With the return of warmer weather comes an increase in the activity of insects and other pests. If left unchecked, the populations will continue to build rapidly throughout the Summer, so now is the time of year to take preventive steps to discourage pest activity. Here are some of the most common pests along the Sunshine Coast and some steps you can take to prevent them.
Termites: Although they can eat wood and damage homes all year round, spring is a particularly active time for termites because it is when the alates (reproductives) swarm to find mates and start new colonies. These swarms most often occur on warm, humid nights. Termites do not fly far from the nest, so seeing termite swarms should alert you to nearby infestations. Termites are particularly attracted to moist or rotting wood, so take time to do some spring cleaning in your yard. Make sure that there is proper drainage and get rid of any old wood or tree stumps on your property.
Ants: Ants are also more active during the spring as they leave their colony in search of food and water. Unfortunately, homes are perfect places for ants to find these things, and we often inadvertently attract ants by some of the things we do. If you hope to avoid the endless lines of ants marching through your home, it is important to seal up the exterior of your house so that they can not enter. Do this by filling any cracks and crevices with caulking, ensuring that weatherstripping is intact around doors, and using screens in windows. It is also critical to limit their access to food and water by maintaining a clean home and eliminating crumbs and excess moisture.
Mosquitos: While the majority of mosquito problems happen later in summer, it is essential to limit the ability of mosquitos to breed during the spring by eliminating their habitat. Mosquitos require standing water to lay their eggs and reproduce. During the spring, it is crucial to take steps to eliminate this water on your property. Empty out containers or pots that may have collected water, clean out gutters and downspouts that are clogged, and fill in low spots in the yard that may from puddles. Warm, wet springs can cause the mosquito population to explode, so do your part to prevent them on your property.
Bees and Wasps: When flowers start blooming, you can be confident that bees will be there to collect the pollen. Bees are critical for the health of the ecosystem, but you don’t want them on your property where painful stings could negatively affect your family. If you see bee hives, it is best to call a professional to relocate the hive. Wasps are much more likely to be pests. They like to build nests under the eaves of structures and can sting multiple times if bothered. Prevent problems with wasps by knocking down their nests when they are small. It is also important to keep the lid on indoor and outdoor trash bins because they are attracted to sweet things.
Spiders: We often think about spiders in the winter, but spiders can also be problematic during the spring. As other insect populations increase, spiders will move in to take advantage of the extra food. To prevent spiders, it is helpful to reduce the amount of clutter around your home and yard. Spiders like to remain hidden, so storage boxes and cluttered sheds are ideal places for them to hang out. It is also important to make sure your window screens are in good working condition with no holes or tears. Replace or repair them to keep many different pests from entering your home.
Redback Spider By Laurence Grayson from Suffolk, UK [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
These are only a few of the many pests that will try to enter your home this spring. Keep on top of the pest populations by performing some spring maintenance. Another great thing you can do is make sure you are up-to-date on your yearly pest control treatments. Professional exterminators can apply residual treatments to your home that will continue to prevent and eliminate pests for months at a time. Radar Pest Control is your Sunshine Coast Pest Control specialist. From Buderim to Nambour and everywhere in between, you can count on Radar Pest Control to get the job done right. Contact us today for more information.