The Pest Control Blog North America

Kudzu Bug Distribution On The Move

Photo Credit: CharlesLam

While in recent years the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug has dominated pest headlines in the United States, a new kind of stink bug is emerging as a threat to homeowners and farmers. The kudzu bug (Megacopta cribraria), native to Asia, has spread aggressively in the southeastern United States since being discovered just outside Atlanta four years ago. Named for their fondness for feeding on the kudzu plant, the bugs in appearance look more similar to a beetle but are actually members of the Pentatomoidea superfamily which contains stink bugs.

While kudzu bugs do not spread disease (like other insects such as mosquitoes and ticks), the plump pests have been causing worry for soybean farmers. Kudzu bugs target soybean fields where they can seriously impact crop yields. Scientists are hard at work studying the kudzu as soybeans are the United States’ second-largest cash crop. A recent study that consisted of 19 trials in the southeast found that kudzu bug-infested soybean crops that were unprotected yielded an average loss of 18%. Read More »

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What Diseases Do Mice Carry?

Mouse Close UpWhen it comes to mice, the idiom “good things come in small packages” does not apply. From Mickey Mouse to Mighty Mouse, mice are often portrayed as friendly characters in cartoons and movies. However, in reality, mice poise a serious threat to humans as they can potentially carry a wide variety of diseases. Mice can spread disease a number of different ways. Diseases can be passed on to humans from mice directly through contact with mice (including bites), through the aerosolized particles in their urine/droppings/saliva, and by eating food or drinking water contaminated by mice.

Mice can also spread diseases  indirectly through the bite of an infected insect such as a tick or flea that feed on an infected rodent. Some diseases that can be spread indirectly by mice, include Colorado Tick Fever, Lyme Disease and Babesiosis. If you believe you have contracted a disease from rodents, seek medical assistance immediately. Below we have listed some of the diseases spread by mice in the U.S. Read More »

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Western Exterminator Hits The Silver Screen

Big Ass Spider CollageWhile pest control technicians have always been heroes in our book, the profession is finally getting the Hollywood treatment it deserves. Opening in theaters nationwide in October, Big Ass Spider, is “a TREMORS-style creature feature about a towering mutant arachnid rampaging across Los Angeles” and the main character is a Western Exterminator technician. The film’s protagonist, Alex Mathis, played by Greg Grunberg (Heroes, Lost), is a clever exterminator determined to bring down the monster spider.

“We often receive calls from producers interested including Western Exterminator in their film and television projects. However, when I read the script to this movie, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the pest control technician was the movie’s star,” said Nancy Ringman, Vice President at Western Exterminator. Read More »

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The American Cockroach: 300 Million Years Strong

American Cockroach CorrectThe American cockroach originated in tropical Africa. What a misnomer! Carolus Linnaeus- “The Father of Taxonomy”- named it after America because that is how it came to him. Despite having written and published more than 180 books, way back in the 1700′s, Linnaeus proved his fallibility with choosing a name.

The American cockroach stowed away on wooden ships and made its way around the globe. A gritty survivor, the pesky roach has predated man by millions of years.

The American cockroach (Periplaneta americana) is one of the four species of cockroaches considered as common pests. The other three species are the German, Brown Banded and Oriental cockroach. Though there are roughly 3,500 species of cockroaches found worldwide, only 55 species are found in the United States. Read More »

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Stink Bugs Invading Social Media

Stink Bugs Invading Social Media Stink bugs, primarily the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, have emerged in the last decade as a common invader of homes in the United States. While the foul-smelling creatures have been most active in the Mid-Atlantic states, the winged-insects have been identified in nearly 40 U.S. states. Stink bugs are not only infiltrating homes but have been permeating Social Media networks of late like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Vine as fall temperatures set in nationwide and the pests become more aggressive indoors.

We collected a batch of Tweets, Vines, and Instagram photos containing the hashtag #stinkbugs to provide you with a sample of the insect’s Social Media stardom. Click the read more to scroll through the examples. Make sure you join in the fun on your favorite social networks by sharing photos of #stinkbugs.  Read More »

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