximity, some people apply crushed leaves for more protection.

Lavender

In addition to smelling lovely, aiding in relaxation and promoting restful sleep, lavender dissuades mosquitoes and gnats from invading your outdoor dinner party when planted in the garden or in pots placed by windows, doors and entertainment areas.

Basil

Enjoy delicious pesto dishes, and keep mosquitoes at bay, with this insect-repelling herb. Basil is one of the few herbs in which you don’t have to crush the leaves to reap its benefits.

Lemon Balm

Also, known as horsemint, lemon balm’s aroma wards off mosquitoes, but attracts pollinators like bees and butterflies.

It’s fast growing, drought resistant and reseeds itself, so consider planting in a pot rather than in your yard to avoid a lemon balm takeover.

We at Southern Pest Control hope that you have found this interesting. Remember when the unwanted pest problem gets out of control, we can quickly rid you of this problem. We have been helping folks like yourself along the Gulf Coast for over 38 years. Please visit our website at www.soyhernpestcontrol.biz to meet our team and learn more about us.

Bed Bugs Gulfport Should We Be Concerned?

bed bugs gulfport

When lying in your bed at night are you ever concerned about bed bugs Gulfport? These unwelcome pests can invade your hope without you even knowing. Questions to ask yourself when being concerned are: Have I traveled lately? Have I had house guests stay overnight lately?   With bed bugs instead of being able to sleep comfortably, you will find yourself uncomfortable and itching. We at Southern Pest Control provide professional bed bug removal services.

These pests are not easily eliminated. Major factors which play a role in how readily a bed bug infestation can be eliminated is the amount of available harborage for this pest to use as a safe haven from control efforts.  Crowded and/or cluttered conditions, as well poorly sealed baseboards, chair and/or crown moldings, window frames, door frames, paneled walls, etc. offer an environment with virtually unlimited harborages.

In many cases two or three services may be all that is necessary to eliminate the problem. However, there are also many cases that require a greater number of visits before the problem is resolved. Finally, there are some infestations where it can be difficult if not impossible to achieve 100% elimination.

Please contact us at 800 527-9832 regarding our bed bug removal services or any of the other services we offer. We have been serving the Gulf Coast area for over 38 years with quality and affordable pest control service. When calling you will speak with a trained experienced member of our team that can answer any questions you may have. We have many satisfied customers that we can give you as a reference if requested. We assure you that we will eliminate any pest problem you may have. We also offer animal removable if needed.

Please visit our website at www.southernpestcontrol.biz to review all our services and meet our team of professionals.

Snakes in Biloxi can be a Summer Problem

snakes in biloxi

Despite being cold-blooded animals, snakes in Biloxi don’t like to get too hot in the summertime, and you may find a variety of reptiles seeking shelter from the hot summer sun.

If you aren’t seeing a snake every occasionally, then something isn’t right.

A lot of people always try to attribute seeing them this time of year to some kind of weather phenomenon, It’s so hot. It’s so wet. It’s so dry. Some people say they haven’t seen a snake in many years, but there’s must be snakes around. By some coincidence they see a couple in a short amount of time. Because they hadn’t seen any in a long time, they think they are suddenly overrun with snakes, which is not normally true.

If you have a healthy environment, you’re going to have snakes. If you have a field next to you and they’re doing construction work or something, they may run a few of them onto your property. That might be the phenomenon that accounts for you seeing a couple of them.

For some people, every snake they see is a venomous one, but in Alabama there are only six venomous snakes, they include the pit vipers: cottonmouth, copperhead and the three rattlesnakes — eastern diamondback, timber and pygmy. The sixth venomous one is the extremely rare coral snake.

The coral snake is so rare. They are usually limited to the southern half of the state, although we have records of them in the central part of state. A coral snake is so boldly colored people are not going to mistake it for one of the other snakes.

All of them are beneficial in their own ways, especially the king snake, which regularly dines on several of the venomous species.

The good thing about snakes is they eat only small animals and other critters. They don’t eat fruits or vegetables. The small snakes are going to eat insects or small invertebrates. The larger snakes like the black racer, garter snake and rat snake will eat what they can catch, which is mice, rats and other snakes.

Most snakes will seek an escape from the summer heat and will typically find shelter underground.

Snakes don’t like it too cold or too hot. You’re going to find them in shady areas in the summertime. If they get caught out in the sun for too long, they’ll get too hot and die. So, they’ll be seeking shelter during the hot times of the day.

We at Southern Pest Control hope that this information was helpful. If you have a snake problem or any other type of animals, please remember we do not only control your unwanted pests, we safely remove unwelcome animals as well. Please call us at 800 527-9832 if we can help. Please visit our website at https://www.southernpestcontrol.biz/. to learn more about us and your services.

Ants Ocean Springs in the Summer

Ants Ocean Springs

Ants Ocean Springs are not generally considered dangerous pests, but they can pose significant health and cosmetic damage to turf grass. Controlling them in the lawn becomes important where their hill building causes root damage to grass and unsightly mounds. These colony insects settle in large numbers and build intricate labyrinths in grass root systems. Knowing how to control them in lawns begins with some information on these insect’s soil and location preferences and a concerted effort to destroy their nests.

The mounds and hills formed by ant colonies are not the only issue with these insects. Many species also have an interest in ranching and will “farm” aphids and mealybugs, protecting them and assisting their daily needs to keep a local source of honeydew. Honeydew is the substance secreted by aphids and mealybugs and is something of a delicacy to ants.  Having a colony of farming ants can mean real trouble for your veggies and ornamental plants, the food of choice for mealybugs and aphids. Controlling ants in the lawn is a good way to minimize the population of these pest insects.

Ants prefer dry, well-drained soil in an undisturbed, low traffic area. Lawn dwelling ants are generally not an issue because these are not the stinging sort but some species have a habit of undermining grass roots and can cause large dead patches in the lawn.

Spot control is the best method for killing ants. They tend to concentrate in a small area and spot application isolates the chemical zone and minimizes damage to beneficial insects who also call the grass home.

They can be a blessing and a curse, so consider the severity of the problem before determining what action you should take. Their activity is also a natural pest control and can increase the tilth of soil, acting as wild aerators to loosen the dirt around roots and enhance growth.

If ants are getting out of control in your yard, please call us, Southern Pest Control at 800 527-9832. We have been helping folks like yourself in the Gulf Coast area for over 38 years. Our trained professionals can solve your unwanted pest problems quickly and avoidably. Please visit our website at https://www.southernpestcontrol.biz/ to meet our and learn more about our services.

Mosquitoes Gulfport in 2019

mosquitoes

If you live in South Mississippi or Alabama, mosquitoes may be a year-round disturbance. These tiny, blood-thirsty insects will attach anywhere from head-to-toe, particularly during warmer months. They also carry diseases that can cause severe symptoms like fevers, diarrhea, vomiting, and even death.

Diseases carried by mosquitoes kill more people than any other living species on Earth. Statistics show that more than 700,000 people worldwide die in any given year because of the diseases these bugs carry.

With the rise of global temperatures, along with the rise of human activity, comes a better environment for mosquitoes to proliferate and spread across the world.

The warmer and wetter it is, the more mosquitoes will be around. Looking back to late summer 2018, areas that had long stretch of rain even as far north as Michigan caused mosquito populations to triple or quadruple. More rain means more standing water, which means more mosquitoes. Similar bouts of rain are expected in 2019, which will no doubt lead to similar increases in mosquito populations.

These warmer and wetter conditions allow diseases that mosquitoes carry to be spread quicker and easier. Currently, different parts of the world are facing outbreaks of yellow fever, dengue, Zika and chikungunya, according to studies. Fortunately, many parts of the U.S. still don’t have substantial communities of the primary disease-carrying mosquitoes that exacerbate outbreaks and epidemics. However, researchers believe that by 2050, almost every section of the United States will have communities of mosquitoes at some point during the year. This makes it imperative to take mosquito control seriously no matter where you live. Keeping areas around your home free of standing water and keeping outdoor covered spaces free from clutter that can create moisture with go a long way in helping protect you again a mosquito outbreak. We at Southern Pest Control have been helping folks in the Gulf Coast Region keep mosquitoes under control at their homes and offices. We have been in the pest control business for over 38 years with well-trained technicians and support staff. Please visit our website at https://www.southernpestcontrol.to meet our team and view all the services