Common household pests
A – C (Ants, bed bugs and carpet beetles)
In this article we introduce the first three common household pests with some information on where these pests are found, the significance of that type of pest and some hints on controlling the pest.
Distribution of Ants:
Black Ants are common throughout Europe, Asia, northern Africa and North America.
Significance of Ants:
Black Ants usually nest in soil but can also be found living under paving stones and concrete.
They can become real nuisance pests because during foraging, the workers may enter domestic, commercial and industrial premises – particularly food preparation areas – in search of sweet foodstuffs.
The mating swarms can also cause a short-term nuisance, although this lasts only a few days.
Control of Ants:
Following the trail of workers and scouts back to the nest is the best way to establish the source of the infestation. From here there is a variety of ways to control and remove the infestation:
- Restricting access to the nest
- Gel baits, which the workers carry back to the nest to feed the queen. These sweet gels are actually poisonous to the ants.
- Strategically placed insecticide barriers to prevent the ants from entering the property
Good hygiene is also vital to avoid attracting the ants back to food sources.
Distribution of Bed Bugs
Bedbugs are found all over the world, but most commonly in multi-occupancy buildings with a rapid resident turnover.
Significance of Bed Bugs
Bedbugs are a significant pest to humans because they feed on blood. They emerge to feed mostly at night while their “hosts” are sleeping. Their bite can cause severe local irritation and itching; there is a possibility of secondary infection.
Where the infestation is very high there is a slight risk of anaemia for the human hosts. Bats, chickens and other domestic animals can also be affected.
Control of Bed Bugs
A thorough inspection is necessary to determine the source and extent of any bedbug infestation. The pests may have entered through second hand furniture or be hiding under wallpaper, where they may have lain undetected for several months.
Once the source of the infestation and any harbourages are located, they should be treated with a residual insecticide.
Distribution of Carpet Beetles
Adults are often seen in April, May and June, seeking egg-laying sites; and the grubs are most active in October before they hibernate.
Significance of Carpet Beetles
The grubs (known as “woolly bears“) of these small, oval beetles have outstripped the clothes moths as the major British textile pest. Carpet beetle damage consists of fairly well defined round holes along the seams of fabric where the grubs bite through the thread.
Control of Carpet Beetles
Once the source of the infestation is identified it should be removed. The larvae of the carpet beetle tend to wander, so a thorough investigation is required to eliminate an infestation.
Chemical sprays can be used for spot treatment and insecticides can help to remove infestations. However, chemical treatments are only effective in conjunction with proper cleaning.
Safeguard Pestcontrol - About the Author:
Safeguard is a Professional Pest Control company that has been helping homeowners and businesses throughout South East England with their pest control now for over 25 years; specialising in Commercial Pest Control, Bird Control London and Pest Control London.
Through our years in the business we have dealt with nearly every type of pest found in the home, commercial premises and building sites within the UK.
Our clients have included many household names including St. Pancras International railway station, Westfield Shopping Centre, Great Ormond Street Hospital and the 2012 Olympic Park.