It’s summer in southern California and the heat is on. This is the time of year we throw our windows and doors open to catch that cool California breeze before we resort to the AC. But leaving doors and windows open can be an invitation for summer pests to walk in. But open entryways aren’t the only places pests can get into your home. Here we will discuss common pests in Southern California and how you can help prevent them from getting into your home
Mosquitoes are the most annoying pests to encounter in the summer. Luckily, here in southern California, we don’t have them nearly as bad as in other parts of the country. This is due in part to our dry climate. Mosquitoes need water to breed and without it, they cannot reproduce. Keep this in mind next time you walk around your yard. Here are some tips on mosquito control that you can do yourself to reduce the chances of getting bitten this summer.
Eliminate Standing Water
One of the best ways to control mosquitoes is by eliminating standing water. Standing water is crucial to the lifecycle of a mosquito. Females deposit eggs in stagnant pools that can form in anything around your yard, such as:
- flower pots
- old tires
- rain barrels
Invite Mosquito Eating Predators To Your Yard
A lot of different species depend on mosquitoes as part of their diet. If you want to curb the mosquito population in your yard and help the environment at the same time, try encouraging natural predators to move into your yard. The most common mosquito hunters are:
- Barn Swallows
- Purple Martins
- Mosquito fish
Use Larvicide In Standing Water
For those that have a water feature that has become a breeding ground for mosquitoes, you can try larvicide pellets. Larvicide pellets are placed in water features and slowly dissolve over time and can prevent mosquito larvae from reaching adulthood for up to a month.
Bees and Wasps
While we love bees, sometimes they can build their nests in areas that are not safe for them or humans. Honey bees are usually harmless unless you try to disturb their nest. They feed on plant nectar and only sting in self-defense which kills them.
Wasps, on the other hand, are an aggressive species that feed on small insects, including bees, and nectar. Contrary to popular belief, wasps do not die when they sting. Wasps hunt with their stingers and when threatened, they can sting multiple times. Yellow jackets are a type of wasp that is notorious for their aggression and multiple stings.
Common Places To Find Wasp Nests
- Under eaves
- Under roof soffits
- Between fascia boards
- In sheds
- Under decks
- Lawn furniture
If you are experiencing trouble with bees or wasps in your yard, don’t put yourself at risk. Call a professional pest control specialist to remove or eliminate the problem.
Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks are both small blood-sucking insects with slight differences.
Fleas live in shady areas of your yard such as under trees, decks, and bushes. Coincidentally, these areas are often frequented by pets. Fleas prefer the blood of animals over humans so when they are in your home it’s a safe bet that your pet brought them in. According to the CDC, fleas can cause health issues such as:
- Cat Scratch Disease
- Murine Typhus
Ticks are small black or reddish-brown insects that feed on the blood of mammals. Unlike fleas, ticks will feed on human blood. Common ticks in our area include the American dog tick, lone star tick, and deer tick. Ticks are known to transmit diseases such as Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
How To Prevent Fleas And Ticks
Flea & tick control begins by identifying and targeting problem areas of your yard. Although they are small, there are some things you can do to reduce the likelihood of fleas and ticks getting into your home.
Cut Your Grass
Fleas and ticks thrive in tall grass where they wait on the long blades of grass until an animal or unfortunate human brushes by. Keeping your yard tame and mowed will help discourage fleas and ticks.
Put Up a Fence
Keep pets out of areas where there is a high risk of fleas and ticks. Consider putting a fence around the edges of your property to keep pets away. If you have a deck or porch, make sure your pets cannot get under them.
Apply Cedar Mulch
Cedar mulch is a known deterrent for fleas. Apply generously around gardens, trees, and the foundation of your home.
Contact A Professional Pest Control Service
Use these tips to help you keep pests away from your yard this summer. If you are having trouble with annoying pests and want a quick solution, call the pest control experts at O’Connor Pest Control today to learn more about eliminating pests from your home and garden.