St Louis Pest Control Blog

Where Do MOLES Go When It Gets Cold

Where do moles go when it gets cold outside? In the St. Louis region, no where, they just go where the cold isn’t.  And since they live below the surface of your yard, they can only go one direction, down.  This is very easy for moles to do since they already have main (permanent) tunnels located deep below the surface. That is how they can easy pop up in different parts of your yard without making any surface damage from one spot to another.

 

As it gets colder, insects that they feed on also tend to dig down deeper, somewhere below the frost line. And since moles stay active all winter long, they need to go where the food is.

The colder weather also makes it harder for you to control mole activity.  Since the insects are moving downward, moles will not find as many insects as they would like, so they tend not to return to a newly dug feeder run in your yard like they would during warmer months. This doesn’t mean you can’t get them, it just means you need to have more patience.

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

Going To A Pumpkin Farm? Don’t Blindly Reach Into The Container Of Pumpkins ….

OK,  before you continue to read this blog, let me just say the odds of what I’m about to tell you is low, but none the less, it is true and has happened to someone in the past.  As most people know, St. Louis pumpkins are harvested before the Halloween season approaches and are stored somewhere on the farm in a container of some type.  Well, this allows things (things that crawl or slither) to find their way into these boxes for shelter.

Yes, you probably get were I’m going with this, but it’s true.  People have found all types of snakes (mostly Black Rat snakes), all kinds of spiders (even Brown Recluse) and a variety of insects (too many to be specific) inside these stored containers.  So, before you start to blindly reach into the container of pumpkins to find that perfect one, take a look where your hands are going to touching.  You might just be surprised what is looking up at you.  Happy Halloween.

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

How Can I Tell if I Have A Brown Recluse Spider in My Home?

Brown recluse spiders are one of the few venomous species of spider found in the United States. Though the spiders are not aggressive and their bites are rarely deadly, their venom can cause pain, disfiguring ulcers, and multiple unpleasant symptoms and complications, including necrosis and gangrene in some severe cases. The brown recluse spider is found in the Midwestern and south-east parts of America, and is common in St. Louis, where spider removal is a necessary part of home ownership. If you think you may have an infestation of this dangerous spider that could require pest control, here are some ways to identify this venomous species.

The brown recluse spider has several unique and unusual characteristics that make them easier for a non-expert to identify. Like their name suggests, brown recluses are shy, and like to live in secluded, dry places that don’t get disturbed very often. This makes them a potential hazard in closets, attics, guest room, or any little-used space that mimics the natural habitat they seek in the wild. Because they are often hidden, or in hard to reach places, these spiders often require expert pest control in cases of infestation. Brown recluses are hunting spiders, which means that they primarily catch insect prey outside of their webs. As a result, they are not great web weavers, and rather than the signature hexagonal shape, their webs are scrappy, with no clearly defined construction. They are nocturnal and mostly come out at night to hunt; brown recluses also feed on dead insects that they find.

If it is safe to get close enough to see, brown recluses also have a number of physical features that make them easily recognizable. Unlike many spiders, who have eight eyes, brown recluses have six, arranged in three pairs. Brown recluses come in colors anywhere from pale tan to dark gray-brown, but all of them have a distinctive fiddle shaped mark on their backs, with the neck of the ‘fiddle’ pointing towards their rear, giving them the common name of fiddleback or violin spider. They have long slender legs, generally long enough to encircle the area of a large coin.

Though the bite of a brown recluse spider is venomous, there is no reason for this spider to cause you worry. Infestations can often be hard to remove on your own, especially if the spider nests contain egg sacs or baby spiders. Fortunately, Blue Chip Pest Control offers expert spider removal for brown recluse spider infestations to Chesterfield and the surrounding areas. Hiring experienced spider removal experts ensures that the entire infestation will be permanently and effectively dealt with, without exposing you or your family to the potential of life-threatening bites. Though a homeowners pest control resources are often limited to a can of bug spray and a vacuum, spider removal technicians have access to a variety of pest control techniques that not only safely remove harmful spiders, but also prevent them from coming back.

Stinging Insects: The Pests of Summer

It’s summer and that means that stinging insects are out in full force. Bees, wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets are the uninvited guests in many backyards and pools. With more and more people becoming seriously allergic to the stings of honeybees, and because stinging insects are a nuisance in general, Blue Chip Pest Control gets many calls during the summer months to eradicate nests in the St. Louis area.
Here are some steps that you can take to be sure that you aren’t attracting stinging insects and inviting them to set up shop at your work or your residence.
Hornets: Hornets are especially aggressive, delivering sting after sting, and they build large, football-shaped nests on the sides of buildings and in trees. They live in colonies that number from several hundred hornets to several thousand!

  • During the fall, fill holes that are in your backyard to prevent ground-nesting wasps from using that space as a breeding ground.
  •  Inspect playset corners, the ceilings of porches, and the corners of patio-swing frames to see if any nests are forming. If they are, you can suck up a small nest with a vacuum cleaner and then leave it running for a while so that the hornets are destroyed by the heat.
  • If a nest is larger, do not attempt to remove the nest yourself! You’ll need special protective gear—hornets are very aggressive and will harm anyone who is standing nearby when they sense danger and leave their nest.

Wasps: Paper wasps can be aggressive if they feel an invader is near. Wasps often gain entry into your home by setting up shop in your chimney, attic, or eaves and then hibernating through the winter. When the weather becomes warmer, they can accidentally make their way into your house instead of flying back outdoors.

  •  While stragglers can usually be sucked into a vacuum cleaner or killed with a fly swatter, larger clusters will need a pest-control strategy.
  • Spraying eaves with insecticide in mid-spring, or calling a pest control company to kill hibernating wasps in the fall will help to keep this insect’s population down.
    Yellow Jackets: Yellow jackets, sometimes confused with honeybees because of similar markings, can be aggressive if their nests are in danger. Their nests are usually in dead logs that are lying on the ground or in tree stumps.
  • If you have tree stumps that are in your yard or in the general area, try to remove them. It’s a perfect nesting area.
  •  Yellow jackets will also scavenge for food, so try not to leave food outside, or cover it if you’re having a picnic.
  •  These insects will circle around garbage areas, so cover your garbage and keep it a good distance away from your house and any doorways that would invite yellow jackets in.
    Honeybees: These insects aren’t as aggressive as some other stinging bugs, but they will still attack you if they or their colony is threatened. While bees are important insects, pollinating thousands of different plants and trees, they can cause anaphylactic shock in some people.

You can prevent nests from being built near your home or business by:

  •  making sure that they can’t enter cracks in your home’s foundation
  •  filling holes in structures that would make a good hive and filling in holes in the ground
  •  putting screening over attic vents, covering pools when they’ve not being used, and inspecting your yard or surroundings often to see if you can spot any hives. If you do, call a reputable pest control company right away before the hive becomes established.

Blue Chip Pest Control in St. Louis can remove any stinging insect nests that are in or near your home or business. We’re experienced and we have the right equipment and protective gear. Also, Blue Chip provides preventative maintenance to keep these insects away—for good. Call us today!

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