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Bed Bugs: Where Do They Come from and How Do I Prevent Them?

Of all the species of pests which can cause you trouble, bed bugs hit closest to home. What’s a worse place to have blood-sucking insects lurking than in the very mattress you sleep on? Luckily, bed bugs don’t have to be a problem as long as you know where they come from and take some precautions against them. Here is a quick look at the behavior of these pests and prevention methods you should know. Where Do They Come From? To start us off, let's take a look at how bed bugs get into your home in the first place. For such small creatures that are unaware of public transportation, it does seem quite odd that they are able to move around as much as they do. However, bed bugs have a couple of things going for them. For one, they’re resilient. Even if it takes them months to settle down...
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How to Keep Your Wooden Structures Safe from Termites

All of humanity’s architectural ingenuity is vulnerable to termite attacks. While other pests can bite and spread germs, termites can bring entire buildings to the ground and cause thousands of dollars in repairs, which means that if you’re not taking precautions against them, you’re risking more than you may know. Fortunately, there are ways to keep your home safe. Here are some methods of preventing these little creatures from causing big problems. Fix Leaks and Limit Humidity One thing that termites love is damp wood. Water makes wood soft, and soft wood is much easier for termites to chew through. This means that you’re going to want to keep your home as dry as possible, and a great way to go about that is by fixing any leaks around your house which allow water to drip onto your wooden beams or floorboards. Make sure all of your pipes are intact and...
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Ridding Your Home of Pests

Your home is your castle and one that you do not want to share with insects and pests. Keeping your home pest free takes a little work and some behavior modifications on your part. One of the easiest ways to keep pests out of your home is by keeping your house clean. You will need to focus more on areas where there is food, water and garbage. You need to eliminate the pests and insects food source, water and habit to ensure a clean home. A Clean Kitchen One of the major food sources for pests is the kitchen. The crumbs and dirty dishes can attract pests and insects. You can remove the food source by: Making sure the dirty dishes are not sitting in the sink for any length of time. You wipe up the counters and floors to remove any crumbs. You empty the trash frequently to keep the...
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How to Find the Right Pest Control Professional

If there are pests living in your house, you’re going to need to find somebody, or a couple somebodies, to get rid of them for you. This is what pest control professionals are meant for. Pest control professionals are trained to assess the situation and exterminate any bugs or insects which may be causing you harm. However, some pest control professionals are better than others. Here are four things to keep in mind when choosing the one that’s right for you. Experience Practice makes perfect. The old adage is true for everything else, why not pest control? Pest control companies which have been in business for many years are more likely to thoroughly exterminate every bug in your house, use the right amount of chemicals in the right areas, and finish in a timely manner, than startups which have opened their doors only recently. Before you hire somebody to eliminate the...
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Signs that you Have Termites and What to Do About it

Finding termites in your home is no laughing matter. These hard-to-spot pests can easily cause hundreds, thousands, and even tens-of-thousands of dollars of damage to your home. The best way to take action against termites is to stop them in their tracks before they get started. If you haven’t had termite problems in the past, we recommend that you put a termite prevention plan in place as soon as possible. Here are two of our top ways to tell if you have termites invading your home. 1) Wood Damage One of the first things that you may notice if you have termites in your home is damage to wood areas around your house. If you have seen small holes in any wooden ceilings, walls, and flooring in your house, you may have a termite infestation. We highly recommend taking a lap around your entire house, both indoor and outdoor, to inspect...
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How Often Should You Inspect for Termites?

There is nothing quite so frightening as discovering that your house is being eaten by termites. Despite their tiny size, they can cause thousands of dollars of damage. Learn how to tell if you have termite damage, and what to do once you’ve found them. How Do You Know You Have Termites? Termintes are easily confused with other pests- most commonly, the carpenter ant. These four characteristics make it easy to tell the difference between the two: A carpenter ant has a tapered middle and segmented antennae with clear blends. A termite has a box-like shaped middle and straight antennae. The termite has four wings that are all the same size, while the carpenter ant’s wings are larger in front and smaller behind. Termites also tend to hide from view, while carpenter ants are more likely to be seen. Before moving ahead with contacting a professional exterminator, it is important to...
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Pests Around the Home — Common Bugs in the Bedroom

Your bedroom should be your sanctuary. It should be the place you go to when you want to get away from all of the external stressors that affect your life. Despite the fact that your bedroom should be a special place for you to unwind, it is not immune from negative forces that can be frustrating. One of these factors is pests. No one wants to share a bedroom with bugs, but they are one of the most common places a pest can set up residence in your home. Here are some of the most common bugs you may find in your bedroom. Bed Bugs Bed bugs thrive on feeding on humans as they sleep. So, they are commonly found in the bedrooms of homes. These bugs can easily travel from place to place by jumping into suitcases, attaching to laundry or attaching themselves to objects like books. Then, they take...
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Weird Pests and How They Impact Your Home

When people think of pests, they often imagine black ants, wasps, mice, etc.; normal creatures you often find in North American homes. However, there are some pests which are truly unique and unusual that you may notice, often released into the United States from foreign locations. While these pests may be fascinating, if not taken care of they can cause a significant amount of harm to both your house and the ecosystem. Here are a few weird pests to look out for and the problems they may cause. Strange Pests and The Problems They Create Giant African Land Snail These massive snails have been imported into America for zoo exhibits. However, some of them have made their way into the wild and have integrated into the ecosystem. The giant African land snail can weigh about as much a grapefruit, and they are enthusiastic eaters, consuming over 500 species of plants. Not...
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Is Termite Damage Insurance Claims Allowed?

While the purpose of homeowner’s insurance coverage is to reduce the financial risk associated with unforeseen circumstances. Some things like termite damage can become excessive both in costs of repairs and treatment to remove the pests. A question that is often asked is, if you have termite damage can you file a claim with your insurance company to help relieve some of the costs of the repairs and removal of the pests? Unfortunately insurance companies generally deny the claims for termite damage. Insurance Coverage Claims Many insurance companies will not consider termite damage as an unforeseen circumstance and will not allow the claim. The reason is there are signs your home has termites. The most known signs include: Termite tunnels Wood damage and carvings in the wood Sagging or buckling in the floors Black flying insects that look like ants Because termite damage can continue to worsen for years, it is...
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Five Myths About Pests

Wrong information about pests has been accepted as truth for a significant length of time. Instead of fading away, many of these myths seem to be getting stronger. It's time to set the record straight on five of these myths about pests which have gone uncorrected. Bed Bugs Are Attracted to Filth Many people believe that bed bugs only infest rooms filled with grime and clutter. However, bed bugs are no more likely to plague a dirty motel than a five-star resort. All that bed bugs are after is places where blood is in high supply. Therefore an infestation of bed bugs in a home or hotel does not signify poor sanitation or housekeeping, just bad luck. Mice Are Invertebrates The myth that mice do not have backbones come from the fact that mice can seemingly fit through any hole or crevice, no matter how small. Mice do have bones, spine...
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Spooky Kansas Pests

If you live in Kansas, then you've probably seen a few spiders or other pests that look rather ordinary. However, there are a few bugs and pests that look spooky and almost look like they are designed for Halloween. Some of these pests are dangerous to humans and should be avoided while others are just looking for a meal. The Abbott's Sphinx Moth is a moth that doesn't look like the typical moth you might see flying around. They have a ragged appearance, and there is a white tail feather that looks out of place. Colors of dark green, brown, and purple adorn the moth. Fortunately, it's just like any other in the moth world and enjoys meals of insects. Another moth that has a spooky appearance is the webworm moth. It's orange, black, and white stripes make it look like a Halloween decoration. The legs appear to be larger than...
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Winterizing Your Lawn

In the Kansas City metropolitan area, having a beautiful lawn requires year-round work. The region's hot, humid summers are followed by cool fall weather and harsh winter conditions. During the fall, the grasses in your yard are much weaker. Your lawn begins to prepare for winter when the temperatures begin falling. Winterizing your lawn during the fall is important to help the grasses become stronger and more tolerant. Aerating your lawn Aerating the soil in your lawn in the fall is important. This helps the ground from becoming too compact and assists with removing excessive thatch. Both of these actions can help more sunlight, air and fertilizer nutrients to penetrate into the ground so that the grass plant roots are nourished. Fertilizing your lawn As cooler weather begins, the grass plants start slowing their growth and storing sugars and other nutrients in preparation for the winter. This is the best time...
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Bed Bugs Don't Just Infest Beds

Once bed bugs get inside your home and establish a nest, catching them right away is vital if you don't want the problem to spread. Knowing the places the pests like to hide is a good step in the right direction, improving your odds of containing the threat. You probably believe bed bugs only hide in mattresses if you are like most people. The truth is that these pests can hide in many places in and around your bedroom, and learning about the other places you can find bed bugs is a powerful step in the right direction. Nightstands Looking in your nightstand for the red flags of bed bugs is a smart move you don't want to overlook. Located within 5 feet of your bed, nightstands offer shelter from detection and easy access to a host each night. You can use a flashlight to check inside your nightstand for bed...
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How to Make Sure You Don't Bring Bed Bugs Back from Vacation

Bed bugs are some of the most troublesome household pests. Not only can bed bugs ruin your sleep with their itchy bites, but they can also exacerbate allergy and asthma symptoms. If you decide to take an out-of-town vacation, be sure you don’t carry these insects back home. Here are some valuable traveling tips to remember. Keep Your Belongings in Plastic Bags Don’t make it easy for bed bugs to hitchhike inside your stuff. A plane’s cargo hold allows bed bugs to simply crawl from one bag to the next. Keeping your luggage wrapped in plastic bags will give you an extra layer of protection. This simply task will dramatically lower your risk of bringing home these pests. Inspect Your Hotel Room Contrary to common belief, even the nicest hotels can harbor bed bugs. Before you begin to unpack, the best approach is to err on the side of caution. Take...
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The Importance of Lawn Irrigation

Lawn irrigation is essential to maintaining the health of your lawn. The irrigation system can include several different watering components. The sprinkler system might be above or below ground, for example. It could be supplemented by other devices for distributing water throughout the lawn. The drip irrigation system is just one example. This device allows you to moderate the amount of water in any given area of your lawn. This is useful for protecting your plants from excessive watering, and it is also a great water conservation device. In addition to these considerations, many areas have a regulatory authority that sets out requirements for irrigation systems, and you will need to remain compliant. Irrigation Systems, Maintenance Irrigation systems may seem simple at first glance; however, problems may arise with your irrigation system. This is a normal part of having and maintaining a lawn, but you might not have the resources needed...
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How to Tell the Difference Between Carpenter Ants and Termites

Whether you've got a sinking feeling after spotting a swarm of bugs or found damage to the wood in your residential or commercial building, you'll want to act immediately to deal with any infestation of wood-damaging insects before the destruction gets any worse. Although both carpenter ants and termites damage wood, getting rid of them requires different techniques, so proper identification is critical. How can you tell the difference between carpenter ants and termites? Look at the Insect's Appearance While carpenter ants and termites are similar in color and size, a closer look reveals distinct visual differences in the two species. A carpenter ant has a narrow waist and segmented antennae with clear bends. In contrast, a termite has a broad, boxy waist and straight antennae. Both species can be winged at certain points in their lifespan, and these wings also offer identification clues. Carpenter ants have larger fore wings and...
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How to keep Your Business Free of Rodents

If you’re a local business owner, you must take the necessary steps to keep pests at bay. Rodent control should definitely be a top priority. Not only can the presence of rats and mice turn away customers, but these destructive critters can also cause extensive amounts of property damage. Here are some important tips for protecting your business against rodents. Inspect Buildings for Unsealed Openings Rodents are incredibly limber animals that can easily squeeze through tiny openings. If even a single mouse gets inside, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll be dealing with a serious infestation. The entire building needs to be inspected for potential entry points, including your ducts and piping. This is an inexpensive way to safeguard your business. Keep Your Workplace Clean It’s no secret that rodents are attracted to reliable food sources. Crumbs will surely cause these unsanitary pests to stick around. It’s also in...
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What Makes Your Home More Susceptible to Termites?

If you want to keep your home in great shape and minimize you repair fees, you are likely wondering what you should do so that you can reach your goal. While many things can damage your home, termites are some of the worst. When they make their way into your home for the first time, you might not even know that they are there. They will consume your wooden floors and walls, and your home will experience structural damage if you don't do something to stop the pests. The good news is that keeping termites at bay is not as hard as you might think, and addressing the factors that make you susceptible will work wonders. Moisture If you have a lot of moisture around the foundation of your home, you will want to fix the problem because it can attract termites. Ensuring that you don't have any leaky pipes is...
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Where Mosquitoes Are Common

Mosquitoes are small insects that have the ability to draw blood from humans and animals. They are only able to build large swarms under certain conditions, so it is important to understand what these conditions are if you live in one of these areas. Tropical areas and swamps are the most common regions where mosquitoes will build their nests. They will appear in places where the weather is humid and the water supply is stable. Although these pests are extremely adaptable, they tend to avoid areas that area extremely cold. They are able to survive in many different types of climates, but they prefer regions that have a high level of humidity and heat. Mosquito Species Certain species of mosquitoes are known for their odd preference of laying eggs around pools of polluted water. One example is the Culex pipiens, which is also called the northern house mosquito. This is one...
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Can Rats Damage Your Home?

Rodents have a bad reputation for spreading diseases. Whether it's rat-bite fever or the hantavirus, wild mice and rats should never share living spaces with people. Not only do they transmit diseases, but they also damage your home. Even bushy-tailed rodents like squirrels can affect your home in negative ways. If you suspect that rodents have invaded your living spaces, take quick action to prevent unnecessary damage. 3 Ways Rats Can Damage Your Home They chew on everything. Rats have incisors and molars, which are perfect for chewing things. In fact, they have to gnaw on something every day; otherwise, their front incisors will continue growing and cause health problems as they mature. When rodents invade homes, they chew through walls and wires. They'll even gnaw on boxed goods, furniture and other miscellaneous items. They contaminate surfaces. Rats turn your home into a contaminated area as they scurry undetected during the...
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