St Louis Pest Control Blog

How Do I Get Rid Of Silverfish?

 

Silverfish can be difficult to get rid of because of the areas that they spend most of their time in.  They love hot and humid conditions and if you think of where in your home may be the hottest, it’s your attic. All attic spaces allow outside air to flow freely to circulate the trapped air out of the attic.  This circulation of outside air also brings in humidity, and anyone who lives in St. Louis, we all know how hot and humid the summers here can be. That’s why in the St. Louis area most silverfish problems are found on the uppermost floor of a house.

Silverfish typically will crawl out of ceiling exhaust vents in bathrooms or any light fixtures on the top floor.  Most people generally find them after they have crawled down or fallen from the ceiling.  Once inside the living space of a home they can damage items when they feed.  They eat glue behind wallpaper, book bindings or pages, cotton clothing or anything else that might be made of protiens or carbohydrates.

The best way to treat for Silverfish is using a dust formulated insecticide.  Even though hiring a professional company may be the best way to treat a D.I.Y.’er can tackle the job given the right equipment.  If you prefer to D.I.Y., a hand duster bulb will be very important piece of equipment to have.  The duster bulb will allow you to apply small amounts of dust in areas that the silverfish rests.  Since Silverfish become most active in the dark they will find cracks and crevices to in hide during the day.  The hand duster can also be used to blow a higher volume of dust into the attic also long as you do not use this space to store personal belongings. This works by dusting the top layer of insulation so that an insect will come into contact with it while moving around. The dust will hold it’s killing properties for about year.

At, Blue Chip Pest Services, we have service designed for this insect as well as other insects (wasps, brown recluse spiders and mites) that can thrive in an attic environment.  Blue Chip uses a machine called a power duster that is similar to a vacuum, but  that has motor working in reverse.  The power duster will force out enough dust to fill the largest of attic spaces while energizing the particles so that they will cling to all surfaces.  This will greatly increase the opportunity for any insect to come into contact with the insecticide.

Please call us if you have any questions or concerns regarding these pests at 636-343-7900 or go to bluechipexterminating.com for more information regarding our service options.

Cicadas – Why do some people have them and some don’t?

The answer to this question may be easier than you think.  It really comes down to where you live.  If you live in a newer subdivision (less than12 years old) there is a good chance you will have less cicada activity then an area like Kirkwood/Webster Groves, where they have very old trees with lots of root systems.  The reason is simple, the immature stage of the cicada  lives below ground feeding on the sap of tree roots.  If your subdivision is new, the developer would have cleared a lot of the old trees (and their root systems) away thus removing any immature cicadas with them.  If your take away the food supply, naturally the  immature stages would die and the emergence this year would be poor to none at all.

Now, just because you didn’t have much activity this year, things will probably change when the next 13 year cycle comes back in 2024.  As all new subdivisions have planted new trees there is now a food source in place for the next cycle of cicadas to live in and around your yard quietly feeding waiting for their time to emerge.

Can you do anything to prevent them from infesting your root systems?  Unfortunately, there is nothing anyone can do.  The cicadas will burrow far enough down in the soil that any topical grub granular material that is spread out and water in will not penetrate deep enough to achieve total elimination. But at least they are otherwise harmless and we don’t have to put up with problem on a yearly basis!

Please call us if you have any questions or concerns regarding these pests at 636-343-7900 or go to bluechipexterminating.com for more information regarding our service options.

Cicada Killers – That Is One Big Wasp

Have you ever seen a Cicada Killer wasp before?  You’d remember if you had.  They are the largest wasp, bee or hornet in Missouri.  Although large and intimidating, this wasp is fairly docile and considered to be beneficial.  Cicada Killers prey apon some of the larger insects that with have in St. Louis.  As you can probably tell by it’s name,  their favorite target is the Cicada.

Why do Cicada Killers prey apon Cicadas and other similar sized insects? Because Cicada Killers catch large prey and paralyze them with their stinger in order to have a meal for their young.  After they have successfully paralyzed the insect, they pick it up and fly it or sometimes drag to a burrow that has already been previously dug out.  They then take the paralyzed insect into the borrow and bury it after placing a single egg on it so that when the egg hatches the larva will have meal.

 

The newly hatch Cicada Killer larva will live under ground until the following year when it will pupate into an adult and start the whole cycle over again.  As an adult, the Cicada Killer will live until early fall and then die.  It is up to the next generation to continue the cycle the following year.

The best way to avoid having a Cicada Killer problem in your yard starts with having a healthly lawn.  Cicada Killers prefer to burrow in areas of bare grass or in patchy areas.  Therefore, a thick and healthly turf will help keep your yard less attractive to this wasp.

If you do get them burrowing into your yard, there are ways to control them.  The easiest way would be to dust each hole with an insecticide.  Delta Dust would be perfect for this job.  It can be used in dry or wet condition and still effectively take care of the problem.  When using Delta Dust, I would recommend using a hand duster as it will allow you to flow the dust easier and more effectively into the burrow.

If you happen to have a large population of Cicada Killers, a professional pest control service is probably warranted.  At Blue Chip, we can treat the area with a misting  backpack sprayer that will spray directly onto the wasps as well as the ground area that they are actively burrowing to help deter new activity. Though unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee that a new batch of Cicada Killers will never come back.

Please call us if you have any questions or concerns regarding these pests at 636-343-7900 or go to bluechipexterminating.com for more information regarding our service options.

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