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What Do Cockroaches Look Like?

Filed under: Cockroach Control — admin @ 3:00 pm July 26, 2016

It is important to know what cockroaches look like because they are a nuisance and can infest homes and businesses.  Cockroaches are insects that can spread diseases.  Thought of as dirty insects, and you want to be able to identify them for proper elimination.  There are about 4,600 different species, but luckily in the US there are only five major species.  Cockroaches can inhabit a variety of environmental temperatures, from cold to tropical heat.  Here are some tips to identify roaches.

cockroach controlGeneral Appearance

Cockroaches come in different sizes; from the size of a thumbnail up to about 40 mm long.  They have a small head and a broad flat body that is an oval shape.  The body is divided into three segments with the outer shell being tough to protect their organs.  The body is coated with wax to repel water and will feel oily.  Most roaches have a reddish-brown to dark brown color and the young roach is much lighter color and does not have wings.

Cockroaches may or may not have wings and not all that have wings use them to fly.  They can have two sets of wings; one set is bigger and tougher that flatten against their body for protection and a smaller set that is more delicate for flying.  Roaches have six legs, two attached to each segment of their body and the front legs shorter than the back legs.  Each leg has tiny spines they use for climbing most any surface and each foot has little claws to help them climb walls and ceilings.  The female cockroach tends to be larger than the male species and their young are similar in appearance with their lighter color.

Different Species

The five most seen species are each a little different in size and color but have the same basic features.  German roaches are tan and 13 to 16 mm long.  Brown Branded roaches are a dark-reddish brown and 10 to 13 mm long.  The American roach is reddish brown and at 40 mm is one of the longest species.  The Pennsylvania wood roach is about 20 mm and the males are tan.  Oriental roaches are dark brown to black in appearance, have a thinner body, are 30 to 40 mm long, and can grow much longer.

Roaches versus Beetles

Cockroaches vary in size and shape to a degree, and some may have an appearance close to the beetle. Beetles have smaller bodies than roaches, and their body is not flattened and much tougher than a cockroach’s.  Beetles are pests that, unlike the cockroach, eat other insects and considered human-friendly.

If you need professional NJ cockroach control, let us know and we’ll let you know your best course of action.

How to Prevent Fruit Flies in Your Kitchen

Filed under: Pest Control — admin @ 3:00 pm July 19, 2016

fruit flies

Summertime is a great time to know how to prevent fruit flies in your kitchen. A beautiful bowl of fresh fruit or vegetables on the kitchen counter looks amazing to people and fruit flies alike.  You want to enjoy the fresh seasonal fruits and veggies without pesky fruit flies. Here are some tips to help prevent and eliminate fruit flies.

Prevention

You can prevent fruit flies with these simple steps.  Do not keep fresh fruit or vegetables sitting out for extended periods of time.  It’s best to keep them covered and refrigerated.  Keep counters, sinks, and table tops clear of food, spilled sweet juices, and drinks. Rinse out glasses and pitchers when finished.  When cleaning up, remember to wash counter crevices and faces for possible splashes and cracks in flooring where decomposing food material may become trapped.

Use an all-purpose cleaner and paper towels or washable rags because sponges are another breeding ground for fruit flies. Take out the trash frequently and be sure to wash the sides and bottom where juice and drinks might spill.  Discarded food wrappers after eating and use a garbage can with a sealed lid.  Tightly seal compost containers in the home and locate the outdoor bin away from the home.  Keep kitchen areas dry and free of standing water by wiping out the sink after each use, turning over rinsed dishes, and watch for leaky faucets.

Elimination

fruit fliesA fruit fly problem can develop in your home even if you follow the prevention steps.  Fruit flies lay approximately 500 eggs at once and generally near the surface of ripening foods (including liquids), such as sink drains, empty bottles and cans, open garbage sites, and damp mops.  A fruit fly’s lifespan is about eight days, so you will want to act quickly if you notice them.

Leaving a saucer or bowl of cider vinegar with fresh basil leaves on the table or counter overnight will attract fruit flies.  The flies will fall into the liquid and drown, and you discard the contents in the morning.  Another option is to put some wine into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and poke a few holes in the top.  They will be attracted to the wine, climb in the holes, and become trapped for disposal.  You can repeat either option until the flies are gone.

Summary

Fruit flies are pesky and often come with the seasonal fruits and vegetables from the local farmers market.  You can use these simple tips to prevent them from infesting your home and use the easy elimination steps at the first sign of fruit flies.

If you find pest control issues in your home, let us know and we’ll let you know your best course of action.

The Top 7 Dangers of Mosquitoes

Filed under: Mosquito Control — admin @ 3:00 pm July 12, 2016

exterminator nj

Mosquitoes aren’t just an annoying pest, they spread many deadly and dreaded diseases as well. For that reason alone they are frequently listed as one of, if not the single most dangerous animal on Earth. People are often surprised to learn this but despite the fact that mosquitoes are not large intimidating predators, they remain among the world’s deadliest creatures for their unequaled ability to spread disease and their resistance to extremes in temperature. Here are 7 scientifically proven reasons why mosquitoes are a very serious problem.

Mosquitoes spread many deadly and dangerous diseases

Mosquitoes carry a host of communicable illnesses caused by viruses, bacteria, fungus, and parasites. Mosquito-borne illnesses include malaria, West Nile virus, elephantiasis, yellow fever, and dengue fever- but they can carry practically any communicable disease small enough to be passed through their needle-like proboscis.

Mosquitoes are very mobile

These tiny pests can travel without regard for national borders, barriers, and geographic locations. They have some ability to migrate if they find too few food sources, and they have the ability to breed almost as rapidly as they can move.

Mosquitoes broaden the range of a virus or parasite

Many parasites and infectious viruses use their host as a vehicle to find their next victims, but no animal offers better transportation to diseases than the mosquito. With their combined abilities of flight, durability, and low visibility- mosquitoes are like a high-speed railway transit system for disease.

Mosquito Bites

Mosquitoes play favorites

Selecting their prey mostly by scent, some people are more attractive targets to mosquitoes than others. This may be good news for those whom mosquitoes like less- but for those who live in areas where infectious disease are rampant- being favored by mosquitoes puts a person at an extreme lifetime risk of contracting all the diseases mosquitoes can carry.

Mosquitoes cause permanent disability globally

Many of the diseases mosquitoes carry have long lasting or permanently debilitating effects if not properly treated. Some of the debilitating illnesses they can carry include:

  • Malaria
  • Chikungunya
  • Dog Heartworm
  • Dengue
  • Yellow Fever
  • St. Louis Encephalitis
  • LaCrosse Encephalitis
  • West Nile Virus
  • Zika Virus

Mosquitoes threaten children most

Sadly, children are frequently the preferred targets for mosquitoes. Presumably, it is children’s lower levels of toxicity and lesser body odors that make them more attractive to mosquitoes. This makes children more at risk of contracting mosquito-borne diseases.

Mosquitoes are almost impossible to get rid of

Capable of living nearly anywhere humans can, mosquitoes only need a small amount of water to breed in. In cold weather, they can live dormant for long periods of time. Mosquitoes are able to spawn very quickly and are very resilient to extremes temperatures.

If you need reliable NJ mosquito control, let us know and we’ll let you know your best course of action.

5 Effective Ways to Protect Against Ticks

Filed under: Tick Control — admin @ 3:00 pm July 5, 2016

tick control

Ticks thrive in warm, moist conditions which is the reason they are so prolific from late spring through fall. While these months are considered “tick season”, most species can survive through the winter in temperatures over freezing, making them a year-round threat.

In order to reduce the risks involved with tick-borne illness, here the top 5 things you can do to protect yourself against ticks:

Create a chemical barrier between your home and the pests

There is a common belief that trap-setting is an effective way to deal with unwanted parasites; however that is the last thing you want to do. You are essentially inviting them closer with pleasant scents, while a chemical spray will both eliminate any existing tick and encourage other “visitors” to go elsewhere. If the chemical Acaricide is applied correctly, even once, it can kill up to 100% of the population.

Beware of wild and domesticated animals

While it may be nice to be in the company of a local deer during a barbeque or family outing, these are the large mammals that carry the highest risk of transporting one of the worst species of ticks. The deer tick is incredibly resilient and transmits Lyme disease up to 60% of the time.  It takes up to 48 hours for their saliva to inject the toxins into the blood stream so it is good practice to checkboth youself and any furry friend you may take care of right after being outside.

Create a chemical barrier between yourself and the wild

If you are leaving your house and plan to spend time outside for any reason, but especially in a wooded area, cover any exposed skin first with N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide, or DEET for short. Any product that contains at least 20% concentration of this repellant will provide protection from ticks for hours. (For clothing, spray with permethrin which kills ticks and can endure through multiple washes)

Know the symptoms of Lyme disease

If you are one of the more than 300,000 unfortunate people infected with Lyme disease each year, the symptoms may present themselves similar to the common flu, often accompanied by a bulls-eye patterned rash. If this is the case, it is highly advised to visit a doctor who can prescribe the appropriate antibiotics as soon as possible. If left untreated, Lyme disease can cause neurological problems including, but not limited to, facial paralysis and excruciating pain in muscles, joints, and bones. The disease can be completely eradicated with medication.

Avoid areas where ticks are most common

Ticks can be anywhere, but especially in wooded or grassy areas. Pay particular attention to leaves and shrubs as these are the flora which ticks can attach to until meeting with a host. Frost will not always kill all species of ticks, so continue to be aware of where you walk in the cooler months following the Fall.

If you need effective tick control in NJ, let us know and we’ll let you know your best course of action.

How Did These Ants Get Into Your Home?

Filed under: Ant Control,Pest Control — admin @ 9:21 am June 10, 2016

fire ants, carpenter ants
Ants may be tiny, but they are certainly pesky, and getting rid of them can be a challenging and frustrating process if you attempt to do it on your own. Before you begin the ant removal process, it is important to understand just how the ants got there in the first place.

One Ant Can Lead to Thousands

Ants operate with a hive mentality. What that means for you is that if one ant finds an entry into your home and a food source inside it, she will report the information back to the rest of the colony. So long as a viable food source is present, more and more ants will eventually find their way into your home, making it important to stop them before it becomes a full-scale infestation. The sooner you contact a pest control specialist, the more manageable the situation will be.

Stopping Ants From Entering Your Homefire ants

Ants are resilient creatures. Their tiny size coupled with their massive numbers make them a formidable pest to to deal with.  Even if you are able to find their entry point and seal it up, the odds are high that they will soon find another one. Keeping your home clean of any food lying around helps, but even the smallest crumbs are worthwhile to an ant colony and will keep them coming back for more. In order to stop an ant infestation, you have to attack them at their source–the nest. Thankfully, pest control experts are trained at finding the nest of the ants invading your home and eliminating it quickly and efficiently, saving you the trouble of having to painstakingly hunt the nest down and remove it yourself.

Get Rid of the Ants in your Home Today

Ants may not pose the same threat to your house as termites, or the same threat to you and your family as poisonous spiders, but they are a terrible annoyance that are not easily eradicated. If you have noticed one or more ants in your home, put a stop to the invasion before it ever begins by contacting the pest control specialists at Horizon Pest Control. Our knowledgeable pest control experts have the tools and training necessary to eliminate your ant problem for good, ensuring that you never have to deal with these pesky little insects ever again.

How to Identify Stink Bugs

Filed under: Bed Bug,Bed Bug Extermination,Horizon Pest Control,Pest Control,Pest Management — admin @ 10:37 pm June 3, 2016

stink bugs

While stink bugs are not typically dangerous to humans or pets, they can be a nuisance inside your home, especially during the fall and spring. Most stink bug infestations occur when it starts getting cold and when it begins to warm up, since the bugs are actively looking for ways into or out of your home at these times.

How to Identify a Stink Bug.

The most common characteristic that almost every variety of stink bug shares is the wide and flat design of its exoskeleton. To most people, it appears as though there is a hard shield on the back of a stink bug, with some specimens growing up to three-fourths of an inch long and wide. A putrid odor comes from the underside of the insect when it senses it is in danger, which can be another telling sign that you are dealing with a stink bug.

When and Where are Stink Bugs Usually Seen?stink bugs

Stink bugs do not tolerate cold weather very well and will try to get to a warmer, protected area before the weather turns too cold. This results in the bugs trying to get into your house around the middle of fall, when it starts getting fairly cold at night. The bugs tend to hibernate during the winter if they haven’t completely made it inside your house, but their hibernation mechanism does not kick in if they make it inside a living area. Once it warms up outside, they will usually try to exit your home, but may end up coming right into your living space instead.

They can usually be found in areas that do not see a lot of foot traffic, especially somewhere like an attic or behind drywall in on exterior walls. During the winter, you will probably see very few stink bugs, even if you do have an infestation, but during the spring you may see a lot of them coming out from any cracks in your drywall and ceiling, as well as from older HVAC vents that are not properly sealed.

What do Stink Bugs Eat?

Stink bugs generally stick to fruits and vegetables as they are an agricultural pest. In the summer, you might see them in your garden where they can do some damage by killing any growing vegetables. In your home, they typically do not eat anything as they are just trying to get outside in order to reproduce. As with most pests, if you see one or two of them in your house, you can bet that there are many times that number hiding just out of sight, requiring the services of an exterminator to get rid of them.

Got a Bee or Wasp Sting? Treat Them With These Home Remedies!

Filed under: Bee Removal & Management,Wasp Control — admin @ 3:37 pm May 27, 2016

Bee StingBeing stung by a bee or wasp can hurt and often results in inflamed, burning, swollen or itchy skin. Fortunately, you don’t have to deal with the pain. There are many things you can do to help relieve the burning and reduce the swelling. Some items can be purchased at the store while others are things you likely already have at home. Here are a few home remedies you may want to try the next time you’re stung by a bee or wasp.

Mud

If you are stung while camping, hiking or fishing, you may not have access to a lot of items. However, this doesn’t mean that you can’t treat a bee or wasp sting. Mud can help to relieve some of the itchiness and pain associated with these stings. Simply mix some dirt and water to form a paste-like substance. Then rub the mud over the sting. When you get home, rinse the mud from the area and clean it well to prevent infection.

Meat Tenderizer

One of the best ways to treat bee and wasp stings is with meat tenderizer. This helps break down the protein in the venom, relieving the symptoms associated with these stings. It can also help break down a stinger stuck in your skin, so if you notice this, this is a method you want to try. Mix four parts meat tenderizer with one part water to make a paste. Rub a liberal layer over the affected area and allow it to dry. Reapply every two to three hours for best results. Meat tenderizer also works on mosquito and spider bites, so keep that in mind if you are bitten by either of those pests in the future.

Toothpaste

If your bee or wasp sting is itchy, apply a thin layer of toothpaste to the affected area. This should be a paste, not a gel toothpaste. This creates a tingly sensation on your arm which satisfies your urge to scratch the area while also reducing itchiness. The toothpaste should be rinsed off and reapplied every few hours to keep symptoms in check.

Baking Soda

The last home remedy for treating bee and wasp stings is baking soda. Mix equal parts baking soda and water to form a paste. Rub the paste over the bite to soothe itchiness and prevent swelling. Baking soda does contain salt, so if you have been scratching the area and broken the skin, this method may burn a bit at first. However, if left on, it will relieve your symptoms.

You don’t have to be uncomfortable after being stung by a bee or a wasp. There are many different ways to treat the sting and relieve the pain, itchiness and swelling associated with it. Using mud, toothpaste, meat tenderizer or baking soda can help. If you are allergic to bee stings or experience trouble breathing following a sting, seek emergency medical care immediately, rather than trying any of these home remedies.

If you need help with flying, stinging insects, contact us right  away.

How to Keep Pests Away After Ridding of Them

Filed under: Ant Control,Cockroach Control,Stink Bugs — admin @ 7:00 pm May 19, 2016

Removing pests from your home may solve the immediate problem you were facing. However, if you do not take the proper precautions, the pests can re-enter and re-infest your home, putting your right back in the same situation you thought you got rid of. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to prevent these problems from reoccurring. Here are three common pests in New Jersey and a few tips for keeping these pests away after you rid your home of them.

Ants

Food ContainerOne of the best ways to keep ants out of your home is to eliminate any food sources for them. This includes placing food in plastic bins rather than leaving it in the boxes, cleaning up crumbs, and taking out the trash every night. If ants find food in your home, they will continue to come in looking for more food. Another way to keep ants out is to find out how they are getting in and seal that off. If they are entering from small cracks in your home’s exterior, seal off the cracks. If they are finding gaps under your door, install new weatherstripping. Finding out how ants are entering and then shutting off that source helps to keep them out.

Cockroaches

PlumbingIf you have recently gotten rid of a cockroach infestation in your home, you will want to work diligently to prevent another one from happening. Just like ants, cockroaches look for food, so ensure there is no food for them to find. Additionally, cockroaches enjoy dark, damp places. Repairing plumbing leaks will help eliminate these damp places, which can help to keep these pests away. Lastly, cockroaches will die if they come into contact with diatomaceous earth. Sprinkle some of this powder in areas where cockroaches may have infested your home before, such as in the crawl space. You can also sprinkle this around door ways or windows to keep these pests from entering.

Stink Bugs

VacuumStink bugs leave behind a pungent smell. After you remove them from your home, you don’t want to have to smell this smell again. As such, you will want to vacuum regularly to keep these bugs at bay. They can hide in your carpet and quickly multiply. Regular vacuuming helps prevent this from happening. Secondly, combine a squirt of dish soap with water in a spray bottle. Regularly spray any cracks or openings that these pests may enter through. The soap sticks to their skin and kills the bugs, helping to prevent an infestation. Lastly, consider placing cat nip or garlic in your garden or outdoor space. Stink bugs hate the scent and will stay away, which deters them from your home.

After you have gotten rid of pests in your home, the last thing you want is to have another infestation. Taking the correct precautions can prevent that from happening, allowing you to live a bug-free life.

If you need help with pests, call Horizon Pest Control for effective pest control in NJ.

How to Tell the Difference Between a Carpenter Ant and a Termite

Filed under: Ant Control,Termite Control,Termites — admin @ 7:00 pm May 16, 2016

What are Carpenter Ants and Termites?

Carpenter ants, also known as sugar ants, reside in damp and decaying wood. They are mostly found in forested areas. They build their nests in woods, however, don’t consume them.

Termites, on the other hand, eat wood. The drywood kind are found in furniture and hardwood flooring. They thrive in warm humid climates and can cause moderate to severe destruction of property.

How to Spot the Difference between Carpenter Ants and Termites

Carpenter Ants vs Termites

Physical distinction between carpenter ants and termites

Carpenter ants are mostly black in color. There are some species that are red/orange and black in color as well. The wings on the front are larger than the hind ones and they measure anywhere between 1/2″ and 5’8″. The antenna is elbowed in the case of carpenter ants.

Termites have straight antenna and are either dark brown or black in color. They measure 3/8″ in length. The wings of termites are of the same size and easily breakable. The wings are longer than the body.

Where can you find carpenter ants and termites

Carpenter ants can be found on porch floors, columns and pillars. They can also be found in gardens where the wood is in contact with soil and branches of trees. They are easily found in firewood piles, stumps, window sills and sometimes even in appliances and electrical equipment.

Termites can be found on wooden floors, mud tubes and furniture. Termites can also be found in dark places of the house, for example, a dingy basement without windows, doorways, sills, porches and any surface in contact with soil. If you spot discarded wings or hollow wood around the house, it is likely that it is infested by termites.

Damage caused by carpenter ants and termites

Carpenter ants looks for decayed wood and then make their way to sound wood in homes and businesses. They chew but do not eat the wood. Once they are done chewing, the texture appears almost sandy. Damage is hard to spot, however, if you spot ants regularly around a structure you should seek professional help.

Termites cause more permanent damage to property than carpenter ants.  Homes primarily constructed of wood are not the only ones that are threatened by termites. Other materials can cause termite infestation as well since they are capable of cutting through plaster and can be found feeding on floors, ceilings, walls, cabinets and wooden furniture. It is sometimes difficult to spot the damage as it can be internal and until severe damage is done, it can go undetectable. In that case, a professional pest control company’s help should be taken to assess the situation otherwise it can lead to severe damage.

If you find a swarm of either of these insects in your house or business place, you should immediately seek professional help before the situation worsens. For effective New Jersey termite control and New Jersey carpenter ant control, trust Horizon!

Why People Find Bugs to be Scary

Filed under: Bug Control — admin @ 7:00 pm May 13, 2016

pest control njThere are many things that people fear, but fear of insects and bugs, also known as Entomophobia or Acarophobia is one that is very common. Americans spend over 168 million annually on bug repellents alone.

Bugs are known as pests and with good reason. Whether mosquitoes, flies, ants, roaches, bees, ticks, fleas or less common household and outdoor bugs – many will agree that they don’t want them around. If it’s not for the fact that many of them carry and distribute nasty diseases and infections like West Nile or lyme disease, it’s sheerly to prevent annoyance and having bugs crawling on or around food or their families.

Pests like bedbugs – which are commonly an issue in major cities – can also cause quality of life issues and lead to lengthy, costly in depth processes to ensure that the problem is eradicated. The money that can potentially get lost in having to dispose of any infested clothing, blankets or furniture is also a concern.

pest control nj

Add to it that for some, a bite from a particular type of bug, like a bee can be fatal and require immediate medical attention or an EpiPen in order to prevent death or further complications. The fear of getting bitten and having to go through a near death experience can cause anxiety, fear and even trigger a more expanded version of the phobia into other bugs and situations.

Termite infestation in a home can potentially lead to a ton of damage if not caught in time and be a costly problem to fix. In tropical climates, mosquitoes are often much larger in size than in the US and they can carry life threatening diseases, like Malaria. Malaria can be very difficult to prevent as well as to treat. Bites from fleas back in the 14th century, which were carried on the backs of rats caused the devastating spread of the Black Plague, also known as the Black Death in Europe. It was as simple as fleas biting other humans and animals and cross contaminating the victims due to infected blood.

Sufficed to say of the aforementioned facts, a fear of bugs can be a very logical one. So can being proactive to prevent and treat infestation and calling in a team of professional experts if you are experiencing a problem with bugs or pests in your home.  If you need an exterminator in NJ today, call us!

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