ABC Blog

What Eats Roaches? Evaluating Natural Control Methods

What eats roaches

Most homeowners see roaches from time to time, particularly during the warmer months of the year. Cockroaches have been on Earth over 300 million years, so they have proven to be incredibly resilient creatures. When they find their way inside your home, roaches can be particularly difficult to evict, which is one reason they are among the most hated common household pests.

Just when you feel like giving up on the battle against roaches, you may notice that Fluffy and Fido perk up when they spy a roach scurrying across the floor. The unsuspecting roach may get batted around by your cat or hunted down by your dog. This may lead you to wonder what eats roaches and whether a more “natural” roach control alternative is right under your nose.

In this post, we’ll examine all of the common questions homeowners have around what types of animals eat roaches to determine whether … Read Full Post »

Digger Wasp: Beneficial Or Dangerous?

digger wasp

Bugs and pests are typically considered a nuisance when they make their presence known inside or around your home. Unlike most other insects, though, the digger wasp is actually one to embrace, possibly even invite, into your backyard.

Not convinced? It’s the truth: The digger wasp feeds on other insects and pests that are harmful to the growth of a healthy lawn. And as such, this wasp can actually rid your lawn of other unwanted pests. These insects also help your lawn’s ability to soak water into the ground, aerate the soil and pollinate flowers in your backyard.

There are many subspecies of digger wasps. Despite the differences amongst species, these creatures have one thing in common: the females dig into dry dirt when it’s time to create a nest for their offspring. To make this job easier, all female digger wasps have rigid front legs, which they use to … Read Full Post »

Tiny Roaches: Are They Babies Or A Big Problem?

Tiny roaches

If you’ve never come face to face, or face to toe, with a cockroach before, consider yourself lucky. These insects are one of the most common household pests. If you haven’t found one inside your home yet, chances are that you will eventually come across one sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, it’s not just one type of cockroach you can encounter. There are a variety of species to look out for that come in different sizes and colors, too.

Take tiny roaches, for example. Both smaller in size and different in color, these cockroaches can puzzle even the most savvy homeowner. If you want to learn more about these small creatures that can cause a big disruption in your household, keep reading for information about types of roaches, what baby roaches look like what to do when you run across these creatures in your home, and most importantly, how to get … Read Full Post »

How To Get Rid Of Cockroaches: Advice For Homeowners

How To Get Rid Of Cockroaches

The vast majority of homeowners have come across a cockroach in their home. That’s because these critters are among the most common pests in homes, schools and businesses. There are around 3,500 species of cockroaches globally, but only 55 species are known to live in the United States. Fear not, though. If you are wondering how to get rid of cockroaches, you have a number of options. But before we dive into the details of how to remove these common pests, let’s go over a few characteristics that set this critter apart from the other creatures possibly inhabiting your home.

As you’ve probably noticed before, cockroaches have flattened bodies and heads that are concealed by a plate-like structure called a pronotum. Cockroaches have elongated, spiny legs that move incredibly fast—as we all know from attempting to squish one—and equally long antennae that help them find food and move around in the … Read Full Post »

When To Start Mowing Lawn And Proper Mowing Techniques

When to start mowing lawn

The end of winter means one thing for many of us in the Southern states: the brutal heat of summer isn’t far away. To look on the bright side, everything comes to life again during the springtime. Insects and other animals emerge from their winter hiding spots and plants and flowers begin to bloom once more.

Just like all other living things in your backyard, your grass will also begin to grow. While your initial inclination might be to get out the lawnmower on the first day of sunshine and warmth, knowing how and when to start mowing your lawn will be the first step in giving your grass the care it needs to survive our dry and hot summers.

In this post, we’ll dive into the dos and don’ts of mowing your grass, including how to properly cut and care for your lawn after the winter months up until your the … Read Full Post »

Benefits Of Mulching For Your Landscape

Benefits of mulching

There are all kinds of gardens in the world, and the most gorgeous ones might have many unique features—native plants that vary from region to region, for example, or a particular gardener’s own artistic stamp on the landscape design. But nearly all the world’s most lush and beautiful gardens have something in common: They use mulch to help keep undesirable weeds away and keep plants, flowers, trees and vegetables thriving. This is because every good gardener knows the benefits of mulching.

Mulch isn’t very complicated or mysterious. At its base, mulch is nothing more than a material, usually something opaque, that is applied over the soil in a garden in order to produce healthier and lower-maintenance plants. Sounds simple, right? Yet the benefits of mulching are many, and they apply to nearly all types of plants and gardens. Whether you’re mulching a flower bed or vegetable garden, applying mulch around trees … Read Full Post »

Do Water Bugs Bite? Taking The Sting Out of Your Next Outing

Do water bugs bite

Imagine that you are taking your dog for a quick swim in the creek in the greenbelt in your neighborhood. By anyone’s standards, not a particularly dangerous activity. It’s the end of August, a great time for both of you to cool off from the oppressive heat.

You decide you might as well take off your shoes and dip your toes into the cool water. 

Then it happens. One minute you were laughing and your pup was splashing around, and the next minute, you suddenly feel an intense pain in your toe, causing you to scream.

You look down, expecting to see a snake. Instead, you see a frighteningly huge bug swimming away. Was that a giant cockroach or beetle? You may even have a simpler question: do water bugs bite?

Immediately you pull on your dog’s leash and limp out of the water as you begin to feel the pain shooting up your … Read Full Post »

Are Water Snakes in Texas Poisonous?

water snakes in Texas

Seeing a snake in the water, especially when you’re swimming, can be one of the scariest experiences a water-loving Texan can have. Your first reaction is probably that these slithery creatures swim faster than you and can catch you if they want to. If you live near a body of water or have a pool or water feature, you may also wonder what the possibility is that a snake could make its way onto your property, or even worse, inside your home.

Snakes play an important role in our ecosystem. That said, water snakes are considered to be aggressive, so they can strike when approached, even if you don’t realize they are nearby. Knowing more about the different types of water snakes in Texas and what does (and doesn’t attract them) can give you peace of mind and help protect your family from the risk of being bitten. Better understanding what … Read Full Post »

Which Salt Tolerant Plants Will Work In My Yard?

salt tolerant plants

Living along the coast certainly has its advantages: access to the beach every day, coastal breezes, mild temperatures, fresh seafood and pretty views.

However, gardening in these environments can present a challenge. While saltwater has its benefits, most plants and flowers don’t like it. Salinity in the soil inhibits a plant’s ability to absorb important nutrients, thereby disrupting the plant’s metabolism.

Finding salt tolerant plants to for your lawn can be a challenge. In many cases, you can select salt tolerant varieties of ceratin plants which can do well in coastal climates. The salt tolerance of plants is determined by a variety of factors, including a plant’s ability to grow under and resist high winds, salt spray, alkaline soils and infertile, sandy soils.

When choosing plants that will be placed facing the ocean without buildings to protect them, you should choose highly salt tolerant plants. If the plants are protected … Read Full Post »

Beach Bugs That Bite: Protecting Yourself From These Pests

Beach bugs that bite

You’ve waited for that perfect beach vacation to come. You packed your swimsuit, beach towels and have the perfect day planned. But, once you get set up in the sand, you start feeling little bites on your legs. You look down and can’t see anything. You have no idea what bit you. These beach bugs that bite can be called a variety of things: sand fleas, sea lice, sandflies and no see ums, just to name a few possible culprits.

In this post, we’ll explore what kind of critters dwell in the sand and which ones might nibble on us, how long sand flea bites last, the difference between sand flea bites and bed bug bites and answer the common question, “What are no see ums?”

Sand Dwellers

There are a number of creatures that live in beach sand, most of which don’t bite humans. These sand dwellers include several species of … Read Full Post »