Pest Myths Debunked

By admin | Blog |

Working in the pest control industry, we’ve pretty much heard it all when it comes to the household pests residents see on Long Island. Luckily, with board certified entomologists on staff, as well as a team of highly trained technicians, we’re able to spot what’s the truth when it comes to insects and other pests on Long Island, and what’s maybe…not so true. Here are five common pest myths debunked.

Where Do Bugs Go in the Winter?

If you’ve ever wondered what happens to bugs in the winter on Long Island, it’s likely you’ve heard a common misconception that they simply “die off” during the winter months…not true! In fact, when the weather cools down, many pests will actually become more active indoors because they’re seeking warmth and shelter just like the rest of us!  Mouse in snow

Arthropods like roaches, spiders, ants, and mosquitoes fall into the category of pests who are exothermic, which means they’re unable to produce heat on their own and are dependent on the environmental temperatures around them for comfort and mobility. During the winter, it’s quite likely you’ll see an uptick in winter bugs on Long Island in the house.

Rodents like mice and rats, and other furry critters such as raccoons and squirrels are also common pests on Long Island during the winter. If you’re cold, they’re cold—these pests will invade your house in order to find a cozy place to call home for the colder months, generally leaving behind costly damages, urine, and feces.

Some insects do have the ability to overwinter, which is the process by which they’re able to “wait out” the winter season. Many insects overwinter as adults, pupae, or eggs inside buildings across Long Island. Essentially, overwintering involves the insects shielding themselves from harsh winter conditions. Their activity almost completely stops until the weather warms back up…but they’re still there!

Do Mice Like Cheese?

Mice are frequently depicted as cheese-loving rodents, but what’s the truth? Do mice actually like cheese? Studies show that sure, mice may eat cheese if it’s the best item on the menu, but it’s actually not their favorite snack to munch on!

So…what do mice on Long Island eat? Given a choice, mice would much rather dine on sweets, cereals, grains, and dried fruits! In particular, some research shows they prefer to eat peanut butter, chocolate, hazelnut spread, and the like. 

Can Clean Houses Have Bed Bug Infestations?

With many household insects, cleanliness is a huge factor in whether or not they make their way into your home (and stick around). Pests like mice, ants, and German roaches in particular are drawn to spills, crumbs, messes, greases, and the like. 

How Do You Get Bed Bugs?

Often, it’s assumed bed bug infestations come about because of a lack of cleanliness or hygiene, as well, but the truth is that bed bugs are hitchhiking pests who must be brought into a home. They are attracted to humans’ blood…not filth. They thrive in heavily populated areas, so it’s not uncommon for them to be in public areas like hotels, nursing homes, offices, schools, movie theaters, airports, and on public transportation. Bed bugs are often associated with cheap motel rooms, but even high-end hotels deal with their fair share of bed bug infestations. 

What Causes Bed Bugs?

All it takes is something as simple as throwing your backpack onto a bed bug infested chair in a hotel room then taking that bag back into your clean home, and before you know it, you have a problem.

While bed bugs aren’t attracted to dirt, they are experts at hide-and-go-seek, so the less clutter and locations for them to hide in, the better. Bed bugs are often hiding out in the seams of chairs and couches, in the folds of curtains, in dresser drawer joins, under loose wallpaper and wall art, in the heads of screws, and near the piping, seams, and tags of mattresses and box springs, to name a few. 

Are Termite Treatments Needed for Houses on Slabs?

Subterranean termites, which are the species of termites most active on Long Island and throughout New York, live underground and use mud tubes to travel through the soil in search of wood cellulose to eat. Houses built on basements or crawl spaces certainly deal with their fair share of termite infestations and damages, but there’s a common misconception that houses built on concrete slab foundations don’t need termite protection, and that’s simply not the case. House on slab foundation

When it comes to houses on slab foundations, subterranean termites find ways to bypass the layer of concrete to get to the wood structures of the home. They often do so by crawling through cracks in the slab that occur when the ground settles with weather and time. It’s also possible for termites to make their way through plumbing and utility entries to get closer to the goods. And while these maneuvers may seem sneaky, termites are also known to brazenly crawl right up the slab layer to find a piece of wood on your home to feed on, and before you know it, you have termite infested wood.

No matter what your home’s foundation is made of, it’s extremely important to protect its structural integrity and your wallet from termite damage. 

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Do Successful Pest Control Services Require Heavy Chemicals?

Another common pest control myth is that getting rid of household pests requires liberally applying chemicals to the home, and that’s simply not true. Integrated Pest Management is “a sustainable, science-based, decision-making process that combines biological, cultural, physical, and chemical tools to identify, manage, and reduce risk from pests and pest management tools and strategies in a way that minimizes overall economic, health, and environmental risks,” according to the IPM Institute of North America.

At Suburban Exterminating, we utilize IPM’s green pest control methodology in our everyday pest control services on Long Island, which successfully eliminate pests without the heavy use of chemicals. After inspecting clients’ homes to detect underlying issues, we select and apply the right pest control products to target the problem at hand, while protecting families and the environment. Much of successful pest management relies on the state of the home, so we also provide recommendations to ensure a pest-free environment through improved sanitization and small home repairs that can help keep pests out before they get in.

Expert Pest Control on Long Island

Whether you need a pest myth busted or you’re dealing with an issue in your home, call or text Suburban Exterminating at (631/516) 864-6900. Our team of pest experts is here to help!

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