What You Need To Know About Pests In Akron, OH
Being able to identify the pests you find in your home or business has several advantages. When you know what pest you’re dealing with, you can determine if it’s dangerous, what problems it can cause, and what action must be taken to get rid of it. Our Pest Library offers the identification and information you need about the most common pests to infest Akron area homes and businesses.
Ants regularly invade our yards and structures to forage for food and water and suitable nesting spots. They are one of the most common and frustrating pests that home and business owners have to deal with; they are always around and always looking for sources of food to feed their extremely large colonies. A single ant colony can have many thousands of ants living together, working as a team to maintain their nest and all the members living within it.
An ant colony divides its members into three different groups: queens (reproductive females), males (whose job is to mate with the females), and worker ants, which are sterile females. Worker ants are the ants we find traveling around our yards and homes, because one of their many jobs is to leave the nest each day to gather food to bring back to the queens, males, and young ants.
If ants have found their way to your Ohio property, in our area, they are likely to be odorous house ants. These ants received their name from the unpleasant, rotten coconut-like odor they emit when crushed. Though considered more of a nuisance than dangerous, these ants cause some big problems for people when they decide to take over our homes. These ants are small in size, allowing them to move through the tiniest of openings they discover in exterior walls and around pipes and wires or through things like vents or spaces around windows and doors.
Once inside, they will travel throughout your home, foraging for food sources that they can gather and take back to their nest. As they move over surfaces and food, they contaminate both with bacteria they have come into contact with. In an effort to expand their colony, odorous house ants may decide to create a nest inside of your home. Their indoor nests are typically places in wall voids near moisture sources like hot water pipes, heaters, and beneath leaky sinks or behind tubs.
The key to keeping ants out of your home is to make sure it is as secure as possible. Inspect its exterior and caulk cracks in the foundation and spaces around utilities entering into your home. Make sure screens in windows and doors and weatherstripping around both is intact. Remove their access to food in your yard that could initially attract them; keep lids on trash cans and recycling bins, maintain gardens, and keep outdoor areas free of leftover food.
Ants are attracted to areas of moisture, so remove as much excess moisture as possible from in and around your home by repairing leaky pipes and fixtures, ensuring your home is properly ventilated, and using dehumidifiers. Inside your house, regularly vacuum and keep a clean kitchen to reduce their access to food within your home.
Bed bugs are blood-feeding pests that have developed an affinity for feeding on human blood. Therefore, these insects have developed an affinity for living inside with people in our homes and businesses. Any Akron house or business could become home to bed bugs, as they move from place to place by hitchhiking unnoticed on people or our belongings (bags, luggage, furniture, mattresses, clothing). Bed bugs are small, oval-shaped insects that, before feeding, have a flattened body that is reddish-brown. After feeding, these pests turn a deeper red color and swell in a capsule-like manner.
Though bed bugs can be seen by the human eye, they are quite easy to overlook when they first enter your home; they know how to hide well out of sight in dark cracks and crevices. Knowing what some of their potential hideouts are is helpful to identify bed bugs before these prolific breeders have the chance to take over in large numbers. The seams of mattresses and box springs, upholstered furniture, rugs, electrical outlets, pictures hanging on walls, cracks in wooden furniture, and spaces behind baseboards and wooden trim should be regularly inspected for signs of bed bugs or bed bugs themselves.
If you are finding or noticing the following things in your home, you may be experiencing a problem with bed bugs:
- You or family members waking up with unexplained bug bites, especially in a linear or zigzag pattern.
- Finding dark streaks or drops of blood on mattresses, sheets, pillows, upholstery, or walls.
- Discovering shed insect skins in piles under mattresses or upholstered furniture, in drawers, closets, or on the ground.
- Noticing a musty-sweet odor has developed in a certain area or areas of your home.
- Finding apple seed-shaped insects in your home.
To help you avoid a problem with bed bugs in your Ohio home, we want to offer you some of our most effective bed bug prevention tips. When traveling or spending time in any public space, make sure to keep your personal belongings up off the ground and away from other people’s things as much as possible. Regularly vacuum your home’s floors and upholstered furniture to remove stray bed bugs. It is also a good idea to regularly wash and dry all bedding on high heat settings, inspecting mattresses and box springs for bed bugs. Place bed bug-proof covers on mattresses and box springs to take away one of their favorite hiding spots. Finally, at the first inkling that these pests are in your home, reach out to Promise Pest Control for help with reliable bed bug control.
If there is a pest we would be okay with never seeing in our Ohio homes, at the top of most everyone’s list would be the cockroach. Cockroaches are prolific breeders, live and forage for food in unsanitary places, and take over homes and businesses they find their way into in large numbers. They are difficult to avoid because the species we find in our homes and businesses are the species that have adapted to living with people. Common household cockroaches have learned that our properties provide them with easy access to the sources of food, water, and shelter necessary for them to survive and thrive. However, having these pests in our structures is dangerous because of the diseases and bacteria they spread and the allergies and asthmas attacks their presence triggers!
An example of a cockroach that regularly finds its way into Ohio structures is the American cockroach. These cockroaches are the largest species to invade homes in the U.S. and are identified by their large size, reddish-brown color, and yellow banding that creates a figure-eight-like pattern behind their head. These roaches can also fly short distances; while there is nothing worse than dealing with cockroaches, dealing with flying cockroaches is even more startling! American cockroaches are most common in structures where food is prepared or stored; they move inside through spaces in exterior walls, gaps around windows or doors, or inside things like boxes, potted plants, or other items that have spent time outside before being moved inside. Once inside our homes, most cockroaches like to move to dark, damp areas, hiding in areas that provide them with food and moisture- bathrooms, kitchens, basements, and utility rooms.
To help you avoid a problem with cockroaches in your home, implement the following cockroach prevention tips:
- Keep lids on trash cans and recycling bins.
- Wash dirty dishes daily and remove trash from your home daily.
- Pick up uneaten pet food each evening.
- Store food in the fridge or hard-sided containers with airtight lids.
- Regularly vacuum floors and wipe down counters and tables.
- Remove sources of water by repairing leaking pipes and fixtures.
- Use dehumidifiers to reduce humidity levels in your home.
- Inspect boxes, plant pots, and secondhand items for cockroaches before bringing them inside.
- Seal openings in your home’s exterior to stop them from moving in on their own.
If you picture yourself and your family relaxing outside enjoying summer’s sunshine and warm weather, know that there is a tiny flying insect that can ruin this idyllic image: the mosquito. Mosquitoes are flying pests that swarm our properties, looking for food and breeding sites. Female and male mosquitoes primarily feed on plant nectar and other sweet liquids, and standing water is where the females like to lay their eggs. Artificial or natural containers that collect rainwater like tree hollows, tree stumps, buckets, wading pools, and clogged gutters are common mosquito breeding sites found in or near most of our yards. Hot, humid weather allows these pests to thrive, usually from March through October. Things like mild winters, ample rainfall, and dense areas of vegetation are what produce large populations of these pests.
What makes mosquitoes so unwanted on our properties is not that they buzz around our yards feeding on plant nectar; it is because the females consume blood meals. Using their elongated mouthpart called a proboscis, they pierce the skin of their animal or human host and feed on their blood. Blood meals are required so females can produce healthy eggs and create more mosquitoes. During the feeding process, mosquitoes can contract and then spread diseases and parasites that make people and animals ill.
Mosquitoes spread the West Nile virus and other significant pathogens along with parasitic heartworms to our pets, which can be deadly. Limiting their numbers in our yards and reducing contact with these pests as much as possible is important because of the health risks these pests pose. In addition to spreading disease and parasites, their bites leave behind red itchy welts that can become infected or leave behind scars due to excessive itching.
To help keep mosquitoes out of your Ohio yard, follow our mosquito prevention tips, and request professional mosquito treatments for extensive problems:
- Store containers that can collect water upside down when not in use, such as flowerpots, buckets, wheelbarrows, and wading pools.
- Regularly empty pet water bowls, wading pools, and birdbaths and refill with fresh water.
- Repair low-lying areas that allow rainwater to pool on your property and provide breeding sites for mosquitoes.
- Cut back overgrown shrubbery, grass, and trees that can provide mosquitoes with shady, cool daytime hiding spots on your property.
- Repair leaky pipes, hoses, or damaged gutters that will allow water to pool near your home.
- Regularly clean out clogged gutters that collect rainwater instead of directing it away from your house.
One of the more costly and troublesome pests to find their way into homes across the country and in Ohio are rodents, and more specifically, mice. Mice and other rodents are cause for concern in our houses because of the damage they cause with their sharp front incisors, the diseases and the bacteria they spread, the food they contaminate, and the money they cost people in repairs and lost food. The presence of mice or other rodents can also lead to fires and water damage after they chew through wires or water pipes. Mice are pests that have adapted to wanting to live with people, so we need to be extra vigilant in keeping these destructive and dangerous pests out.
Mice want to live in our yards and homes because they offer them easy access to food, water, and shelter. Mice are identified by their small, oval-shaped bodies, large ears, dark eyes, and long tail. These pests can move their flexible skeletons through the smallest of spaces to move inside of structures to find sources of food and shelter.
Though mice are a year-round threat, they tend to be most problematic when the weather is either very hot or cold and if food outside becomes scarce. Inside of homes, they move to dark, secluded spaces that keep them hidden from view during the day. At night they will come out of hiding to search for food. If you are spotting dark, rice-like droppings in your home, chewed boxes, furniture, or food containers, or hearing scratching or running noises behind your home’s walls at night, you likely have an uninvited rodent in your home.
To help you avoid a problem with rodents in your Ohio home, we want to offer you some of our most effective rodent prevention tips:
- Make sure to regularly inspect the exterior of your home, sealing any openings you discover. Remember, mice can maneuver their bodies through a space the diameter of a dime.
- Eliminate food odors that may attract mice to your property by placing tight-fitting lids on trash cans and compost bins.
- Pet food is also often utilized by rodents as a food source. Pick up your pet’s uneaten food each evening.
- Inside your home, reduce areas of clutter that rodents could hide or nest within.
- Remove water sources by repairing leaky pipes, removing areas of standing water, and making sure gutters are directing water from the perimeter of your home.
Trying to do things in your backyard like gardening, mowing, playing with kids or pets, or eating outside can be made impossible when stinging insects have decided to make your yard into a nesting or foraging site. Stinging insects are helpful when living outside away from people in wooded areas, meadows, fields, and other areas, but pose dangers when living close to people.
The benefits of pollination and control populations of nuisance insects are outweighed by the dangers they cause. Stinging insects have stingers extending from the abdomen that they use to paralyze their prey with and as a means of defense from larger threats, including people. Not only are their stings painful, but the venom they inject is strong enough to trigger allergic reactions that range from mild to extreme, depending on a person’s sensitivity to the venom.
Bees, wasps, and hornets are examples of the most common species of stinging insects to invade our properties. Our yards often provide them with a perfect place to build a nest. Trees, shrubs, or the exterior of our homes offer a sheltered spot to build their nests. Our gardens, trashcans, and recycling bins offer plentiful food sources, and things like clogged gutters, leaky hoses or pipes, and low-lying areas that collect rainwater provide them with sources of water. Preventing these opportunistic pests from finding a home on our properties is difficult. But knowing where to look for a nest is helpful so that you can identify a problem sooner rather than later.
Some favorite spots to build a nest include:
- Tree branches and shrubs
- Under roof eaves or deck rails
- In ground holes or the abandoned nests of small animals
- Under trees or in tree hollows
- Around light fixtures or in vents
- Inside of attics spaces or wall voids
To help you avoid a problem with stinging insects in your Ohio home, try some of our most effective stinging insect prevention tips. Remove areas of standing water from your property: keep gutters clear, store containers upside down when not in use, and fill in low-lying areas in your yard or driveway. Cut back overgrown trees, shrubs, and fill in ground holes to remove nesting sites. Remove things like fallen trees, unnecessary woodpiles, and other debris from your yard that they could also build a nest within. Keep stinging insects out of your house by caulking around outdoor light fixtures, repairing roof damage, and making sure screens in windows and doors are secure and free of holes.
Custom Solutions For Your Akron, Ohio Pest Problems
Let the professionals at Promise Pest Control provide you with the best possible pest control solutions to keep pests out of your home throughout the entire year. Through detailed services, excellent communication, and more than 25 years of experience, we are dedicated to resolving pest problems and keeping pests from returning.