Christmas Tree Hitchhikers


There could be up to 25,000 bugs living in your Christmas tree. Thirty-Three million natural Christmas trees are sold in the United States every year. Insects brought into the warmth of a home behave as though spring has come and become active again.

Some common pests hiding in your Christmas tree:

  • Mites
  • Sawfly
  • Aphids
  • Spiders
  • Adelgids
  • Bark Beetles
  • Praying Mantises
  • Pine Needle Scale

Pest Prevention:

  • Vigorously shake the tree before bringing it into your home.
  • Look out for bird nests, since they may contain parasites such as mites and lice.
  • Beware Spruce Spider mites appear as tiny red and brown dots when shaken out of Christmas trees. Vaccuum all discarded fallen droppings.
  • Cinara Aphids and their eggs are often hidden down inside the lower branches of Christmas trees where they are hard to find.
  • The Praying Mantis and Gypsy Moth will lay eggs in Christmas trees. Look for the walnut-sized tan egg masses. If you find any, remove them.

Unwelcome Pest Invasion


What do we do when the temperature drops? We seek warm shelter. Same for a lot of pests. In addition to seeking refuge from the cold, pests are also searching for food sources.

Rats and mice transmit diseases, transport fleas, mites, ticks, and lice, trigger asthma attacks in children and cause significant damage to the home by gnawing through electrical wiring causing fires. Rodents can squeeze through spaces as small as a coin and create holes in the foundation for easy entryways.


  • Store food in airtight sealed containers.
  • Screen vents and openings to chimneys.
  • Screen vents and openings around the foundation.
  • Ensure shrubbery is well-trimmed and away from home.
  • Repair all damaged torn screens and cracks under doors.
  • Store firewood away from the home on an elevated surface.
  • Inspect and seal areas where utilities and pipes enter the home.
  • Keep basements, attics and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.
  • Seal with caulk all cracks in and around the foundation of the home.

If you suspect a pest infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect, identify and treat the problem.

Don’t Do It Yourself Pitfalls


Homeowners may be tempted to buy “do it yourself” pesticides at a local hardware store in an attempt to rid their home of bugs.

  • In order to effectively treat your home for pests, the insect must be correctly identified. Our technicians are trained to correctly identify the target pest and determine the appropriate treatment. There are 17 different ant species that populate the Southern & Sovereign Pest Control service areas and the appropriate treatment depends on the type of ant being treated.
  • In many cases, the off shelf products are not as effective as the products used by a licensed professional. The active ingredient may not be as effective and the application may only be effective for a short time period.
  • Do you want to go into your crawl space?
    Many of the treatments for common household pests require an application to be performed in the house crawl space. Let’s face it, most crawl spaces are dark, dirty, and a little scary. Our technicians frequently encounter spiders, rodents, and snakes in crawl spaces. A professional knows what to look for and can make decisions on effectively applying pesticides in the crawl space.

Check out a cool video regarding “Don’t Do It Yourself Pitfalls”.

Ouch. What stung me?

red ants

Fire Ants

  • Fire Ants can sting several times
  • Male fire ants die soon after mating
  • A fire ant queens’ lifespan is 7 years or more
  • Fire ants are extremely aggressive, especially if their nest is disturbed
  • The fire ant uses it’s antennae to hear, smell, find and taste food
  • Fire Ants are reddish brown to black in color and are about a quarter inch long
  • Fire ants were accidentally imported to the U.S. in the 1930’s via South America ships
  • The ants themselves are reddish brown in color and roughly 1/8 to 1/4 inch in length
  • One fire ant colony may have numerous queens, each with the fertility to lay up to 1,500 eggs per day
  • Fire ant mounds may reach two feet in height and have been found to extend twenty feet into the ground
  • Fire ants mate when the temperature is between 70 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit, with peak times during the spring and fall months
  • Once the queen has established a group of new workers, she continues to lay 100,000 to 300,000 eggs per year and can live for six or seven years



Fun Fact Friday

  • An engorged female tick may lay around 2,000 eggs or more.
  • Adult American dog ticks are reddish brown in color with silvery-gray or whitish markings on the back or upper body.
  • American dog ticks are most numerous along roadsides, paths, old fields, marshy areas and trails in brushy woodlands or meadows with tall grass or weeds.
  • The American dog tick, is the primary transporter of Rocky Mountain spotted fever in the eastern United States.
  • People or their pets may bring these ticks from outdoors into the home, where they can survive for many days. The Brown dog tick is capable of causing household infestations.
  • Keep lawns mowed, brush trimmed, and leaf litter away from the home.
  • Keep trails or paths in wooded areas on your property clear of vegetation.
  • Tuck your pants into the top of your socks or boots to create a “tick barrier.”
  • Wear clothes that will help shield you from ticks; long-sleeved shirts and long pants.

Protect your home, family and pets from flea, tick and fire ant infestations For more details and to schedule an appointment, contact your Southern & Sovereign Pest Control representative today 1-800-627-0577.

Heavy Rain plus Hot Weather equals Mosquitoes


With significant and frequent rainfall this year, combined with hot temperatures, the mosquito season is buzzing. Puddles of stagnant water are ideal breeding spots for the females to lay their eggs. All a female mosquito needs is a bottle cap of water to lay 100 to 200 eggs. Once the eggs are laid, they hatch into larvae within 24 to 48 hours.

Since hot air incubates viruses faster in mosquitoes, there is an increased risk catching West Nile (most commonly transmitted by mosquitoes that have bitten infected birds) or the Zika Virus during warmer weather. The warmer it gets, the more efficiently they transmit the virus. In addition, warmer temperatures increase their appetite for blood meals.

Did You Know?

  • Some female mosquitoes will lay their eggs in the fall, lying dormant and eventually freezing. The frozen larvae keep until the weather warms up then they hatch.
  • Only female mosquitoes bite. The female needs the protein in blood to help her eggs develop.
  • For the majority of mosquitoes, their activity peaks during the dusk hours.

Tips: Control Mosquito Populations on Your Property

  • Make sure you drain or get rid of any standing water.
  • Keep grass and vegetation cut/trim to reduce places to hide.
  • Have a pest control expert treat your property.

For more info regarding Mosquito Elimination Services click here.

Increase in Tick Population


Rainy Spring Sundays, the Winter’s Snow, and Hot Humid Days, Increase Tick Population.

In addition to rainfall and temperature, climate change with seasonal weather variations are contributing to the acceleration of a tick’s developmental cycle, causing an increase in eggs. A humid spring creates conditions conducive for a tick outbreak in early summer. Increased humidity creates the ideal environment for ticks.

  • Adult females lay their eggs in the spring
  • An engorged female tick may lay around 2,000 eggs or more
  • After hatching, ticks must immediately begin their quest for a hosts’ blood in order to survive
  • A tick must draw blood from a host in order to molt and reproduce
  • Once full of blood, the tick will fall from the host and be able to lay eggs

tkbld554pxTicks are known for climbing grasses and shrubs in an attempt to attach themselves to a host (people or animals) walking by. A tick needs to be attached for a certain length of time extracting blood before it can transfer disease. Of all blood sucking arthropods, ticks transmit the widest array of diseases.

After being in an infested area, and since most tick bites are painless, be sure to check yourself and your pets for ticks immediately.

Taking precautions can help reduce the risk of infection related to serious diseases carried by ticks. Wear long sleeves and pants. Tuck your pants into the top of your socks or boots to create a “tick barrier.” Be aware and avoid any harboring grassy unmanned landscape, wooded or brush areas.

Tick Avoidance Tips

  • Walk in the center of trails
  • Find and remove ticks from your body
  • Avoid tick habitat such as densely wooded areas
  • Use repellent that contains 20 percent or more DEET
  • Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter
  • Check your pets for ticks daily, especially after they spend time outdoors

Apply pesticides outdoors to control ticks, if needed.

Southern Pest Control Announces New Location in Newport News, VA

Southern Pest Control Announces New Location

Due to our increased growth in the Eastern Virginia area and our continuing efforts to ensure superior customer service, exact on the hour appointments, along with customized pest control and exterminating services to better serve our clients, we are proud to announce the opening of a new office in Newport News, VA.

The new office will be located on 751 Thimble Shoals Blvd., Suite H3, Newport News, VA 23606.

751thimbleshoalsgoogle_350pxThis new location and enhanced operational efficiencies will help us continue to grow and evolve keeping pace with our client’s needs, allowing us to provide exceptional value and superior service along the way. It will be our pleasure to serve you at our new location with the same quality and service you have come to expect of us.

For more information about the new Newport News location, call 757-468-9512 or 800-627-0577.

Our Newport News exterminators at Southern Pest Control are dedicated to providing professional exterminating services for residences throughout Newport News, VA and surrounding areas. We have the certified highly trained pest control experts to handle any pest issue. If you suspect an infestation of spiders, ants, mice, roaches, fleas, mosquitoes, termites or any other household pests, Southern Pest Control’s exterminators will provide a unique custom treatment plan that will fit your needs and safeguard your property. Our Newport News pest control exterminators strive to deliver prompt on the exact hour appointments, friendly customer service and lasting treatment results for every home we protect.

Are You Prepared for Mosquito Season?

Mosquitoes are remarkably hardy little creatures that can live through drought and withstand freezing temperatures. There are species of mosquito that travel long distances to feed while others live their entire life within 150 feet of their birth place.

Mosquitoes are more than just a nuisance. Prepare now by taking measures to ensure the mosquito population is kept in check.

  • Keep grass mowed
  • Prevent breeding grounds by removing debris from ditches, and gutters
  • Inspect window screens and doors are in good repair and fit or close tightly
  • Empty out any standing water, ensuring all water reservoirs are removed, as these can include tires, unused flower pots, kids toys and non-circulating water in bird baths

Mosquito Prevention

  • Dress in light long-sleeve clothing
  • Limit daytime outside activity at dusk and dawn
  • Apply mosquito spray that contains DEET

Fight back against mosquitoes with help from Southern & Sovereign Pest Control. Our mosquito control options are designed to reduce mosquito populations around your property so you can enjoy your outdoor living space. If you’re planning a large gathering in your backyard, mosquito service can make for a much more comfortable, and safe, event.

  • Weddings
  • Family Reunions
  • Team Building Events
  • Graduations
  • Other Outdoor Parties Or Events

Mosquito reduction will directly address the mosquitoes hiding on your property, and eliminate eggs, so they don’t hatch into a mass of new mosquitoes on the day you plan to have family and friends congregating in your yard.

Let us help you host a pest-free outdoor event. Call today and ask about our monthly special for April 2018 (4 mosquito treatments for $200).

Southern Pest Control does not believe in multi-hour appointment windows. All appointments are scheduled on the hour. We respect our customers’ time and want to make it easy and convenient to schedule service.

#1 Top Five Pest Concerns for 2018


Trouble distinguishing an ant from a termite? This can be difficult because termites and ants do look very similar, especially during the spring when female termites seek a mate before losing their wings and finding grounds for a new nest. When wings are present, the front wings will be longer than the back wings on ants. Only reproductive ants, (queens & and males) have wings. Queens shed their wings after the nuptial flight.

Ants are social insects that typically live in underground colonies, made up of workers and a queen. Most queen ants live for many years and breed millions of baby ants. The queen, the female workers, and males make up the ant colony. The queen and the males have wings, while the workers don’t have wings.

Ant colonies also have soldier ants that protect the queen, defend the colony, gather or kill food, and attack enemy colonies in search for food and nesting space. If they defeat another ant colony, they take away eggs of the defeated ant colony. When the eggs hatch, the new ants become the slave ants for the colony. Some jobs of the colony include taking care of the eggs and newborns, gathering food for the colony and building the anthills or mounds.

  • An ant has three distinct body regions: head, thorax and abdomen, as well as antennae
  • An ant’s head contains many sensory organs
  • Two antennae (“feelers”) are attached to the head; these organs detect chemicals, air currents, and vibrations
  • The queen is the only ant that can lay eggs
  • Once the queen grows to adulthood, she spends the rest of her life laying eggs
  • Depending on the species, a colony may have one queen or many queens
  • Queen ants may live for up to 30 years, while ant workers live from 1 to 3 years
  • Ants are active during warm/hot weather, but hibernate during cooler/cold weather

Ant invasions usually start with a few lone ants striking out to find a food source for the rest of the colony. Scout ants mark a scent path to the food and then return to the colony. The scent trail leads other worker ants straight to the food source. Ants will eat practically any kind of food, but are especially attracted to sweets.