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Warm weather brings bugs ahead of schedule

Posted: March 30, 2012 at 3:16 am

Subterranean termites are among the pests making an early appearance this year.

Ticks, termites, fleas and mosquitoes are part of a torrent of insects emerging early, after a mild winter and the abrupt arrival of summer-like weather. Exterminators are taking calls for pest infestations a month earlier than usual. Sarasota and Manatee counties already are treating ditches to keep mosquito populations at bay. “We’ve had a lot more calls earlier in the year than we’re used to,” said Danny Nix, manager of Hughes Exterminators in Sarasota. Fleas, ticks, ants and termite swarms have become the biggest problems. Since early March, daytime highs have regularly climbed into the mid- to upper-80s, about 10 degrees above normal. Temperatures rose high enough to match or break records six times so far this year. Similar abnormally warm weather covered most of the nation through last week, though the northeast is bracing for cold weather and even potential snow in the next few days. In Michigan, for example, temperatures soared more than 30 degrees above normal last week. The early warmth triggers changes in nature. Flowers bloom earlier and bugs jump into action faster. “One cannot deny that the insects are appearing at an earlier time and in bigger numbers,” said Gary Hevel, a research collaborator with the Department of Entomology at the Smithsonian Institution, in Washington, D.C. Hevel said it is not just pests that respond to the warmth. Various flies and honeybees also are active earlier, in response to early flower blossoms. Fred Santana, an entomologist who recently retired from Sarasota County, has been watching the changes from his own backyard. Ghost ants and white-footed ants invaded his home early and lots of pollinators, such as sweat bees, are buzzing around his flowers. “The warmer temperatures so few of them get killed off. The soil doesn’t get cold enough to really harm them and they just keep right on foraging,” Santana said. That is what happened with the fleas and ticks, Nix said. The blood-suckers never took a rest because the weather did not get cold enough to slow them down. “When it stays warm they can get larger in the size of their colonies. There’s nothing to push them back,” he said. Calls for fleas and ticks are up 20 percent now compared with a year ago, Nix said. Two houses in downtown Sarasota had tick infestations so bad that Nix collected two full cups of the tiny pests. The residents of both homes spent a lot of time outdoors in the woods, where ticks are more commonly found. Mosquitoes also are emerging earlier. Chris Lesser, assistant director of the Manatee County Mosquito Control District, said residents and visitors are calling mosquito control for service about two months earlier than normal. Dry weather helped to keep mosquito populations under control earlier in the year. But recent rain means the dormant larvae will soon hatch, said Eric Schreiber, manager of mosquito management services for Sarasota County. After nearly an inch of rain fell recently in the North Port area, crews quickly treated the flooded ditches. “If it’s really nice and hot, their development time is really fast,” Schreiber said. To prevent mosquitoes, people need to remove all sources of standing water from their yards. For termites, keeping a tightly sealed home is key to preventing their entry. It is also important to keep mulch, twigs and leaves at least 15 inches away from the house to prevent subterranean termites and other pests from entering.

Ticks, termites, fleas and mosquitoes are part of a torrent of insects emerging early, after a mild winter and the abrupt arrival of summer-like weather. Exterminators are taking calls for pest infestations a month earlier than usual. Sarasota and Manatee counties already are treating ditches to keep mosquito populations at bay. “We’ve had a lot more calls earlier in the year than we’re used to,” said Danny Nix, manager of Hughes Exterminators in Sarasota. Fleas, ticks, ants and termite swarms have become the biggest problems. Since early March, daytime highs have regularly climbed into the mid- to upper-80s, about 10 degrees above normal. Temperatures rose high enough to match or break records six times so far this year. Similar abnormally warm weather covered most of the nation through last week, though the northeast is bracing for cold weather and even potential snow in the next few days. In Michigan, for example, temperatures soared more than 30 degrees above normal last week. The early warmth triggers changes in nature. Flowers bloom earlier and bugs jump into action faster. “One cannot deny that the insects are appearing at an earlier time and in bigger numbers,” said Gary Hevel, a research collaborator with the Department of Entomology at the Smithsonian Institution, in Washington, D.C. Hevel said it is not just pests that respond to the warmth. Various flies and honeybees also are active earlier, in response to early flower blossoms. Fred Santana, an entomologist who recently retired from Sarasota County, has been watching the changes from his own backyard. Ghost ants and white-footed ants invaded his home early and lots of pollinators, such as sweat bees, are buzzing around his flowers. “The warmer temperatures so few of them get killed off. The soil doesn’t get cold enough to really harm them and they just keep right on foraging,” Santana said. That is what happened with the fleas and ticks, Nix said. The blood-suckers never took a rest because the weather did not get cold enough to slow them down. “When it stays warm they can get larger in the size of their colonies. There’s nothing to push them back,” he said. Calls for fleas and ticks are up 20 percent now compared with a year ago, Nix said. Two houses in downtown Sarasota had tick infestations so bad that Nix collected two full cups of the tiny pests. The residents of both homes spent a lot of time outdoors in the woods, where ticks are more commonly found. Mosquitoes also are emerging earlier. Chris Lesser, assistant director of the Manatee County Mosquito Control District, said residents and visitors are calling mosquito control for service about two months earlier than normal. Dry weather helped to keep mosquito populations under control earlier in the year. But recent rain means the dormant larvae will soon hatch, said Eric Schreiber, manager of mosquito management services for Sarasota County. After nearly an inch of rain fell recently in the North Port area, crews quickly treated the flooded ditches. “If it’s really nice and hot, their development time is really fast,” Schreiber said. To prevent mosquitoes, people need to remove all sources of standing water from their yards. For termites, keeping a tightly sealed home is key to preventing their entry. It is also important to keep mulch, twigs and leaves at least 15 inches away from the house to prevent subterranean termites and other pests from entering.

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Warm weather brings bugs ahead of schedule

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Termite Inspection: Will Yours Be One of the 1 in 30 Homes(i) Under Attack This Year?

Posted: March 29, 2012 at 8:13 pm

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Spring swarming season will let you know if you have termites

Posted: March 26, 2012 at 10:38 pm

Termites are just as happy with the warm weather and drought-busting rains as practically everyone else in Southeast Texas.

“Typically, when temperatures get up close to the 80 degree mark or above, a warm rain shower will trigger a termite colony to swarm,” said Barry Bryant of Bill Clark Pest Control.

The insect pests tend to be active between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., a time when many people are at work or school.

Helpful hint: You have termites if you come home to find piles of dead insects lying around.

Subterranean termites are black insects with wings, often mistaken for flying ants.

“It’s not pleasant to see,” Bryant said of termite swarms.

Swarming is the singles bar scene of the termite mating ritual.

The insects leave their colonies in search of open air, but in their search for the highest point to exit, might make their way up through the walls of the homes they feast on. Then, they exit into rooms through gaps or crevasses in walls or paneling, said David Kibodeaux, a Terminix entomologist.

Termites can be actively gnawing away on homes year round without residents knowing about it until they swarm.

“I think of it as an alarm system,” he said. “It gets a lot of people aware they have a problem.”

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Mild winter brings termites earlier

Posted: at 10:38 pm

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –

Pest inspectors throughout Middle Tennessee are warning homeowners to be on alert as mild winter temperatures have brought termites out much earlier this year.

Tom Dixon of U.S. Pest Protection says the termites are about a month earlier than normal.

“April is the huge month for termites going through their reproductive stage. We’re actually seeing a lot of [reproducing] right now and have over the last two weeks,” Dixon told Nashville’s News 2.

Dixon warned this could only be the beginning of an extended termite season. He urges homeowners to take precautions before it’s too late.

“Inspection is [the key] of course,” explained Dixon. “The other thing is earth to wood contact. Any earth to wood contact that you may have in your crawl space or in your home that comes down, you would want to make what changes need to be made to get rid of that.”

Dixon also suggested removal of any firewood stacked beside the foundation of a home.

“Also, it is not always easy to tell if a home is infested with termites until they are seen” said Dixon, “When they swarm out, they’re black, they have wings on them and they literally can come out by the thousands and that’s generally the only sign [of termites] unless homeowners are in their crawl space to do an inspection.”

Dixon estimated that termites cause roughly $5 billion in damage to homes each year.

Tennessee is located in what’s considered a “moderate to heavy” zone for termites which means the potential for damage is significant.

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Mild winter brings termites earlier

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Primary school infested with termites, has smelly drains and leaky roofs

Posted: March 25, 2012 at 4:11 am

KUCHING: SK Kenyalang might carry the namesake of the states emblem, but the schools facilities are in a pretty woeful state.

Most drains are without covers, the lower floor at one of its blocks is termite-infested, while the top floors of classrooms leak badly when it rains. Although inadequate school infrastructure is not unheard of, SK Kenyalang is rather unique in terms of the make-up of its student and student population.

The school, which began in 1971, comprises two streams; one for students to learn in Bahasa Malaysia and another where subjects are taught in Chinese.

Above all classroom doors, coloured signs indicate the dual-language nature of the school. Red is for Chinese classes and yellow for Bahasa Malaysia classes.

Headmistress Ho It Chin calls it a truly 1Malaysia school, and strongly believed that students here deserve better facilities.

When I see termite damage, leaky roofs and open drains, I feel bad for the students. We have to do something, Ho said yesterday, during a Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) annual general meeting.

To raise funds and awareness, the school has enlisted the help of a nearby hair salon at Kenyalang Commercial Centre.

At the schools PTA gathering yesterday, it also invited several senior Government officials to attend the event, where a talent show was put up. Ho also spoke about Mohd Shazzreal Fithrys achievements as a national sepak takraw player who will be competing in the next national championship in April, and praised the students performance.

Ho said given better facilities, the school would continue to cultivate quality students, who have the advantage of mixing with pupils of diverse backgrounds.

SK Kenyalangs PTA chairman Mahmud Dan agreed. In his opening address, Mahmud called on authorities to add another multi-storey block in the school.

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Termites Swarm in Like a Fastball This Spring

Posted: March 22, 2012 at 9:12 pm

ATLANTA–(BUSINESS WIRE)–

With our very mild winter coming to an end and all the exciting activities of spring like baseball season underway, it is time to think about some of the not-so-nice effects of the warmer weather as well. Termites are beginning to swarm in a big way and Arrow Exterminators urges homeowners to learn more about them in an effort to protect their homes. Estimated to cause more than $5 billion in structural damage each year, most of which is not covered by homeowners insurance, termites are very treacherous spring pests. Subterranean, drywood and Formosan termites, the most common termites in the south, become active in the spring, flourishing as soon as temperatures begin to heat up, and continuing through the summer. Given the mild winter we experienced, termite colony populations are expected to be at an all-time high this year. Once inside a home, termites can chew 24 hours a day through concrete, wood, carpeting, floors and wallpaper.

Swarms occur when termites seek to expand their territory and form new colonies. Not surprisingly, this is usually the first time a homeowner becomes aware of a potential infestation in the home, however termites are most often present in a home before they swarm. Other evidence of a termite infestation includes mud tunneling in, over and under wood structures; the darkening or blistering of wood; and/or damaged wood becoming extremely thin. In all circumstances a pest professional should be contacted immediately. Additionally, Arrow recommends that homeowners have their property inspected by a licensed professional annually to protect their families and their investment.

Once a termite infestation begins, it can quickly cause significant property damage so its imperative that homeowners get an inspection early, says Shay Runion, Arrow Pest Expert. Many homeowners believe that termites dont exist simply because they cant see them. However, the absence of typical ‘swarming’ signs doesnt mean there is no termite activity happening below the surface of a home.

When it comes to termite control, Arrow Exterminators hits the ball out of the park and offers these tips to help prevent a termite infestation this spring:

Arrow protects homes from termites and other pests with the STEPS Total Protection System, an industry-leading process that utilizes Integrated Pest Management. STEPS includes a full home and property evaluation to pinpoint pest control issues; identification of not only the pest, but the true cause of the problem; and treatment in the most environmentally responsible way to alleviate current issues and to help prevent future recurrences.

Consumers interested in protecting their homes from pests may obtain additional information at http://www.arrowexterminators.com. Additionally, consumers can contact Arrow for a free whole home evaluation at 1-888-462-7769.

About Arrow Exterminators

Family owned and operated since 1964, Atlanta-based Arrow Exterminators is the eighth largest pest and termite control company in the United States, ranked by revenue. Arrow boasts a modern fleet of more than 700 vehicles, more than 67 service centers and revenues exceeding $100 million. With QualityPro Certification by the National Pest Management Association, the company offers innovative and environmentally responsible services to protect homes and businesses of customers in Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas. Visit http://www.arrowexterminators.com for more information.

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Termites Swarm in Like a Fastball This Spring

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EpestSolutions: Termidor SC Termite and Ant Control – Video

Posted: March 16, 2012 at 8:45 pm


14-03-2011 20:09 Termidor® is 100% effective at controlling 100% of termites in three months or less – a statement no other termite control product can make. That’s why since its introduction in 2000, pest management professionals have made Termidor America’s leading termite control, with more than one million structures treated. It’s the product’s unique “Transfer Effect™,” allowing Termidor to achieve 100% control of termite populations at the very low rate of just 0.06% active ingredient. And because Termidor is a non-repellent – undetectable to termites – the pests freely forage through treated areas, unknowingly ingesting, picking up and transferring Termidor throughout the population •A 20 oz bottle of Termidor Termiticide will make 25 gallons of finished solutions. •Apply product at a rate of 4 finished gallons per 10 linear feet. •Product will treat 62.5 linear feet of structure for termite control •This is the same active ingredient in Frontline Drops you put on your pets for fleas and ticks. •Kills all types of drywood and Subterranean and Formosan termites Termidor is now labeled to treat the following pests: •Ants (acrobat, Argentine, big-headed, carpenter, crazy, odorous, pavement, pharaoh, thief) •Asian lady and darkling beetles •Box-elder bugs •Pillbugs •Centipedes •Cockroaches (Australian, Oriental, smokey brown) •House crickets European earwigs Cluster flies •Millipedes Silverfish Spiders (black widow, brown recluse, hobo, cellar) •Brown dog ticks •Paper wasps •Yellow

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EpestSolutions: Termidor SC Termite and Ant Control – Video

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A Termite and its Pests, Mites and Nematodes – Video

Posted: at 8:45 pm


06-09-2011 18:14 I found some little termites living large on the fringe of my compost heap so I put one under my Celestron digital LCD microscope and this is what I found. These are mites and nematodes (roundworms) which are both known to parasitize temites (or it may be commensalism in the case of the mite). Here is a study from Florida Entomologist on “MITES AND NEMATODES ASSOCIATED WITH THREE SUBTERRANEAN TERMITE SPECIES (ISOPTERA: RHINOTERMITIDAE”): http://www.rci.rutgers.edu My best guess from the research I have just done including reading the abstract of the above paper is that the organisms here are as follows: Eastern Subterranean Termite – Reticulitermes flavipes Mite – Family Acaridae, Genus Australhypopus Nematode – Family Rhabditidae, Genus Rhabditis Anyone with more knowledge of these species please feel free to offer corrections in the comments.

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High Priced Termite

Posted: at 1:34 am


08-03-2011 23:18 pestcemetery.com Sometimes fancy tools for termites just don’t work.

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High Priced Termite

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War: Ants vs Termites – Video

Posted: at 1:34 am


29-04-2011 16:00 War between Ants and Termites. Made by National Geographic.

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War: Ants vs Termites – Video

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