What you need to know about pests in Augusta, Georgia
Georgia is a beautiful state that is home to great weather, beautiful landscaping, and friendly people. Unfortunately, Georgia is also home to many different insects and other pests that thrive in our warm, humid climate. The best way to keep these pests from becoming an issue in your yard or home is to learn which are the most common, what they want, and how to deter them. At High Priority Pest Services, Inc., we have put together an easy-to-understand pest guide to help you understand more about our area's pests and how to keep them at bay.
Read through our pest guide and begin protecting your Augusta area property from unwanted pests.
Contrary to popular belief bed bugs can invade any home or business, so you need to protect your property from bed bugs. While bed bugs are commonly associated with filth, the truth is that filth or clutter doesn't attract bed bugs. They move into our homes and businesses by hitchhiking on people or our belongings. They like to live close to people because our blood is their preferred food source.
The most common places to come into contact with bed bugs are public places where many people are coming and going regularly. Airports, hotels, movie theaters, hospitals, and dormitories are often overrun with bed bugs. Once they enter our homes, identifying their presence is difficult. These insects are experts at hiding in dark crevices during the day. At night they emerge to bite through our skin and feed on our blood as we sleep. Knowing some of their most common hiding spots is important. Regularly inspecting bed bug hideouts is the best way to identify an infestation in its infancy. Bed bugs will congregate in the seams of mattresses, within upholstered furniture, under rugs, behind walls hangings and wall voids, and inside electrical outlets.
Use the following prevention tips to help keep hitchhiking bed bugs out of your Georgia home.
- Always inspect bags, luggage, and other personal belongings for bed bugs regularly.
- Keep your personal belongings up off the ground and away from other people's things when in public areas.
- Regularly vacuum your home and wash bedding to eliminate stray bed bugs. Use bed bug-proof encasements on mattresses and box springs.
- Take care when purchasing used mattresses or other secondhand items for your home where bed bugs may be hiding.
- If you suspect bed bugs are in your house, contact us for immediate help.
Many species of cockroaches live in warm, humid places, making Georgia a state with large numbers of them. Our yards and homes, provide them with ample shelter, access to multiple food sources, and the moisture they need to survive. The most common and problematic cockroaches in the Augusta area that invade our residential and commercial properties are the American cockroach, German cockroach, and smoky brown cockroach. Cockroaches are considered dangerous for several reasons:
- They are prolific breeders and quickly take over any place they decide to live.
- Cockroaches contaminate food, dishes, utensils, and food prep areas.
- They spread disease-causing pathogens and bacteria.
- Cockroaches trigger allergies and asthma attacks in people, especially young children.
Cockroaches are nocturnal creatures that hide during the day and emerge in the evening to feed. If you see cockroaches scurrying around during the day, there is a large infestation present. Though our warm weather allows cockroaches to live outside, they still regularly find a way into our homes and businesses. Their most common entry points include spaces around windows and doors, cracks in the foundation, drains, sewers, and openings around utilities entering our homes. The most common species to live year-round in our structures is the German cockroach. These small roaches move efficiently from place to place by hitchhiking and inside homes and other buildings through walls, ceilings, and under doors.
Use the following prevention tips to help keep cockroaches out of your Georgia home.
- Always inspect deliveries, boxes, bags, and secondhand items for cockroaches before bringing them into your house.
- Inspect the exterior of your home, sealing any openings leading inside.
- Place covers over vents and drains leading into your house.
- Keep roaches from foraging for food in trash cans, recycling bins, and compost bins by keeping lids on them.
- Regularly vacuum your home and keep kitchen and dining areas clean to remove their access to food.
- Eliminate a cockroach's access to water and humid living conditions by repairing leaky pipes, faucets, and poorly ventilated areas of your house.
Mosquitoes are those tiny flying insects that just won't leave us alone — swarming around us and ruining our time spent on our yards or other outdoor spaces. They live in heavy populations throughout Georgia as our humid, warm weather provides them with the perfect environment to thrive. Female mosquitoes lay their eggs on top of standing water, something that we have plenty of in Georgia! The more breeding sites you have on or near your property, the more mosquitoes there will be.
Mosquitoes are small flies identified by their gray or brownish bodies, six long skinny legs, and the buzzing sounds their wings create. Female mosquitoes feed on the blood of warm-blooded animals and people. They require blood meals to create viable eggs. When they bite people or animals to feed, they leave behind a red, itchy welt. During the feeding process, they become infected with diseases that cause serious health risks. Their ability to transmit diseases is why we label them as one of the world's most deadly creatures and why their presence in our Augusta yards should always be discouraged.
Use the following prevention tips to help stop mosquitoes from taking over your Georgia yard.
- Dump out containers that collect standing water.
- Fill in low-lying areas in your yard that collect rainwater.
- Mosquitoes love to hide in tall grass, overgrown vegetation, and under trees. Keep your property's grass and landscaping well maintained.
- Mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn. Do your best to avoid being outside during those two times of the day.
- Keep biting mosquitoes out of your home by keeping windows and doors closed as much as possible.
Spiders are predatory arachnids. Their diet consists of insects and other spiders. While their feeding habits are super helpful out in nature and play an intricate part of the ecosystem, we can all agree that they should not be a part of our households. Spiders are unwanted pests when living in our yards and definitely inside of our homes in large numbers. Not only are spiders a problem, but their presence can mean you have other problems you need to worry about. The presence of spiders typically means that large populations of insects are nearby. If spiders are in your home, it should alert you that there are entry points that will allow insects, other unwanted pests, and water to get inside and damage your house. Spiders themselves usually aren't dangerous; most spiders living in the U.S. have venom only potent enough to harm their insect prey, not people!
Homeowners regularly deal with spiders because our year-round warm weather allows many insects to thrive in Georgia, insects that spiders like to eat. The more insects there are, the more spiders there will also be. Spiders prefer to live outside, but when their prey moves indoors to escape harsh weather or search for food, spiders follow. Once inside, if there are dark, quiet places for them to take up residence, safe places to lay their eggs, and plenty of insects to hunt, they will make themselves at home. Things found in most of our yards that make it a place spiders and the insects they feed on want to be include trees, tall grass, landscaping, woodpiles, gardens, and outdoor lights. If you see a lot of spiders, spider webs, or insects on your property, call us at High Priority Pest Services, Inc. to help eliminate your home's pest problems through our comprehensive pest control services!
Use the following prevention tips to help keep spiders from taking over your Georgia home or yard.
- Seal up potential entry points in your house. Regularly look over your home's exterior and repair any defects.
- Lawn care is vital in keeping spiders at bay. Mow your lawn regularly, cut back overgrown vegetation, and remove yard debris.
- Regularly vacuum and dust your house to remove unwanted spiders and their webs.
- Get rid of standing water and repair leaking pipes and dripping air conditioners to remove water sources for spiders and other pests.
- Use dehumidifiers in your home to eliminate the dampness that attracts spiders and insects.
In Georgia, the most common termite species that we need to guard our properties against year-round is the subterranean termite. These pests are a huge concern in our area and live in large populations throughout the state; any structure they find their way into can become seriously damaged. The reason that subterranean termites are so destructive is because of their feeding habits. Subterranean termites consume cellulose found in wood and other organic materials. They have high moisture needs and prefer to feed on water-damaged or decaying wood. Any home these termites infest is generally dealing with moisture issues.
Subterranean termites are social insects that live together in a nest they build underground. These insects divide the members of their colony into three groups - workers, soldiers, and reproductives. The workers are tasked with tunneling through the interior of wood and wooden structures to gather food to bring back to the nest. Soldier termites defend the colony, and reproductive members are the kings and queens. Reproductive termites are winged and emerge from mature colonies to mate and find new nesting sites. Termites live in large populations throughout Georgia; therefore, guarding your home against these pests year-round is the best way to protect it and your bank account from the damage they cause.
Use the following prevention tips to help keep termites out of your Georgia home.
- Eliminate excess moisture by using air conditioners, dehumidifiers and ensuring your home has proper ventilation.
- Make sure gutters and drains are clear and work to direct water away from your home.
- Repair any damaged roof shingles, siding, wood trim, and weatherstripping.
- Leave a barrier between any mulch or soil and your foundation.
- Limit wood to soil contact on your property that will enable termites to move into the wooden structures on your property.
Ticks are small arachnids that solely feed on the blood of animals and people for survival. They have a four-stage life cycle (egg, larvae, nymph, adult) and require a blood meal from a new host at each life stage. Ticks don't fly or jump to find a host; they like to crawl to the top of blades of grass or other vegetation. When an animal or person brushes past them, they will crawl onto them and use their specialized mouthparts to bite through their skin, attach themselves, and begin feeding. They are slow feeders, and their feeding process takes several days. Once full, they fall off their host to the ground, develop into their new life stage, and then begin the search for a new host.
Keeping ticks out of our Georgia yards is difficult; wild animals like rodents, raccoons, skunks, and deer constantly introduce these external parasites as they pass through our yards. Ticks not on a host survive best in damp, dark areas, leaf piles, woodpiles, and under mulch or soil found under shrubs or decks. In addition to their ability to bite us, ticks are unwanted in our yards because they spread diseases that make people ill during their feeding process. Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and ehrlichiosis are examples of the many pathogens and bacteria these blood-feeding pests spread. Keeping ticks and the wild animals that spread them from getting too comfortable in our Georgia yards is important to the health and safety of our families and pets.
Use the following prevention tips to help stop ticks from taking over your Georgia yard.
- Keep your grass cut short.
- Cut tall grassy areas or wooded areas back from the perimeter of your property.
- When using walking trails in wooded areas, make sure to stay in the center of the path.
- Remove bird feeders, keep lids on trash cans, and regularly harvest vegetables from gardens to keep hungry wild animals away from your yard.
- Remove yard litter like leaf piles and woodpiles from your yard that ticks can use as hiding spots.
Protect your residential or commercial property against pests with the help of our locally owned and operated company. We take a proactive approach to pest control. Our professionals are committed to our customers and provide effective services while prioritizing your family's health, safety, and the environment. To discover the benefits of choosing us for your pest control needs, reach out to High Priority Pest Services, Inc. today.