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Arrow Exterminators Blog

Monday, May 23, 2011

Top Five Pests to Smoke out This BBQ Season

Kimberly Beaudin Director of Marketing

Memorial Day is almost here, which means many of our customers (and employees) are firing up their grills. While dining alfresco is a beloved rite of summer, we always like to warn our customers of dangers potentially lurking in their own backyards.

Pests such as wasps, yellowjackets, fire ants, mosquitoes, flies and ants are attracted to the same things we are: tasty food and drink. Here are some tips on how to prevent summer's most notorious pests from ruining backyard fun:

1. Wasps and Yellowjackets: Have you ever been outside and it feels like a wasp is following you for no apparent reason? Don't worry. That feeling is not all in your head! As one of summer's most aggressive pests, wasps do not need to be provoked to attack. Yellowjackets are also just as aggressive, often attacking their victims multiple times. To keep these summer stingers from crashing your dinner party, it is advised to keep desserts in sealed containers since they are attracted to sweets. If a wasp or yellowjacket nest is detected in your backyard, contact a pest professional immediately as these stinging insects are extremely dangerous.

2. Red Imported Fire Ants: Fire ants are known for the large, distinctive mounds they build in landscaped areas and near the foundations of homes. Unlike other types of ants, fire ants will sting if their nest is disturbed, leaving behind painful red welts on their victims. Before hosting a party, search your yard for fire ant mounds. If a nest is detected, contact a pest management professional to properly assist with its removal.

3. Mosquitoes: Summer's most notorious pest is back and with a vengeance, thanks to the very rainy spring many of us have experienced. Mosquitoes love to breed in stagnant water and it only takes 10 to 14 days to fully develop from an egg into an adult. They will also travel far for a meal - sometimes up to 14 miles! To prevent mosquitoes from invading your backyard barbeque, remove sources of standing water, children's wading pools, birdbaths and saucers of flowerpots. Also, keep rain gutters cleaned out to prevent water from standing in drains.

4. House Flies: Arguably one of the most annoying pests, house flies can pose quite a nuisance! Feeding most any food source, travel far to dine as well, up to 20 miles. To prevent flies from ruining a party, remove trash regularly and use well-sealed garbage cans. Food should also be kept in airtight containers and opened only when ready to be eaten.

5. Ants: In the United States alone there are more than 700 different species of ants, making it very likely for one to appear at your next party. Carpenter ants, odorous house ants and argentine ants are the most common types of ants that are found in and around homes this time of the year. To keep these pests from storming your outdoor barbeque, make sure that firewood is not stored next to the home, keep food sealed in airtight containers (especially sweets) and cut back tree branches and other plants away from the house.

We hope these tips help you and your family enjoy the great outdoors pest-free all summer long! Bon appétit!