WESTERN ENCEPHALITIS MOSQUITO

HABITS:
Female mosquitoes ingest blood while male mosquitoes feed on plant nectars. They can develop from egg to adult within 10 to 14 days and are most active from dusk to dawn.   They will fly up to 14 miles in search of a blood meal.

HABITAT:
Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water sources such as storm drains, old tires, children’s wading pools and birdbaths.

THREATS:
Mosquitoes are well-known to spread diseases such as West Nile Virus, Encephalitis, Malaria and dengue fever.

PREVENTION:
Eliminate or reduce mosquito breeding sites by replacing all standing water at least once a week. This includes bird baths, ponds and unfiltered pools. Remove unneeded vegetation and trash from around any standing water sources that cannot be changed, dumped or removed. For passive mosquito management, introduce mosquito-eating fish to standing water. Screen windows, doors and other openings with mesh. Avoid going outdoors when and where mosquitoes are most active: during dusk or dawn. For stronger mosquito treatment, use insect repellent containing DEET on exposed skin whenever or wherever mosquitoes are likely to bite.

HUMAN FLEA

PEST DATA:
Color: Light-brown
Legs: 6
Shape: Flat
Size: 1/12″ to 1/6″
Antennae: Yes
Region: Entire US

Human fleas feed on the blood of cats, dogs, rats, humans or any warm-blooded animal.

HABITS:
Fleas spread by jumping as high as 8″ and as far as 16″ to infest rodents, household pests and other wild animals.

HABITAT:
In order to feed, fleas seek warm-blooded hosts at all times. Clothing, blankets, and carpeting can spread fleas to other areas.

THREATS:
Fleas carry diseases such as Bubonic Plague, Typhus, Flea Allergy Dermatitis, and can transfer tapeworms.  They can cause anemia in pets, and produce painful, itchy, red-colored bumps on skin.

PREVENTION:
Keep your lawn manicured to avoid attracting rodents.  Protect pets using a veterinarian prescribed flea treatment.  Thoroughly clean and repeatedly vacuum carpets often to eradicate fleas and prevent egg laying.   Consult a pest control control professional to eliminate rodents and fleas.

BED BUG

PEST DATA:
Size: 1/4″
Shape: Flat, broad, oval
Color: Mahogany to rusty brown and they turn red after sucking blood
Legs: 6
Wings: No
Antenna: Yes

Bed bugs are commonly found in beds, hotels, upholstered chairs and couches or any place where humans spend a lot of time.

DIET:
Bed bugs can feed on the blood of any warm-blooded animal. Their most common targets are humans because, unlike animals with fur, we have a lot of exposed skin for them to bite.

HABITAT:
Bed bugs are typically found around beds and nearby small cracks and crevices.

IMPACT:
When Bed bugs feed, they inject the bite with saliva to keep blood from clotting and an anesthetic to keep the host from feeling the bite and moving. Bed bugs do not spread disease, but their bites can become red, itchy welts.

PREVENTION:
Don’t take mattresses or padded furniture that has been left at the curb or on the street.  Check your bed sheets for blood spots. Keep your suitcases covered in plastic and off the floor when you travel. When you travel, take a small flashlight to help you look for bed bugs. When you return from a trip, wash all your clothes in very hot water. Bed bugs are difficult to see.  If you suspects that you have bed bugs, call a pest management professional.

CHIGGER MITE

PEST DATA:
Color: Red, Dark Orange
Legs: 6
Shape: Small oval
Size: 1/60 of an inch
Antennae: Yes
Region: Entire US

Chiggers are also called berry bugs, harvest mites, red bugs, scrub-itch mites.

HABITS:
The six-legged parasitic larva feeds on humans, rabbits, toads, box turtles, quail, and insects. They do not actually “bite”, but instead form a hole in the skin and chew up tiny parts of the inner skin. The severe itching causes hives and skin rash after the larvae detach from the skin.

HABITAT:
Chiggers are found damp areas where the vegetation is low such as lawns, golf courses, and parks.

THREATS:
Chiggers do not normally carry diseases in the US.

DOG TICK

PEST DATA:
Color: Brown/black body
Legs: 8
Shape: Flat; broad oval
Size: 1/8 “
Antennae: No
Region: Central and Eastern US

HABITS:
Dog ticks are sometimes called wood ticks.  They feed on the blood of animals such as deer and domestic animals such as cats and dogs.

HABITAT:
Dog ticks prefer to hide in grass and shrubs.

THREATS:
They carry bacteria responsible for several diseases in humans, including Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia.

PREVENTION:
When in an area where ticks are common, wear long sleeved shirts and pants, preferably light colored so ticks will be easy to detect. Tuck pants into socks. Use a tick repellent. To get rid of ticks and their risks indoors, inspect clothing and skin when heading inside. Wash clothes immediately.

DEER FLY

PEST DATA:
Color: Yellow with black stripes
Legs: 6
Shape: Triangular
Size: 1/2″ – 3/4″
Antennae: Yes
Region: Entire US

HABITS:
The bites of female deer flies are more painful than a mosquitoes as they use their razor-like jaws to tear and slice flesh apart. They are even able to bite through clothing. The flies will pour clot-preventing saliva into the open wound and then suck the blood for several minutes. If not treated quickly, the bites may cause large swellings or lesions, become itchy and cause a high fever.

HABITAT: Suitable habitats include salt marshes, swamps, bogs and areas along the edges of ponds, lakes and streams. Deer fly larva will feed on organic debris, insects, small crustaceans, snails, earthworms and other organisms.

THREATS: Deer flies can transmit equine infectious anemia virus and anthrax among cattle and sheep. They are the most common cause of tularemia between rabbits and humans in the Western US. They are suspected of transmitting Lyme disease as well. Large numbers of deer flies can cause an animal to lose up to 300 ml of blood in a single day and can severely weaken or even kill them.

PREVENTION: Since these flies are commonly found along endangered wetlands, control is impractical as it can be toxic to fish, birds and mammals. Common repellants containing DEET (N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) are not effective in keeping these flies from landing but may discourage them from biting. To reduce bites, it is recommended to wear light-colored clothing, a cap or hat.

CAT FLEA

PEST DATA:
Color: Dark reddish/brown
Legs: 6
Shape: Flat
Size: 1/12″ to 1/6″
Antennae: Yes
Region: Entire US

Cat fleas feed on the blood of cats, dogs, rats, humans or any warm-blooded animal.

HABITS:
Fleas spread by jumping as high as 8″ and as far as 16″ to infest rodents, household pests and other wild animals.

HABITAT:
In order to feed, fleas seek warm-blooded hosts at all times. Clothing, blankets, and carpeting can spread fleas to other areas.

THREATS:
Fleas carry diseases such as Bubonic Plague, Typhus, Flea Allergy Dermatitis, and can transfer tapeworms.  They can cause anemia in pets, and produce painful, itchy, red-colored bumps on skin.

PREVENTION:
Keep your lawn manicured to avoid attracting rodents.  Protect pets using a veterinarian prescribed flea treatment.  Thoroughly clean and repeatedly vacuum carpets often to eradicate fleas and prevent egg laying.   Consult a pest control control professional to eliminate rodents and fleas.

HORSE FLY

PEST DATA:
Color: Black
Legs: 6
Shape: Triangular
Size: 3/4″ – 1″
Antennae: Yes
Region: Entire US

HABITS: Female Horsefly bites are more painful than a mosquitoes as they use their razor-like jaws to tear and slice flesh apart. They are even able to bite through clothing. The flies will pour clot-preventing saliva into the open wound and then suck the blood for several minutes. If not treated quickly, the bites may cause large swellings or lesions, become itchy and cause a high fever.

HABITAT: Suitable habitats include salt marshes, swamps, bogs and areas along the edges of ponds, lakes and streams. Horse fly larva will feed on organic debris, insects, small crustaceans, snails, earthworms and other organisms and are also cannibalistic and will eat other horse fly larvae.

THREATS: Horse flies can transmit equine infectious anemia virus and anthrax among cattle and sheep. They are the most common cause of tularemia between rabbits and humans in the Western US. They are suspected of transmitting Lyme disease as well. Large numbers of horse flies can cause an animal to lose up to 300 ml of blood in a single day and can severely weaken or even kill them.

PREVENTION: Since these flies are commonly found along endangered wetlands, control is impractical as it can be toxic to fish, birds and mammals. Common repellants containing DEET (N-diethyl-meta-toluamide) are not effective in keeping these flies from landing but may discourage them from biting. To reduce bites, it is recommended to wear light-colored clothing, a cap or hat.

BLACK LEGGED DEER TICK

PEST DATA:
Color: Dark brown to black body
Legs: 8
Shape: Flat; broad oval
Size: 1/8“
Antennae: No
Region: Eastern US
Summer Insect Health Risks

The black-legged tick, sometimes called deer ticks, are named for its dark legs, which contrast with it’s pale body.

HABITS:
These ticks like to feed on the blood of white-tailed deer.

HABITAT:
Black-legged ticks prefer to hide in grass and shrubs.

THREATS:
Black-legged/Deer ticks can spread Lyme Disease.

PREVENTION:
When in an area where ticks are common, wear long sleeved shirts and pants, preferably light colored so ticks will be easy to detect. Tuck pants into socks. Use a tick repellent. To get rid of ticks and their risks indoors, inspect clothing and skin when heading inside. Wash clothes immediately.