What to love about lovebugs?

Lovebugs 300x269 What to love about lovebugs?Lovebugs are known for their large populations on the East Coast, including North Carolina into Florida. With their affectionate name, you’d imagine lovebugs were welcome insects, but these tiny flies are more pests than helpers inside or outside the home. If you find yourself with an infestation, calling the professionals may be your only reprieve unless cold weather is on its way.

Why are they called “Love” Bugs?

The lovebug, is actually called Piecia nearctica and it is a member of the family of march flies. They have been dubbed “lovebugs” because of their in-flight mating. These pests pose no threat to the environment or people as they do not bite or sting. The only time that they cause problems is when the weather warms up and then they become a nuisance.

Not Man’s Best Friend

Lovebugs cluster into huge swarms. You may see them on the road as you drive home. The flies smash against cars, damaging paint and hindering radiator use as their bodies cover the cooling element. Drivers are also bothered by poor vision because the Lovebugs remain stuck on the windshield.

The Buzzing with Bees

Lovebugs don’t just bother humans. They also hinder pollination. Bees look for flowers each day to collect nectar. As the bees visit each flower, pollen sticks to their hairs, allowing them to cross-pollinate with other plants. If a bee sees a plant and flower that’s infested with Lovebugs, however, the bee avoids the area entirely.

All out of “Love”

Unfortunately, Lovebugs do not respond to insect repellents containing DEET or citronella so the best way to keep Lovebugs out of your home is through barriers. Repair any broken screens and keep doors closed to stop these flies from entering. Your car may have many Lovebug victims on the windshield, but if they get into your home, they will be bothersome and they will not show you too much “love”.

For more tips or for professional assistance, contact Clegg’s online or by phone at 888-672-5344.

 

No more escargot! How to remove snails and slugs from your garden

Grapevinesnail 01 300x176 No more escargot! How to remove snails and slugs from your gardenYou work hard on making your garden gorgeous. Unfortunately, there are plenty of predators out there to damage your beautiful array of vegetables, plants and flowers! If snails and slugs are hurting your gardening efforts, here are some ways to get rid of them for good.

1. Remove them manually

Before you do anything too drastic, take a look at the slug and snail situation you have now. Remove them slowly using a flat knife. Placing them 20 feet away from your garden area can be just as good as termination.

2. Create barriers

You want the garden to be hard to get through for these pests. Using mulch around the plants and flowers can deter them. Take a combination of pine needles, old leaves and bark pieces and place it around your plants.

3. Copper tape

Putting a copper strip around your garden can deter these pests from entering your space. Copper tape can be found at most plant nurseries. The copper reacts with the slime that the slug and snail produces, and sends a small electric shock to them when they touch it.

4. Honey and yeast

Make a honey and yeast trap to get rid of slugs. Take a cup of boiling water with one part of honey and one part of yeast. Allow this mixture to cool down. Create a small hole in your garden where the slugs usually gather and fill the hole with the concoction.

5. Beer

Take a jar and fill it with dark ale beer. Dig a hole and make it so the jar is only one inch above the soil. Slugs are attracted to beer and will fall down into the hole. They will become submerged in the alcohol and drown.

6. Plant other plants

Planting other plants can deter slugs from ruining your garden. Plant items like mint, chives, ginger, garlic, chicory and red cabbage. Most slugs don’t like the taste or texture of these plants.

7. Change your watering routine

Snails enjoy the moist earth. That’s why they love coming out at night after people water their garden. Say goodbye to snail damage by simply changing up your watering routine. If you water in the morning instead of the afternoon, the soil will be dry by nighttime.

It isn’t always easy getting rid of garden predators. However, with these tips and techniques should help. But if you need professional help, contact Clegg’s online or by phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snail

No More Masked Creatures! How to Keep Raccoons Away from Your Shed!

800px Raccoon climbing in tree   Cropped and color corrected 291x300 No More Masked Creatures! How to Keep Raccoons Away from Your Shed!If you are a resident of North Carolina, you are likely no stranger to raccoons. These mammals are common in yards and properties across the state and can even be a nuisance to many. They might go through your trash, attempt to get into your shed or even dig up your garden. So how can you keep these pesky critters away from your trashcans, garden and shed? Here are a few recommendations:

Turn on the Lights

One of the ways that you can keep raccoons away from areas on your property, like your shed, is to install bright lights. Raccoons are nocturnal; thus, they tend to shy away from areas that are too bright. Though light will not be a total cure-all to your raccoon issue, you will certainly find that it will deter them from coming near. Remember, the brighter the light, the better this method will work. Noise can also work, but at night, this can be disruptive to your neighborhood.

Try Some Repellants

You will find a number of over the counter repellants on the market that are made for raccoons. Keep in mind that not all of these products are effective for all raccoons. For instance, if you have a nesting mother with babies, a product containing the scent of male raccoon urine can work well. This works because mother raccoons know that males will attack and kill the young. Other repellents that may work include ammonia and bleach. Keep in mind, however, that these substances can be dangerous to neighboring plants or other areas in your yard.

Remove Food Sources

Raccoons will not go into areas where there is nothing for them, especially food. So, it is important that you take the time to remove any food sources that they might be attracted to. For instance, if you are having problems with raccoons getting into your shed, find out why they are going in there. Food is a great motivation for them. They will be attracted to garbage, birdseed, pet food and anything else that they can eat. By removing the food, they will have no reason to get into the shed.

Cover Access Points

And last, you should take steps to cover any access points, if possible. Even small holes or access points into a shed can be large enough for raccoons to enter. Though raccoons might look large, they can still get into very small spaces.

If you have more questions about keeping raccoons away or need professional assistance, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.

Image via: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Raccoon

What’s so lovely about ladybugs?

1024px Coccinella magnifica01 300x200 Whats so lovely about ladybugs?Adorable, flying beetles with bright red shells and polka dots seem to put a smile on both children’s and adults’ faces in the springtime. Ladybugs often appear out of nowhere, dropping onto an arm or nearby leaf to rest. However, larger numbers of ladybugs congregate for winter’s chill in the fall. And these congregation points could be in your home if active barriers aren’t implemented.

Beneficial for the Garden

While you don’t want them inside your home, lady bugs are not all bad, especially for your yard. Allow ladybugs to roam about your garden. Their small size makes them perfect predators for mealybugs and aphids. These tiny pests eat away at edibles, foliage and flowers. The ladybugs simply want these insects as a meal, not your gorgeous garden. Even a small group of a dozen ladybugs isn’t a problem in the garden. They’ll spread out to create natural pest control.

Indoor Headaches with Ladybugs

When cooler fall weather arrives, ladybugs look for a perfect place to hibernate. Because they’re cold-blooded, they cannot fly effectively in the fall or winter. Your home becomes a wonderful winter home. They’ll find their way into wall crevices and under carpets. You may even find them under rugs or in floor cracks. Any space they can fit gives them a warm area to wait out the cold weather.

Small Infestation Solution

The moment you see an infestation, consider using the vacuum to remove them. A hose extension allows you to suck up the ladybugs without harming your home. You may need to repeat this vacuuming to find other ladybugs moving in. To keep them from perpetually moving indoors, use caulk to seal all crevices and cracks. With no access, ladybugs move onto the next home for refuge.

Calling in the Big Guys

A major infestation requires the help of a trained professional. A huge ladybug group could eventually attract other pests, such as spiders. The arachnids could be looking for warmth and a meal in your home. Before any infestations grow out of control, professionals can find all the access points and fill them quickly. Using pesticide foggers on ladybugs is typically not a solution because of their location and staining abilities when killed off. You don’t want stained floors from ladybug residues.

Because ladybugs are typically good for a property’s yard, it’s never a smart idea to eradicate them all from the area. While Clegg’s does not service lady bugs, we always like to provide our customers with insect information. However, if you have problems with any other type of pest, we’d love to help. Contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.

You Little Stinker! How to Stop Stink Bugs

Acanthosoma labiduroides female01 300x225 You Little Stinker! How to Stop Stink BugsPentatomidae are also known as “stink bugs”. They are called this because when they are frightened their scent glands, located between their front legs, release a foul-smelling chemical which discourages predators. But you don’t want these stinkers inside your house so the best way to avoid a stink bug infestation is to stop them from coming into your home in the first place. Consider these methods for stopping stink bugs from entering your home.

Seal Your Home

The most common entry point for stink bugs is gaps and holes in your home. Scan your home carefully for holes and gaps that may be allowing stink bugs to enter your home. You should pay special attention to areas near windows and doors. You may need to caulk your windows again to make sure there are no cracks. Seal other holes in your home with putty or other materials that keep spaces filled.

Replace Window Screens

You might want to get some air in the summer, but you need to have quality screens in your windows. Installing new screens might also help you find other holes that need to be filled. Better screens will keep stink bugs out. If you don’t want to buy new screens right away, you must at least patch your current screens to close any holes or gaps. A faulty screen is one of the easiest ways a stink bug army can march right into your home. Be sure to shut out those stinks bugs so that they can’t get in your window screens.

The Color Yellow

Did you know that stink bugs love the color yellow? You can and should use this to your advantage. If you have a yard, you can place a yellow tarp with sticky material somewhere away from the house. The stink bugs will fly to it and be unable to fly away once they are stuck. Whatever you do, don’t kill stink bugs inside your home. The odor is terrible, and it takes a while to go away once it starts flowing.

To contact a professional pest control service that can take care of keeping stink bugs away from your home, contact Clegg’s online or phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentatomoidea

My garden is ruined! Tips to keep the wildlife away!

Colonial Williamsburg 2464331014 300x200 My garden is ruined! Tips to keep the wildlife away!You have a beautiful garden and you don’t want to see it destroyed by pests and animals. Don’t fret! There are ways to avoid this unfortunate outcome. Using mulch, fences, raised beds, scare tactics, live traps and spray repellent, here are some ways to keep out unwanted garden guests.

1. Put up a fence

To deter animals from coming in your garden, you may want to place a fence around the area. Since deer are great jumpers, it’s best to make your fence high. You’ll want to create an eight foot barrier to keep your plants safe.

2. Build a raised bed

To prevent rabbits from coming into your vegetable garden, you may want to consider building a raised bed for your plants. This provides several advantages to you as a gardener. Using stock lumber to build your raised bed, your soil will be warmer. That also means it won’t become compacted under your feet.

3. Use spray repellent

You can easily keep aphids and slugs away from your garden when you use a nonchemical pest spray that you can easily make at home. Place a peeled onion, a teaspoon of cayenne pepper and two peeled garlic cloves in the blender. Add in three cups of water and blend the concoction until it’s smooth. Strain the liquid in a spray bottle after you’ve let it sit overnight. Coat the plants well in the morning.

4. Place mulch around your plants

Take some mulch and place it between the plants and vegetables in your garden. Many things can be used as mulch. Simply take a mixture of wood bark and old pine straw needles. Animals are usually fearful when it comes to walking over these mulched areas.

5. Set up live traps

If you’re worried about the health of the animal and don’t want to kill them, you can use live traps in your garden. Many of these traps are made of some sort of steel mesh that comes in different sizes. Using crackers or vegetables, you can lure the animal into the cage and lock them in.

6. Scare them off 

If you’d simply rather scare the animals off, you can use a variety of auditory and visual devices to do so. These may include ultrasonic repellers or water sprayers that are motion activated. You might want to use visual devices like faux predators or reflective tape.

To contact a professional pest control service that help you keep the wildlife away from your garden, contact Clegg’s online or phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden

Call the Fire Department! We Have Fire Ants!

Fire ants02 219x300 Call the Fire Department! We Have Fire Ants!Fire ants are more than just a nuisance in the yard. Their stings are painful for humans and pets, and they can even infest homes. Although only a small percentage of the population react critically or even fatally to a fire ant sting, those who have a fire ant infestation should have it taken care of professionally by a pest control company to prevent future outbreaks and the spread of foraging worker ants.

What Are Fire Ants?

Fire ants first came to the United States around 1930 via a cargo shipment and settled in Alabama. From there, they have quickly fanned out across the southern states, being found everywhere from Florida to California and as far north as Virginia. They can be recognized by their red coloring, two nodes and stinger. Although they are typically quite small, they may be as large as 5 centimeters long. They build sandy mounds on dry parts of the ground. Some mounds may become quite large, and most can be readily identified after it rains.

What Damage Do Fire Ants Cause?

When fire ants are bothered, they hold their victim in their mouth and sting. The more the person or animal moves, the more they will be stung because fire ants become agitated with increased movements. The stings are very irritating to humans and will cause a great deal of burning as well as red bumps and white pustules. Most people will be stung more than once because hundreds of thousands of ants can live in one colony.

How Can Fire Ants Be Controlled?

Although most fire ants are found outside, some may make their way indoors foraging for food. Both indoor and outdoor fire ants should be treated by a professional, and annual maintenance is key for prevention of future outbreaks. A pest control company will treat all mounds in the yard as well as the point of entry and the trails that the ants use indoors. The baits that are usually used allow the foraging ant to carry poison back to its nest, increasing the effectiveness of the poison. These baits are generally considered to be safe for grass and other vegetation as well as for pets and humans to be near.

Professional treatment of fire ants is highly recommended for complete eradication and future prevention. For fire ant control, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_imported_fire_ant

Ready for Vacation? Be Sure You Don’t Bring the Bed Bugs

KofferV3 Ready for Vacation? Be Sure You Don’t Bring the Bed BugsFrom the name alone, you can tell that a “Bed Bug” is a bug that lives in your bed. While you can guess that they would be active at night, you may not know that they are not exclusively nocturnal. And sometimes they can get into your luggage and go with you on your next vacation. Here is what you can do to avoid bringing them with you.

What is a bed bug?

A bed bug is a parasitic insect that feeds exclusively on blood. The name comes from the fact that their preferred habitat is inside beds or bedding of warm houses. This bug feeds on human blood and often times the host does not even know that they are being noticed. If they bite you, it could cause skin rashes and allergic reactions.

Inspection is your First Defense

Preventing bed bugs in the first place is a great way to avoid them from getting into your luggage and joining you on your trip. When packing, be sure that your luggage is clean and be sure that you pack in a clean location. Carefully inspect the luggage inside and out. Take it outdoors in the natural light. Open the luggage and remove the contents to make sure everything looks clean. Even pull out a trusty magnifying glass to really see into tight areas.

Avoid the Spread

If you see any movement from a dark or translucent pest, you could have an infestation on your hands. If you think there is a problem, you should vacuum it and wash it with soap. You can even immerse the luggage in hot water. A thorough cleaning is very important to avoid from spreading the bed bugs. In addition, it is a good idea to avoid using secondhand luggage from a thrift store as you do not know where that luggage has been. By isolating potential bed bug infested items, you stop their spread immediately, helping you travel without pest invaders.

Getting Help

For more information about bed bugs or to get professional treatment, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: https://openclipart.org/detail/181295/suitcase-with-stickers-by-frankes-181295

Clegg’s September 2014 News

In this month’s issue of our newsletter: Seasonal Insect News; Back to School Can Mean Head Lice; and The Science Behind a Cricket’s Chirp.

Seasonal Insect News

house mouse Cleggs September 2014 NewsIt won’t be long now before the weather begins cooling off, the air grows crisp and the swarms of mosquitoes become a memory (at least for a few months!). Here are a few things to consider as you open the windows and enjoy the transition into fall:

  • It’s a great time to inspect the screens in your windows and patch any holes you find. While the mosquitoes may not be bothersome, other insects are still looking for ways to get into your home;
  • Termites are most often in the news during the spring, however they feed year-round. If you haven’t had your home inspected this year, make an appointment;
  • Inspect your foundation, soffit, exterior vents, and frames around your doors and windows. Seal off any cracks or access points to keep insects out;
  • Bats, squirrels, opossums and other furry critters are going to be looking for a nice warm place to spend the winter. Make sure access to your attic is blocked off, too;
  • As you inspect your foundation, crawl space and attic, watch for signs of moisture. High moisture content in your home can lead to problems with mold and draw in insects;
  • Never store firewood near the foundation of your home. Piles of old wood offer food and shelter to insects and other pests. Store wood away from your house.

A little awareness and action taken now can prevent a lot of headaches later. As always, the pest control professionals at Clegg’s are here to help. Please call 1-888-MR-CLEGG if you need us.

Back to School Can Mean Head Lice

Head Lice CDC gov 300x209 Cleggs September 2014 NewsIt’s that time of year again when parents and kids gear up for another year of school. All too often kids come home from school itching and scratching their heads constantly, and upon further investigation it is determined to be head lice (Pediculus humanus capitis De Geer). If you haven’t personally dealt with head lice, consider yourself lucky. When I was younger, my brothers and I were getting haircuts when the stylist jumped back and notified our mother we had lice! We went home with half-done haircuts and had to have our heads shaved. We made piles of our clothes and linens and set them ablaze (ok not really, but as parents we may be tempted to do this). We went through the special combs and pesticidal shampoo, and got a clean bill of health to return to school. Read more…

The Science Behind a Cricket’s Chirp

Cricket House 300x197 Cleggs September 2014 NewsIn China, the sound of a cricket chirping in the house is considered good luck, and the chirping males are often bred as pets and kept in tiny cages made of bone. Many people around the world find the little insect’s early evening song a calming piece of natural music, while others find it an annoyance. How do tiny crickets produce such a vibrant noise and why do they do it? Just what is the science behind the cricket’s chirp? Read more…

Pests & Your Store: Steps to Dealing with an Invasion

Falcarragh   Spar convenience store off N56   geograph.org .uk   1332763 300x199 Pests & Your Store: Steps to Dealing with an InvasionPests in your store can seriously damage your business. Depending on the type of pest, they can eat or destroy your stock. And your customers might catch sight of these pests and leave without making a purchase. If this happens, word of mouth might prevent new customers from coming to your store. If you are running a restaurant or other food-services business, you might find yourself with a negative health report from the country agency. Sometimes despite your best efforts, your store might find an invasion of pests creeping into the business. Here are the steps for dealing with a pest invasion.

A Thorough Cleaning
Your first step when pests invade your business is to clean your business from top to bottom. All pests need a food and water source to survive and thrive so if you remove what is attracting them, they will go away. You will also want to sweep and mop the floors. You will want to wipe down all of your shelves, and make sure there is not any food loose around the break area or kitchen. Many common pests thrive in a moist environment, so you will want to dry the areas you wash with a towel to eliminate any excess water or moisture.

How Did They Get Into Your Store?
Pests are adept at finding ways into your store. In many cases, they are looking for a new food source or to get out of hot or cold outside temperatures. Once you notice a pest has made its way into your store, you will want to locate how it got in and close it off. Common pantry pests, like Indianmeal moths and weevils, usually come into your store in food supplies. Carefully examine your food stock to determine the source. Once you find the infested product, throw away all unused product and clean out the container with hot, soapy water. Other pests like flies or rodents might come in through a window, partially opened door or other entry point. Once you locate the entry point, you will want to seal it off to ensure no more pests can enter that way.

Traps And Bait
You can set out some traps or sticky paper to catch the pests. There are several brands and natural remedies on the market too. However, if you are running a restaurant, you will not want to spray your business with an insecticide without the help of a professional pest control service. A pest control company will know the kinds of pesticides that can be safely used in your business and they can take care of the problem for you.

To contact a professional pest control service that can take care of your invasion problems, contact Clegg’s online or phone at 888-672-5344.

 

Image via: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Falcarragh_-_Spar_convenience_store_off_N56_-_geograph.org.uk_-_1332763.jpg