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Know Your Pest

AMERICAN COCKROACH

APPEARANCE: American cockroaches are reddish brown with yellow margin on the body behind the head.

SIZE: Considered as the largest specie among all the cockroaches. Adults can grow up to (4 centimeters) 1 ½ inches long.

BEHAVIOR: They can travel hastily. This cockroach likes to stay in warm and damp areas.

REPRODUCTION: Approximately 5 to 18 egg capsules are produced per female, each containing 19 eggs and require 3 to 9 months to complete the reproductive cycle.

GERMAN COCKROACH

APPEARANCE: Its color is light brown to tan and has 2 dark parallel longitudinal stripes on its thorax behind the head.

SIZE: The adult German cockroach grows for about 1/2-5/8 inch long.

BEHAVIOR: German cockroaches are the most common indoor roaches. They like to stay in warm and humid places. They often cluster together in favorable hiding areas such as the creaks in the cupboards, under the drawers, kitchen sinks and similar locations.

REPRODUCTION: On the average, the female can produce about 4-8 egg capsules and carries it until it is within 1-2 days of hatching, and then deposits it in a sheltered area.

ORIENTAL COCKROACH

APPEARANCE: Oriental cockroaches are dark brown, almost black in color. They have oval shaped bodies and the male has fully developed wings shorter than its body while the female has none.

SIZE: 1 and ¼ inch long.

BHAVIOR: They are considered as the dirtiest among all the cockroaches and can produce strong smell. Because they prefer damp places, they are often called as water bugs.

REPRODUCTION: A female deposits an average of eight egg cases during its lifetime; each capsule produces about 16 young. It takes 300 to 800 days, depending on conditions, for Oriental cockroaches to hatch from eggs and develop into adults.

DEER MICE

APPEARANCE: Deer mice are small, has bulging eyes, big ears and their fur resembles the color of a deer.

SIZE: They are about 7 inches long including the tail.

BEHAVIOR: Deer mice are nocturnal and very energy efficient. They are the primary carriers of hanta-virus that is very dangerous to human health.

REPRODUCTION: They often breed during spring and early fall. Females can have up to four litters per year with an average of three to six young per litter.

HOUSE MOUSE

APPEARANCE: House mice are usually gray or brown rodents with large eyes.

SIZE: 5 ½ to 7 ½ inches long including the 2-3 inches tail.

BEHAVIOR: Mice have good senses with the exception of sight; they cannot see clearly beyond 6 inches. Mice are nibblers and eat only small amounts of food at any one time. They will feed on almost anything, but generally prefer cereal based foods such as grass and canary seed.

REPRODUCTION: House mice are able to breed throughout the year, producing between 5 and 10 litters each of about 4-8 young.

NORWAY RAT

APPEARANCE: Norway rats are husky, brownish rodents that weigh about 11 ounces.

SIZE: They are about 13 to 18 inches long including the 6 to 8 1/2 inch tail.

BEHAVIOR: Rats have poor eyesight beyond three or four feet, relying more on their hearing and their excellent senses of smell, taste and touch. Rats use their keen sense of smell to locate food items and apparently to recognize other rats.

REPRODUCTION: Litters of 6 to 12 young are born 21 to 23 days after conception.

ROOF RAT

APPEARANCE: Roof Rat are blackish (or brownish), medium-sized, slender rat with long, naked, scaly tail.

SIZE: Roof rats have a slender body about 6 1/2 to 8 inches long.

BEHAVIOR: Rats tend to be very shy and cautious animals. They also have poor eyesight, but they leave behind a strong pheromone odor telling them where to run.

REPRODUCTION: Roof Rats are born in a nest, in a litter of 6-8 young. The nest is often in a secure place with nesting debris such as in an attic in the insulation.

ACROBAT ANT

APPEARANCE: Acrobat ants vary in color from yellowish brown to dark brown, and the heart-shaped abdomen is usually darker than the rest of the body.

SIZE: About 5/8 inches long.

BAHAVIOR: Acrobat ants often tunnel and nest in wood. They feed on live and dead insects, and they tend aphids for their sugary excrement known as "honeydew."

REPRODUCTION: Like all ants, the acrobat ants may produce winged, reproductive individuals (males and females) called swarmers. These sexually developed adults emerge from an established colony, usually in the fall, to disperse and start new colonies.

CARPENTER ANTS

APPEARANCE: The most common species is color black, but some have reddish or yellowish coloration. Workers have large mandibles.

SIZE: Carpenter ants are among the largest ants. They are about 1/4- to 3/8-inch long.

BEHAVIOR: Carpenter ants can damage wood used in the construction of buildings. They can leave a sawdust-like material behind called frass that provides clues to nesting location.

REPRODUCTION: Carpenter ant colonies are started by a queen. Mated queens generally fly during late spring and locate a suitable cavity in which to begin laying eggs. She can use almost any protected cavity such as inside a wall, under floor insulation or outside in a tree stump.

ODOROUS ANTS

APPEARANCE: Dark brown in color. The antennae have 12 segments.

SIZE: Range from 1/16-1/8 inches (2.4-3.25mm) long.

BEHAVIOR: This species is a scavenger/predator ant that will eat most household foods, especially those that contain sugar, and other insects. They appear to be more likely to invade homes after rain (which washes away the honeydew they collect).

REPRODUCTION: Female odorous ants in their house nest lay one egg daily. It takes an average of 24 days for the young to reach adulthood. The nest colonies range from 100 to 10,000 ants, but can be driven away by invading Argentine ants.

DAMPWOOD TERMITES

APPEARANCE: They have brownish-reddish heads with big mandibles.

SIZE: Dampwood termite nymphs are up to 3/4 in (20mm) long, swarmers up to 1 in (25mm) long.

BEHAVIOR: Dampwood termites only infest wood with high moisture content such as buildings or structures where timber is in contact with the soil or with moisture say from plumbing leaks, ventilation or drainage deficiencies.

REPRODUCTION: Typically a pair of winged termite alates will shed their wings and choose a crevice in a damp log or some similar place. in a few weeks the Queen lays her first eggs.

DRYWOOD TERMITES

APPEARANCE: Drywood termites have bodies that are soft and cylindrical in shape, usually pale brown in color; six legged; they have compound eyes and chewing type mouthparts.

SIZE: During their winged stage there are 4 equal size wings that extend longer than the body by 1/8-1/4 inch.

BEHAVIOR: They infest dry, undecayed wood, including structural lumber as well as dead limbs of native trees and shade and orchard trees, utility poles, posts, and lumber in storage. They have a low moisture requirement and can tolerate dry conditions for prolonged periods and can remain entirely above ground and do not connect their nests to the soil.

REPRODUCTION: Dampwood Termites starts when a male and a female swarmer excavate a chamber in a piece of damp wood. They seal up the chamber from inside and mate for a couple of weeks during which the female deposit its eggs. A colony is then established with the laying of about 15 eggs. This process is a continuous one as the queen will always come back the follow springs to lay more eggs.

WASPS

APPEARANCE: They are black with yellow markings. Have 6 legs and an ovipositor (tube for laying eggs) that may be modified in various ways.

SIZE: They're about 1 ½ inch.

BEHAVIOR: Wasp species are categorized as social or solitary. Social wasp species are aggressive and will defend the territory around their nests. Solitary wasps live alone and rarely build nests. They do lay eggs, but their eggs are left alone to hatch. Wasps are very visual insects. They depend on a keen sense of sight to catch moving prey.

REPRODUCTION: Wasps do not reproduce via mating flights like bees. Instead social wasps reproduce between a fertile queen and male wasp; in some cases queens may be fertilized by the sperm of several males. After successfully mating, the male's sperm cells are stored in a tightly packed ball inside the queen.

BEES

APPEARANCE: Bees are four-winged, have enlarged hind feet, branched or feathered body hairs, and generally a stinger.

SIZE: Most bees are small from 2 mm (.08 inches) long to 4 cm (1.6 inches) long.

BEHAVIOR: Bees communicate with each other about food sources using dances. The sounds from the movement of the bees are picked up by the tiny hairs on the bee's head. Bees use the sun in navigation. Bees swarm when it is time to find a new home because of overcrowding, or other undesirable conditions. Swarming bees are loaded with honey and are not inclined to sting.

REPRODUCTION: Usually, a female bee mates with several male bees in midair, gathering all of the sperm she will need in her lifetime -- a few months for a solitary bee, or up to five years for a honeybee. The queen mates and lays eggs for the span of her life.

MOSQUITOES

APPEARANCE: Mosquitoes has very thin body and brown in color. Have long and narrow wings with scales along the veins.

SIZE: Their body length is about ¾ inch.

BEHAVIOR: Both male and female mosquitoes are nectar feeders, but the females of many species are also capable of drinking blood. Females do not require blood for their own survival, but they do need supplemental substances such as protein and iron to develop eggs.

REPRODUCTION: Adult females lay their eggs in water, which can be a salt-marsh, a lake, a puddle, a natural reservoir on a plant, or an artificial water container such as a plastic bucket. The first three stages are aquatic and last 5–14 days, depending on the species and the ambient temperature; eggs hatch to become larvae, then pupae. The adult mosquito emerges from the pupa as it floats at the water surface. Adults live for 4–8 weeks.

SILVERFISH

APPEARANCE: Silverfish have bodies that are long flattened and slender with a uniform silvery color over the upper surface.

SIZE: Silverfish is about 1/2 inch long.

BEHAVIOR: They prefer a dark, moist environment and require a large supply of starchy foods or molds. They are fast-moving and can travel throughout buildings.

REPRODUCTION: Females lay eggs continuously after reaching the adult stage and may lay over 100 eggs during her life. Silverfish develop from egg to young to adult within 4 to 6 weeks and continue to molt throughout their life.

MITES

APPEARANCE: The mites are globular in shape, clear to creamy white in color, with hairs on their legs and body.

SIZE: Mites are extremely small, ranging in length from 0.1-0.5mm, so they are often invisible to the naked eyes.

BEHAVIOR: Mites are usually found in warm and humid locations, including beds.

REPRODUCTION: Mites reproduce on a 10-day cycle. A female dust mite, in the breeding stages, produces 30 to 100 eggs at a time.

FLEAS

APPEARANCE: Fleas are very dark, wingless, and have three pairs of legs. The hind pair of legs is modified for jumping. Fleas are vertically flat like a fish, and can move easily through the hair of a host.

SIZE: Adult fleas are about 1/8 inch long.

BEHAVIOR: Fleas normally prefer the blood of pets over that of humans but they will bite humans-especially when they cannot find their usual animal host or if they become very numerous.

REPRODUCTION: Female fleas lay eggs loosely in the host's hair (usually a cat or dog). The eggs drop off and hatch into tiny, hairy, worm-like larvae. The larvae are usually found where the animal sleeps, along baseboards, in carpets, or on furniture. Larvae pupate and new adults emerge. The new adults seek a host immediately and must get a blood meal to survive and produce eggs.

HEAD LICE

APPEARANCE: The head louse is a grey-white animal varies from pale beige to dark gray; however, if feeding on blood, it may become considerably darker.

SIZE: They are about 2-3 mm in length.

BEHAVIOR: Most lice are scavengers, feeding on skin and other debris found on the host's body. Lice spread easily from one person to another through close contact or through shared clothing or personal items (such as hats or hairbrushes). A louse cannot jump or fly.

REPRODUCTION: Pairing can begin within the first 10 hours of adult life. The female laid only one egg after mating, and her entire body was tinged with red. A single young female confined with six or more males will die in a few days, having laid very few eggs.

BED BUGS

APPEARANCE: Adult bedbugs are reddish-brown, flattened, oval, and wingless. They have microscopic hairs that give them a banded appearance.

SIZE: Adults grow to 4–5 mm in length and 1.5–3 mm wide.

BEHAVIOR: Bedbugs are obligatory hematophagous (bloodsucking) insects. Bedbugs are attracted to their hosts primarily by carbon dioxide, secondarily by warmth, and also by certain chemicals.

REPRODUCTION: All Bed Bugs mate via a process termed traumatic insemination. Female bed bugs have the ability to lay up to five eggs a day, allowing up to 500 eggs in a life time. The eggs are visible to the naked eye measuring 1 mm in length and are a milky- white tone. The eggs are ready to hatch in one to two weeks.