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Termites
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Ants
Crickets
Roaches
Bed Bugs
Ticks
Beetles
Spiders
Silverfish
Rodents
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Residential & Commercial Treatments

Common Pests in Oklahoma

Ants

There are more than 700 ant species found in the U.S., although only about 25 species commonly infest homes. Ants are social insects that typically live in underground colonies, made up of workers and a queen. Ants will eat practically any kind of food, but are especially attracted to sweets. Ant identification is relatively simple due to their three distinct body regions: head, thorax and abdomen, as well as antennae. Despite similar construction, ants vary in overall appearance. Small or large ants and brown or black ants are common nicknames for different species.

What Attracts Them

Ants are very fond of sweets, and have a keen sense of smell of honeydew and sugar. However, they do not eat sweets exclusively.

While sweets supply energy for various activities of ants, food materials such as dead insects and plant seeds are also essential for ants as the nutritional sources of the components of their body structures.

When workers find pieces of solid food, they carry them back to the nest. On the other hand, when they find sweet liquid food such as honeydew, they store the liquid in the crop in their abdomen and walk back to the nest. When they reach the nest, they feed the liquid food in drops directly from their mouth to the mouth of other members of the nest.

Types of Ants

There are several species or genera commonly categorized as pests include the Argentine ant, pavement ant, yellow crazy ant, banded sugar ant, Pharaoh ant, carpenter ants, odorous house ant, red imported fire ant, European fire ant, and many others. Some ants will raid stored food, others may damage indoor structures, some can damage agricultural crops directly (or by aiding sucking pests), and some will sting or bite.[12] The adaptive nature of ant colonies make it nearly impossible to eliminate entire colonies and most pest management practices aim to control local populations and tend to be temporary solutions. Ant populations are managed by a combination of approaches that make use of chemical, biological and physical methods. Chemical methods include the use of insecticidal bait which is gathered by ants as food and brought back to the nest where the poison is inadvertently spread to other colony members through trophallaxis. Management is based on the species and techniques can vary according to the location and circumstance.

Treatment

If you do find signs of an ant infestation in your home you should contact a pest professional like Get’em Pest Control promptly. We will be able to inspect your home, perform proper ant species identification, and recommend a course of ant control and extermination.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are parasitic insects of the cimicid family that feed exclusively on blood. The term most commonly refers to members of the genus Cimex of which Cimex lectularius, the common bed bug, is the best known as it prefers to feed on human blood although other Cimex species are specialized to other animals, e.g., bat bugs, Cimex pipistrelli (Europe), Cimex pilosellus (western US), and Cimex adjunctus (entire eastern US).

The name of the “bed bug” is derived from the preferred habitat of Cimex lectularius: warm houses and especially nearby or inside of beds and bedding or other sleep areas. Bed bugs are mainly active at night, but are not exclusively nocturnal. They usually feed on their hosts without being noticed.

Adult Bed Bug

Adult bed bugs are about ¼ inch long, oval, reddish-brown, and wingless. Their body is very flat, and they possess long, slender legs and antennae. They have a long, segmented proboscis (beak) that extends forward when the bug takes a blood meal. At rest, the proboscis lies beneath the body and projects backwards between the legs. Immature bed bugs are known either as “larvae” or “nymphs.” They closely resemble adults, but are smaller and less deeply pigmented.

A number of adverse health effects may result from bed bug bites, including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms.Diagnosis involves both finding bed bugs and the occurrence of compatible symptoms.

Bed Bug Life Cycle

Adverse Health Factors

  • Carriers of Viruses (not found to be transmitted to humans)
  • Carriers of Bacteria (not found to be transmitted to humans)
  • Blood Loss Leading to Anemia (in bad cases)
  • Skin Rashes
  • Allergic Reactions
  • Emotional Distress
  • Loss of Sleep

Bed bugs have been known as human parasites for thousands of years. At a point in the early 1940s, they were mostly eradicated in the developed world, but have been on the rise since 1995. They are well known as annoying biting pests, and they are increasing in importance, including in hotels and other lodging establishments in the U.S. You are encouraged to learn more about the biology of bed bugs and their association with homes, apartments, hotels, and lodging establishments so that you can make more informed decisions about health risks, how to protect yourself when traveling, and whether bed bug control is warranted in a residence or lodging establishment.

Roaches

There are many differce species of cockroaches but generally about 4-5 kind will infest homes in Oklahoma. These include the German cockroach, brownbanded cockroach, American cockroach, and Oriental cockroach. These four species can be major pests in restaurants, hospitals, warehouses, offices and buildings with food-handling areas. A fifth kind, the Pennsylvania wood cockroach, may enter buildings accidentally but become only a temporary nuisance.

Indentifying Cockroaches

Correct identification of suspected cockroaches is important as there are many insects that look similar (e.g. long-horned beetles, crickets, leaf-footed bugs and ground beetles). A cockroach has a flattened, oval shaped body and long antennae (about the length of their body). When looking at a cockroach from above, its head is hidden from view. It has six strong legs covered with spines.

Many adult cockroaches have fully developed wings, although few fly. Other cockroaches have short wings or lack wings altogether. Young, immature cockroaches resemble adults but are smaller and wingless. If there is any doubt about whether an insect is a cockroach, submit a sample to an insect specialist or a pest management expert.

Habits

German cockroaches will feed on almost anything, including soap, glue and toothpaste. German cockroaches are good hitchhikers and often find their way into new structures via grocery bags, cardboard boxes, drink cartons and secondhand appliances.

Habitat

German cockroaches prefer to live in warm, humid places close to food and moisture sources. They are frequently found in residential and commercial kitchen environments, and bathrooms.

Threats

In addition to being a nuisance, the German cockroach has been implicated in outbreaks of illness and allergic reactions in many people. Cockroaches have been reported to spread at least 33 kinds of bacteria, six kinds of parasitic worms and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces. Medical studies have shown that German cockroach allergens cause allergic reactions and can exacerbate asthma attacks, especially in children. This makes German cockroach control incredibly vital.

Cockroach Prevention

Wondering how to get rid of German cockroaches? The best advice for German cockroach control is to practice good sanitation. To prevent German cockroaches from infesting the space, vacuum often, keep a spotless kitchen, seal all entrances around utility pipes and ventilate crawl spaces to prevent moisture buildup. If there is evidence of a cockroach infestation, contact a licensed pest professional like Get-em Pest. We will inspect and treat the your cockroach problem to eliminate this nusance from your home or business.

Spiders

Types of Spiders

All spiders are predatory eight-legged creatures that have organs to spin silk at the back ends of their bodies. They are the largest part of the Arachnid family, a group that also includes scorpions and ticks. Spiders all have the ability to bite with venom-injecting fangs to kill prey and nearly all of them are poisonous (even if it’s just a little). Most are harmless, but a few are very dangerous such as the brown recluse and black widow.

Where do They Come From?

Spiders will enter homes through the many gaps that currently exist on your property. If you happen to live in a wooded area or have a garden near the base of your foundation, you can be more prone to having spider activity in your home since spiders are more prevalent in those types of environments. Spiders are attracted to areas that are damp or dark, such as basements or gutters, but you can still find them in dry, warm areas of your home.

More common ways spiders enter homes by entering through poorly screened windows and doors or cracks and gaps around door or window frames and poorly sealed utility entry points. Another common way spiders enter a home is by hitchhiking on boxes, outdoor items as well as other numerous items that are brought inside of a home from the outdoors.

Brown Recluse (Fiddle-Back)

Brown recluse spiders are light to dark brown, with a characteristic dark brown violin marking on their back. This species is very common in Oklahoma and much of the Southwest. they often live outdoors in debris and woodpiles. Indoors, they can be found under furniture, inside storage items and in dark recesses such as baseboards and window moldings. Closets, attics and crawlspaces are the most common hiding places of brown recluse spiders.

Like the black widow spider, the brown recluse spider bites in defense. Bites are often painful and can produce an open, ulcerating sore that requires medical treatment. Restlessness, fever and difficulty sleeping are common symptoms of a brown recluse spider bite.

Male brown recluse spiders wander farther from the nest than females and are therefore more likely to crawl into shoes or other attire. Brown recluse spiders get their name from their coloration and reclusive habits.

Black Widow

Black widows are black and shiny, with a telltale red hourglass shape on their back. Habitats for Black Widow spiders include around woodpiles, under eaves, in boxes, and other areas where they are undisturbed. They tend to make their ways indoors by being brought in on woodpiles. Black Widow webs are typically constructed on ground-level in undisturbed areas.

If you happen to find a Black Widow in your home, it’s recommended to call a pest control professional to have it removed safely. Female Black Widow spiders are aggressive and will bite in defense, especially if she is defending her eggs. Black Widow bites can cause fever, increased blood pressure, sweating, and nausea. As long as proper medical treatment is sought promptly, fatalities from a Black Widow bite is unlikely.

Black Widow bites can be particularly dangerous for young children and include symptoms such as swelling and reddening at the bite site, muscle tightening and breathing problems from paralysis of the chest muscles. If you suspect your child has been bitten by a Black Widow, immediately take the child to your local emergency department.

Treatment

Spider control and extermination can be a major concern for homeowners – particularly for those who live in the southwest. There are about 3,000 species of spiders throughout North America, but the good news is that only two in the southern and western United States can cause serious harm when accidentally disturbed – the black widow spider and brown recluse spider. This is why it’s particularly important to only hire well-trained spider exterminators to eliminate an infestation.

If spiders are infesting your home, contact a spider control professional like Get’em Pest Control. We will be able to inspect your home, confirm the species of spider and recommend a course of proper spider control to rid your home of spiders.

Termites

Termites thrive in the warm moist lowlands and along coasts. Some species of North America have adapted to colder temperatures allowing them to infest homes and other wood sources farther north. Although there are about 2,000 known termite species in the world, but the biggest problem in Oklahoma are from the following: Subterranean termites, Dampwood termites, and Drywood termites.

Subterranean termites

Subterranean termites are found in every state except Alaska. This termite species lives in underground colonies or in moist secluded areas aboveground that can contain up to 2 million members. They build distinctive “mud tubes” to gain access to food sources and to protect themselves from open air. Subterranean termites are by far the most destructive species in the U.S.

Dampwood termites

As the name suggests, dampwood termites infest wood with a high moisture content. Dampwood termites are normally larger in size than other termite species. They do not usually infest structures because of the low moisture content of wood in structures, however, care must be taken to avoid attracting dampwood termites to a structure. Dampwood termites are found in Pacific coastal and adjacent states, the desert or semi-arid southwest, and southern Florida.

Drywood termites

Drywood termites infest dry wood and do not require contact with the soil, unlike the subterranean and Formosan termites. This termite species often establishes nests in roof materials and wooden wall supports and can infest dead wood that may be around homes. Although they don’t require as much moisture for survival as other species, they can also be found in wood near a water source such as a leaky pipe or water heater. Drywood termites are found in the southern tier states, from North Carolina through the Gulf Coast and into the coastal areas of California.

Termite Reproduction

King and queen termites swarm in the summers in large groups of thousands in search of a mate. The two mates have a mild courtship dance, and then begin to start their own colony. The male or king shares the labor with the queen as she is fertilized and ready to begin having baby termites. The first year of laying eggs the queen can have anywhere from a hundred to thousands of eggs a day. The two care for the first few generations until there are enough young or workers to help the two. When hatched into larvae, the young termites can become workers or soldiers depending on the pheromones and temperatures the eggs are exposed to. The workers are the sole providers in the colony’s division of labor and it relies on them to care for all of the feeding, maintains order of the young and developing babies, and foraging. The workers and soldiers can be male or female; it doesn’t matter because both are sterile. The population of the colony will continue adding massive numbers for about five years, then the queen will have her first reproductive alates, or young kings and queens. They will mature and prepare to swarm and leave to start another colony in the summer. The cycle continues over and over.

Signs of Termite Damage

It is not always possible for an untrained individual to see evidence of termites; however, homeowners can sometimes identify a potential termite problem by being vigilant in and around the home.

  1. 1. Mud tubes (used by termites to reach a food source) on the exterior of the home
  2. 2. Soft wood in the home that sounds hollow when tapped
  3. 3. Darkening or blistering of wood structures
  4. 4. Uneven or bubbling paint
  5. 5. Small piles of feces that resembles sawdust near a termite nest
  6. 6. Discarded wings near doors or on windowsills indicating swarmers have entered the home

If you see any of the above, it’s time to contact a pest professional like Get’em Pest Control. We can immediately determine the extent of the problem and recommend the appropriate treatment