When you see a rodent scurrying around your home or business, how do you know if it’s a rat or a mouse? Although both of these types of rodents cause similar problems for property owners, there are significant physical differences between them. Keep the following in mind, so that you can tell the difference between mice and rats.
Physical Appearance of Mice
Mice are generally smaller in size than rats. These rodents tend to weigh up to 0.5 ounces when they are fully grown, while rats can weigh up to 11 ounces as adults. They have a smaller head, smaller feet, and larger ears compared to rats. They also have a more pointed snout and their coat is a light brown coloring.
Physical Appearance of Rats
Rats are typically bigger than mice. Norway rats have a brown or black body, as well as shorter ears and a blunt snout. They also have bodies that are heavier and thicker than mice and a coat that tends to be longer and have a rougher texture. Their tails are usually a paler coloring underneath and a darker coloring on top. Roof rats, another common type of rat species, are typically a grayish color with some black shading. These rats have bodies that are more slender than Norway rats, and they're also slightly smaller when they are fully grown. They have a more pointed snout similar to a mouse’s snout, as well as larger ears. Roof rats have a smoother coat and a tail that is dark all over in coloring.
Other Differences Between Mice and Rats
Mice and rats also differ in terms of their droppings. Mouse droppings are typically shaped like a rod, while rat droppings have a more blunted or capsule-like shape. Both of these rodents are known for leaving droppings behind as they move about looking for food and water. Since their feces can contain harmful germs, it’s important to have professional pest control experts inspect your home or business if you find any.
Another difference between rats and mice is where you’re more likely to find them. Mice are generally found in a wide range of habitats, including rural and urban areas, as well as indoor and outdoor areas. They can easily fit through narrow openings to gain entry into residential and commercial buildings. Norway rats are usually found in lower areas of buildings, while roof rats are mainly found in higher areas, such as on upper floors, roofs and trees. Rats and mice are both nocturnal, so you’re much more likely to see or hear them during the night rather than during the day.
If you have rats or mice on your residential or commercial property, please contact Perfection Pest Control for help. We offer dependable pest control services in Cincinnati and northern Kentucky.
You may have heard a couple stories about the brown recluse spider and how it can be dangerous, but would you know if you saw one? Do you know what climates they live in, and how they behave? When it comes to spiders that may pose a threat (or at least, an annoyance), it's important to understand how to spot them and what actions to take if it looks like you have a pest problem! Let's take a closer look at the brown recluse and everything you need to know!
The brown recluse is an unassuming spider, colored light to dark brown and only around ¼ to ½ inch long – and most of that is the recluse's spindly legs. The easiest way to identify the brown recluse is the violin-like brown shape on its back. However, because of the recluse's size you usually have to get pretty close to see this, so be careful when studying spiders! If you spot a small brown spider in your home and you live the right climate (more on this in a bit), it's usually worth a careful examination.
The brown recluse is well-named: These spiders are famously reclusive and prefer to stay away from people, animals and light, hiding in dark spaces. That means you can often find them in woodpiles, sheds, and piles of old leaves outdoors. Inside, their hermit-like habits can prove more dangerous: Brown recluses may call boxes in your attic or basement home. They may find a spot to live in dark closets or at the bottom of boots, too. When exposed, they will usually try to scurry away.
There are 11 species of brown recluse spiders that can be found around the world (except, up to this time, for Asia and Australia). In the United State, brown recluses tend to stay where it's warm and preferably dry. They are found primarily in Midwest and Southeast states, and have been seen as far west as Nebraska and as far north as Ohio.
Danger and Prevention
The goods news is that brown recluses are not aggressive. If they bite a human, it's generally by accident as they are trying to get away. However, that bite can be potent, especially if high levels of venom are injected. Reactions vary from a mild allergic response to serious tissue death, so it's important to keep an eye on the bite if you think it was a recluse.
Prevention is all about making sure these tiny spiders can't get inside. It's important to seal up any cracks, gaps and small spaces in your home, as well as making sure that your weather-stripping doesn't wear down. Make sure your attic and basement are tidy, and that all containers are tightly sealed. Outside, keeping wood piles away from the house and making sure there is no piled debris can help keep recluses away. Pest professionals can help you make these changes, and clear out a serious infestation!
Do you think that you might have dangerous spiders or other unpleasant bugs living in your home or business? Schedule your service with us today!
The famous black widow spider is bad news for homeowners — but do you know how to spot one? Do you know if black widow spiders live in your area, and in what parts of your home they are likely to be found? If you have a pest problem that can pose health issues, it's important you know how to identify it and what to do next. So let's examine the infamous black widow and what you should know about this spider.
Out of all the dangerous spiders, black widows are one of the easiest to identify thanks to that famous reddish-orange hourglass on their abdomen (females only). However, the hourglass is on the front of their body, so if you are looking at the back of the spider, all you'll see is a small black spider around 1 and ½ inches long. Additionally, the hourglass mark only shows up on mature spiders, so young black widows will just look black.
Black widows are big fans of warm weather. When the temperature hits 10 degrees Fahrenheit or higher they will often be active, spinning their webs: These webs are typically described as "irregular" without any set shape, which allows the widow to build webs in many different places. However, they typically prefer webs at ground level, where they often spin in bushes and corners.
Interestingly, the black widow does not actually kill and eat their mate – at least, not often enough to win a name for it. Many spiders occasionally devour their mates, and black widows are no exception. However, the female of the species does tend to be more aggressive, while the male rarely bites anyone.
The black widow is a hardy species, and can be found in every state except Alaska, which is too cold for the spider. In other colder climates, the black widow will try to venture inside to find warmer areas during the winter. This means that cold months can be an especially dangerous time to encounter black widows seeking refuge – and ready to defend their territory.
Danger and Prevention
Black widow females can be aggressive when spinning their webs or laying eggs and guarding their egg sac, which can lead to bites when disturbed. Fortunately, black widow bites very rarely kill anyone except the very sick or very sensitive. However, the bite can cause fever, increased blood pressure, and nausea: It's important to treat these symptoms quickly to avoid any danger.
Prevention focuses on being tidy and careful. Keep wood piles and other debris away from the house, and elevated if you can – black widows rarely venture far away from the ground. If you spot webs in your storage areas or closets, examine them for black widows before you start moving them. If you seem to have a serious infestation, contact a professional and ask them about the next steps you should take.
Do you think that you might have dangerous spiders or other unpleasant pests living in your home or business? Schedule your service with us today!
Termites can cause a considerable amount of damage to homes when an infestation is left untreated. Unfortunately, these pests can go undetected inside the walls of your home for months or even years. How do you know if you have them? Keep an eye out for the following warning signs of a termite infestation.
Mud Tubes or Shelter Tubes
One of the most noticeable signs that you might have termites in your home is the presence of mud tubes or shelter tubes. Termites build these tubes, which are roughly the width of a pencil, from the ground to your home. These tubes allow them to travel back and forth in a sheltered environment that provides them with enough heat and humidity. These tubes also keep them safe from predators as they move to and from your home. Keep in mind that larger or wider tubes often indicate a more serious infestation.
Not all members of a termite colony reproduce. Those who do are called swarmers, and these termites have wings that are discarded shortly after they fly off to establish a new colony. Termites that nest in dry wood might swarm at different times, but those that live in the ground tend to swarm during spring. If you see piles of discarded wings near your window sills or other areas of your home, it’s time to seek help from professional termite control experts. Check around the outside of your home, since you might find these wings out there as well.
Visibly Compromised Wood
Termites feed on wood, which is why they’re so destructive to homes. As they feed on wood inside your walls and other parts of your home, structural problems can develop. The wood becomes weaker and can sag or show visible signs of damage. Watch for areas of wood floors that sound hollow or sag. You can also tap on walls to listen for a hollow sound that indicates that termites have caused a significant amount of damage. If you notice signs of damage to the wood in your home, don’t hesitate to have an inspection done to check for the presence of termites. Having infestations treated promptly can help prevent further damage from occurring.
Don’t wait for termites to do significant damage before getting help. Contact us at Perfection Pest Control today to schedule your inspection.
If you spot a pest in or near your home, your first thought is probably, "How am I going to deal with this?" Grabbing bug spray or buying some bait traps from the store are common decisions. However, if pests are living inside your house, or if you spot serious pest issues like mosquito problems or termite damage, you shouldn't deal with the issue alone. Here are the top reasons why it's best to call in a pest control professional for these situations.
Homeowners Don't Always Know What the Problem Is
Pest problems can be difficult to diagnose without professional training. Some termite signs are easy to see, but would you recognize signs of other pests like carpenter ants? Can you tell if those droppings are from a rat or a squirrel? Are those bugs the sign of a nearby nest, or are they encroaching from farther away? Is that shredded cardboard the work of a rodent or a raccoon? You can quickly see how professionals can provide the necessary guidance to get to the root of a problem.
Professionals Have Advanced Technology and Experience
Professionals have access to important tools like thermal imaging cameras that can spot masses of bugs in the walls and locate where a specific problem is based on a few signs. These devices and others like them give pest control companies an edge in identifying issues and treating them effectively. Even if homeowners had access to this technology, they don't have the necessary training to use it.
Professionals Have Access to Targeted Pesticides and Know How to Use Them Safely
Professionals often have access to traps and pesticides that aren't available at the local department store. Even more importantly, they know how to use these solutions in effective ways around your home while also keeping your plants, kids and pets protected. Misuse of pesticides can cause serious health concerns and other issues. When dealing with a large pest threat, it's important to find someone with the right training to use pesticides and other methods of dealing with it.
Professionals Aim to Treat Infestations at the Source
This problem occurs when homeowners treat the problem they see with a DIY solution. Professionals, however, can help find the source of the issue, such as a termite colony underneath your porch, or a hole in your attic where pests are getting through. This allows for a much more effective treatment and helps homeowners save significant money in the long run.
If you are ready, schedule your inspection with us today at Perfection Pest Control! We use advanced technology and experience to uncover any pest problems around your property and suggest the most effective means of dealing with it.
If you're worried that you might have a bed bug problem, you aren't alone! Since bed bugs are so small and easy to transfer from place to place, new infestations are always a possibility. But it's important to make sure that you're dealing with bed bugs and not a different problem. Here are some telltale signs that will help you identify those annoying bugs.
Small Dark Stains
Stains can be caused by all sorts of things, but if tiny stains start appearing regularly in the morning, it's a good sign that bed bugs have taken up residence. These stains will look like little smears with a black marker, but in reality, they are actually feces that the bed bug immediately poops out after eating, which then seep into nearby sheets. It's gross, but it's a good way to tell that they are present.
Bed bugs do produce an odor, especially if they start to accumulate. You are most likely to notice this odor at night when you first lay down to sleep. The smell is distinctive but difficult to describe. Many people think it smells like fruit that is starting to spoil or some unpleasant workout body odor. If you notice a smell like this repeatedly but can't find any source, then it may be time to take a closer look or call up a pest control expert.
Bed bugs shed their skin a lot as they are growing. When an infestation is serious, this leads to a lot of shed skins that gather up and accumulate in the cracks of mattresses, sheet folds, and furniture. On their own, the skins are tiny, like the head of a ballpoint pen, so you may want to get a magnifying glass out to take a closer look at the dust and dirt in hidden-away places. However, if you do find any tiny bug shells, it's a pretty clear confirmation that your home has a problem (unlike eggshells, which can be harder to identify, especially if you aren't a professional).
Live Bed Bugs
Sometimes bed bug skins indicate a past problem but not a current infestation. Your best bet to identify a current problem is to find living adult bed bugs. These are typically visible to the naked eye if you have plenty of light, but they like to hide out during the day. You can check for them by removing your bedding and take a close look at any seams, holes, or cracks in your mattress. Bed bugs will be small, red mite-like creatures hiding out in these places. They are very flat and can hide well, so look carefully and take your time!
Do you have a pest problem or signs of damage that you would like inspected? At Perfection Pest Control, we can help with all of your pest needs. Schedule your service today and find the right treatment for your issue!
Two common treatments exist when termites infest a house: baits and liquids. These aren't just two methods for delivering insecticide, either – they represent two important stages of response and protection. Let's talk about how they work, and what circumstances they really shine in.
What to Know About Bait
Termite bait is delivered in stations that are typically inserted into the ground or near damaged materials.
Sometimes baits are a type of alert; stations can be used to monitor areas for termite presence and track where the termite nest is and where termites have spread to. However, bait stations are also used to deliver termiticides particularly designed to kill termites. Many baits are slow-acting or made to build up in the system. Termites will carry the bait to their colony and feed it to the queen. Once termite queens are dead, the colony will start to collapse.
As a result, baits are best used early on in the process to see where they can pick up termites, and as a core treatment to target termites fast when they are in the house and already doing damage. Different products also give baits different advantages depending on the goals of the treatment, so they are a particularly adaptable solution. However, the bait stations depend on termites coming to them. If termites find a way around the bait station before it does its work, then the damage may continue. That's why professional placement of bait stations is important!
What to Know About Liquid
Liquid treatments are designed to form treatment zones around a house or building. Typically, a small trench is dug into the ground, the liquid is applied to the trench, and then it is filled back up again (although sometimes different liquids and sprays are applied in different ways). These liquids can be very potent — often, termites will die just from crossing over or will avoid drawing closer at all. When liquids are well-applied, they can prevent termites from reaching a house.
Obviously, this makes liquid treatments a good option for preventing infestations if you are worried about termites. Liquid treatments can be applied one time and guaranteed with a 1,5, or 10-year service agreement.
Do you have a pest problem or signs of damage that you would like inspected? Schedule your service with us today at Perfection Pest Control and find the right treatment for your issue!
A rare insect exhibit is slated to open soon in China’s Sichaun province in Beijing. Included in the exhibit is an ant fossil believed to be 165 million years old!
The exhibition, organized by the Insect Museum of West China, is a month long show that will include other rare insect fossils as well. Aside from the ancient ant exhibit the exhibition will include dragonflies, beetles and bees; many of which date back to the Jurassic period.
Museum curator Zhoa Li stated that “The reason for scarcity of insect fossil is that their exoskeleton do not preserve very well,”. This might explain why some of the fossilized insects look completely different to their modern descendants while some still look the same.
The 165 year old ant fossil is among the most impressive of all the insects on exhibit. The museum is so proud of the ant because it is believed to be around 45 million years older than a comparable ant fossil found by American archaeologists in the Amazon. Those are some old ants!
In all The Insect Museum of West China is home to over 4,000,000 insect samples collected from over 40 countries! That sure is a lot of insects to share a roof with! If you have insects under your roof but are not as gracious a host as the museum call a Cincinnati pest control extermination expert to make them history!