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Learn All About Pests Print E-mail


Found a bug and don't know what it is?  Try this website.  It has professionally written, easy-to-read articles on everything from common pests to pest management techniques to internet myths help homeowners answer pest management questions and better understand pest control issues. Photos accompany each article to further assist consumers in identifying their pest management problems. Articles are organized by name of pest, as well as by categories that include Insects and Spiders Around Our Homes, Pests in the Landscape and Garden, Birds, Rodents and Other Vertebrates, and Pest Control Materials and Methods. New and interesting articles, such as the real story on internet myths like Red Butt Spiders and Camel Spiders and an article called “The Roadkill Cafe” that will appeal to CSl fanatics, are added constantly to make sure the site stays fresh and up-to-date.


Dig out the truth about Termites at the web’s most comprehensive resource for learning about America’s $5 billion termite problem. If you’re concerned about termites in your home, or want to learn how to prevent termite damage, you’re in the right place.

The Termite Institute features an interactive termite map detailing current termite risk throughout the country, tips for selecting a pest professional, information on popular termite treatments, and answers to the most frequently asked termite-related questions. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for here, simply email our expert entomologists! Just click the section you’d like to get started.


Ants are incredibly social insects. But that doesn’t mean you need to include them on the invitation list for your next cocktail party. At the Ant Institute™, you can learn about America’s number one nuisance pest in an easy, friendly and informative atmosphere. Browse the resources available to you here – from identification of ants to their control and prevention – before meeting with a pest professional or attempting to tackle an ant infestation on your own.

Africanized Bees in Florida Print E-mail

Did you know that Florida is now officially listed as having Africanized bees established in the state? Image Bees with Africanized genetics have been identified from specimens turned in all the way from Miami up the state to Live Oak, and across the panhandle to Pensacola. Most Africanized bees have been identified close to ports, and the majority of Africanized bees have been found established in the Tampa Bay area of Florida.  Now that Africanized bees are established, the pest control industry will be expected to play an important role in handling bee complaints.  Is your pest control professional trained to handle grumpy and aggressive bees? Keep in mind that Africanized honey bees look just like regular European honey bees. The differences cannot be seen just by looking at them. Without proper precautions, pest control personnel and bystanders are at risk of attack and injury from the agitated Africanized bees .  A-Key Pest Control has the expertise and training to safely remove this threat from you home or business.

How to protect your home against Termites Print E-mail
A home is the biggest investment many people make. What are you doing to prevent your home against subterranean termites? According to Dr. Philip G. Koehter, University of Florida, "every year termites cause more damage to houses in Florida than fire. Many Floridians have fire detectors installed in their homes. They replace the batteries in the detectors on a regular basis. But about 50% of Floridians do nothing for termites, except hope that termites won''t swarm and make their presence known. Every year termites cause more damage than storms. The news has radar that updates people during times when storms are present to let people know what to do. People buy plywood to cover windows and doors during hurricanes. They prepare their yards by removing tables, chairs, and other items from being blown away. But homeowners insurance cover that type of damage. Homeowners insurance does not cover termite damage.

Every year termites cause more damage than floods. If you live in a low-lying area, you will probably buy flood insurance. But the best protection from termites is a properly applied termicide. The termicide can be applied as a bait or as a soil treatment. These treatments cannot be bought at Lowe''s or Home Depot. They must be applied by a pest management professional."

Conclusion: What can be done to protect your home?

  • Termidor.  A-Key Exterminators recommends treating your home with Termidor. Call for a free estimate. 
  • Termiscope.  If you''re not prepared for treatment immediately, you can have a monitoring system installed where you can self-monitor for the presence of termites around your home. When monitors show signs of activity around your home, it''s time for a treatment. Don''t wait much longer. Many systems can be done for under $100.00 with the Termiscope system. The Termiscope system, with its innovative visual alert, will aid in protecting your biggest investment your home.

Termites are huge menace Print E-mail
'In the United States, no pest causes more annual damage to homes than the termite. Termites have been found across 70 percent of the world and have survived environmental changes for more than 250 million years, adjusting to most any climate. In the U.S., termites are found in ever state except Alaska. In fact, they invade the homes of more than 1.5 million Americans every year. Americans spend more than $2.5 billion yearly dealing with termites and repairing the damage they cause - more than tornadoes, hurricanes, floods and fires combined. But unlike these natural disasters, termites will destroy a home silently -their presence often goes undetected until after the damage is done. What''s worse, termite damage is not even covered by most homeowner insurance policies.

Read more to learn the warning signs to avoid termite damage.

The Warning Signs

According to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), the following signs may indicate a home is infested with termites:

  • Swarms of flying termites (called "swarmers" or "alates") can occur both inside and outside of the house, usually in the spring. Often the first sign of a termite infestation is the sudden appearance of these swarmers, ushering in the beginning of termite "swarming" season.
    Swarming termites usually shed their wings after swarming, leaving behind small, papery piles on windowsills, countertops or floors. During swarming season, termite colonies send off large numbers of these winged reproductive termites.
    A swarm is recognizable by the sudden appearance of hundreds to thousands of swarmers within a home or building. The swarm often lasts just a few minutes, as swarmers fly a short distance, then fall to the ground and lose their wings. Soon afterwards, females will emit a pheromone to attract male termites for mating. After pairing, the termites search for a location to begin a new colony.
Termite swarming is triggered by a combination of several successive days of above average temperatures, followed by a light rain. Swarm activity varies geographically, but occurs most often in the spring (March-May) and during the daytime. A single colony may swarm more than once a year, but ensuing swarms are often not as large as the original spring swarm. It is also common for termite colonies in the same area to swarm on the same day.
  • Small piles of wood residue or shavings often indicate termite activity. Tiny holes in wood, crumbling drywall and sagging doors are other symptoms of wood damage. Termites are attracted to the cellulose and high moisture in wood; some termite species need only a space 1/64 of an inch wide - the thickness of a piece of paper - to enter a home.
    There are five major types of nuisance termites throughout the United States - Eastern Subterranean termites, Western Subterranean Termites. Desert Subterranean termites, Formosan Subterranean termites (the "Super Termite" invading homes throughout the South and Hawaii) and Drywood termites. Eastern Subterranean and Formosan termites are by far the most destructive. Combined, they account for more than 80% of the economic loss in North America every year.
An average Eastern Subterranean termite colony can consume five grams of wood per day, the equivalent of 2 1/3 linear feet of a 2-foot by 4-foot pine board annually. Formosan termite colonies can average millions of workers, all of them foraging for food. A mature colony of Formosans can consume as much as 13 ounces of wood per day. As a result, Formosans can severely damage a structure in as little as three months.
  • Beware of bubbled paint or visible, pencil-sized mud tubes running across concrete or connecting soil to wood. Termites often make underground tunnels or above-ground "shelter tubes" of mud, feces or debris while searching for new food sources and connecting their underground nests to the food. These mud tubes are the tunnels that termites use to gain access into your home.


Although Eastern Subterranean Termite colonies are largely located in the ground below the frost line, secondary colonies can exist above ground, and examples of true above-ground colonies existing without any ground contact have been seen. However, such above ground colonies have access to moisture and often the source is a roof or plumbing leak. In all, subterranean termites can average 13 to 14 colonies per acre, with as many as one million termites per colony.

This article was prepared for the LESCONEWS by the BASF Corporation.

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