The Dayton's Blog

The Official Blog of Dayton's Pest Control

How to Remove Stink Bugs From Your Home

As the weather turns cold once again, that crisp air begins to drive insects and vermin indoors to shelter for the winter. One of the more irritating visitors is the stink bug, and they can make life indoors very unpleasant for their unwilling and often unwitting hosts. Halymorpha halys, or the brown marmorated stink bug, is a member of the pentatomidae family, and hails from China, Japan, the Korean peninsula and Taiwan. They made their appearance in the U.S. around 1998, and they have since become year-round pests that invade orchards and homes in the fall and winter. Though not dangerous, their defensive excretion of foul smelling spray can make life extremely unpleasant. Here are some ways you can get them out of your house without them stinking up the place. Use a Vacuum Cleaner Provided you empty the canister promptly, stink bugs can be vacuumed up quickly and deposited outside....
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Rats or Mice? Different Approaches to Each Pest

You are pretty sure you have a rodent infestation, but do you have rats or mice? While these are different pests and infestations are treated differently, both species tend to breed very rapidly, having between six to 18 offspring. Therefore, if you don’t deal with your problem quickly, it can easily get out of hand. Both rats and mice can damage the structure of your home and your electrical wiring, and both can contaminate your kitchen and your food. The most common rats that infest homes are the Norway rat and the roof rat. Norway rats can be either black or brown with a gray belly. They are quite large and can weigh over one pound. They have very long tails that can be as long as their bodies. Roof rats have a more pointed nose and will travel the same path each night. Rats prefer to live outside your home,...
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What to Do If You Have a Serious Termite Problem

To a homeowner, there’s just about nothing more terrifying than the thought of a termite infestation. Once those little bugs get into your home and your walls, you’re looking at a long and expensive ordeal before your home life even begins to return to a semblance of normal.If you suspect you might have Termites in your home, then it’s essential to act as soon as possible. Here’s what you need to do: Know the Signs The first thing you need to do is confirm that you do have a problem. There are many types of termites, and each one leaves different signs, but the most common are things like discarded wings, mud tubes, termite galleries (open spaces in wood that typically run parallel to the grain) and wood disfiguration such as holes and swelling Try it Yourself As mentioned above, termites can be a potentially expensive and devastating problem. That’s why...
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How to Remove Bed Bugs, Permanently

Most of us get the heebie-jeebies when it comes to bugs, but I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that one type of bug that really gets us going is the bed bugs. For many people, the idea of these little pests crawling all over them while they sleep is just too much to handle. If you’re worried that you might have bed bugs, no doubt you’ve lost sleep trying to figure out how to get rid of them. I’m sorry to say, though, that just being on your mattress less is not an effective way to combat these creeping critters. However, if you’re looking for ways to get rid of bed bugs permanently, don’t worry: we’ve got some tips to help keep your night time bug-free. Turn on the Heat One of the most important things to know about bed bugs is that they can not stand heat. Literally....
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Why You Should Not Ignore Pest Control in Winter

When winter approaches in a few short months, the end of pest season comes with it. Right? Wrong. The idea that you do not need to worry about pest control when the temperatures drop is a common misconception. Believing that pest control is not necessary during winter will do nothing but leave you battling insects and other pests for control of your home all season. Here is some important information to help you keep your home pest free all winter. Why Do You Need Pest Control in the Winter? Although it may seem like pests go dormant during the winter, you still need to take precautions to keep them at bay. Here are some great reasons you need to remain vigilant and not ignore pest control in the winter: Bugs that live within your walls are not affected by the cold weather outside. Rodents can find their way inside through cracks...
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Pests Native to the Knoxville Area

Knoxville, Tennessee is a beautiful city. There are many wonderful aspects of it for residents and visitors alike. But, Knoxville does have one downside. It is the home to some unwelcome pests. Here are some common pests that are native to the Knoxville area. Acrobat Ants Acrobat ants are a unique species. These creatures that can be found throughout Knoxville have the ability to lift their heart-shaped abdomens over their heads. These ants are quite small, measuring a mere 1/16th to ⅛th of an inch. These pests are generally harmless. However, if they feel threatened, they have been known to bite. They can also cause damage to a home. They can easily strip insulation from wires and cause short circuits. They can also contaminate food sources. If you find acrobat ants in your home, your best course of action is to contact Dayton's Pest Control. Ants could make their way into...
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5 Common Stink Bug Myths

The stink bug has a relatively large body with a shape that resembles a shield. It crawls slowly and occasionally flies. This common Asian insect comes in multiple colors, such as brown and green. It reached the U.S. about two decades ago. 1. Misconceptions Everyone should ignore several well-known myths about these bugs. For example, a few websites claim that they only produce an odor if you crush them. In reality, this pest can also exude an unpleasant smell when it feels threatened. Some Tennesseans believe that stink bugs are harmless because they normally don't bite or sting people. However, these insects may cause allergic reactions. They can damage crops and gardens as well. This pest could also stain a home's furniture, curtains or rugs. Additionally, your pet might vomit after eating a bug. 2. Disappearance During cold, rainy months, people often think that absent stink bugs have died or traveled...
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Lower Your Heating This Year with Better Insulation

Unless you have a fireplace or use a kerosene heater in the home, then you will probably use more electricity in the winter because of the colder temperatures as you want to keep your family comfortable. Using more electricity often means that your electric bill will increase. You can lower your heating bill with better insulation throughout the home. One of the first places to start is in the attic. Spray foam insulation is an option to consider if you have open walls or if there are slats along the walls. Plastic on the walls works as well, but you should have some kind of other material with the plastic because it can tear and blow around if it's not tacked down securely. In addition to keeping your house warm this winter, make sure you keep in mold-free too. Signs of Mold in Your Home Ways to Keep Your House Warm...
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Hiking Tips to Avoid Ticks

An enjoyable hiking excursion can quickly turn dangerous if a tick decides to burrow into your skin. Avoiding these pests is difficult, especially if you're hiking in areas with a healthy tick population. However, you can take a few smart precautions to lessen your risk of becoming a host, starting with dressing to protect your skin. Cover Your Skin On a hot summer day, you may worry that wearing clothes that cover your skin may leave you overheated and drenched in sweat. However, wearing a lightweight shirt with long sleeves can help you avoid an unfortunate meet-up with a tick. Wearing pants is also essential, especially if you're planning to hike through overgrown areas. Tucking your socks into your pants might not earn you any fashion points, but it can significantly reduce the chance of a tick hitching a ride on you. If you're concerned that you'll feel too hot while...
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Preventing Pests from Destroying Your Fall Decorations

The leaves change colors and there is a crisp feeling in the air in the fall. It's often a time to decorate with pumpkins, hay bales, and scarecrows. However, pests might want to get into your decorations while they are outside. Fortunately, there are a few ways to prevent pests like spiders and ants from making a home out of your decorations. Keep all of the debris and leaves picked up out of the yard. Many pests are only looking for somewhere to call home, and if they find a leaf pile or a log suitable enough for shelter, then they will usually take up residence. Don't put any food or food containers outside. Keep everything in a sealed trash can where pests can detect the smell. Trim the limbs from your trees, especially the ones that look like they are dead or like they are dying. Put any firewood that...
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3 Tips for Keeping Your Home Pest Free

Your home is a sanctuary, a place in which you can relax and forget about the worries outside. Unfortunately, pest insects and rodents make it hard to enjoy your home. They contaminate your food and fly around your face when you're unwinding on the couch or the patio. If you want to enjoy a pest-free home, it pays to take preventative action as soon as possible. 3 Pest-Free Tips for Your Home Reduce the clutter inside and outside Pests need protection and will hide in hard-to-reach places. Clutter offers safety for small pests, giving them a place in which to breed and to stay safe from predators and bad weather. Reduce the clutter inside your home and on your property to eliminate infestations, especially when pests look for shelter as the seasons change. Seal cracks and crevices Insects and rodents easily locate cracks and crevices around plumbing pipes, vents and areas...
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Fall is Flea Season. Here's How to Prepare.

A female flea can lay between 28 and 50 eggs per day. As temperatures become milder in the fall, fleas hatch in large numbers. Your pet’s developing winter coat is a perfect place to contain the pests. Prevent a fall flea infestation by treating your pet as well as your environment. Treat Your Pet Consistently Don’t stop administering flea treatment just because summer’s over. You should give pets flea treatments throughout the year. Treat all of your pets. For example, you may have an indoor cat and a dog that goes outdoors. If the dog brings fleas inside, they could find their way to your cat. Other animals that are susceptible to fleas are ferrets and rabbits. Check Pets For Fleas If your animal has sores on its skin or scratches itself frequently, it might be suffering from flea bites. Examine your pets regularly using a flea comb. The comb will...
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Preparing Early for Fall Pests

It's never too early to begin preparing your home for pests that come around in the fall season. The types of pests that you might see will likely be different than those that were present in the summer. Mosquitoes and wasps won't be as much of a threat as ants and other pests that are looking for somewhere warm to make a home for the cold winter months. Take a tour around the outside of your home as well as the inside to see if there are any areas that are exposed. Seal any cracks that you see to prevent pests from getting inside the house. You should also examine your garage or any sheds that are on the property as well to seal off any cracks. Seal any holes in the siding and any holes that are seen in window screens because pests will find any opening possible to escape...
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What Are Kudzu Bugs and Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs?

Brown marmorated stink bugs and kudzu bugs have several things in common and are sometimes referred to as distant cousins. Both bugs originated in Asia and were accidentally introduced in the United States. Both can inflict damage on plants and trees, and both types can emit an offensive odor when they feel threatened or are crushed. Both species have been rapidly expanding their range since they were introduced. Despite their similarities, however, they are distinct species. Kudzu Bugs One of the favorite food sources for kudzu bugs is an Asian vine known as kudzu. The kudzu vine was brought to America during the late 1800s for use as an ornamental plant. The plant can tolerate drought, help prevent soil erosion and feed foraging livestock, so it was often planted in areas affected by the Dust Bowl that occurred during the 1930s. It proved to be an invasive vine that took over...
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Signs of Mold in Your Home

Molds are classified as fungi, so they are neither animals nor plants. Since molds do not rely on photosynthesis, they can thrive in any dark, moist environment. Most molds also prefer warm temperatures; a few species can survive temperatures that are near the freezing point. If the environment becomes inhospitable, molds can simply go dormant until environmental conditions improve. Molds reproduce by forming spores that are released into the air. These spores form new colonies when they land on a surface that is conducive to growth. The ability of mold spores to float effortlessly through the air means that colonies can spread quickly, and the airborne spores can also affect the health of humans who inhale them. Unfortunately, mold can be difficult to identify, so the following information may help you recognize common signs that your home is harboring mold. Visible Mold Seeing mold is an obvious sign, but not all...
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5 Tips To Avoid Bringing Home Bed Bugs

After a six-decade hiatus, bed bugs are making a comeback. A National Pest Management Association survey found that “one in five Americans [has] had an infestation or [knows] someone who has encountered bed bugs at home or in a hotel.” These tiny oval insects often go unseen but feed by sucking blood from humans or other animals. Active at night, they leave many victims exhausted, covered in bites and rashes. Some simple practices, however, can ensure your household remains bed bug-free, regardless of where you may go. How To Avoid Bringing Home Bed Bugs Tip #1: Recognize Bed Bug-Friendly Public Settings Bed bugs are pervasive. They can exist anyplace, from nursing homes and libraries to corporate offices, college dormitories and hospitals. Even public transportation is not exempt. One person whose home is infested can easily and unknowingly transport them to a new site complete with a crevice to call home and...
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What Is Frass, and How Can I Identify It?

The actual term "frass" dates back to the mid-1800s and comes from a German root word that meant “devouring as a beast does.” Today, frass is a polite technical term for the waste that certain insects excrete. Key among these is the carpenter bee because its frass can serve as a handy indicator that a property has carpenter bees. More important, it can direct homeowners to the exact sites where carpenter bees are nesting. What is a Carpenter Bee? Unlike other members of the bee family like honeybees or bumblebees, carpenter bees tend to be solitary insects. Although they closely resemble a bumblebee, closer inspection will reveal that carpenter bees have yellow downy hairs on the thorax but have a smooth, shiny black abdomen. The other major difference is that while the social bumblebee tends to nest in the ground in a group, each solitary female carpenter bee drills a perfect...
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What Foods Attract Ants?

Ants can invade your property during any time of the year. These small insects often form large colonies after they discover a stable supply of food and water. They often send in a small scout to locate this food supply before reporting back to the colony. The early signs of an ant infestation might include small trails where they dropped some food or even corpses of scouts that might be consumed by other insects. To understand your ant control options, consider the following facts about ants and their food preferences. Take precautions to seal your food in containers that do not leak or allow a scent out into the air. Types of Ants Understanding the different preferences for each type of ant can help you when you are planning your ant-control system. Although there are some additional varieties, most ants will fall under the following three categories: Ants that prefer greasy...
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Fun Facts About Termites

Termites often perform their work on the structure of your home behind the scenes, but there are times when you can see them as they begin to swarm for the first time in the spring season. They usually don't begin to swarm until the weather turns warmer. Most of the termites that leave the nest have wings and will find other termites to mate with, increasing the size of the nest as the eggs hatch over the next few weeks. After termites mate, they leave behind their wings. Most of the time, termites will die once they mate and leave the nest for the first time in the spring. If there are termites underneath your home or in your walls, then you might see the wings of the insects or even the dead bodies that are left behind on the floor, on the washing machine or dryer or on windowsills. Sunlight...
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April Showers Can Lead to Water Damage

April is a month known for large amounts of rain. The grass gets greener, and the flowers begin to bloom because of the rain that falls. However, April showers can also lead to water damage in the yard and even mold in the home. Aside from rain that falls, ice and snow begin to melt as well, which can also result in changes that are seen around the exterior of the home as the gutter system, windows, and the roof experience changes in temperatures in a short time along with the abundance of water. Culverts in the yard can begin to flood and can become clogged if you haven't raked the leaves. Storm drains can also become clogged from too much rain falling at one time. If the culverts and drains have too much water, then the water can begin to flow back through your yard and into your basement or...
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