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Do Not Stir a Hornet’s Nest

Filed under: Bee Removal & Management,Pest Control — Tags: — Megan Howard @ 11:48 pm June 26, 2012

The most dreaded pests are perhaps are those that can deliver a good sting and leave you gasping for breath. Wasps, bees and yellow jackets – all of them can sting and usually where there is one, there are several others too. Spring particularly brings around bees, wasps and yellow jackets and with all its beauty and cheer, this is the season to beware of stings.

Wasp Nests

Wasp nests are usually found in warm places like lofts or outhouses. The colony gets eliminated in the winter but the queen finds a place to hide until spring. In April, the queens usually come out and build the first cell of the nest. Nests may vary from the size of a golf ball to the size of a small room. The rest is completed by worker wasps. They feed on little insects, tiny pieces of meat and also take nectar from flowers. The worst thing about wasps is their sting.

Hornets nest under a roof

A sting is different from a bite. In a sting, wasps and bees release small amounts of venom into the blood which make it a very painful experience. Stings are undoubtedly painful but usually not dangerous unless it induces an anaphylactic shock that can induce breathlessness.

Spring is when the queen begins building the nests so it is this time that the nests are easily dismantled. As you travel further down the year, the nests become too big to handle easily. Poking a huge hornet’s nest with a stick is NOT ADVISABLE.

There are a few precautions that you could consider taking to prevent stings. Avoid keeping sweet drinks open as bees, wasps and yellow jackets are attracted to sugary drinks. Try and keep strong odors under control and wear light colors instead of bright ones.

If you need help in identifying the stinging insect invading your home, call us or visit Outdoor Pest Solutions to set an appointment. We will conduct a thorough inspection your home or business for free.


Carpenter Ants- Things You Should Know

Filed under: Carpenter Ant Control,Pest Control — Tags: , — Megan Howard @ 11:30 pm June 17, 2012

Understanding the biology, life-cycle and nature of carpenter ants helps in organizing treatment for infestations. Carpenter ants have been so named because of their ability to carve wood. They are usually fond of living in wooded areas but because human settlements have encroached into the woods, they have begun invading homes and destroying property. Though not considered as destructive as termites, they are still potentially a threat to your home and property.

What carpenter ants looks like?

Carpenter ants are about five-eighth of an inch. They come in two colors red and black. They have a narrow body split into three segments with a very narrow waist. Their antennae are bent visibly and they have four wings. The front wings are much larger than their hind ones. Their wings are pointed and have visible black spots on the tips.

Carpenter ants

They breed in colonies where roles are clearly defined. There is a queen, soldiers and reproductives who all do their jobs diligently. There may be more than a single queen in one colony. When the colony expands too much, winged representatives set out to look for potential nesting places.

Where you find them?

They are found where moist and damp tree stumps, logs of wood etc are found. They are particularly attracted to a combination of dampness and wood.

Signs of carpenter ant infestation in your house:

  1. Tiny piles of sawdust under or near wooden structures- particularly window frames, furniture.
  2. Tiny, neat mud galleries that is visible to the naked eye.
  3. A humming or rustling sound behind floors, walls and ceiling especially at night.
  4. The appearance of more ants inside the house especially during the winter.
  5. The appearance of winged carpenter ants near the window.
  6. A hollow sound when you tap on the wall.

If you think your home is infested with carpenter ants or if you would like to know more about this pest, visit our New Jersey Pest Control page. For a free estimate, you may call us at 1-888-612-2847.

What’s the difference between Carpenter Ants and Termites anyway?

Filed under: Pest Control,Termites — Tags: , , — Megan Howard @ 3:38 pm June 7, 2012

Given the fact that both are associated with extensive wood damage, home owners often mistake and confuse one with the other. But termites and carpenter ants are quite different from each other. There are several physical and behavioral differences between the two.

Differences Between Carpenter Ants and Termites:

Differences in wing structure

Termites have all four wings of the same size while in carpenter ants the front wings are significantly larger than the hind ones. The shapes of the wings are also different. Termites have paddle-shaped wings while carpenter ants possess pointed wings with a black tip. Termite wings do not show any darker vein structure while carpenter ants have a visibly noticeable dark vein running through the wing. Termites tend to shed their wings very easily while carpenter ants do not leave a trail of broken wings.

The antennae are also different

Both have antennae but carpenter ants have bent antennae while termites have straight antennae.

Differences in shape of the body

Termites have only two segments and a rather broad waist while carpenter ants have three segmented body characterized by a narrow waist.

Different life cycles

Termite nymphs bear a close physical resemblance to the adults. The carpenter ants on the other hand undergo what is called a complete metamorphosis and go through a life-cycle of egg, larvae, pupa and then adult stages.

Difference between carpenter ants and termites

Behavioral differences

Termites actually feed on the wood they infest. Carpenter ants do not feed but decompose the wood into sawdust. Carpenter ants can be identified by a slight humming or rustling sound while termites cannot be detected in this manner.

Finally, even the galleries carve out the two organisms are different. Carpenter ants carve smooth and clean galleries while termite galleries tend to be rough and filled with hardened fecal material.

If you are not sure if you have carpenter ants or termites at home, it is best to consult with a professional. For more information about these pests, visit New Jersey Termite Control today.