Bugs, bugs, bugs. They're everywhere, especially during spring and summer in Southern California. During the spring season, crickets, ants, bees, cockroaches, pincher bugs, silverfish and spiders start to emerge from their overwintering sites, seeking food, water, and shelter to reproduce and continue their life cycle. As the weather warms up and the days get longer in summer, these bugs become more active and reproduce more rapidly, leading to a larger population and they can be a real nuisance in our homes and gardens. But fear not, my bug-phobic friends, we've got you covered.
Why are there so many bugs in summer?
Simply put, summer is bug season. The warm and dry conditions create the perfect environment for these little critters to thrive. As they emerge from their winter slumber, their metabolisms ramp up, and they start reproducing at an alarming rate. But that doesn't mean we have to surrender our homes to them.
Let's break down each bug and how to keep them at bay
Cockroaches are the bane of many homeowners' existence. These scavengers love warm and moist environments, making kitchens and bathrooms their favorite hangout spots. To prevent them from infesting your home, make sure to keep things clean and dry. That means wiping down countertops, cleaning up crumbs, and fixing any leaks. You can also try setting out traps or using boric acid, a natural insecticide.
Ants are the ultimate picnic crashers. They're attracted to food and drink and, while they may not cause any direct harm to humans, they can contaminate your food and leave behind unsightly trails. So make sure to keep things clean and sealed. You can also try using natural repellents, like vinegar or cinnamon. If you do spot a trail of ants, try following it back to the source and sealing up any entry points.
Earwigs (also known as pincher bugs) have a bit of a bad reputation, but they're actually harmless. Despite their intimidating appearance, pincher bugs are not harmful to humans and primarily feed on decaying plant matter. They're attracted to warm and moist environments, so make sure to fix any leaks or standing water. You can also use diatomaceous earth or a natural repellent like neem oil to keep them at bay.
Spiders are often feared, but they're actually great at keeping other bug populations under control. They seek shelter in cool and dark areas, like basements and crawl spaces, so make sure to seal up any gaps or cracks. There are some spiders that are harmless to humans, such as the Daddy Long Legs spider and other ones that can be very dangerous, such as the black widow. So, if you do encounter a spider, try to appreciate their role in the ecosystem – from a safe distance, of course.
Silverfish are a type of wingless insect that can be found in Southern California during the summer months. They are attracted to damp and humid areas like bathrooms and basements, and they feed on paper and other materials. To prevent silverfish, make sure to keep your home dry and well-ventilated. You can also use dehumidifiers to reduce the humidity levels in your home and keep paper products stored in airtight containers.
Bees. Due to their higher activity levels and potential for stinging during the summer, bees can occasionally be viewed as pests. They can become a nuisance at outdoor events, picnics, or around swimming pools, where they may be attracted to food and sugary drinks. People with allergies or sensitivities may also be at risk since bees may construct their hives in undesirable places like walls or rooftops. With this said, it's vital to keep in mind that bees are critical for maintaining healthy ecosystems and they play a significant part in pollinating plants, therefore humane and environmentally friendly approaches should be employed to manage any potential concerns with bees over the summer. If you have a bee problem, don't attempt to handle it yourself, call a Residential Pest Control professional right away.
Last but not least, crickets. Crickets are attracted to light and can be heard chirping at night. While they are not dangerous to humans, their chirping can be a nuisance and they are known to eat through fabric and upholstery. To prevent crickets, make sure to keep your home and yard dry and free of debris. You can also use sticky traps to catch them.
So, what can you do to keep summer bugs at bay?
Now, prevention is all well and good, but what about when the bugs have already invaded? Fear not, my brave bug fighters, there are plenty of options.
Here are some tips on how to get rid of them:
- Identify the type of bug: It's important to correctly identify what type of bug it is in order to use the right method of extermination. Each bug has different behaviors and habits, and knowing these can make a huge difference in the success of your pest control efforts.
- Use traps and baits: Traps and baits are a great option for controlling bugs. They are easy to use and effective in getting rid of insects without the use of harsh chemicals.
- Seal off entry points: Bugs often enter homes through cracks, holes, and other entry points. By sealing these off, you can prevent future infestations.
- Clean regularly: Keeping a clean home is one of the best ways to prevent bugs from taking up residence. Vacuum regularly, wipe down surfaces, and take out the trash often.
- Call a Residential Pest Control professional: If you have tried DIY methods and are still struggling with a bug problem, it's time to call in the professionals. A residential pest control expert can accurately identify the type of bug, use safe and effective methods to eliminate them, and provide long-term prevention strategies to keep your home bug-free. AIPM assists all Southern California homeowners in the prevention and removal of summer bug infestations, for locations in Simi Valley, Santa Clarita, Oxnard, Sherman Oaks, Malibu, Woodland Hills, and beyond!
In conclusion, bugs are a fact of life during spring and summer in Southern California, but they don't have to take over your home. By staying clean, dry, and vigilant, and using preventive measures, you can keep these six common bugs at bay. Have in mind that, while DIY pest control methods can be effective for small infestations, it's important to call in a Residential Pest Control professional when things get out of hand. Bugs can pose health risks and cause damage to your home, so don't hesitate to seek help if you need it… And if all else fails, just remember – you're bigger than they are.