Top Tips for Pest-Free Outdoor Living

Avoid mosquitoes in your Atlanta GA backyard with tips from Active Pest ControlWith summer winding down, you’re likely wanting to spend as much time outdoors as possible. Whether you are hosting a backyard barbecue or reading out on your patio at night, the last thing you want to deal with is a pest problem. Mosquitoes, ticks, flies, lawn pests, and wasps are just a few of the many pests that can become quite a nuisance. At Active Pest Control, we know you want to enjoy your time spent in your outdoor living spaces to be pest-free, which is why we’re here to provide you with our top tips for pest-free outdoor living in your Atlanta area home.

Common Pests in Your Yard

The time of year that provides nice enough weather for you to be outdoors is also the time of year when pests are most active! Whether you have a garden in your backyard or couches and tables on your deck, you will likely encounter some of the following pests:

How to Prevent Pests in Your Outdoor Living Space

To keep pests away when you’re in your yard, there are several things you can do. The best ways to keep pests away in your outdoor space are as follows.

  1. Get rid of standing water. Mosquitoes only need a half inch of standing water to breed.
  2. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed. Overgrown grass or vegetation provides mosquitoes and ticks with shelter.
  3. Know how to look for ant hills. Even a tiny mound can contain thousands of ants inside.
  4. Check wood structures. Termites and carpenter bees will damage your wooden decks or porches.
  5. Use an insect repellent. Insect repellent containing DEET will help repel mosquitoes and ticks.
  6. Clean your patio or space regularly. Crumbs or spilled liquids will attract ants and other insects.

Year-Long Pest-Free Living

Pests are just a fact of life outside. However, you don’t have to let them ruin your time spent in your own backyard! For help implementing pest-free outdoor living tips, the experts at Active Pest Control can help. Contact our residential exterminators to learn more.

Why Does Cockroach Activity Spike in the Summer?

Cockroaches are common in Atlanta GA summertime - Active Pest ControlIf you’re wondering when “cockroach season” is, we’re in the midst of it! Summertime sees a growth in cockroach infestations and populations, especially here in the Atlanta GA area. Although roaches can survive in many different climates and environments, they generally prefer warm, humid temperatures. As soon as summer rolls around, roaches are more likely to be on the hunt for food. While they breed year-round, the reproduction rate goes up during the summer. Keep reading to learn about summertime cockroach activity as well as what you can do to prevent it with tips from Active Pest Control.

The Season of Cockroaches

Cockroaches are a common household pest all year long. So why are they more populous in the summertime? Most roach species are drawn to warm or moist environments, which is why they frequently inhabit bathrooms, kitchens, and basements. Many cockroaches lie dormant in the wintertime, but rising temperatures encourage them to resume activity. In cases of extreme heat, cockroaches that otherwise stay outdoors will flood inside in search of food, water, and relief from the heat. This is why we get so many calls for roach infestations this time of year!

How to Keep Cockroaches Out

No one wants to deal with a cockroach problem in the summer, or any time of year for that matter. Our best summertime cockroach prevention tips are as follows.

  • Inspect the perimeter of your home and seal cracks and crevices. Seal windows and doors or install screens.
  • Keep a clean kitchen and bathroom. Wipe or clean up any spills or messes as soon as possible.
  • After feeding your pets, pick up pet bowls and avoid leaving food out overnight or for days at a time.
  • Keep all food securely sealed in airtight containers, and refrigerate unsealed food. Ensure your garbage is sealed with a tight-fitting lid, and routinely take it out when needed.
  • Avoid leaving piles of clutter or junk both inside and outside of your property.
  • Because cockroaches love moisture, promptly fix any leaky pipes or clogged rain gutters.

Summertime Cockroach Control

Cockroaches are certainly a nuisance, but they can be dangerous too. Not only are they difficult to get rid of, roaches can carry and spread a number of harmful bacteria and germs. Even seeing one roach often indicates there are many more hidden nearby. Unfortunately, DIY cockroach control is fruitless. Always contact the licensed roach exterminators at Active Pest Control if you are dealing with a summertime cockroach infestation.

Guide to Identify Wasp Nests

Wasp nest identification in Atlanta GA - Active Pest ControlIn the middle of the summer, we see a lot of stinging insect activity. Wasps in particular are seen often here in Georgia in the late summer and fall. Whether you’re used to seeing paper wasps in your backyard or yellowjackets at the park, you’re accustomed to seeing wasps here and there. But these wasps are all different, and it’s important to learn how to identify the nests they build. If you notice one of the below nests on your property, it’s important to be cautious, even if it appears abandoned. Certain types of wasps can be more aggressive than others, especially when it comes to defending their nest. To learn how to identify different wasp nests, keep reading for expert tips from Active Pest Control.

Where Are Wasp Nests Found?

Everyone thinks wasp nests are mostly in trees, but that’s not always the case. Yellowjackets favor areas near the ground, in hollow trees, under porches, and a number of other areas. Some even nest entirely underground in old burrows. Mud daubers tend to build their nests in sheltered areas, including under eaves, garages, attics, or on the sides of buildings. Paper wasp nests are often located under and within the eaves of structures, in attics and wall voids, and in other enclosed areas. Bald-faced hornets, on the other hand, like to build nests high up off the ground. This means they’re found in trees, but also on the sides of buildings.

Paper wasp, mud dauber, yellowjacket, and bald-faced hornet nest identification in Atlanta GA - Active Pest Control

4 Different Wasp Nests

It’s important to learn how to differentiate the different wasp nests your most likely to come across. Here are the main characteristics of each:

  1. Yellowjackets. Likely the most common nest you may see, yellowjacket nests are a papery material and have a single opening. The inside of a yellowjacket nest can have up to 100 tiers of cells. Yellowjackets can also build underground nests that can be enormous in size.
  2. Paper wasps. These nests famously look like upside-down umbrellas. Paper wasp nests are often open, and can get quite large in size. They are typically supported by a single stalk and consist of a paper-like material.
  3. Mud daubers. True to name, female mud daubers construct their nests out of mostly mud. The nests are small and tubular in size, often looking like organ pipes. They are typically found in cracks or crevices.
  4. Bald-faced hornets. These nests are almost always at least three feet off the ground. They are made of chewed wood fibers mixed with saliva. They often grow to be the size of a football or basketball.

What to Do About Wasp Nests on Your Property

Even if you believe a wasp nest to be old or abandoned, it’s important to avoid it altogether. Lingering stinging insects may be inside. DIY nest removal is always a risk, and is especially dangerous for anyone who is allergic to stings. If you notice one of the above wasp nests forming on or near your property, always contact your local wasp removal experts at Active Pest Control.

Mosquito Breeding Grounds Around the Home

Old tires collecting water are a common mosquito breeding ground in Atlanta GA - Active Pest ControlIn the middle of the summer, no one wants mosquitoes ruining their outdoor activities. Mosquitoes can breed at a rapid rate. Even worse, they can easily do so right in your backyard if given the chance. Thankfully, there are a number of ways you can disrupt the mosquito breeding cycle and, in turn, keep mosquitoes out of your yard. If mosquitoes lack a suitable area to lay their eggs, they will be forced to look elsewhere.

The team at Active Pest Control is here to bring awareness to the most common mosquito breeding grounds around your home in the Atlanta GA area.

Common Mosquito Breeding Grounds

Female mosquitoes can produce anywhere from 100-300 eggs at a time, and their life cycle takes just two weeks for larvae to become adults. For this reason, it’s crucial to know how to stop mosquitoes from breeding in your yard. Here are the main areas they will target:

  • Birdbaths
  • Gutters
  • Mud pots
  • Tree stumps and wood piles
  • Children’s play sets
  • Trash cans
  • Old tires

How to prevent mosquitoes in Atlanta GA - Active Pest Control

How to Stop Mosquitoes From Breeding

In general, any body of stagnant water on your property will attract mosquitoes and provide females with a spot to lay their eggs. If any of the above items harbor standing water, make sure to routinely dump out the water or place covers on them. Female mosquitoes need just a half inch of water to breed, making it important to stay on top of inspecting areas in your yard for that. In addition, install screens on windows and interior doors of your home, reduce outdoor lighting at night, fix water leaks, keep your lawn trimmed, and use mosquito repellents following the manufacturer’s instructions.

Long-Term Mosquito Prevention

Mosquitoes are pesky and opportunists-they can breed and inhabit areas of your yard you likely wouldn’t expect. It can feel overwhelming to know how to keep mosquitoes out. If you need help eliminating mosquito breeding grounds around your home, contact your local mosquito exterminator. At Active Pest Control, we focus on long-term protection against mosquitoes. Contact us today to learn more!

How to Prevent Summertime Ants

How to prevent summertime ants in Atlanta GA - Active Pest ControlAnts can be a problem year-round, but they tend to show up in overwhelming numbers during the summertime here in the Atlanta area. Although ants aren’t considered as dangerous as other pests, they are the number one nuisance pest in the nation for a reason. They often will appear in your kitchen, bathrooms, and along your floorboards in search for food and shelter. To avoid the frustration of ants in your property, it’s important to learn how to prevent summertime ants.

What Type of Ant Do I Have?

With more than 700 species living in the U.S., it is crucial to know which one you’re dealing with in order to properly get rid of these common summer ants. An infestation from any of these can be a major pain to deal with, making it important to know what you’re coming up against. A few of the most common types of ants you’ll likely encounter include:

Prevent Summertime Ants in 5 Steps

To avoid dealing with ants, it’s important to learn how to stop them from making their ways indoors in the first place! Some of our top tips for preventing summertime ants include:

  1. Keep a clean home. Sweep your floors regularly to get rid of crumbs. Ants are attracted to sugary food sources and a few crumbs will keep them coming back for more.
  2. Store away food. Avoid leaving food out uncovered. Keep food in airtight containers or store them safely in cupboards and fridges.
  3. Seal entry points. Ants can crawl through the tiniest of cracks. Inspect your property and use caulk to seal any gaps, holes, or potential entry ways.
  4. Get rid of excess moisture. Areas with standing water or leaks will attract ants quickly. Attend to broken pipes and clean up spills quickly.
  5. Trim back trees and vegetation. Plants close to your home can encourage ants to come in. Make sure tree branches, shrubs, and bushes are trimmed away from the perimeter!

Long-Term Ant Prevention

Keeping ants out can seem like a daunting task, especially if you’ve done all you can to prevent them! To give yourself peace of mind, it’s best to contact your local ant exterminator. At Active Pest Control, we have the experience and resources needed to prevent ants in the summertime and all year long. To learn more about how, contact our team today!

10 Bed Bug Myths Debunked

Bed bug awareness week in Atlanta GA - Bed bug myths debunked by Active Pest ControlBed bugs are certainly one of the most feared pests. Not only does a bed bug infestation cause distress, they can be very difficult to get rid of! There are many theories about bed bugs and their behaviors that have been passed on throughout history. Because these bugs incite a lot of fear, it’s important to separate fact from fiction.

With Bed Bug Awareness Week upon us, the bed bug exterminators at Active Pest Control are here to debunk some common bed bug myths.

False Bed Bug Facts

The following “facts” about bed bugs are simply not true:

  1. Bed bugs are attracted to messy or dirty homes. Unfortunately, anyone can get a bed bug problem. Unsanitary conditions will not lead you to get bed bugs in your home!
  2. Bed bugs only feed at night. Bed bugs are active when their hosts are at rest. This usually means overnight, but they are able to adjust their schedule to fit yours!
  3. These bugs are only found in your bedroom. Bed bugs tend to congregate near areas where people rest. This includes sofas, chairs, cracks in the wall, and even power outlets!
  4. Bed bugs are too small to see with the naked eye. Adult bed bugs are perfectly capable of being seen. They are the size of an apple seed and often grouped together, making it easier to spot an infestation.
  5. They can jump and fly. Fortunately, bed bugs cannot jump or fly as other pests can. They have underdeveloped wings, and instead move from one spot to the other by crawling or latching onto a moving item.
  6. Bed bugs latch or travel on people. Although bed bugs are known to hitch a ride on your purse or suitcase, they do not attach to people as fleas or ticks do.
  7. You can get rid of bed bugs with DIY methods. At-home or DIY treatments for bed bugs are, in a word, ineffective. An aggressive approach from a pest control company is necessary to getting rid of the entire infestation.
  8. Bed bugs transmit dangerous diseases. These pests may cause you anxiety and even itchiness, but their bites do not transmit disease as other pests do.
  9. Bed bugs can live a year without feeding. While they definitely can survive months without a meal, they won’t make it through an entire year unless under optimal conditions.
  10. You should get rid of your mattress and clothing if you have bed bugs. If you are in the midst of an infestation, it’s actually dangerous to move your infested items. Doing so can spread bed bugs into other areas!

You Have Bed Bugs–What Now?

Bed bugs are certainly one of the more terrifying pest problems. It’s important to know the truth about bed bugs in order to better prepare yourself for the chances of an infestation. When you do have a problem, it’s always best to enlist the help of a professional pest control company to get rid of infestation for you, bringing you peace of mind. Contact the team at Active Pest Control to learn more.

3 Wasps to Look Out For This Summer

Learn how to identify summer wasps in Atlanta GA - Active Pest ControlSummer is right around the corner here in Atlanta GA. For many, that means more backyard barbecues and time spent at parks, swimming pools, and hiking trails. Unfortunately, it also means wasp season has arrived. Especially in the late summer months, wasps can be a nuisance to any outdoor event. They also can be very dangerous as they become more aggressive. There are three summertime wasps in particular that you may encounter: paper wasps, mud daubers, and–of course–yellow jackets. It can be difficult to differentiate between these wasps, which is why Active Pest Control has gathered the info you need to know in this blog post. Keep reading to learn more!

Common Summertime Wasps

There are over 4,000 wasp species in the United States, but there are just a few you are most likely to encounter. The three summertime wasps to know are:

  1. Paper Wasps. These wasps are known for the papery nests they build, which look like upside-down umbrellas. Their nests often hang from tree branches and twigs, as well as porch ceilings and door railings. They typically contain up to 30 wasps. Paper wasps aren’t as aggressive as yellow jackets, but they may sting to defend their nests. Their sting is known to be especially potent.
  2. Mud Daubers. As their name suggests, mud daubers build their nests from mud. They are mostly black in appearance but may have light-colored markings. The most characteristic feature of the mud dauber is their thin, thread-like waist. Nests are usually located in covered areas such as porch ceilings, sheds, and attics. These wasps are less social than other types, often preferring to be solitary. Mud daubers aren’t as aggressive and will only sting when directly handled.
  3. Yellow Jackets: During the summertime, yellow jackets are infamous for being aggressive. Yellow jackets congregate in colonies of up to or more than 1,000 workers. Their nests can be a ticking time bomb if anyone tries to knock it down without a professional pest control company. Yellow jackets will not bother you unless they feel threatened, in which case they may sting repeatedly.

Common summertime wasps in Atlanta GA - Active Pest Control

6 Tips to Prevent Wasps

It’s important to take caution around wasps. Always be on the lookout for nests, which often are built in porch ceilings, decks, sheds, garages, and on the sides of buildings. When outdoors, take the following steps to avoid a wasp sting:

  • Always wear shoes outside, especially in grassy areas.
  • Do not leave drinks or food in accessible areas.
  • Keep windows and doors properly screened.
  • Keep garbage in sealed receptacles.
  • Do not swat at wasps as it increases the likelihood of an aggressive reaction.
  • If stung, seek immediate medical attention, as reactions can be severe.

Summertime Wasp Control

It can be difficult to identify summertime wasps, which is why it’s best to leave it up to the professionals. A wasp nest on your building can be very dangerous, and always needs to be handled by a professional pest control company. DIY removal methods are simply out of the question when it comes to stinging insects. The team at Active Pest Control has the experience needed to provide safe, quick, and effective wasp removal services.

Summer Pests in Chattanooga

Situated along the Tennessee River, Chattanooga is a city with endless possibilities for adventure, a great night out, and a lot of family fun. The mountains of Southeast Tennessee are also a great attraction for a hike or even a short walk with a view. Since Chattanooga combines city fun, woodsy adventures, and river cruise trips, couples and families are not the only ones attracted to Chattanooga’s charm. Pests of every shape and size are drawn to this mountainous riverside city. With temperatures reaching into the 90s during the summer, pests find themselves very comfortable in that kind of habitat. This becomes a large concern for commercial companies looking to make a great impression on a guest, customer, or client.

Summertime is warm, fresh, and beautiful; but at the same time, summertime pests are a great nuisance and a health concern for companies all over Chattanooga. The top three pests that will cause you trouble this summer are rodents, fleas, and cockroaches. Within your business, these pests need to be held at bay since they affect the health and environment for your customers or guests. Whether you are responsible for a restaurant, hotel, daycare, school, or another commercial business, you should be on the lookout for these pests wandering around this summer.

Rodents are mammals, and because they do not hibernate, they can be found anywhere year-round. They also reproduce rapidly; so once there is a sighting or a hint of rodent infestation, action needs to be taken. If you are in any kind of food service industry you are aware of how rodents can affect the health and safety of kitchens, storage areas, and even public spaces. Rodents are capable of crawling through spaces that seem much too small for them, so they could be entering in areas you wouldn’t even expect. Rodents can also chew through hard materials, leave urine and feces, and cause anxiety if seen by someone visiting your establishment. If a rodent’s nest is made somewhere within your business, reproduction will occur and can lead to contamination of food and surfaces where they roam around upon.

Fleas are extremely common in the summer months. Fleas need a host to feed on to survive; so most of the time, they will hitchhike on rodents, pets, and even humans. Fleas have different stages of development from egg to adult, but it takes a flea at the adult stage to be seen with the naked eye. Fleas can bite, can carry disease, and can be a nuisance throughout your business. Since fleas make their way inside from a host, extermination needs to be done at the first sight of a flea before reproduction happens.

Cockroaches are well known for being a huge pest, and they are an unsightly scene for commercial businesses. Cockroaches pose a large health concern since they are often found by waste deposits, drains, and kitchens where food is nearby. Cockroaches can carry diseases all over your business, and they even emit a foul odor. Since they are nocturnal, most of the time they won’t be seen unless they are uncovered or frightened away from their place of hiding. There is usually nothing good associated with a cockroach, and coming across one will send shivers up your spine.

Combating these summertime pests alone is next to impossible. Keeping the reputation of your business is extremely important, so at the first sign of a rodent, flea, cockroach, or any other pest in your business, contact us. We have over 40 years of pest control experience; and with the strength of our team, you will not be disappointed. We pride ourselves in sending the best technicians, being environmentally responsible, and honest. We have a range of programs to fit any need you have for pest control within your business. Call us today for a pest control service that will remove and prevent pests because ‘When bugs are all gone, it’s Active Pest Control.’