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How to Identify Bed Bugs and Treat Them Properly

Filed under: Bed Bug,Bed Bug Extermination,Pest Control — admin @ 3:36 pm April 30, 2016

Bed bugs have made a resurgence in New Jersey and across all of America. While not known to transmit disease like some other bugs, bed bugs are more than just an annoyance. Anyone who has had bed bugs knows that an infestation can cause an abundance of stress and anxiety. Additionally, it can cause physical issues with painful and irritating bites and skin rashes. bed bugs new jersey

Bed bugs can live anywhere that they find a live host to feed on. The cleanliness of the home or other location has nothing to do with an infestation; even the most well-kept house can become victim to these little pests. Bed bugs are small and are easily transported on clothing, luggage, used furniture, and other personal belongings without being noticed. The increase in travel, especially internationally, has also fostered the spread of bed bugs to places where they had previously been eradicated.

Bed bugs are small, flat, and oval-shaped and are brown or reddish brown – more on the reddish side if they have recently fed on a host. They are often mistaken for other insects like ticks or small cockroaches, but unlinke those bugs, bed bugs have segmented bodies. These little bugs are tricky and they are usually active at night, so you may not see them, but there is some evidence that you can look for. Bed bugs leave small red or brown spots. This is actually partially digested blood from their fecal droppings, so the spots will smear if you try to wipe them away.  bed bugs new jersey

If you think that you may have bed bugs, it’s important to check your bed linens, mattress and box springs, upholstered furniture, electrical outlets, and behind wallpaper and picture frames, around the site you suspect. Remember, they are small and they like crevices and folds, and can even be inside your mattress or box springs, or inside your wall.

Bed bugs are no joke. They have become resistant to many pesticides, and home remedies are not usually able to destroy them completely. In fact, some home remedies may just cause the bed bugs to move to a friendlier spot in your home. Complete extermination of bed bugs is best managed by a pest professional. Even then, it will likely take several treatments to completely eliminate the bugs.

If you suspect that you have bed bugs, or have seen evidence that you might, don’t let your problem get worse! Call the professionals at Horizon Pest Control to help you get rid of bed bugs today.

Common New Jersey Pests: When it is Time to Call an Exterminator?

Filed under: Pest Control — admin @ 4:00 pm April 22, 2016

New Jersey Pest Problems

Everyone gets the occasional spider or a few ants in their house, but when is it time to call an exterminator? If you suspect that you have a pest problem in New Jersey, Horizon Pest Control can help. Some insects and rodents can be managed with over-the-counter insecticides or traps, but at other times only an exterminator is effective. That’s because most pests reproduce at amazingly fast rates, making it difficult to eradicate them yourself. Every home or building is different, and a professional recognizes what makes one treatment more effective than another based on the built environment. If you have any of the following critters, you may want to consider hiring an exterminator:

new jersey exterminatorAnts

Ants are a common nuisance, but they can get out of control if not dealt with immediately. Effectively evicting ants requires more than killing the ones you see. Ant nests house hundreds or thousands of the insects. If, after using an over-the-counter product, you still see ants in your home, it’s probably best to call an exterminator.

Termites

Termites are a much bigger problem, and you shouldn’t waste time trying to eradicate them yourself. Call an exterminator at the first sign of termites, as time is of the essence with pests that eat wood.

new jersey exterminatorBees and Wasps

If you have allergies to bee or wasp stings, you will also want to call in an expert immediately. It’s best to use a professional on hives even if you are not allergic, as all evidence of the hive and any honeycomb must be removed so that it doesn’t attract other pests, like flies or mice.

Mice and Rats

Mice are another pest that can be managed with over-the-counter traps, but if your efforts don’t seem to be working it is probably worth it to hire an exterminator, as mice and rats can be very destructive. Not only do they chew through wood and drywall, they also carry disease-causing agents such as bacteria, fleas, and viruses. They also reproduce quickly, and a problem with one or two rats or mice can quickly turn into an infestation that can’t be managed with traps alone.

Horizon Pest Control Can Help!

If you have a problem with any of the above bugs or pests, call Horizon Pest Control today! Our family-owned and operated pest-control business has been operating in New Jersey since 1970. We fight over thirty pests common in the Garden State and offer two programs to fit your needs and budget.

Stinging Insects of New Jersey

Filed under: Bee Removal & Management,Stinging Insect Control,Wasp Control — admin @ 4:00 pm April 18, 2016

Of the things the Garden State is well-known for, stinging insects are luckily not among them. However, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any to worry about! There are two main kinds of stinging insects to worry about in New Jersey, namely bees and wasps. Although these insects perform important ecological functions, having them on, in, or near your house ranges from inconvenient to actively dangerous. Many people are allergic to bee or wasp stings, and even mild allergies can be life-threatening in the case of a swarm. Pets are also vulnerable to stings, especially as they may not know to leave the nest alone. If stung, be sensitive to the signs of an allergic reaction, and if you feel any swelling seek medical attention immediately!

Bees

bee controlOf the two, bees tend to be the least harmful but the most numerous. Though there are dozens of different species of bee, many are harmless to humans; male carpenter bees, for instance, don’t even have stingers. However, honey bees and bumblebees are social insects, building hives that can hold hundreds of insects, and can sting individually or in swarms. Honey bee stingers are barbed and thus are single-use weapons, but commensurately remain in the wound and exacerbate the original injury. Bumblebees can sting repeatedly and are thus substantially more dangerous in numbers. Bees generally only attack in self-defense, but have been known to attack people and pets.

Wasps

wasp controlLike bees, there are a number of different kinds of wasps; unlike bees, any kind of wasp can pose a substantial danger and should be dealt with immediately. Wasps can be easily identified by their long thin profile, shiny body surface, and yellow markings, common across the entire genus. Hornets and yellow jackets are species of wasp as well. These insects are attracted to food and beverages, can be aggressive, and have a painful, venemous sting, so if you see wasps or a hive on your property you should call Horizon Pest Control immediately. Some kinds of wasps build nests in the ground, while others build hanging hives which can be concealed in attics, hanging from eaves, or up in trees, but all of them are dangerous.

In either case, it is strongly advised that you leave removal to the professionals! All of the hive and honeycomb must be completely removed in order to prevent a recurrent infestation, and in some cases all of the inhabitants need to be killed before the hive is removed. Once your property is safe and the hive is gone, our professionals can help you bee- or wasp-proof your property by sealing off roof access and strategically placing repellent to convince new colonies to go elsewhere.  Remember, if you need help with stinging insects, contact us right away!

What You Need to Know About Stink Bugs

Filed under: Bug Control — admin @ 6:00 pm April 8, 2016

stink bugsPests come in a wide variety, but the one thing they all have in common is that you don’t want them in your home. Stink bugs are a recent addition to the list of potential problems in the U.S., but their presence is rapidly growing. While you have likely heard of stink bugs before, there is a lot you probably don’t know. Understanding a little more about the bugs can help you prevent an infestation and will better prepare you to handle one if it does occur.

They Aren’t American

Stink bugs are indigenous to Japan, Taiwan and other areas of East Asia. They didn’t first appear in North America until the late 90s. The first reported case was in Allentown, PA in 1998. Since then the population has swarmed, and they infest crops and homes in more than 40 states. American agriculture has been potent for their explosive growth, as they have access to far more farmland here than most of their native regions.

stink bugs prefer fruits and vegetablesThey Prefer Fruits and Vegetables

Stink bugs have proboscis that let them pierce the skin of their food to feed. This makes them harder to control with traditional pesticides, as they ingest far less of substances on the skin of a fruit. Their recent growth has been seen as an epidemic problem for the farming regions in the eastern half of the United States. They eat a much wider range of crops than most pests, and they are much more resilient against extreme weather, so their expansion across the country has been somewhat unprecedented. Aside from their trademark odor, they are most easily identified by the scarring they leave on the fruit they eat, often in the shape of a cat face.

They Are Inactive in Winter

Stink bugs mostly hibernate in the winter, but they will become more active through warm spells. They often hide under rocks and loose foliage, but when the opportunity exists, they enter buildings by the thousands. Crawlspaces, attics and the regions between walls are their normal homes. Preventing them from invading the building is very important, because they can be very difficult to displace once they settle. In recent years they have become resistant to many pesticides and other pest control remedies, so your best bet is to make sure your home is properly sealed. Caulking gaps, screening openings and making sure your building is generally free of openings is essential to preventing an infestation.

If you find yourself faced with a stink bug problem, there are still measures that can be taken. Professionals can remove the bugs and plan treatments that will prevent the problem for returning. For help with your pest control issues, call Horizon Pest Control today!

Pest Prevention Methods

Filed under: Pest Control — admin @ 12:50 pm April 1, 2016

Spring is coming once again, which means it is time to prepare your home for spring time pests. We’ve compiled a list of some of the best pest prevention methods so you can be ready for spring. Contact Horizon Pest Control for the most comprehensive pest control services, but in the meantime, here is a list of three common spring pests and some tips and tricks to keep pests out of your home.

Termites

The warm and damp springtime weather is a prime time for termites to swarm. There are about 41 species of termites in the United States. The National Pest Management Association estimates that termites cause $5 million in property damage each year, so you will be sure to enlist Horizon Pest Control as your main line of defense against them. In the meantime, here are a few steps you can take to defend your home against termites.

  • Termites like to live in moist soil, so keep the soil around your home as dry as possible to keep termites away.
  • Keep firewood away from your crawl space or foundation.
  • Regularly inspect wood surfaces in your home for damage.

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants don’t eat wood like termites, but are still another nasty pest you want to keep out of your house because they will tear up wood in your home to build nests. Carpenter ants are one of the largest types of ants, and like to eat sweet foods. Take these steps to keep carpenter ants away from your home.

  • Identifying carpenter ants in your area is an important step. Carpenter ants are generally larger than normal ants, and have a curved back where normal ants have a notch.
  • Repair any damaged wood in your home. Damaged wood is easier for carpenter ants to nest in.
  • Keep shrubs and bushes well maintained, and completely remove any stumps near your home.

Mosquitoes

mosquitoMosquitoes are one of the most irritating pests that come out during the warmer months. Not only are their bites painful and itchy, they can also carry diseases. Protect your family from mosquitos by calling Horizon Pest control and taking the following steps:

  • Light citronella candles around your yard.
  • Put lavender near your windows and doors as a natural mosquito repellent.
  • Put up a bat box. Bats are generally unobtrusive and love to munch on mosquitos.

 

Horizon Pest Control is a family owned pest control business with nearly five decades of experience serving the New Jersey area. Let our family take care of your family for all of your residential and commercial pest control needs.

Different Types of Stinging Insects in New Jersey

Filed under: Bee Removal & Management,Stinging Insect Control,Wasp Control — admin @ 12:47 pm March 29, 2016

The American Bumble Bee

The bumble bee has a black body and a yellow-striped belly. Bee colonies (like that of the other stinging insects) are divided into queens, female workers, and male workers. Unlike males, females have stingers; furthermore, queens are twice as big as the males. Bees have short life cycles and become adults 21 days after they are hatched.

Bees drink flower nectar and make honey with pollen. They are usually harmless, but when their nests are disturbed, they become defensive. Worker bees can sting over and over again without dying.

The Bald-faced Hornet

Bald-faced hornets are black with white stripes; all bald-faced hornets have the same pattern of markings. Like most stinging insects, bald-faced hornets become highly aggressive if the nest is disturbed, but unlike other stinging insects, they squirt venom into a harasser’s eyes, causing temporary blindness.

The hives (also referred to as nests) of the bald-faced hornet are above ground and shaped like pears. Usually, there are about 100 to 400 hornets in a single hive.

The Common Thread Waisted Wasp

The common thread waisted wasp has a many names, including caterpillar-hunter, cicada killer, and hunting wasp. They are one inch long and get their name from their extremely thin waists. They have orange stomachs, eat small insects, and drink flower nectar.

To catch its prey, the common thread waisted wasp stings the insect, immobilizes it, and then drags the insect to its lair with its jaws. Eggs are then laid on the paralyzed prey; after hatching, the wasp larvae eat the paralyzed, but alive victim.

Yellow Jackets

Yellow jackets are often confused with bees because they are also yellow and black; however, yellow jackets are smaller and hairless. They are half an inch long and live for only a year.

Yellow jackets love carbohydrates and sugar; they like human food such as candy, carbonated beverages, and meat. They also rob honey from bees from time to time.

Yellow jackets are some of the most aggressive stinging insects. Moreover, some people are allergic to yellow jacket venom and can die if stung. Furthermore, the venom of yellow jackets is more powerful than that of bees, and their stingers stay on, even after repeated use.

Where Are Bed Bugs Found?

Filed under: Bed Bug — admin @ 12:45 pm March 25, 2016

BedbugWhat are Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs are insects with a brown shell shape and a small head. Like other parasites that live on blood, they have adapted to the travel patterns of their food source. Places where travelers come and go have a high risk for bed bugs. Hotels, motels, and conference halls all deal with this issue. Bed bugs do not care about the rating of a hotel; they simply seek their food.

Where Are Bed Bugs Found Inside Your Property?

Bed bugs stay very close to their food source. They spend daylight hours hiding in cracks near a bed, within the mattress, and among the folds of fabrics. At night they only travel a short way to bite their victim. The bed of a hotel room is the most important place to search when checking for bed bugs. The wall and night stand close to the bed are also important. Leaving your own possessions stored in the bath tub, carefully turn back the bedding and lift up the mattress at both ends of the bed. Check all folds of material, the sewing along the edge of the mattress, and under the mattress. You are looking for beetle shaped insects or dark blood stains around the corners of the mattress. Check under the box springs, search the wall, and move any nearby furniture to search its joints and edges. Check the rest of the room as well- every piece of furniture, no matter how small. If you discover anything that concerns you, talk directly, but politely, to the manager. A different room far from the original room might work. If you find bed bugs there as well, do not stay in that hotel. The caution you practice now is far better than the trouble you face later if you carry a bed bug home in your suitcase or jacket.

What Can be Done if You Have Bed Bugs at Home?

If you discover bed bugs at home, contact New Jersey Bed Bug Control experts. You can also treat small problems yourself. First, zip all mattresses and box springs inside plastic storage bags. Second, clear the area around each bed and search every fold and corner. You can kill bed bugs by drowning them in a cup of water. Leave the beds in their bags for six months. Keep the phone number of an exterminator handy, just in case!

Carpenter Ants vs Termites: How to Tell the Difference

Filed under: Ant Control,Termite Control,Termites — admin @ 12:42 pm March 22, 2016

People  often confuse carpenter ants and termites, and for good reason: both are tiny, black wood-eating insects that swarm inside of homes. However, termites can cause significantly worse problems for your home than carpenter ants. This is because carpenter ants usually isolate their activity to their nesting area, and mainly search for already damaged wood. In contrast, termites can eat through any kind of wood in any part of your house. For this reason, it is important to know the difference between carpenter ants vs termites.

How to Tell the Difference

Termite

Termite

The main difference between the two insects is in their appearance: the insects’ wings, antennae, and bodies are distinct and therefore discernable. Both termites and carpenter ants have four wings each. However, the front set of termite wings are noticeably longer than the pair in the back, and will always be the same size on any termite you come across. The wings on carpenter ants, in contrast, come in all sizes and are evenly matched in front and back. Another, slightly more detailed, way to dell the difference between carpenter ants vs termites is in the antennae. While carpenter ants’ antennae are crooked in the middle, termites have straight antennae that appear to be beaded. Finally, the two insects’ bodies are distinct and allow identification. Carpenter ants look similar to any other ant: they appear to have segments because of the thin waist in their middle. In contrast, termites are not narrow at all, and can be identified by their straight bodies.

Carpenter Ant

Carpenter Ant

 

If you are not able to find any of the insects, another great way to tell if you have an ant problem or a termite problem is to look at the clues around your house. Since carpenter ants do not actually eat the wood they burrow in, you should be able to find wood shavings or sawdust near their nesting area. In contrast, termites will leave trails of mud and other debris as they work to eat away the wood in their nest. If you find remains of other kinds of bugs, this is a good sign that your house is host to carpenter ants vs termites, since termites do not eat other bugs.

While the above tips are a great start to identifying carpenter ants vs termites, it is important to take care of the infestation problem regardless of which insect your house is host to. For effective NJ termite control and NJ ant control, you can rely on Horizon Pest Control. Call us today!

Common Spiders in New Jersey

Filed under: Spider Control — admin @ 12:39 pm March 18, 2016

Spiders are beneficial insects, acting as population control of sorts for harmful insects. Some gardeners will purposely place certain spiders in their gardens to protect their vegetation. However, once spiders begin invading the living area that becomes a game changer for the humans in the environment. Even though not all spiders are harmful, most people don’t want them in their homes. Here are four common spiders in New Jersey.

black widowThe Black Widow

The black widow spider is considered a poisonous spider and its bite can cause a painful, even serious, reaction in humans. Its body is shiny black with an orange or red mark on the underside of its abdomen. The mark may look like two triangles or have an hourglass shape. The female black widow can bite through human tissue and inject venom, causing a reaction that is quite painful. The male is unable to do this. While rarely fatal, the bite of the black widow can cause severe discomfort. If you are bitten, the sooner you can receive medical attention, the milder your symptoms will be – or they may be alleviated entirely.

Yellow Sac Spider

This aggressive but non-poisonous spiders are notorious for biting humans. While the bite is not poisonous or harmful, it does cause pain that is often described as an “intense sting” that is much like that of a hornet or wasp. The body of the yellow sac spider is pale yellow and they are around a quarter of an inch. They spin papery, white sacks of silk, hence the name, and you may see them in corners, under shelves, along ceilings, or behind pictures.

American House Spider

The American house spider is one of the common spiders in New Jersey. They are the polar opposite of the yellow sac spider in terms of aggression. When threatened, the American house spider prefers to play dead and rarely bites unless he is handled very roughly. They are typically small spiders, measuring about a quarter of an inch. However, they can be as long as 1 inch with their legs stretched out. This spider is usually a dull brown with an almost dappled pattern of varying shades. They are very shy and many homeowners never see the actual spiders although they do see their tangled cobwebs.

Wolf Spider

Another common New Jersey spider species in the wolf spider. These are larger spiders, around an inch and a half, are either black or dark brown and have a hairy or fuzzy appearance. They strongly resemble the tarantula (don’t worry, wild tarantulas are not found in New Jersey, not even close) which can cause some people to be intimidated or downright afraid. Wolf spiders prefer crawl spaces, basements, sheds, and garages as opposed to cohabitating with humans (usually much to the humans’ relief). They do not spin a web, but instead live in the ground where they can pounce on their prey as it passes. Despite its appearance, the wolf spider is not aggressive and typically only bites when it is continually provoked.

Dealing with these common spiders in New Jersey?  If you have a spider problem, call the experts in NJ spider control. At Horizon our experienced, knowledgeable technicians can help you with any of your pest problems. Give us a call to schedule an inspection and let our family take care of yours.

New Jersey, Prepare Your Homes…Spring is Coming

Filed under: Pest Control,Spring Pest Control — admin @ 12:29 pm March 15, 2016

Every new season in New Jersey brings an influx of insect pests to deal with. Due to rain showers, and the resulting flowers, the warmer spring days see pest activity significantly increasing, often inside of our homes. Spring is the time of year when over-wintering pests emerge from their hiding places to reproduce. Expect to see wasps, roaches, silverfish, scorpions, spiders, mites, earwigs, millipedes and pill bugs to become more active as their populations multiply.

Common New Jersey Spring Pests

New Jersey residents love the sunshine and warmth that accompanies spring — unfortunately, many varieties of household pests enjoy the warmer springtime temperatures as well. Here is an overview of some of the most common fair-weather pests you may find yourself dealing with:

Termites

These silent destroyers cause more home and property damage each year than all storms and fires combined. During spring months the winged alates are often seen swarming in large numbers, reproducing and starting new colonies.

Carpenter Ants

Wood-destroying insects, these pests emerge in the springtime to forage for food. They swarm to reproduce, are attracted to damp wood, and their elaborate tunnels between food sources and nests will cause damage to your home, particularly attacking areas that suffer from moisture issues.

Carpenter Bees

Another wood-destroying pest, Carpenter bees bore into wood surfaces such as the fascia trim of your home, causing unsightly holes and possible structural damage if not treated.

Cockroaches

While roaches don’t cause structural damage to your home, they cause hygiene problems and can spread disease. These unpleasant pests love moist environments, and typically congregate in food prepping and serving areas. Visual confirmation of one roach is a good sign there are plenty more lurking.

Preventing New Jersey Spring Pests

While year round pest control service will certainly help reduce their numbers, there are a few things you can do around your house to prevent intrusive spring pests from bothering your home and family. Here are a few of our best pest prevention tips.

  • Inspect window screens around your home; repair or replace any torn screens
  • Inspect your home’s exterior foundation for openings or cracks insects can squeeze through; seal possible entry points with pest proofing or caulk
  • Trim tree branches, bushes and shrubs touching your home to remove possible pest bridges
  • Redirect water away from your home’s exterior
  • Keep appliances and dining, prepping, and serving areas clean

The best way to minimize a pest invasion this spring is by protecting your home in the fall with an outdoor treatment to reduce pests from coming back season after season. For more information about New Jersey Spring Pests, contact NJ Pest Control experts at 888.612.2847 today.

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