Usual Suspects: The Top Three Insects and Bugs Expected To Be a Pest In 2019
The largest cockroaches found in homes, the American cockroach, is not native to North America. The American cockroach most likely was transported to North America via ships from Africa in the 1600s. Being nocturnal, cockroaches spend the daylight hours in dark secluded areas. They venture out at night in search of food and water.
- Cockroaches need daily consumption of water
- Females can hatch up to 150 offspring per year
- Cockroaches don’t get their wings until they become adults
- Cockroaches are mainly nocturnal and run away when exposed to light
- Cockroaches will eat just about anything, including plants and other insects
- Sightings of the cockroach are most commonly reported in the evening hours
- Cockroaches can cause allergies and trigger asthma attacks, especially in children
- The average lifespan of an adult cockroach is about 1 year depending on the species
- Most species of cockroach are about the size of a thumbnail, but several species are bigger
- Cockroaches prefer warm environments close to food and water, therefore they are commonly found in kitchens and bathrooms
- Cockroaches prefer close spaces, fitting into small cracks and crevices, thereby evading humans and eradication efforts
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.
Best known as a summer pest, female mosquitoes can lay up to 300 eggs at a time. Mosquitoes can develop from egg to adult in 10 to 14 days. Once reaching adulthood, the mosquito may live 5-6 months.
A mosquito uses heat sensors on its antennae and around its mouthparts to locate capillaries near the skin’s surface. The mosquito has a proboscis, a long pointed mouthpart, uses it to pierce the skin and to tap the capillary then drink up to three times its weight in blood.
- Mosquitoes are attracted to your body warmth and odor
- Carbon dioxide is considered to be the greatest attractant to mosquitoes
- When the female mosquito sense carbon dioxide (your breath), she will fly back and forth in a zigzag pattern, until she finds the source
- Female mosquitoes need protein to lay their eggs and get it by feeding on warm-blooded creatures. If a mosquito bites an infected animal or a person, then bites you, it can pass the disease to your blood through its saliva
- Mosquitoes breed in soft, moist soil or stagnant water sources such as storm drains, old tires, clogged gutters and birdbaths
- Mosquitoes are busiest at night and will fly up to 14 miles for a blood meal
- Mosquitoes spread diseases such as West Nile Virus, malaria and dengue fever
- People with Type O blood attracted more mosquitoes than any other blood type
- Almost all mosquito-bite illnesses have similar symptoms: Fever, Body aches, Rash & Headache
- Ideally, you want to avoid being bitten by wearing long sleeves and long pants or other protective measures