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Biting and Stinging Pests
- Bed bug
- Cat flea
Black Widow SpiderThe black widow population has definitely been on the increase in central Maryland over the last decade. Adult female body length is about ½ inch, with a spherical abdomen. Usually black, with 2 reddish triangular markings usually joined to form a reddish hourglass-shaped marking underneath the abdomen. They spin an irregular web and hang from it upside down. Outdoors they prefer protected places such as under and around stone and wood piles, stored items and equipment, under decks, barns, sheds, etc. Rarely are they found indoors in homes. The black widow’s venom is a neurotoxin. Although their bite is rarely fatal (small children are at the greatest risk), it is quite painful.
- Spiders, various species
- Black legged tick
- American dog tick
- Lone star tick
- Honey Bee
- Bumble Bee
Yellow JacketYellow jackets are one of the most aggressive stinging insects we have in Maryland. The queens start to build their nests in April and will start to have workers appear on the nest around the third week of May depending on the weather. Yellow Jackets will build several different types of nests. They will build ground nests which are usually the most serious because a lot of people step or ride over the nest and get stung multiple times. They will also take advantage of any holes in the exterior of your home and build void nest inside the structure. The third nest type Yellow Jackets build are aerial nests which most people describe as a large softball or large grapefruit size paper nest. These yellow jacket nests will reach between 1,000 and 5,000 workers in size and it’s not advisable for homeowners to treat these on their own. Call Eco-Care Pest Management, Inc. today and get a quote from us to come and take care of your pest concerns today.
Paper wasp (Polistes spp.)These wasps (polisties spp.) build inverted umbrella shaped nests that are open faced. There are no lack of nesting sites they will use including behind shutters, under deck rails, in grills, under lawn furniture, in light fixtures, and under eave lines. Color patterns vary, with one imported type resembling yellow jackets. Paper wasps will readily sting when disturbed and average about 12-50 workers.
Bald Faced HornetBaldfaced Hornets are actually a type of Yellow Jacket. The markings on their head are black and white, with white being the dominate color, hence the name baldfaced. They build aerial nests that can be free hanging from a tree branch or up against the structure of a building. People will describe these nests as the Winnie the Pooh nest. Baldfaced Hornet nests can reach the size of a large basketball. Nests are built starting in late April in Howard County and central Maryland. Around thirty days later the first workers start to appear. Baldfaced Hornet nests range in numbers from 250 to 500 workers. Baldfaced Hornets do not reuse their nests and build new ones every year. Call Eco-Care pest Management, Inc. today to take care of your Baldfaced Hornet needs and any other insect concerns today.
European HornetAs the name suggests European Hornets were imported from Europe. Most people will describe these as large Yellow Jackets the size of your thumb. They are quite large compared to other wasps and hornets. Workers hunt their prey during the day and night. In fact they are the only social hornet/wasp/bee that is foraging at night in Howard and the surrounding counties. We get quite a few calls when they fly into garages or around decks at night as they are attracted to the exterior lights. European Hornets build void nests. We find them in attics quite a bit and hollow wall voids. Large nests can be up to a thousand strong, but they usually range in size of 200 to 400 workers. Call Eco Care Pest Management, Inc. Today to take care of your European Hornet needs or any other pests concerns.
- Cicada killer
Carpenter BeesCarpenter Bees are a nuisance to homeowners due to their habit of boring into wood to create nesting galleries. Any exposed wood can be used such as deck and fence rails, fascia boards, playground equipment, and door and window frames. The most noticeable is done when woodpeckers rip the wood open to pluck the bee larvae from the galleries. Female carpenter bees can sting but rarely do.
- Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
- Box elder bug
CentipedeCentipedes are fast moving, elongate, flattened and wormlike. The house centipede is the most common type found in homes and is noticeable by the ease in which it breaks off its legs if touched. They prey on other smaller arthropods and typically are found in unfinished basements, garages and sheds. Outside they like areas with a lot of moisture.
Camel CricketIn Maryland there are two common species seen in homes, camel and field crickets. Camel crickets have a distinctive humpbacked appearance and readily jump if disturbed. They can survive year round in homes, especially in areas with high-relative humidity. Camel crickets are commonly found under mulch, stones, woodpiles and wood siding on the exterior of homes. Field crickets are usually black, and unlike camel crickets, the males emit a chirping noise. They normally invade homes in the late summer and early fall. Outside they like weedy areas, around woodpiles, under debris, etc.
Field Cricket (gryllus spp.)In Maryland there are two common species seen in homes, camel and field crickets. Camel crickets have a distinctive humpbacked appearance and readily jump if disturbed. They can survive year round in homes, especially in areas with high relative humidity. Camel crickets are commonly found under mulch, stones, woodpiles and wood siding on the exterior of homes. Field crickets are usually black, and unlike camel crickets, the males emit a chirping noise. They normally invade homes in the late summer and early fall. Outside they like weedy areas, in and around woodpiles and under debris.
EarwigEarwigs are easily identified by a pair of appendages that look like forceps at the tail end of their body. The adults are about 3/4 inch long with a reddish brown body. They are nocturnal and like to hide during the day in moist, shady places such as under logs, piles of leaves, and mulch. Occasionally they will invade homes by the dozens or hundreds.
- Lady beetle
MillipedeSlow moving and wormlike, millipedes are sometimes called thousand leggers. The most common type found in homes in Maryland is blackish or brownish and about 1 inch long. They typically are found in high moisture areas such as under leaf litter, mulch, and grass clippings. They invade structures during times of drought or heavy moisture. Often homeowners find millipedes dead and curled up in their basements.
- Ground beetle
SilverfishSilverfish have a carrot shaped body covered with silvery scales and 3 long tail like appendages on the rear end of their body. They have a preference for living in the upper stories of a home, although they can be found in other areas as well. Silverfish are pests of paper, such as glazed paper and paper with sizing wallpaper and wallpaper paste.
Clover MiteThese small dark red mites are normally found around the exterior of homes where they feed on lawns and plants. Clover mites show a preference for heavily fertilized lawns. They are active during times of cooler weather and can enter homes in large numbers, especially during the spring. Although they don’t bite, they will leave a reddish stain if crushed.
Stored Product and Fabric Pests
- Carpet beetle
- Cigarette beetle
- Drugstore beetle
- Red flour beetle
- Sawtoothed grain beetle
- Indian meal moth
- Webbing clothes moth
- Casemaking clothes moth
- Phorid (humpbacked) fly
- Moth fly
- House fly
- Small fruit (vinegar, pomace) fly
- Blow fly
- Fungus gnat
- Flesh fly
- Cluster fly
Odorous House AntOne of the most invasive pests by far is the odorous house ant. It is a small brown to blackish ant, only 1/8 inch in length, and has a noticeable odor when crushed. Although they don’t cause damage like carpenter ants and termites, their nesting and foraging behavior into homes for food, moisture, and shelter can be extremely irritating. The foragers can be seen crawling around on floors, walls, and cabinets especially in kitchens and baths. Control can be difficult to achieve for homeowners due to the sheer numbers in a colony (500,000-1 million), the dispersal nature of the nests, and their general avoidance of baits. Removing leaf debris from around the foundation of the home, trimming back branches and shrubs from touching the house, and not over mulching can help reduce nesting sites.
- Pharaoh Ant
Pavement AntsPavement Ants derive their name from nesting in and around cracks in pavement. They commonly push up piles of soil from cracks and seams along sidewalks, driveways, and patios. Although only 1/16 – 1/8” long, the workers can bite and sting. They will forage into homes for food and nesting sites.
Acrobat AntsAcrobat Ants don’t actually do circus acts, but will arch their heart-shaped abdomen over their head when disturbed. In homes they like to nest in the same areas that Carpenter Ants do, especially areas subjected to high moisture and fungal decay. They are much smaller then Carpenter Ants, only 1/8” long.
- Field ant (Formica spp.)
- Citronella ant
Carpenter AntsIf you see large black or black/red ants in your home, most likely they are carpenter ants. Carpenter ants cause structural damage when hollowing out galleries in wood for nesting purposes. Usually their nests inside homes occur in areas with moisture problems. Seeing workers inside does not necessarily mean a colony is living in the home as they will forage in from outside nests looking for food. Outside colonies are typically in old firewood, rotten landscape timbers, stumps, and dead sections of standing trees.
- German cockroach
- American cockroach
- Brownbanded cockroach
- Oriental cockroach
- Wood cockroach (Parcoblatta)
Wood Destroying Insects
- Termite, subterranean (Reticulitermes)
- Powder post beetle (Lyctid & Anobiid)
- Old house borer
- Carpenter ant
- Carpenter bee
- House mouse
- Deer mouse
- Norway rat