Dorm Rooms and Bed Bugs

It’s a rite of passage for many college students to be on their own in a dorm or apartment. Parents go to inspect the new place of residency, making sure all is safe. But is it really safe? Dorm room bed bug problems are becoming increasingly more prevalent.

Bed bugs are small insects that are brown to reddish brown in color and broadly oval and flat in shape. Bed bugs harbor in cracks and crevices during the day and come out to feed at night. They prefer to feed on humans but will feed on other warm blooded animals. Typically, they can be found around mattresses, in box springs or their coverings, and in any crevice of a wooden bed frame, such as where members join. Before students move ANY of their belongings into their new home, they should check in and around wall hangings such as picture frames, night stands, stuffed furniture, baseboards, floorboard cracks, behind loose wallpaper, light switches, door and window frames, conduits, etc. Also check mattress covers for small, brownish stains. It would be wise to purchase mattress and box spring encasings as a precaution.

Bed bugs can be introduced into a structure via used furniture, clothing, boxes, suitcases, or other goods that are moved from residence to residence. Keep this in mind when your kids come home from college to visit.  Make sure to check bags and boxes thoroughly before they enter your home.

Bed bugs are most active at night and bite any exposed areas of skin while an individual is sleeping. The face, neck, hands, and arms are common sites for bed bug bites. The bite itself is painless and is not noticed. Small, flat, or raised bumps on the skin are the most common sign; redness, swelling, and itching commonly occur. If scratched, the bite areas can become infected. A peculiarity of bed bug bites is the tendency to find several bites lined up in a row. Infectious disease specialists refer to this as the “breakfast, lunch, and dinner” sign signifying the sequential feeding that occurs from site to site.

Getting rid of bed bugs is not an easy process and most cases of bed bug infestations will require treatment by a pest control expert. If bed bugs are suspected in a dorm room, contact the RA (Residential Adviser) immediately and make sure that they use a pest control expert like Northwest Exterminating.

Do you have a child going off to college this year?

 

Northwest Exterminating
830 Kennesaw Ave MariettaGA30060 USA 
 • 888-466-7849
 

Mythical Origins of Insects

People love a good myth. These narratives contribute bright symbolism of interactions between higher powers, people, and nature. They assist in many relevant functions as well as further adding colorful stories. One valuable role of myths is to illustrate some angle of life.

Several myths describe the beginnings, morphology, and conduct of various insects. Here are just a few:

The origin of mosquitoes is revealed by The Tlingit Indians of North America.  The narration tells of a blood sucking carnivorous giant who dines on humans. This giant is eventually avenged after his horrific death by coming back to feed on humans in the appearance of blood sucking mosquitoes.

An Algonquin tale of North America justifies why bees, wasps, and hornets have stingers. This myth grants that the god Wakonda bestowed stingers to bees because the bees were industrious, but required a defense. Since wasps and hornets are linked to bees, The Great Spirit willingly endowed them with stinging weapons as well.

Ant actions are revealed in an African myth that reminds us of the everlasting punishments of Atlas, Prometheus, and Sisyphus of classical mythology. An infinite punishment of bearing a burden is handed down to ants by deception in the African myth. Accordingly, we see the outcome today in ants repeatedly transporting things in their everyday routine.

Atlas

And on an absolutely universal spectrum, the composition of our galaxy, The Milky Way, is translated in an insect myth of the Cochiti. This myth tells of an Eleodes Beetle that was in charge of depositing stars in the sky. The stars were dropped due to his ego and recklessness, thus forming the Milky Way. The beetle was so distraught at what he had done, that even today, the beetle hides his face in the dirt when approached – will lower its head, raise its abdomen, and emit a disagreeable odor probably for defense. This simple insect myth explains not only insect behavior, but also the start of our own galaxy.

Beetle

Who are your favorite mythological characters?

 

Toe Tapping Songs about Bugs

After doing a post on bug movies, we thought it was only appropriate to have a post about bug songs!  We came up with some classic kid songs, some well-known mainstream songs, and even found some songs that we’ve never heard of before!

Here’s our list of Songs about Bugs:

  • Itsy Bitsy Spider
  • Bringing Home a Baby Bumblebee
  • Ants Go Marching
  • Shoo Fly, Don’t Bother Me
  • The Flight of the Bumblebee – written by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
  • La Cucaracha
  • The Bugs Bunny Theme Song
  • All My Friends Are Insects – Weezer
  • Butterfly – Weezer
  • Butterfly – The Verve
  • Greedy Fly – Bush
  • Between Angels and Insects – Papa Roach
  • Termite Song – Joseph Arthur
  • Dune Buggy – The Presidents of the United States
  • Butterfly Kisses – Bob Carlisle
  • Bugs – Pearl Jam
  • Spider – They might Be Giants
  • Ticks – Brad Paisley
  • Fireflies – Owl City
  • Ants Marching – Dave Matthews Band

While coming up with songs we also came up with some band names that were based on bugs:

  • The Beatles
  • Alien Ant Farm
  • Papa Roach
  • Adam and the Ants
  • Daddylong Legs

For more “Ticky Tunes” visit Northwest Exterminating‘s Pinterest page!

What bug themed songs or bands can you think of?

 

 

Hollywood Invasion

Throughout history, most humans have disliked and even had a fear of insects and spiders. Entomophobia, or insectophobia, is a common fear or aversion to insects and arthropods. Arachnophobia is the fear of spiders. Hollywood has capitalized on those common fears by exposing them in the horror film genre.

Since the horror genre hit the scene back in the 1940’s, the bug movie has been a pivotal part of the industry. The insect horror film is in an exceptionally extensive category of horror. Since the premiere of 1950’s Highly Dangerous, Hollywood has produced over 75 movies featuring killer insects or spiders. Some contain mammoth, mutant bugs that can devour humans, while others feature deadly swarms of ants, bees, or wasps. They vary from the hilariously campy to the straight -up terrifying.  Here are a few:

Them! – A crew of FBI agents and entomologists battle radiation-induced gigantic ants in this black-and-white sci-fi flick from 1954.

The Fly – Jeff Goldblum’s iconic turn as the scientist-turned-fly in this remake is equal parts poignant and petrifying.

The Deadly Mantis – The star of William Alland’s sci-fi flick is a 200-foot-long praying mantis freed from its prehistoric lair by a sudden seismic shift.

Arachnophobia – South American killer spider hitches a lift to the US in a coffin and starts to breed and kill.

Not all movies about bugs tap into our fears.  Here are movies that make you almost wanna like the little guys:

A Bug’s Life – A misfit ant, looking for “warriors” to save his colony from greedy grasshoppers, recruits a group of bugs that turn out to be an inept circus troupe.

Spiderman – When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family.

 

Don’t let your home turn into a horror film! Call Northwest Exterminating.

What is the creepiest movie that you have ever seen?

Cara Carver
ccarver@callnorthwest.com

 

What to Expect During a Pest Control Inspection

We recently discussed the importance of having an inspection prior to receiving a pest control treatment (HERE).  We thought we would continue with the discussion by letting you know what you should expect during a pest control inspection from an exterminator.

What to expect during a pest control inspection:

  • A highly trained pest management professional should be neatly and professionally dressed.
  • The exterminator should arrive in a well marked vehicle that clearly states what pest management company they are representing.
  • A thorough pest control inspection should include both inside and outside inspection of the structure.  This will target common “hot spots”, or entry points, for insects, rodents, and other pests.  Common entry points are bathrooms, kitchens, garages, attics, and crawlspaces.
  • Along with checking for entry points, the pest control representative will check for conducive conditions that would attract pests.
  • An exterminators best friend is their flash light.  The flashlight helps them to locate and see insects and harborage areas around the structure.  Other common tools that may be used: telescope mirror, moisture meter, and a probing tool.
  • Following the inspection, the inspector will review their findings and create a customizable treatment plan that is best suited for the needs of the structure.  The customized treatment plan will include how to exclude points of entry, eliminate conducive conditions, and a personalized pest control management plan for ongoing protection.

Getting rid of bugs is important to you and Northwest Exterminating.  We want you to know what you should expect out of our highly trained technicians when they inspect your home or business.  For more information about pest control visit us online at www.callnorthwest.com.

Northwest Exterminating offers FREE inspections.  Call 888.466.7849 or visit our website for your FREE, no obligation inspection.

 

 

How Much Is Monthly Pest Control?

How much do you charge for monthly pest control? Acrobat Ant

This is a question that comes in frequently so we wanted to address it.  The cost of NorPest Green pest control is varied depending on the specific needs and issues of you and your home. If you aren’t having specific pest issues and want to keep it that way, the cost of preventative treatments can be given over the phone by one of our customer service representatives.  Whether you are having a specific bug issue or looking for preventative measures, a highly trained Northwest Exterminating professional will conduct a FREE inspection of your home.  By completing an inspection we are able to conduct a customized program that will meet the pest needs for you and your home.

NorPest Green is a program that was developed by Northwest Exterminating to get rid of bugs and insects while maintaining the lowest environmental impact as possible.  The active ingredients are derived from flowers, plants, and natural elements that are friendly to the Earth and your family…pets included.  We use a 5 step Integrated Pest Management (IPM) process.

Complete our FREE Inspection Form or call us at 888.466.7849 for a free, no obligation inspection of your home.

 

 

 

Granddaddy Long Legs Aren’t Spiders

It may be one of the most easily identifiable pests but it’s also commonly misrepresented.  Granddaddylonglegs, or daddylonglegs, are often thought to be spiders but are actually harvestmen.  Harvestmen get their name because that is when they are usually seen…during harvest time.  There are about 150 species of daddylonglegs in North America.

When you spot a granddaddylongleg, with its long and thin legs, it is not hard to see where the “longlegs” part of their name comes from.  They use their infamous legs to catch insects, spiders, and plants that they feed on.  They are found around structures of homes and buildings, and tree trunks, presumably looking for food.  Inside of a structure they are typically found in garages, basements, crawlspaces, or other damp areas of the home.  You won’t usually find them in the common living areas.

Another common misconception about daddylonglegs is that they are poisonous or venomous…neither of which are true.  They are not harmful to humans or animals, they won’t even bite.

How to Get Rid of Daddy Long Legs
  • Keep pests out.  By keeping pests out of your home granddaddylonglegs won’t venture in looking to feed on these small pests.  *Maintaining your pest control service with a professional exterminating company will keep bugs out of your home.
  • Vacuum.  Vacuuming is the easiest way to remove any daddylonglegs that you find in your home.  Vacuuming also helps to remove food sources from your carpets and furniture.
  • Keep house dry.  Like most insects, daddylonglegs like moisture.  Fix leaky faucets and pipes, use dehumidifiers, and dry any standing water.
  • Sticky Traps.  Sticky traps are a great way to catch harvestmen and other insects.  Place traps in areas of the home where you have seen pests.  Check regularly to see if any pests have been trapped on the board.

Did you know that granddaddy long legs weren’t spiders?

Call Northwest Exterminating to get rid of grand daddy long legs or other pests in your home or business.

 

 

Bug Themed Party

Every good party has a theme!  And what better time to have a party than the summer?  Summer is a great time for cookouts, family get-togethers, birthdays, or just because!  And what goes together better than summer and bugs?  So why not have a bug-themed party?

Bug theme decorations:

  • Use green streamers that look like vines and shrubs
  • Place jars with plastic bugs as table decorations
  • Antennae headbands
  • Magnifying glasses

It’s never a good idea to pair real bugs with food.  But we can make our food look like insects, right!  Try these bug themed treats that are sure to be pleasing on the eyes and the stomach.

Ants on a Log

Bug theme foods:

  • Dirt Cake
  • Gummy worms
  • Fruit caterpillar kabobs – skewer green grapes, place 2 white dots on front of first grape using cream cheese, place mini chocolate chip in center of white dots for eyes
  • Bug juice – mix any flavor of red juice and a blue juice…to make GREEN juice
  • Ants on a log – You will need: Celery, cream cheese or peanut butter, raisins
  • Slice celery horizontally and spread with either cream cheese or peanut butter.
  • Place raisins on top
  • Burrowing Worms – Cut 6-7 slits along one half of each hotdog (1/4″ apart and 1/2″ deep).  Do the same on the opposite side.  Cook hotdogs and serve on bun with hotdog condiments.
  • Create your own critter mix – It’s trail mix with a spin.  Give guests a bag and let them make their own mix with selections of nuts, seeds, cereals, crackers, pretzels, raisins, dried fruit, marshmallows, chocolate chips, etc.
  • Watermelon Bug: Cut a rectangle out of the top of a watermelon. Scoop out the flesh and refill with fruit salad. Create a face on the melon using fruit (an orange wedge for the mouth, grape eyes). Use banana halves to make six legs and curl some pipe cleaners for antennae. Attach everything with toothpicks
  • Pretzel butterflies: Attach two small pretzels, tip to tip.  Place piece of caramel at tips and microwave for 10 second or until caramel is melted and pretzels are stuck together.
  • Mosquito Bloody Marys – for the adults, of course.

Don’t let uninvited guests ruin your party.  Call Northwest Exterminating to get rid of any mosquitoes or pests.

 

Mound Ants & Their Mounds

The allegheny mound ant is a common ant found outdoors.   They feed on small insects or arthropods that are found outside so they rarely have a need to make their way into a structure…but that doesn’t mean you will never find them inside.

Identification:

  • 1/4″ long
  • red bodies and black abdomen
  • most often identified by the large mound that they build

The Mound:

The allegheny mound ant is known for the large mounds that they build.  This is the easiest way to identify the species.  Their mounds are made up of built up soil that can go up to 4 feet above soil and extend 3 feet deep into the ground.  A 5 month old mound can be about 2 feet wide and 8 inches tall.  A two year old mound can be up to 3 feet tall.  These large mounds are mostly found in unkept grassy areas, pastures, nurseries, and turf.

Allegheny mound ants produce formic acid that can damage bushes, plants, and gardens.  Formic acid can kill small trees and shrubs within 40-50 feet of a mound and the grass of your lawn that is located around a mound.  Most new mounds are made in late May and early June.  This can cause issues if you spend time in your lawn because the mound ants will bite if they feel like their colony is being disturbed.

Protect yourself and your lawn by hiring a professional exterminator that can eliminate ants around your home and prevent damage and harmful bites.  Call Northwest Exterminating to get rid of your ant problems.

 

 

 

 

Watch Out Pests! It’s National Pest Control Awareness Month

Watch out pests, it’s National Pest Control Awareness Month and the Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) Commissioner Gary W. Black is reminding Georgia residents to protect your homes and businesses from pests.  Read the GDA’s recent press release for more tips and information on how to keep your home free from pests.

State Ag Commissioner reminds residents to protect homes, businesses
Spring has sprung in Georgia. This season is always a busy time for insects and pests in Georgia, but it is especially the case after such a mild winter. In honor of National Pest Control Awareness Month in April, Georgia Department of Agriculture (GDA) Commissioner Gary W. Black reminds residents about the risks posed by household pests.

“We are already seeing more insects and pests earlier this year due to the warm winter Georgia has had,” said Commissioner Black. “Every year, pests cause millions of dollars in damage for our residents and it is important for Georgians to prepare a plan of action to help prevent damage from occurring.”

In addition to fees paid for control and preventative services done by pest control professionals, Georgia residents spend untold dollars to repair damage caused by pests such as termites, rodents and carpenter ants who chew through walls, flooring and even electrical wiring. Residents also pay for expenses related to the treatment of medical conditions; mosquitoes can carry West Nile virus while house dust mites and cockroach allergens trigger asthma attacks, and stinging insects send more than half a million people to the emergency room every year.

“I encourage all Georgians to take proactive steps to prevent infestations in their homes and businesses,” said Commissioner Black. “All it takes is a few simple, preventative measures to help protect year-round.”

In April, consider these tips and suggestions:
- Trim back trees and shrubs so they are not physically touching any building structures;
- Walk the perimeter of a structure’s foundation and seal up any cracks or small openings;
- Install window and/or door screens and check once a year for holes or tears;
- Keep wood debris and piles of wood (including firewood) at a distance;
- Check plumbing and pipes to eliminate sources of moisture or standing water;
- Tightly secure all food and garbage to prevent pests from finding their way to the source (this includes pet food dishes and storage containers); and
- If there are any visible signs of pests or an infestation, contact a licensed pest professional immediately.

“April is a great time to have your home or business checked to determine if it’s necessary to re-establish any pest control measures, such as termite protection” said Commissioner Black. “And if control or treatment is necessary, that is one homeowner project best left to the professionals.”

Consumers are urged to only seek advice and use licensed professional pest control companies. If a company is not licensed by the GDA, it is illegal for them to practice pest control protection as a business. Residents can find a list of all licensed professional pest management companies at www.kellysolutions.com/GA/Structural/searchPCOCo.asp, or contact the GDA Structural Pest Section at 404-656-3641.

Note: Consumers can learn more about Pest Control Awareness Month, the GDA’s Structural Pest Section and hear from industry partners in a short video clip available on the Department’s website homepage starting April 1: www.agr.georgia.gov.

The Georgia Department of Agriculture is responsible for licensing the professional pest management companies who perform termite control. There are approximately 1,200 of these companies operating in Georgia. Learn more online at www.agr.georgia.gov.