Nothing but Trouble: Here Are Some of the Biggest Pest Problems in Washington to Look out For

Insect and rodent pests are a problem both in commercial and residential spaces.

They eat crops. They get into sensitive equipment. And in our homes, they pose a serious health and safety risk.

In fact, pest control has proven to be so important that experts believe there is a correlation between more pest control and longer life expectancy today compared to the early 1900s.

Keep reading to learn about a few pests common throughout Washington, and why you need Natura pest control to get rid of them.

Fleas

Fleas are a painful, annoying pest. But they are often overlooked on lists of household pests because they need a host in order to survive.

If you have a household dog or cat, or one comes to visit and is carrying fleas, once inside your home they can lay eggs. After those eggs hatch, they’ll look for a nearby host to attach to, which might just be you or a loved one.

Fleas bite, leaving behind painful red welts that itch. While the itching is annoying, these bites can be much more dangerous is a flea is carrying a disease that it picked up from a previous host.

Stopping a flea infestation in your home requires much more than treating the fleas living on your skin or that of your pet. Instead, you need professionals to stop the entire reproductive process, eliminating the presence of flea eggs in your home.

Ants

Ants are one of the most common — and most annoying — pests you can experience. That’s because it takes very little to attract them, and they can get into your home from just about anywhere.

Oftentimes, ants are found in bathrooms and kitchens where water and food sources are plentiful. They can squeeze through cracks you didn’t even realize that your home had.

You could see just one or two ants on occasion. Or you may see hundreds of them. When they’re simply marching in and out of your home, they won’t do much beyond devouring any food crumbs.

But what many homeowners don’t realize is that ants can infest your walls, eating through drywall and insulation.

Left unchecked, they can form massive colonies in the walls of your home before you even realize that they are there. Over time, this can lead to costly damage in your walls.

Rats

While one or two ants won’t cause much damage in your home, one or two rats can.

Unlike some pests, rats can harm a home’s inhabitants directly. Rats carry a variety of diseases, including Lassa Fever, Leptospirosis, Salmonellosis, and more.

The plague, originally spread by rats leading to millions of deaths during the middle ages, is still being spread in various parts of the world by rats.

Rats can also spread other pests, such as fleas or lice, into your home, making them even more dangerous. They chew through walls, eat through containers, and often aren’t afraid to approach humans. This can lead to bites and exposure to the diseases that they carry.

Fighting a rat infestation on your own is very difficult. Rats are stealthy and resilient — and they repopulate quickly.

Homeowners who aren’t familiar with rats often don’t realize how many different types of rats are out there. Each has its own characteristics that you’ll need to know if you want to get rid of them.

Mice

Smaller and a little less intimidating, mice aren’t usually as feared as rats. But that doesn’t make them any less dangerous, especially in your home.

Like rats, mice can carry a variety of diseases, including Hemorrhagic Fever, Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome, and more. Also like rats, they’ll eat just about anything.

They leave urine behind everywhere they go, which will give your home a foul odor in no time.

Because mice can flatten themselves down to just a portion of their usual size, they can slip under doors and through tiny cracks, making it easy for them to get into even newer homes.

Wasps

While wasp nests are often found in backyards, individual wasps may enter your home through pipes or cracks. Once inside, they may start new nests in your walls, on enclosed patios, or anywhere that they can find an undisturbed spot.

Once the nest begins to grow, it can be difficult to stop. You’ll go from having one or two wasps in your home to dozens or even hundreds of dangerous creatures flying around, stinging your family.

Never attempt to get rid of a wasp nest on your own, especially if it is inside of your home.

Roaches

When most people think of pest infestations, they think of cockroaches.

Roaches most often come up through pipes and from septic tanks. They carry a number of dangerous diseases, not to mention they leave behind a stench.

They multiple incredibly quickly, are resilient and need very little food or resources, and are also difficult to kill. This is one pest that is definitely best left to the professionals to get rid of.

Spiders

Like all of the pests on this list, spiders can sneak into your home from just about anywhere.

While many species of spiders are harmless, others, such as Black Widows, are poisonous. Black Widows are not only present in Washington but are common in the eastern part of the state.

A single bite can severely injure or even kill your loved ones or pets. A single spider could be just that — or a sign that you have other waiting in your walls and hidden under furniture.

Trust Natura Pest Control to Get Rid of Your Pests

No matter which type of pest is infesting your home, you and your family’s health and wellness could be at risk.

Don’t let an infestation get even further out of hand. The faster you treat the problem by calling in the pros, the less chance of someone getting bit, stung, or otherwise hurt.

Contact us today to see how Natura pest control can help you rid your home of annoying, dangerous pests such as these.

They All Go Marching Down: 7 Signs You Need an Ant Exterminator in Vancouver, WA

Ants are among the prime examples that allude to diligence and hard work in the natural world. They can be fascinating creatures.

However, they are also the number one nuisance. The most damaging of them is the carpenter ant.

Carpenter ants can inflict significant damage to wooden structures. They can ruin furniture or even damage the foundations of your home.

But there are many more types of ants! Identifying the type of pest causing the damage is key in treating them. You need to know if you need to call the best ant exterminator Vancouver WA can offer.

Here are seven signs that will tell you when to call for a professional for an inspection:

1. Food Being Overrun by Ants

Leaving exposed food long enough would invite ants to that spot.

You would know that you have an ant infestation when the ants start swarming your pantry. Even pet food is fair game for the ants. Ants are not picky eaters, and they will go after any food that they can sniff out.

One way to address this problem is to store all food in the refrigerator or in airtight containers. While this is a good preventive measure, be on a lookout. Having carpenter ants present is not a good sign.

2. Stray Ants Walking Around

The presence of a carpenter ant is a sign enough that you will need a pest control expert to inspect your home. This would likely be a scout ant wandering around your home. You might also notice winged ants creeping out from ceilings, walls, or other crevices in your home.

If you end up spotting individual ants in odd places in your home, like the bedroom, they are part of an ant infestation in your home. It gets more alarming if you spot them on a regular basis.

Carpenter ants prefer to preside in wood. If there is no rotted wood around your home, you might want to have your walls or floors checked.

3. Hearing Insect Activity in Walls

One way to check for signs of ants is to listen to the walls or floors. If you end up hearing rustling noises at night when you listen in to the walls, you might be hearing an ant colony at work. Some breeds are more active during night time, which explains the sounds.

Another way to find out is by knocking at the walls. If the solid wood wall sounds hollow, you might be facing an ant or termite infestation problem. This is a good time for you to contact pest control.

4. Ant Colony Nearby

Another sign that you shouldn’t ignore is the ant hill. If you spot an ant colony anywhere in your yard, you shouldn’t ignore this. Ants can and will travel a long distance in search of food.

Also note that while there are only a few ants on the surface of the colony, this is but a façade. Under the dirt mound is an extensive network of tunnels and sections. This is where ants live, breed, and thrive.

Since carpenter ants thrive with wood, also check the wooden sections of your home, as mentioned earlier there are ways for ants to gain entry in your home.

5. Look for Wood Shavings

Carpenter ants burrow into wood. Due to this, you would notice a trail of wood shavings and sawdust. Make a closer inspection when you clean and sweep your floors.

If you find any of these wood shavings without any clear reason behind their origin, like any form of carpentry done, you need to have your home inspected for pests. While termites are the more likely ones to eat wood, carpentry ants are just as destructive to woodwork.

6. Check Damp Areas

Carpenter ants prefer wet wood. Thus, any moisture area in your home is fair game to them. Check the bathroom and kitchen for any sign of carpenter ants. They are also likely to hide anywhere that has a leak, like outdoor pipes or faulty faucets.

Rotted wood also attracts carpenter ants. Get rid of any rotten firewood or lumber within the home and also outside, as these may end up being likely places for carpenter ants to nest in.

7. Rotted Areas on your Home’s Exterior

Another note in looking for signs of carpenter ants is to look for rotted sections on your home’s exterior. You would usually find rot in areas where broken gutters are as well as areas where rainwater rests next to the house.

If you notice this along with the other signs mentioned, it is time to take action and call for pest control.

What to Do in Case of Carpenter Ant Infestation

The key here is proper identification. Homeowners may find it difficult to determine the cause of the wood damage, whether the damage was by termites or ants. A professional should be able to help you in identifying the source.

Once they have made the inspection, they will take proper measures to treat the problem. Of course, each type of pest has a specific treatment designed for them.

Don’t attempt to exterminate ants on your own. You might end up buying the wrong chemical products. These chemicals could be dangerous to your health or to your furniture.

It’s better to call the professionals and allow them to handle the problem. They have the training and equipment to deal with the infestation properly.

Call the Best Ant Exterminator Vancouver WA Offers!

With these pointers, you should be able to identify the source of the problem. Before the ant problem grows, do not hesitate to call for assistance from a pest control professional.

You can attempt to use your own methods in ridding your home of ants. However, this is the quickest and safest way for you to eliminate ants and various pests.

We offer pest control services and solutions for homes. Don’t hesitate to call the best ant exterminator Vancouver WA has to offer. Contact us to get started with getting rid of ants, pests, and the woes that come with it.

 

How to Get Rid of Mice: 8 Ways You Can Tackle an Infestation

You’re hearing faint, but rapid footsteps at night while you’re lying in bed. You’re seeing shadowy figures move out of the corners of your eyes. You’re finding droppings in miscellaneous areas of your house.

There’s no doubt about it: you’re dealing with a mouse infestation.

Now, you’re scouring the internet, searching for answers about how to get rid of mice. Fortunately, you’ve landed in the right place. Below, we’re going to discuss 8 of the most effective methods.  

1. Lay Mouse Traps

If you already have mice in your house, one of the best courses of action is to lay mouse traps.

Sometimes called snap traps, these devices are designed to kill any mice which come into their grasp. Making use of spring-loaded bars and triggering mechanisms, mouse traps are weight-activated, snapping down hard when mice put their body weight on top of them.

To attract mice to mouse traps, you should cover said traps in a food that mice enjoy (ie. cheese, peanut butter, etc.). Spreading several baited mouse traps throughout your home is a sure way to snag you some mischievous mice.

2. Close Off Open Gaps

The best way to do away with mice in your home is by preventing them from coming into your home in the first place. But how do you pull this off? By closing off any open gaps.

Over time, as your home deteriorates, it becomes more and more prone to damage. Eventually, holes begin to form. These holes can appear in a number of different places, from cabinetry to doors, windows and a variety of other locations.

Mice can squeeze their way through nickel-sized holes and larger. Make sure to give your home a thorough inspection, plugging any hole which could be used as an entryway for mice.

3. Keep Your House Clean

Another preventative measure to take to prevent mice from coming into your home is to clean thoroughly and often. After all, the primary reason that mice make their way into homes is to devour the crumbs and scraps which accumulate on floors and countertops.

Sweeping, vacuuming, and dusting on a regular basis will remove all of these food scraps from your home, ensuring that mice have no reason to enter your home in the first place.

4. Make Use of Glue Traps

If you’re looking to remove mice from your home, but are turned off by the violent snap of mouse traps, you could make use of glue traps. Glue traps are small trays filled with liquid adhesive. These traps lay in wait for anything that crosses their path, stopping that thing in its tracks the second that it makes contact.

While you’ll most typically see glue traps used to catch flies, they can also catch mice. Simply place them in different locations throughout your home and wait for mice to misstep.

Be aware, however, that glue traps will not always take mice alive. In fact, in some scenarios, glue traps can actually be inhumane, causing mice to die slowly through suffocation and heart attack.

5. Set Up Live Mouse Traps

The best way to catch mice alive is by setting up live mouse traps. These traps are essentially just cages which can be easily accessed from the outside, but which are impossible to exit after an entrance has already been made.

You can use live mouse traps in the same way that you use snap traps. Place a desired food in the traps as bait and wait for the mice to come.

Once a mouse has been trapped, it can be safely moved to a desired location outdoors. There is no violence involved whatsoever.

6. Utilize Bait Stations

Another option is to make use of bait stations. These are small, enclosed boxes which hold both poison and bait.

If you have pets and small kids that you don’t want being harmed by traps, bait stations are a solid option. This is because they’re only accessible by very small beings, such as mice.

Mice will enter bait stations to access the bait that has been placed for them. However, after they’ve entered, they will become intoxicated with a deadly poison, killing them shortly after their entrance.

7. Employ Repellents

While there are a variety of substances that attract mice, there are also a variety of substances that repel them. A great way to keep mice from your home is to take advantage of these repellents, some of which are synthetic, and some of which are natural.

Synthetic repellents are sold in stores and are generally contained with plastic implements. They can be quickly and easily placed in various locations throughout your home.

Natural repellents run the gamut from peppermint oil to soap to pet urine. By placing these natural repellents in vulnerable areas, you might be able to scare off eager mice.

8. Call a Pest Control Company

The most effective way to get rid of mice is by calling a pest control company. Pest control companies are highly experienced in the removal of mice, utilizing various implements and methods in order to do away with them.

When you hire one of these companies to handle your mouse problem, they will take all necessary measures to ensure that the problem is solved. Not only will they remove the mice that are already in your home, but they will also deploy methods to keep them out as well.

That’s How to Get Rid of Mice!

All these methods are effective ways to defend your home against mouse infestations. Now that you’ve learned about how to get rid of mice, you can put some of these methods into action.

Interested in utilizing the services of a pest control company? If so, and you live in the Vancouver, Washington area, Natura Pest Control has you covered.

Contact us for more information.

 

9 Obvious Signs of Fleas in the Home

Nothing beats coming home from a long day of work to cuddle with your favorite little dog or cat. How often do you think about where your furry friend was all day before rubbing your face next to theirs?

Indoor pets can come into contact with a lot of questionable things, including fleas. While you may view them as a nuisance, fleas can actually pass on certain diseases to your pet and you!

If left unattended, fleas can also be very difficult to eradicate.

Have you noticed your pet acting differently or maybe scratching a little more? Wondering if it could be fleas? Keep reading for nine clear signs of fleas you should be aware of.

1. Scratching

Probably the top indicator that your cat or dog may have fleas is excessive scratching. Bites irritate dogs and cats which is why they scratch or bite the areas.

Fleas tend to hang around areas that your pets can’t easily get to. This includes the back of the head and neck. Animals with especially thick hair give fleas optimal hiding spots.

Remember animals normally scratch all the time. But take a closer look if they seem to scratch for extended periods of time.

2. Hair Loss

Also called alopecia, sudden hair loss in pets could be a sign of fleas. Some of this is caused by your cat or dog constantly scratching and biting at spots where they are getting bitten.

Additionally, though, certain types of fleas can cause a reaction that leads to hair loss. If you begin to notice patches of hair loss in conjunction with some scratching, it would be wise to get a vet to take a look.

3. Welts And Red Skin

Flea bites can cause small stinging sensations. But they jump around so much, you’d never likely catch the little critter mid-bite. If you begin to notice tiny little bumps, consider checking for fleas.

For your dog or cat, sometimes bites cause allergic reactions. Saliva from fleas can lead to red, irritated patches of skin and painful looking welts.

If you notice any of these skin changes in your pet, carefully look through their fur. Check armpit and groin areas first. Wear gloves to avoid picking up any fleas on yourself.

4. Ankle Bites

You might focus on your pet getting bites, but if your home has a large flea problem, you could be a meal too. Do you walk around barefoot a lot? If you do and notice bites around your ankles and knees, it is likely fleas.

These bites will not swell up a lot but can be very itchy. They will have one tiny puncture hole at the bite site. This distinguishes flea bites from spider bites, which often have two puncture holes.

Heavy home infestations are best handled by a professional. Check out the top things to look for when hiring a pest control specialist.

5. White Sock Test

Maybe you haven’t noticed any bites like mentioned above. This doesn’t mean your carpet is free and clear of these pests. One way to detect fleas in your house is to throw on a pair of white cotton socks and walk around.

Higher socks are better because you’ll be less likely to get bitten. Walk around carpeted areas for around ten minutes. If fleas are present, they will jump up to hitch a ride. Shuffling your feet is a good way to stir up any fleas that are hiding.

After walking around, carefully take the socks off and inspect them. If you see signs of fleas, take action quickly. Fleas, like many other pests, can make life miserable and damage your home.

6. Pale Gums

When you suspect your animal may have fleas, check their gums. Because fleas feed on your pets’ blood, they are at risk of anemia. Anemia basically means a reduced amount of red blood cells or hemoglobin in your pets’ bloodstream.

If your pet has pale gums and has been more tired than usual, it could mean a serious flea infestation. Get your dog or cat to the vet immediately.

7. Flea Dirt

Small red-brown or black specks on your pet or around your home may be a sign of fleas. While it could be typical dirt or dust, it’s important to inspect.

Flea dirt is flea feces. It often has a reddish hue due to the digested blood.

To distinguish flea dirt from normal household dirt or dust, collect some onto a white paper towel. Spray with water. If you begin to see red or brown hues, it likely is flea dirt.

8. Flea Eggs Hiding in Carpet

Another way to gauge if your home has become a playground for fleas is to check the carpet for eggs. Fleas lay their eggs in carpet because it provides a relatively safe space for them.

To check for eggs, put on gloves and run your fingers through the carpet. Eggs tend to very small and white. Because they are so small, you may need a magnifying glass.

Finding eggs throughout your house means you have a fairly serious flea infestation.

9. Restless Pets

In addition the above average amounts of scratching, your pet is likely to become restless if they have fleas. Any sudden change in demeanor is cause for concern.

For example, if your dog is normally calm and friendly, but becomes snappy and fidgety, check for fleas. This behavior is common because they are struggling with something they can’t remedy. Nor can they verbalize to you the issue.

Because of this, you should be on alert for any strange behavior or appearances of discomfort.

Keep Your Fur Babies Flea Free and Happy

Having a pet is an amazing experience, but unfortunately, it often means encountering fleas. If you keep an eye out for all these signs of fleas, you should be able to catch a problem before it gets serious.

Want to get a professional take on your flea problem and discuss solutions? Please contact us, we are happy to help you and your furry friends.