Friday, September 29, 2017

Earwigs vs. Silverfish - Do You Know the Difference?

While there are many different insects that have the same name, silverfish and earwigs do not fall into this category. While we may often confuse them, or think of them as the same insect, they are two very unique insects. Best Pest Control is here to explain the difference between the two. If you think you may have an infestation of either of these pesky insects, give the best pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks a call.


How to Tell Earwigs and Silverfish Apart 


Appearance

Here are a few ways to tell the difference between earwigs and silverfish.

Earwigs  

Earwigs have slightly flattened bodies, however, that’s the only resemblance it has to the silverfish. Earwigs are usually brown or black and some have stripes of reddish coloring on their heads and limbs. Earwigs can be anywhere from ¼ of an inch to 1 ¼ inches long. Earwigs have wings, but they hardly ever fly. One of the earwig’s most distinctive features are its cerci. Cerci are two hard appendages that resemble pinchers extending from the backend of the abdomen.

Silverfish

Their name basically says it all. Silverfish are pearl gray and shiny. They have slightly flattened bodies and they do not have wings. Because they don’t have wings, there’s no such thing as a flying silverfish. They look like a tiny silver lobster without pinchers because of the way their body tapers from the head to the tail. Silverfish can be anywhere from ½ of an inch to 1-inch long. They also have three tail-like appendages that look like antennae.

Diet

When it comes to food, earwigs and silverfish prefer similar things. 

Silverfish

Silverfish mainly prefer starches. They are also known to feed on books and certain paper products because of the starches in the paper. They also like glues used in old books and wallpaper installation.

Earwigs

Earwigs mostly eat plants and decaying organic matter.

Habitats

Earwigs and silverfish don’t really look alike, they eat similar things, but what about their habitat?

Silverfish

If you want to see a silverfish, you should look in parts of your home that are moist and that usually don’t see a lot of foot traffic. If they place has food sources like old newspapers or books, they may never want to leave. This is even more likely if you live in a house that has wooden shingles. Wooden shingles tend to mold and silverfish can feed on that.

Earwigs

Luckily, earwigs prefer the great outdoors. They are nocturnal and look for damp, dark places to live. Places like this include the underside of flagstones, tree bark, or decaying wood. The only time these insects will cause you any problems is if they move to the inside of your house. If they do make it inside of your house, you will more than likely find them in your basement, bathroom, or a small dark crawl space.

While it may be easy to classify these two insects as the same, the truth is that they have many differences. One thing that they both have in common is that they’re hard to control if they infest your home. If you think you may have a problem with silverfish or earwigs, make sure you contact the best pest control at the Lake of the Ozarks. Our skilled technicians at Best Pest Control can evaluate your individual situation and recommend the best plan of action for your home

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Thursday, September 21, 2017

What's Lurking in Your Leaf Piles?

Fall is just around the corner and that means tree leaves will begin to change colors and start to fall. When the leaves start to fall, giant piles are created and what’s more fun than jumping into those giant piles of leaves? While they may seem harmless, leaf piles can be dangerous. The best pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks knows that piles of leaves can supply hiding places for all kinds of creatures, from centipedes to snakes. Most insects and other pests you may find in piles of leaves are relatively harmless, but some are not. Best Pest Control has listed some types of pests you may find in piles of leaves.


Centipedes


These pests are motivated by their hunger. They go wherever their hunger leads them. Centipedes are nocturnal. They like to stay hidden and stay close to the ground. Because of this, piles of leaves provide them with irresistible cover. Some centipedes are also equipped with powerful venom that can cause pain and in some cases an allergic reaction in some people.

Ticks


While summer is definitely tick season, ticks can still pose a threat during the cooler months, especially when the leaves begin to fall. Deer ticks, also known as Black-legged ticks, are known carriers of the pathogens that can cause Lyme disease. If a tick attaches itself to you and goes undiscovered for a period of time, that can be enough to transmit any number of tick-borne diseases. To help prevent ticks in your yard, make sure that your yard doesn’t attract these pesky bugs. To do that, keep your grass trimmed and do not let leaves accumulate. Some ticks may seek protection from the elements in dense woody, leaf-cluttered areas.

Spiders


Spiders are predators and habitually take up residence where they know they'll have easy access to prey. That main source of prey comes from other insects. So, they may find their way into leaf piles while preying on those insects or could be raked into the pile. If you’re concerned about spiders in your yard, you may want to bag or dispose of piles of leaves as soon as possible. Doing so can help limit your exposure to common garden spiders.
Garden spiders are considered beneficial and you should avoid killing if possible. However, you’ll want to avoid potentially dangerous species such as the black widow and brown recluse.

Snakes


Venomous snakes, such as copperheads, can be found in leaf piles. If you live in an area where venomous snakes are common, you should be extra cautious when cleaning up piles of fallen leaves. The last thing you want to come across when cleaning up leaves is a snake, poisonous or not. 

Raking and quickly bagging up leaves can be a form of pest control for your yard. The key is to clean up your yard quickly. When cleaning up leaf piles that have been sitting out for more than a day, you should wear gloves and use caution. Bugs and other pests may have set up camp in there. If you need help with pests in or around your home, the best pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks is here to help. Best Pest Control technicians are trained to tackle all sorts of pest problems. To learn more about our services, visit our website or call us at 573-348-1600. 


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Friday, September 15, 2017

Are Gnats Driving You Crazy?

Gnats are one of those pesky insects that seem to multiply every time you turn around. Gnats are a common pest problem, which can require a call to the best pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks. In order to combat your gnat problem, you need to understand these annoying insects. Best Pest Control has some information to help you with your gnat problem. If you need professional help getting rid of these flying insects, we can help you! 

What Are Gnats?


The term “gnat” commonly describes a range of small, flying, non-biting insects. These flying bugs include:
  • Fungus gnats
  • Buffalo gnats
  • Black gnats
  • Fruit flies
  • Phorid flies
  • Sand flies
  • And several other species

Many gnats do not live long enough to feed. Depending on the specific species, a gnat’s life cycle only lasts approximately four to five weeks. This is just enough time for them to mate and lay eggs.

What Attracts Gnats?


For gnats that do live long enough to feed, scent is a strong attractor. Gnats gravitate more towards fruity or sweet odors that are associated with their preferred sources of food.

Things that can be extremely tempting to gnats are fruit trees, vegetable gardens, and flower beds. Gnats can also make their way inside of your home if they sense the presence of ripening fruits or vegetables, food spillages, some types of houseplants and garbage that is out in the open. Other things that attract gnats are bath products and certain cosmetics that contain fruity or flowery smells. Gnats can also zero in on certain body parts that are associated with those cosmetics. Yes, that includes the face.

Besides scents, gnats are also attracted to heat and moisture. They like wet areas either inside or outside of your home. The kitchen sink can become a gnat magnet. It not only provides the moisture they like, we also dump food down the drain which they can smell. Gnats are also drawn to people who are perspiring. They may be the most persistent around the moist regions of the face, which includes the eyes, lips and mouth area.

Moisture is extremely important to gnats because they rely on that moisture to reproduce. The larvae develop in standing water in areas such as pools, ponds, clogged rain gutters, or even puddles.

How to Help Keep Gnats Away


Besides having your gnat problem professionally taken care of, one of the most effective ways to keep gnats away is to remove any attractors. It’s important to keep areas both in and around your home clean. By keeping things clean, you can greatly reduce the likelihood of attracting gnats. Don’t allow food (especially fruits like bananas) or sugary drinks to sit out. You should also promptly clean up any food or drink spills and make sure your trash can has a lid.

Since moisture attracts gnats and is their breeding environment, you should be diligent about preventing water from collecting in areas near your home. The main areas of focus should be: 
  • Rain gutters
  • Pet bowls
  • Birdbaths
  • Or any low spots in your yard that collect any standing water

Remove Any Existing Gnats


There are a few safe homemade remedies you can try to use to capture and kill unwanted gnats. A simple gnat trap can be made by mixing red wine (or vinegar if you don’t have wine) and dish soap. Mix equal parts in a bowl and set it out in an area (out of reach of kids and pets) where you’ve seen gnats. The gnats will land in the mixture hoping to feed, but because of the mixture’s structure, the gnats will likely sink and drown.

While DIY methods are an easy and quick fix, they often times don’t cut it. If you need help with your gnat problem, the best pest control company at Lake of the Ozarks can help you. If you need help solving your home's pest control problem, call Best Pest Control. Our technicians are trained to tackle all pests that infect the Lake of the Ozarks. To learn more about our services and to schedule your appointment, contact us at 573-348-1600.


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Thursday, September 7, 2017

When are Mosquitoes Most Active?

Have you ever wondered why mosquitoes seem to be more active during certain seasons or even during certain times of the day? Here at Best Pest Control, we have those answers for you. The best pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks has put together some information so you can get to know more about these pesky bugs. With over 176 mosquito species in the United States and over 3,000 species world wide, knowing when these insects are the most active can help you and your family avoid them.


Time of Year


Once the temperatures begin to decrease, the number of mosquitoes start to decrease as well. Mosquitoes don’t like to be exposed to temperatures that fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Once fall rolls around, you won’t have to worry about those annoying insects as much.

In some mosquito species, the adults themselves overwinter by relocating to environments that will help protect them from the cold weather. These environments include places like sewers, cellars, and caves. Other mosquito species overwinter their eggs which then hatch the following spring when temperatures start to rise.

Regardless of a how a mosquito deals with the winter season, they start to reappear when temperatures are consistently over 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Areas that have mild winters usually see mosquitoes reappear sooner than areas with harsh winters.

Time of Day


The activity level of a mosquito depends largely on its species type. Some may be more active during the night, while some may be more active during the day.

Mosquitoes in the genus Culex are mainly active at night time. Some mosquito species in the genus Aedes are active during the day and they tend to aggressively bite humans more during the morning and late afternoon hours. Anopheles mosquitoes are active during nighttime, dawn, and dusk.

Mosquitoes across all different species tend to be more active during dusk.


Interesting Facts


  • Mosquitoes are most closely related to flies, gnats, and midges.
  • Only female mosquitoes bite. They require nutrition that is found in blood to begin producing and laying their eggs.
  • In order to assist with proper feeding, when a mosquito bites, they deploy anticoagulants. The human immune system responds to this by releasing histamines. This can cause redness, swelling, and itching that is associated with mosquito bites.
  • Although scientists are still searching for reasons why, studies suggest that consuming alcohol makes you a more attractive target for hungry mosquitoes.
  • The lifespan of a female mosquito is typically anywhere from two to four weeks compared to the one to two weeks lifespan for a male mosquito.

Even though completely avoiding mosquitoes isn’t likely, Best Pest Control is here to help. Knowing when mosquitoes are most active can help you avoid these pesky insects. If you’ve noticed an increase in mosquitoes at your home, the best pest control company at Lake of the Ozarks can help. Our technicians know how to properly treat pests that can cause problems for you and your family. To learn more about our services, call us at 573-348-1600.

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Friday, September 1, 2017

What Can Best Pest Control Do For You This Fall

Labor Day Weekend is typically the mark that the summer season has ended at the Lake of the Ozarks. Although the first day of fall is September 22, now is the perfect time to start thinking about getting your home ready for the season, especially if you're a second homeowner at the Lake of the Ozarks. If you're thinking about getting your home ready for the fall season, here are the ways Best Pest Control can help!


Pest Control

Pest control may be the last thing on your mind once the summer ends, but pests don't go away during the fall. Many different insects like to seek out shelter to escape the cold, and that warm place may be your home. Termites also tend to swarm during the fall, so make sure your home is fully protected and call a Lake of the Ozarks pest control company.

Fall Lawn Care

Although you may not be mowing your lawn every weekend, there are still some things you need to do to make sure your lawn is prepared for the following spring. The leaves will soon be changing, and they will soon be covering your yard. Excess leaves on your grass can kill your lawn, become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and grow mold, fungus and disease. Don't spend your weekend cleaning up leaves, call Best Pest Control.

Winter Home Checks

Do you have a second home at the Lake of the Ozarks? Our winter home check can help make sure your home is secure and protected during the off-season. From unwelcomed critters to foundation issues, we can help you protect your home away from home.


Gutter Maintenance

Maintaining your gutters is especially important in the fall and winter months. When the leaves fall, they not only become a problem for your lawn, they also clog your gutter. Clogged gutters can cause foundation, wood and landscape damage, and in the winter can cause ice dams. These problems can be a burden to deal with in the colder weather, so make sure it doesn't happen by scheduling routine maintenance that includes cleaning the gutters.

Power Washing Services

You may not think power washing is an important step in preparing your home for the winter months. However, there are a few benefits to having it done. Besides making your home look better, power washing can also remove mold from siding and shingles. If left untreated, the mold could continue to grow and damage the wood structure of your home.


Animal Control

Just like insects, wildlife will seek out shelter in the fall and winter months. Make sure they don't make your home their sanctuary and call a professional to evict them. These animals can cause serious damage to a home, so it is important to take care of the problem as soon as it arises.

Sadly, the summer is almost over and the weather will be getting colder. Although the pests might not be bugging us as much, your Lake of the Ozarks pest control company is still here to help protect your property. Best Pest Control is more than just a professional pest control company at the Lake of the Ozarks. In addition to pest control, we also offer a variety of different services at the Lake, including power washing, trapping, leaf blowing, yard clean up and more. Visit our website at www.LakeBestPestControl.com to learn more about these services.

THE LAKE'S MOST TRUSTED PEST CONTROL COMPANY

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