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Archive for July, 2010

Carpenter Ant Pest Removal

How do I know if I have Carpenter Ants?

Carpenter Ants are among the most damaging of all the insects in Minnesota.  In addition to nesting in moist wood, such as a wood pile outside of your home or decaying trees or stumps, they can be found inside buildings from such places as around bathtubs and behind dishwashers to under roofs, in some types of insulation and in attics.

Carpenter Ants make many satellite nests in addition to the main nest which the queen resides in.  In addition to the satellite nests, the main nest must be exterminated, along with the queen, in order to ensure all Carpenter Ants are gone and will remain gone.  For this reason, it is extremely important to seek professional help from a professional exterminator to rid your home of these pests.

If you think you may have a Carpenter Ant problem, call a professional pest control service today for a friendly, free consultation.  We will diagnose the problem and begin immediately with our organic product line of treatments.

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Wasps can be differentiated from bees as bees have a flattened hind basitarsus. Unlike bees, wasps generally lack plumose hairs. They vary in the number and size of hairs they have between species.

First stage

After emerging from hibernation during early spring, the young queens search for a suitable nesting site. Upon finding an area for their future colony, the queen constructs a basic paper fibre nest roughly the size of a walnut into which she will begin to lay eggs.

Second stage

The sperm that were stored earlier and kept dormant over winter is now used to fertilize the eggs being laid. The storage of sperm inside the female queen allows her to lay a considerable number of fertilized eggs without the need for repeated mating with a male wasp. For this reason a single female queen is capable of building an entire colony from only herself. The queen initially raises the first several sets of wasp eggs until enough sterile female workers exist to maintain the offspring without her assistance. All of the eggs produced at this time are sterile female workers who will begin to construct a more elaborate nest around their queen as they grow in number.

Third stage

By this time the nest size has expanded considerably and now numbers between several hundred and several thousand wasps. Towards the end of the summer, the queen begins to run out of stored sperm to fertilize more eggs. These eggs develop into fertile males and fertile female queens. The male drones then fly out of the nest and find a mate thus perpetuating the wasp reproductive cycle. In most species of social wasp the young queens mate in the vicinity of their home nest and do not travel like their male counterparts do. The young queens will then leave the colony to hibernate for the winter once the other worker wasps and founder queen have started to die off. After successfully mating with a young queen, the male drones die off as well. Generally, young queens and drones from the same nest do not mate with each other; this ensures more genetic variation within wasp populations, especially considering that all members of the colony are theoretically the direct genetic descendants of the founder queen and a single male drone. In practice, however, colonies can sometimes consist of the offspring of several male drones. Wasp queens generally (but not always) create new nests each year, this is probably because the weak construction of most nests render them uninhabitable after the winter.

Unlike most honey bee queens, wasp queens typically only live for one year (although exceptions are possible). Also, contrary to popular belief queen wasps do not organize their colony or have any raised status and hierarchical power within the social structure. They are more simply the reproductive element of the colony and the initial builder of the nest in those species which construct nests.

Getting rid of these pests can sometimes be fearful, especially if you are allergic.  A large nest may mean an attack and stings on you or other people in the area.  Hiring a professional pest control can mean safe and efficient handling of the wasps and bees.  Pest control experts are trained in handling these stinging pests and we can rid your home or business quickly using nontoxic organic products.

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Getting Rid Of Wasps In Minnesota

The various species of wasp fall into one of two main categories: solitary wasps and social wasps. Adult solitary wasps generally live and operate alone, and most do not construct nests; all adult solitary wasps are fertile. By contrast, social wasps exist in colonies numbering up to several thousand strong and build nests—but in some cases not all of the colony can reproduce. Generally, just the queen and male wasps can mate, whilst the majority of the colonies are made up of sterile female workers.

Characteristics

The following characteristics are present in most wasps:

  • two pairs of wings (except wingless or brachypterous forms in all female Mutillidae, Bradynobaenidae, many male Agaonidae, many female Ichneumonidae, Braconidae, Tiphiidae, Scelionidae, Rhopalosomatidae, Eupelmidae, and various other families).
  • An ovipositor, or stinger (which is only present in females because it derives from the ovipositor, a female sex organ).
  • Few or no hairs (in contrast to bees); except Mutillidae, Bradynobaenidae, Scoliidae.
  • Nearly all wasps are terrestrial; only a few specialized parasitic groups are aquatic.
  • Predators or parasitoids, mostly on other terrestrial insects; some species of Pompilidae, such as the tarantula hawk, specialize in using spiders as prey, and various parasitic wasps use spiders or other arachnids as reproductive hosts.

Wasps are critically important in natural bio control. Almost every pest insect species has a wasp species that is a predator or parasite upon it. Parasitic wasps are also increasingly used in agricultural pest control as they have little impact on crops. Wasps also constitute an important part of the food chain.

It is possible to distinguish between certain wasp species genders based on the number of divisions on their antennae. Male Yellow jacket wasps for example have 13 divisions per antenna, while females have 12. Males can in some cases be differentiated from females by virtue of the fact that the upper region of the male’s mesosoma(called the tergum) consists of an additional terga. The total number of terga is typically 6. The difference between sterile female worker wasps and queens also varies between species but generally the queen is noticeably larger than both males and other females.

Getting rid of these pests can sometimes be fearful, especially if you are allergic.  A large nest may mean an attack and stings on you or other people in the area.  Hiring a professional pest control can mean safe and efficient handling of the wasps and bees.  Pest control experts are trained in handling these stinging pests and we can rid your home or business quickly using nontoxic organic products.

Pic Source

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Ant Prevention and Ant Control In Minnesota

Prevention is truly the best line of defense against the infestation of any pest insect.  A thorough inspection of a home and yard can reveal potential infestation problems and possible solutions for the infestation.

Cleanliness is most defiantly the best tool in the prevention approach.  Any food or food particles are a major attraction to ants. Cleaning up quickly and storing food in air tight containers is critical.  It is also important to seek out and repair any moisture problems in the home.  Check for condensation problems and leaks and have them rectified as quickly as possible.

Indoors, ants will nest in walls, behind baseboards and beneath the foundation of the house.  Carpenters ants in particular will especially seek out decaying or moist wood and create galleries for nesting purposes.  Smaller ant species can fit through the smallest cracks and holes in order to gain access to a home.

What you need is an exterminator who will locate the nest location(s) and eliminate all the ants.  Pest control experts are able to tell the difference in ant species, which means they require different treatments.  Also, they are well trained in locating their nesting location and terminating the colony in a timely manner, of course using a nontoxic organic product line.

Ants that are typically considered as pests that can become household pests are Pharaoh Ants, Carpenter Ants, Argentine Ants, and Red Imported Fire Ants.

A pest control expert can do more than just get rid of the pests.  They can teach you steps to help ensure they will not return.  They can also repair any damages they may have caused in a way that the pests will not be able to enter again.

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Ant Control

Ants many times can be the worst pests of all.  Anywhere in and around your house or business, including your lawn, walls, stumps, and under your foundation, are perfect nesting spots for ants.  Yikes!  No wonder they seem to continuously invade your home or business no matter what you try.

Their colonies are ginormous, numbering up to 300,000-500,000…lets face it, that is a whole lot of ants.  They can basically invade your home or office through any crack or hole.  Generally they are seeking sweet or greasy food, or water, so closing lids, and cleaning up messes can help reduce the problem.

What you need is an exterminator who will locate the nest location(s) and eliminate all the ants.

The professional exterminators are able to identify difference in ant species, which means they require different treatments.  They are trained in locating their nesting location and terminating the colony.

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Wasps & Hornets

Wasps are generally considered to be pests because of their ability to sting.  They can become a problem from the middle of summer to late fall when they may disrupt many outdoor activities.  Wasps live in colonies that are ruled a queen and maintained by workers.

Appearance
Wasps have a slender body with a narrow waist, slender, cylindrical legs, and appear smoothed-skinned and shiny.  Yellowjackets, bald-faced hornets, and paper wasps are the most common types of wasps encountered by people.

Food Preferences
Wasps are predators, feeding insects and other arthropods to their young, which develop in the nest. During late summer and fall, as queens stop laying eggs and their nests decline, wasps change their food gathering priorities and are more interested in collecting sweets and other carbohydrates.  Some wasps may become aggressive scavengers around human food and may be common around outdoor activities where food or drinks are served.

Nesting Sites
Yellowjackets, bald-faced hornets, and paper wasps make nests from a papery pulp comprised of chewed-up wood fibers mixed with saliva.  Yellowjacket and bald-faced hornet nests consist of a series of rounded combs stacked in tiers.  These combs are covered by an envelope consisting of several layers of pulp. Paper wasps construct only one comb without any protective envelope.  These insects are sometimes known as umbrella wasps because of the shape of their nest.

Life Cycle
Wasps have annual colonies that last for only one year.  The colony dies in the fall with only the newly produced queens surviving the winter.  The new queens leave their nests during late summer and mate with males.  The queens then seek out over-wintering sites, such as under loose bark, in rotted logs, under siding or tile, and in other small crevices and spaces, where they become dormant.  These queens become active the following spring when temperatures warm.  They search for favorable nesting sites to construct new nests.  They do not reuse old nests.

Wasp Stings
Wasps sting to defend themselves or their colony.  Stinging involves the injection of protein venom that causes pain and other reactions.
Wasps can sting more than once because they are able to pull out their stinger without injury to themselves.  If you are stung by a wasp, the stinger is not left in your skin.
An allergic reaction may include hives or rash, swelling away from the sting site, headache, minor respiratory symptoms, and stomach upset.  These allergic reactions are not life-threatening and can be readily treated with an antihistamine.

Control of Nests
The best time of the year to control wasps is in June after the queen has established her colony and while the colony is still small.  However, because nests are small, they are also harder to find.  The best time of the day to control wasp nests is at night, when they are less active.  At temperatures below 50° F, wasps have difficulty flying.  Never seal a wasp nest until you are sure there are no surviving wasps inside.  If a nest is not discovered until fall, control may be unnecessary, as imminent freezing temperatures will kill the colony.

The first step in wasp control is to correctly identify the insect and locate its nesting site.  Most situations can be solved with one application.  Exposed nests that have been treated should be left for at least 24 hours before removing them.  Access holes should be sealed a couple of days after all activity has ceased. It is also possible to prevent wasps from nesting by treating likely harborage areas with a residual insecticide prior to their nesting.

Getting rid of these pests can sometimes be fearful, especially if you are allergic.  A large nest may mean an attack and stings on you or other people in the area.  Hiring a professional pest control can mean safe and efficient handling of the wasps and bees.  Pest control experts are trained in handling these stinging pests and we can rid your home or business quickly using nontoxic organic products.


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