All posts in “spiders”

unique bugs

Vinegaroons

Vinegaroons

It is amazing to me to find insects that are so weird but useful to the environment. Vinegaroons rarely ever bite people, usually only biting people when they feel threatened. Vinegaroon bites, are not poisonous, but can still be quite painful, especially due to the acidic spray released by this spider. They are classified in their own unique order arachnid which includes ticks, scorpions and spiders. They tend to freak people out due to their often strange appearance and claw-like appendages. People call them whipscorpions, solifugids, sun or wind scorpions  and spiders but weird looking is the common name.

 

They hunt at night are carnivorous and emerge from holes to look for prey, which is crickets, earwigs, millipedes, cockroaches and other small things. I find them often in water meter, electrical boxes and damp areas. You can find them under tree bark, rocks and debris in yards. They get to be about 3 and 1/2 inches long, generally black and live about 4 years. Their lifecycle is about 4-7 years and pretty much live a solidary life. They also inhabit the areas of North America like Arizona and Mexico. They have eyes but their vision is limited.

As always please wear gloves when doing any yard work or garage work. Don’t collect stuff in piles in the yard and of course don’t stack stuff against the home or business.

Boxelder Bugs

Boxelder Bugs can be a real nuisance and are identified as a occasional invader.  They become quite numerous in the Spring and Summer, populations go off the scale. I have seen (millions) similar to False Chinch bugs especially in tall grass and weed areas. So the key in reducing the population is to keep grass mowed and weeds in check.

These bugs feed by sucking the juices out of the plants and therefore pose little risk to homeowners. Keeping doors and windows shut can keep the majority out but since they are little they often sneak by. The use of screens is extremely beneficial and is considered (IPM) Integrated Pest Management. Reduce and seal cracks, electrical outlets can be sealed with caulking and check the jtrim along the stucco edge of your home. You can also seal all holes on exterior and interior of the home.

Boxelder Bugs don’t bite, but since they have a piercing suck mouth part they could possibly puncture the skin. The ideal treatment is a barrier pest control treatment which will help to reduce numbers. They are also a prey of scorpions and spiders. So keeping those numbers down is essential in keeping your home bug free. As always please call ProBest Pest Management 480-831-9328 or 623-414-1076

Expert

Expert

Expert: In my days of traveling to give presentations to pest control technicians across the world, I ran into all kinds. The one thing that always got me, if you traveled to speak you were the expert. The biggest audience was in Mexico with over 500 attendee’s. And it had to be translated because you know who couldn’t speak Spanish. I really enjoyed the comradery and since I had hands on experience it was easy to relate to me and my talks.

Expert

ProBest Expert

I want to share another feature/benefit of ProBest Pest Management, there is this site for Pest Control people across the world. They can go there to ask questions, ask for help in identifying other bugs and ask questions on day to day operations. It’s a cool, informative site. I like it because one of my technicians is a member and an (A.C.E.)  Associate Certified Entomologist and he is constantly helping people on this site. Makes me proud to have him onboard as a supervisor and resident expert on bugs.

There are a lot of bugs out there and by the way they weigh more than all of us, so be careful. #1 bug threat to man = mosquitoes and #2 probably fleas. So the world needs the Public Health expert to stand against the bugs. Bugs come in many sizes, shapes and nastiness, so bee careful and let the Expert just do it for you.

Rain

Rain

O boy all that rain, over 2+ inches here in Arizona. Thanks to Hurricane Rosa. Unusual for that much water in a few days, and its flooding everywhere. All this brings the bugs out in force and I’m expecting termi8te activity to bump up quickly. What can you expect?

  • Termite activity – check your slab foundation outside and inside for tubes.
  • Increase activity on scorpions, water may push them in.
  • Just like above ants may wonder in to get away from water.
  • This tarantula below was under a French door (thanks Chas A.) he/she was seeking shelter.
  • This is termite season in Arizona, after the monsoons so as usual do a monthly check of your home.
  • Honeybees may be swarming as well

Rain

Facts just the facts

Facts: remember the show – “Just the Facts please just the facts.

A few Facts.

  1. All scorpions are venomous but only about 25 species are known to have venom capable of killing a human being. We only have one in Arizona that is a concern however there have been no deaths attributable is some time.
  2. Termites were once classified in a separate order from cockroaches, but recent phylogenetic studies indicate that they evolved from close ancestors of cockroaches during the Jurassic or Triassic.
  3. New reproductive termites are winged, and able to fly. This is the time when most people think they are ants, but unlike ants they have straight antenna and no pinched waist.
  4. Scorpions are known to be one of the oldest animals on earth, 430 million years ago and emerged from the Oceans.
  5. Arachnophobia is the fear of Spiders. It is one of the most common fears in the world. It probably affects about 10% of men and 50% of women.
  6. Houseflies existed 65 million years ago! I hate flies!
  7. In Arizona we have wind scorpions or the Arizona sun spider, these eight-legged creatures aren’t technically spiders at all.
  8. Boxelder bugs can congregate on buildings and home, they are a real threat except to some plants and the best measure to keeping them out is home seal and vacuum when they do get inside.
  9. Did you know that the Arizona State Bug is the Two-tailed Swallowtail Butterfly?

Facts

Bug t-shirt

Bug t-shirt

Bug t-shirt, what a great idea. A little friend of Dr. Bugs zoo came by to check on our favorite buggy friends and his Grandma had just bought him a new t-shirt. Of course I wanted one but I’ll have to check and see if they come in my size. We have a few children that come by weekly to check on Hagrid the Bearded Dragon, the snakes, cockroaches and tarantula. Post Office was the original best idea and the bug zoo (to keep the kids entertained)  the 2nd best idea.

Bug t-shirt

Other shirt and shoes maybe?

I often see spiderman shoes and clothes but this was the first bug out shirt I’ve seen. Hopefully we will see more in the future, every kid loves bugs, right? I did when I was growing up. I do have a few shirts with bugs on them, my Beatle’s shirt and my spider shirt but that’s it.

Happy Halloween! Boo!

Halloween and the scary pests!

Halloween probably began as a Pagan celebration and originated from Celtic harvest festivals. Over the years, more and more people have added touches of the things that scare them, like cockroaches, roaches, bats and rats, snakes etc. I’ve seen candies that are shaped like all kinds of bugs to spiders. Which scare me to death, the spiders of course. So think about the costumes, parades and the tons of candy which the little Goblins are really looking.

The one thing I’m not real crazy about is those clowns. I’m not frightened by them they just creep me out, but no more than spiders freak me out. Tough exterminator putting on the front of a Professional, right?

Halloween

Halloween

What are the most dangerous pest in Arizona?

Dangerous?

I know that the title can be subjective, what is and can be hazardous? I think something that can bite or sting is right up there. It could be a dog, snake or bug or someone who is driving recklessly. But in my day to day it’s the bugs that can be the most dangerous. Let’s say you’re cleaning the garage, you put your hand into a box handle and something bites you. That is bad news cause it could be a Black Widow spider. I personally would rather be stung by a scorpion than bitten by a Black or Brown Widow. So wear gloves (IPM) and always protect yourself when gardening or moving stuff. That storage shed that you haven’t been in for 1+ years might hold a few bugs or pests including honeybees.

Scorpion dangerous

Scorpion dangerous?

 

Storage Firewood

Storage Firewood

The correct way to store firewood, keep it high and dry and away from the pests. This keeps the air circulation around the firewood and allows the firewood to dry and age correctly. At the same time it prevents pests from coming straight up the ground into the wood,. Still have to be careful and rodents and other critters may still be able to hide within the spaces of the wood. Be especially careful of Black Widow spiders, and always wear gloves when moving firewood. This simple device below is ideal, it keeps the firewood dry and off the ground, you can also put a tarp over it. I also like the cement pads. You may get other pests like wasps or spiders but as I mentioned use gloves and check things out before you begin to move the wood.

Bring in only what you need and don’t store it inside. I have seen Powder Post Beetles come out of the wood, stored in the winter inside when it became wood enough to let them think it was summer.

Storage Firewood 20151217_130254

I absolutely hate stories like this, don’t you?

Stories – Fact or Fiction?

Have you heard the stories? As many of you are aware I hate spiders, without any doubt the Brown recluse spider is right at the top of my list. I’m always the first to mention that is is very important to know your enemy, so even though they may not be in Arizona or Pennsylvania it is important to know that they may travel. “Venomous spiders close Pennsylvania elementary school” In Arizona we have a Brown spider, related to but isn’t the dread Brown Recluse. So just to reiterate, if your in the bug biz – know your enemy even if it doesn’t live in your area.

stories Photo by PPMA

Photo by PPMA

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