ABC Blog

Florida Carpenter Ants: Controlling An Infestation

Florida carpenter ant on damaged wood

You’ve found what looks like tiny sawdust piles along your baseboards or in your attic crawl space. Then, you spot an ant. After hearing horror stories about the damage these ants can do, you begin to worry that you may have a carpenter ant problem. First, you’ll need to confirm that what you have is actually a Florida carpenter ant and not something else.

Florida carpenter ants have a brown to rusty orange-colored head and thorax with the bottom half of their bodies being black. This ant grows a circular ring of golden hairs around its abdomen. Antennae are bullet-shaped and segmented into 12 parts. Workers measure in at about a quarter of an inch to a half of an inch in length, while winged swarmers and the queen can reach up to three-quarters of an inch long.

If the ants you have seen on your property fit this description, you’ll need … Read Full Post »

Are Termites Harmful To Humans? Your Questions Answered

Are termites harmful to humans

Yes, termites are harmful to humans, but perhaps not in the way you might immediately think. These creatures aren’t often responsible for serious physical harm, as they do not pose the same health risks as many other insect and animal pests that can bite or sting you or transmit disease. However, the destructive impact of termites on the structure of a home makes these pests extremely dangerous.

Only in rare cases have soldier termites bitten people while defending their colonies. While in the most severe infestation scenarios, occupants can experience contact dermatitis, asthma attacks and lung irritation, these instances of direct ill effects are relatively rare. However, left untreated, this insect can completely break down all the wooden structures in a wood-built house (including the furniture) within three years. Within five years, termites can render a home unfit for human habitation and cause it to be condemned. In short, termites are … Read Full Post »

What To Put In A Mouse Trap To Attract Rodents

What To Put In A Mouse Trap

Finding a mouse in the home—or, even worse, more than one—sends most people into a frenzy of worrying about whether or not there’s an actual infestation. You may be pacing around your home wondering what to put in a mouse trap and where to place these devices, because no matter how small and cute they may seem on TV and in pictures, mice definitely are pests.

When thinking of what to put in your mouse trap, your mind might instantly go to cheese. In reality, a mouse’s favorite things to snack on are fruits, nuts, seeds and other sweet foods, so these will be your best bet when baiting a trap. However, mice also eat anywhere from 15 to 20 times a day, so if they are hungry, they will eat whatever they can get their paws on. In desperate times, they will even eat each other!

If you have reached your wit’s … Read Full Post »

Do Possums Eat Cats? Your Questions Answered

Do possums eat cats

You’re a bit concerned when you hear your cat hiss loudly at something. You assume it’s just your neighbor’s cat that’s causing that kind of reaction, but when you look outside, you see a possum wandering around your property. Now, your feelings of apprehension suddenly escalate. You know these animals can become a nuisance as they overturn trash cans and get into birdseed containers in search of food. However, you don’t know what exactly possums consider tasty. Do possums eat cats? Most importantly, should you keep your fur baby locked inside until the possum is gone?

Fortunately, possums are not out looking for your cat when they scrounge for food. While possums (technically opossums, but more commonly referred to by their shortened name) are omnivores and could theoretically kill and eat a housecat or dog, these common backyard visitors are more focused on easier prey. In fact, the scent of cats … Read Full Post »

What Do Baby Bed Bugs Look Like?

What Do Baby Bed Bugs Look Like

The emotional toll of a bed bug infestation can be significant, in part because these tiny pests are so difficult to eradicate. For one thing, they hide in discreet locations, making them almost impossible to find. If you are currently dealing with bed bugs in your home, you’re probably wondering, what do baby bed bugs look like? Do they bite? And, perhaps most importantly, how can I get rid of these pests?

Baby bed bugs, which are also called nymphs, are actually similar in appearance to their adult counterparts, except for some key differences—mainly their size and their color. After hatching from tiny white eggs that are so small that they are difficult to see with the naked eye, bed bugs go through five stages before reaching adulthood.

First-stage nymphs are tiny (less than 1/16″)  and a pale, yellowish-white color. After feeding, baby bed bugs’ abdomens turn red due to the blood … Read Full Post »

What Is Digging Up My Lawn At Night And How Do I Stop It?

what is digging up my lawn at night

Plenty of homeowners have experienced the unpleasant shock of discovering unsightly holes, torn-up turf and piles of dirt scattered around the yard that seemed to appear while they were sleeping. If this has happened to you, you probably immediately wondered what is digging up your lawn at night.

Raccoons and skunks are two common grub-eating nocturnal culprits for digging in yards. Skunks tend to make shallow holes with loosened soil, while raccoons can actually use their front paws to pull up chunks of sod and flip them over to find whatever delicious food might lie beneath. Rabbits are burrowing animals that have also been known to dig holes in yards, and they have a better chance of doing so undetected at night. In addition, there are other animals that are active during the day, including squirrels, that might damage your lawn, and you may not discover the problem until the following … Read Full Post »

Do Squirrels Eat Mice? How To Stop An Infestation

Do Squirrels Eat Mice

There are holes in the food boxes in your pantry. You hear scratching in the walls throughout the night. You’re in denial until one night you see it—a mouse. Horrified, you start to wonder about how you can keep these creatures away. Are there any creatures around your property that eat mice? For example, do squirrels eat mice?

While a squirrel will eat a mouse, it would prefer not to. Like all other animals, squirrels require protein, carbs and fat in their diet. While they would prefer to get these nutrients from nuts, leaves, mushrooms, roots, seeds and insects, they’ll eat from a larger menu when the going gets tough. So, if the squirrel on your property is faced with starving to death or eating the mice in your attic, they’ll decide on the latter.

What this means for you is that squirrels are not going to be an effective method of … Read Full Post »

Florida Centipedes: How To Control And Prevent An Infestation

Florida centipedes

If you had to make a list of the creepiest of creepy-crawlies you’d rather not have in your home, Florida centipedes would probably be near the top. Who wants a pest with all those legs showing up inside?

Centipedes do more than freak Floridians out in the middle of the night. These creatures bite, which can be pretty painful, due to the toxins they release. You won’t get sick from a centipede bite, and they are certainly not fatal, but victims will tell you a close encounter is still quite unpleasant.

To make matters worse, these arthropods lay dozens of eggs at a time, which can easily turn into a horrifying centipede infestation in your home. To add insult to injury, a pest control expert will tell you that when centipedes show up inside your house, it’s likely that other pests are also present.

Why is that?

Centipedes are situated right in the middle … Read Full Post »

Possum Out During The Day: Is It Rabid?

Possum During The Day

It can be somewhat shocking to look outside and notice a possum out during the day. The first question that probably pops into your mind is: “Is it rabid?” After all, many of us have heard that raccoons that are active during daylight hours are more likely to have rabies, so it would make sense for the same logic to apply to a possum, another nocturnal animal. Right?

The truth is, while rabies might cause normally nocturnal animals like raccoons and skunks to behave in strange ways, including venturing out during daylight hours, possums aren’t actually likely to contract rabies. Furthermore, possums (as well as raccoons and skunks) can be active during the day even when they are perfectly healthy. For example, it’s possible that a smaller possum out during the day is immature and has been separated from its mother or even orphaned. Or, a larger adult possum venturing out … Read Full Post »

Do Mice Eat Roaches? Your Questions Answered

Do mice eat roaches

After checking your sticky traps for roaches, you may have noticed an odd phenomenon—roach legs are stuck on the trap, but the body is nowhere to be found. You don’t have any pets who could’ve eaten the pest, so maybe you have another creature in your home. This begs the question: Do mice eat roaches?

If you have ever wondered this, you aren’t alone, as homeowners who either experience this same phenomenon or those who spot these uninvited critters around their homes, garages or other areas of their property have asked themselves the same thing. After all, if mice feed on roaches, having mice around might not be all that bad.

The simple answer to the question of whether mice eat roaches is yes. A typical mouse diet can include cockroaches, both German and American varieties. Rats also happily dine on various species of cockroach, both large and small. Mice have even … Read Full Post »