Archive for Pest Control

What You Need To Know About Termite Swarm Season

TermitesIn the Spring, flowers are blooming, the trees are filling with green leaves and birds begin chirping at the first sign of dawn. Another sign that spring has sprung isn’t quite as nice, however, and can be an annoyance to homeowners throughout North Carolina. Yes, spring is the time when termites swarm and though this behavior may not last long, if you are like most homeowners, you aren’t pleased when these flying insects invade your property. What do you need to know about these pests?

Swarming Termites Can Settle In And Stay All Year

Some people know that swarms of termites are only temporary, so they won’t take the time to contact an exterminator. This, however, could be a mistake since the colony could feed on your home throughout the entire year, no matter how cold it gets outside. Any time there is a swarm of insects in or around the home, they should be identified, so try to capture a few of them in a jar or bag before calling the exterminator. This way, they can easily be identified.

Swarming Termites Are Only Part Of A Greater Whole

You should know that swarming termites are only part of a colony. There are other termites that stay underground forever and never take flight. So, just because you no longer see swarms of termites, that doesn’t mean they are no longer on your property. On the contrary, there could be thousands of them moving through the dirt just under your feet.

Swarming Termites Won’t Hurt You, But They Could Hurt Your Home

Swarming termites will not bite a human, but shortly after they take flight, their wings will fall off, and they will need to find retreats. Though many run for the soil, others could get into your home. Once they are inside, they have a full buffet of wood in front of them. Remember, even if you don’t see the termites themselves, you may see the wings that have broken off. Any sign of a termite swarm, even if it isn’t the termites themselves, is a sign that you should contact a professional exterminator.

For more information on termite swarms, and controlling your termite population, contact Clegg’s online or on the phone at 888-672-5344.


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Did you know there is a hister beetle?

Hister.unicolor.-.calwer.17.02The hister beetle, better known as the clown beetle, are often found on or around decaying vegetation or dung. They are predatory feeders and often feed on the larvae of flies, but interestingly enough, there are some species of the hister beetle that feed on their own kind. Currently, there are almost 4,000 different species of the hister beetle, and they can be found worldwide, including in North Carolina. If your property has a lot of vegetation that is dead or dying, or livestock, such as chickens, it is quite possible that you may have a colony of them just steps away. These beetles are known to migrate from feeding spot to feeding spot, and they do so using their scent of smell. Though most homeowners don’t like the idea of a beetle colony on their property, hister beetles, like spiders, can perform a beneficial service. They do this by feeding on the larvae of pests, such as the common house fly.

The Hister Beetle Will Integrate with Other Species

Though not common or well known, the hister beetle has been known to integrate with other types of insects. For instance, they have been found living in colonies of ants when young. It isn’t known why they do this, but they have been seen being fed by ants, too, perhaps as a form of protection for their nests. The Hister, after all, is a predator, and as it gets older they tend to begin feeding on the ants themselves.

The Hister Beetle Prefers Dry and Decaying Locations

If you have land or areas of disrepair, such as an old shed, they may serve as a breeding ground for this beetle. But, they don’t stay there as they quickly spread out to the surrounding areas as they begin searching for sustenance. They are often found in areas that have been infested with termites, too. Why? As the termites breed, the hister beetle has an immediate food supply. They also make a point to inhabit locations where their prey feeds.

Is The Hister Beetle A Problem?

The hister beetle, though helpful in many ways, can become problematic as their colony size grows, as it may take a localized ecosystem out of balance.

For more information, contact Clegg’s online or on the phone at 888-672-5344.


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How to Protect Your Home From Cockroaches?

EcdysisCockroaches can be a serious problem for homeowners, and not just because they are unsightly. Cockroaches can spread disease, and it is even possible to be allergic to cockroach droppings. Whether you are dealing with the oriental cockroach, the smokybrown cockroach, the German cockroach or the particularly large American cockroach, there are some ways to help prevent them from getting into your home. These tips can help keep cockroaches out and then help you deal with them if they do make it inside.

Find and Seal Any Exterior Holes

Rather than fighting cockroaches in your home nonstop, figure out how they are getting in and prevent their entry altogether. Search the exterior of your home for any cracks or holes. Fill these holes with caulk or an all-weather sealant. Even if a crack seems small, roaches can still surprise you and find their way inside.

Clean Your Kitchen Every Day

A clean kitchen can be a key way to help keep roaches out of the home. Never leave dirty dishes in the sink or uneaten food on plates overnight. If you have a dishwasher, make sure that it clicks closed at night, as cockroaches can still find their way inside otherwise. Scrub cabinets and countertops with a mixture of water and detergent to cut any grease and leave your kitchen completely clean. Invest in a special cleaning solution for stovetops and use it every two or three days if there is any caked-on food residue.

Get Rid of Excess Cardboard

If you have any old corrugated cardboard around the house, toss it out. Cockroaches can eat cardboard, but even more frustrating is the fact that cardboard boxes can serve as a shelter for the pests and are seen by cockroaches as an attractive place to lay eggs.

For more information, contact Clegg’s online or on the phone at 888-672-5344.


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If Milkweed Bugs Don’t Damage Flowers, What Do They Do?

Milkweedbug1Milkweed bugs are an odd pest. It was believed that milkweed bugs damaged plants, but recent research suggests otherwise. In the wild, the only plant that milkweed bugs eat is milkweed. This is often considered helpful since milkweed is poisonous to most creatures. However, just because they like to chow down on milkweed doesn’t mean that this is a bug that you want living in your yard.

Milkweed Bugs Everywhere

Not everyone has to deal with milkweed infestations. They are usually drawn to homes that have milkweed plants for them to eat. Homes that do have milkweed bugs will find them everywhere. These bugs have a habit of staying in large groups as a way to enhance their warning color, which is bright orange. They have also been known to make their way inside buildings to seek protection. Stepping or crushing one by mistake is a pain to clean because they leave behind their signature orange coloring.

Not Many Natural Predators

If you are thinking about waiting for another bug to come along and clear out your infestation of milkweed bugs, you better think again. Unfortunately, this bug does not have many natural predators. A lot of this has to do with the warning color mentioned above. There are few bugs or animals that will eat insects that are orange in color as it’s associated with bad taste.


While wild milkweed bugs like to feed on milkweed plants, those in captivity like to feed on sunflower seeds. This means that even though the bugs prefer to feed on milkweed plants, they have the ability to live a full life eating the seeds of plants. This may be a serious problem for farms or gardeners who find milkweed bugs attracted to their yard by milkweed plants. Once the milkweed plant is all gone, the bugs may turn their attention to the seeds of other plants. In general, however, these bugs are not believed to be a threat to other plants.

Unless you grow milkweed plants, milkweed bugs aren’t going to be a huge problem aside from them hanging out in groups in plants, which isn’t always pleasing to look at. Some homeowners, however, might like having milkweed bugs around because they are one of the few insects that can tolerate eating the toxic compound that is found in milkweed.

To learn more about milkweed bugs or any other pests, contact Clegg’s online or by phone at 888-672-5344.


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Since St. Patty’s Day just passed, learn about the shamrock spider!

Irish_cloverWhen you think of St. Patrick’s Day, you probably picture shamrocks, leprechauns, parties and plenty of emerald green. Although bugs probably don’t pop in your mind, there is one creature that goes along perfectly with this holiday since it is called the shamrock spider.

What Is the Shamrock Spider?

The araneus trifolium, or shamrock spider, is part of the orb weaver family. These creatures are also sometimes known as pumpkin spiders. Even though its name might give you this impression, the shamrock spider is not actually green.

Since shamrock spiders are orb weavers, they create a new web each day. These spiders can be fascinating to watch, especially in the early morning hours. If you watch closely, you’ll see the spider first tear down the previous day’s web, and then create a new web. The new web will normally be placed in the same location.

Just like other orb weavers, you will usually find a shamrock spider sitting upside down in the middle of its web. However, these cunning spiders don’t always stay in their webs. In order to attract unsuspecting prey, they will hide nearby behind leaves or other natural materials after attaching a thread to their webs to feel movement.

What Does a Shamrock Spider Look Like?

Some people find that shamrock spiders are difficult to identify because they come in a variety of colors. Female shamrock spiders can be dark red, light yellow, dark yellow, tan, red-orange, purple, black or brown. However, the males are normally a combination of browns and yellows.

The shamrock spider is known for its bold black and white legs. These legs especially stand out on spiders that have brightly colored orbs. If you’re trying to determine whether or not you’re looking at a shamrock spider, it’s important to remember that its stripes will always be in threes.

Is the Shamrock Spider Dangerous?

If you’ve found shamrock spiders on your property, you’ll be pleased to know that these types of spiders are not dangerous. The shamrock spider’s bite is not poisonous to humans. In fact, they are a favorite among some gardeners since they can reduce the amount of smaller pests in your yard.

Of course, you want to have shamrock spiders outside of your home and not in its interior. If you are dealing with spiders or other pests inside your house, contact Clegg’s online or at 888-672-5344.


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What Bugs Are A Common Problem In the Spring Time?


For homeowners, the start of spring can mark a very unpleasant time. While there are a number of bugs that cause problems during the summer, many insects come out of hibernation at the start of spring when the weather becomes enjoyable again. Here are some of the pests that commonly become problems at the start of spring.

Hornets, Wasps, Yellow Jackets and Carpenter Bees

All of these pests have been lumped together because infestations of these types of insects usually happen in the same way. Having an infestation of bees during the spring is considered rare because bees are more active during the summer. However, these pests often choose to spend winter in the walls and attics of people’s homes. When they spend the winter in your home, they never have to deal with the frost that they would have had to deal with if they hibernated outside. As a result, they usually come out of hibernation early. Once awake, these insects quickly start to establish new colonies, most often within your house. Carpenter bees are a prime example of a flying insect that wakes up in spring to lay eggs. By summer, these newly laid eggs are ready to hatch.

Carpenter Ants

As soon as temperatures start hitting around 60 degrees Fahrenheit, which typically happens in the spring in North Carolina, carpenter ants wake up and start seeking food and new places to nest. This types of insect can be seen both inside and outside the home in spring. The biggest problem with carpenter ants is that they love to create tunnels in the wood of homes. Over time, this starts to create serious structural issues for houses. The presence of carpenter ants is never good and is something that has to be dealt with right away.


If you have other insects in your home, you can bet that spiders are there too. Just like other insects, spiders like to find shelter in your home during the winter. They often set up their homes on porches and other sheltered areas, such as basements and garages. The presence of spiders in your home is never a good sign. Along with the infestation of spiders, you have to consider what insects were in your home to draw the spiders there.

For professional help dealing with an infestation of spring pests, contact Clegg’s online or on the phone at 888-672-5344.

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What are some common stinging insects?


Insects can be more than a nuisance. Some species are genuine health hazards, and an infestation will ruin your garden, transmit diseases to your children and even kill your household pets. Here are just a few common stinging insects that you should beware for the protection of you and your family.


No one likes a bee sting, but they can turn downright deadly if the recipient goes into anaphylactic shock. It’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to hornets, honeybees and bumblebees, all of which have been known to sting if disturbed or provoked. They may look sweet on Hallmark cards, but they represent a big risk if allowed to build hives in your yard.


Wasps aren’t bees, but their stings are just as painful. Take precautions when trying to rid yourself of nests or infestations. It’s a common misconception that wasps can only sting once before they die, so even a small swarm can send you to the hospital with dozens of stings.


Mosquitoes can carry everything from malaria to the West Nile virus. They’re also extremely difficult to eliminate on your own; there’s only so much that bug lights can do. You’ll need to look into professional-grade insect repellants and misting systems if you truly want to keep your property bloodsucker-free.

Asp Caterpillars

Not all caterpillars are cute and fuzzy. The American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC) considers the asp caterpillar to be one of the most toxic insects alive, and their venomous hairs can cause a painful and even debilitating sting when they come in contact with human skin.

Fleas and Ticks

While not technically stinging insects, fleas and ticks operate by attaching their suckers to warm-blooded animals, and the results can produce the same effects as stings. You’ll need to be careful when it comes to brushing Fido. Disease-carrying insects can have devastating consequences for their hosts.

Fire Ants

Fire ants inject a venom into the skin of their victims. While a single sting might only cause itchiness or discomfort, people are rarely stung by just one fire ant, so the effects are usually a little more severe. They can be a particular concern among young children.


If you’re serious about keeping your family safe, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.


What Is An Acorn Weevil?

Kaldari_Curculio_occidentis_01The acorn weevil is a member of a genus of weevils called Curculio. Related species include the pecan weevil, chestnut weevil and filbert weevil. Not surprisingly, the nut from the oak tree plays a prominent role in the life of the acorn weevil. This article will discuss how female weevils manage to lay their eggs inside the hard-shelled nut, and how the acorn benefits the weevil larvae as they grow.

Identification and Detection

A fully grown adult is typically about 3/8-in long and mottled brown in color. The specific coloring allows it to blend well into its surroundings.

A female acorn weevil has a particularly long snout or beak that is ideal for creating holes in acorns, thanks to the saw-like teeth at its very end. The snout has a hollow center which allows the weevil to feed on liquids and plant matter. In some cases, this protrusion is actually longer than the female’s body.

By contrast, acorn weevil larvae will be off-white in color, legless and quite robust. The presence of acorn weevil larvae is detected by examining acorns in the area and looking for holes. An infested acorn may have one or more holes in its shell. One can break open the shell to look for the C-shaped larvae and/or evidence of feeding.

Reproduction and Life Cycle

Early in the growing season, an adult female will lay her eggs in a young acorn after she first gains access to the nut by drilling a hole in the shell. After the eggs are laid inside the acorn, the weevil plugs up the hole with her own feces. Just a few days later, the eggs hatch and legless, C-shaped grubs emerge. These larvae are typically 1/4 to 3/8-in long. They grow by feeding on the matter inside the acorn.

In the fall, a grub bores a hole in the acorn shell in order to escape into the surrounding soil. It will burrow down into the ground, and it becomes invisible to possible predators. Once the weevil has burrowed into the soil, it may stay there for as long as two years before it finally emerges as a mature adult.

Squirrels and Infested Acorns

Squirrels often ignore these infested nuts, because they appear to have an innate ability to gather only the “good” nuts. Children are often tempted to collect acorns and bring them into the house. If any of these acorns are infested by acorn weevils, the home’s occupants may be greeted by the sight of wiggly grubs on floors or counters.

There are both natural and chemical controls that may be employed to deal with acorn weevil infestations. To learn more about pest control and the acorn weevil, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.


Tell Me About Praying Mantis

1280px-Mantis-greece-alonisos-0aThe angelic-looking praying mantis, its arms folded as if in prayer, is actually one of the insect world’s greatest hunters, able to nab even a flitting moth in the blink of an eye. Preferring subtropical and tropical climes, several mantis species have been introduced in the United States as a form of natural pest control.


Part of a larger insect group known as praying mantis, the various praying mantis species grow up to six inches in length. Their specialized front legs, folded as if in prayer, are actually designed for hunting, shooting out at lightning speed to capture passing prey, then gripping it tightly with the sharp spines lining its legs. Although they look a little like large grasshoppers, these insects are actually more closely related to cockroaches. Green to brown in color, they blend well with grasses and shrubs.


This intriguing bug is found in a wide variety of habitats, although it generally prefers warmer tropical and subtropical regions, living in gardens grasslands, gardens, meadows, deserts and rainforests. Although there are about 1,800 species of mantis in existence, only are 11 are in North America and most of these are not native to the region, having been introduced for pest control. The female deposits eggs in the spring or fall, sealing them in a protective Styrofoam-like egg case for winter protection.


A voracious eater, the carnivorous praying mantis helps gardeners by eating a wide variety of pests including mosquitoes, roaches, caterpillars, flies, aphids, moths, lizards and even small rodents. This slow-moving insect is an ambusher, hunting by sitting on a plant or twig waiting for prey. Due to a flexible joint between the head and prothorax, the praying mantis is able to rotate its head a full 180 degrees, adding to its considerable hunting skills. This bug eating machine is the only predator known to feed on moths at night and the only one fast enough to catch flies and mosquitoes in flight, often staying close to street and porch lights after dark to catch these speedy insects.


The praying mantis has some definite cannibalistic tendencies. Not only will this insect eat its own kind when no other prey is available, the mantis young will chow down on one another if they don’t immediately find other food. Part of the insect’s mating ritual includes the unusual practice of the female killing the male by severing his head, devouring him after the sex act is completed.

Nature’s Pest Control

Many farmers and gardeners use the praying mantis as a form of natural pest control. However, if these voracious bug hunters aren’t solving your garden pest problem, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.


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How to Avoid Spiders

Spider-Web-Image-WikipediaAvoiding spiders can be bothersome, especially after they get into your house. While not all spiders are dangerous, many are and become threats once they set up home in your house. If they lay eggs, your home could become infested with these crawly creatures. Spiders are naturally attracted to homes because they are dry, warm and offer plenty of dark places in which to hide. Thankfully, there are ways that you can discourage spiders from entering your home.

Regular Cleaning

Keeping your house clean might be your No. 1 defense against spiders. Cleaning your home every day and keeping it as dust-free as possible is a great way to keep spiders and other insects at bay. If you notice any spiderwebs in the corners of your home, you need to take them down right away. Try vacuuming around that area as well to get rid of any eggs that the spider might have laid. Also, vacuum under your furniture. Those are dark spaces, and spiders often nest where they can’t be seen.

Look for Cracks

While it’s impossible for you to find every hole or crack in your home, keep a look out for ones that are noticeable. If it’s noticeable to you, it’s going to be like a welcome invitation to a spider. Start by checking around your windows and doors. If you notice any little gaps, try sealing them with caulk if appropriate.

Light Peppermint Oil

Did you know that peppermint and lemon are natural insect repellents? While it doesn’t keep all insects away, lighting peppermint oil around the house every few days will keep most spiders away. You can also spray some lemon grass oil around your doors and windows. This deters spiders from coming in your house and is an all-natural repellent, so it’s not poisonous to you or other animals.

Professional Assistance

Keeping spiders away is no easy task. However, following the tips above can limit how often you come into contact with these insects. The best way to prevent spiders from getting into your house is to be proactive. Once you see them running around in your home, it becomes more difficult to get rid of them. If you need more information on dealing with spiders, contact Clegg’s online or via phone at 888-672-5344.


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