Everything You Need to Know About Murder Hornets

Murder hornet facts from Pest Defense Solutions - Albuquerque NM

You’ve likely heard about the infamous “murder hornets” in the past few months. These hornets have struck fear in the hearts of many, and it’s easy to understand why. The Asian giant hornet is by far the biggest hornet in the world. Their sting is known to inject potentially lethal amounts of neurotoxins that, with multiple stings, could be fatal. The main danger is the major threat they pose to the honeybee population. Although they’re mostly in Asia, the murder hornet was spotted in North America several months ago. Keep reading to learn all you need to know about murder hornets.

What Does the Giant Asian Hornet Look Like?

Murder hornets are infamously big and have a distinctive appearance. They have a light orange head with big, prominent eyes and distinctly sharp mandibles. In addition, their bodies are orange, black, and brown striped. They have 6 legs and a set of antennae, and their stingers are a quarter of an inch long! The most telling characteristic of the Asian giant hornet is their size. Queen murder hornets can exceed 2 inches in length, while worker hornets are about 1 ½ to 2 inches in length.

The Threats of Murder Hornets

Asian giant hornets typically do not attack humans unless they are provoked or feel their nest is threatened. A sting from a murder hornet is painful and contains neurotoxins. When multiple stings occur or when the victim is allergic, the neurotoxins can be very dangerous. Multiple stings can lead to organ failure and death.

Scientists are most concerned about how the honeybee population may be affected. Asian giant hornets attack honeybee hives, killing adult bees and devouring the larvae and pupae. A single murder hornet can kill dozens of bees in minutes, while a group of hornets can devour a hive of 30,000 bees in hours!

Are Murder Hornets in Albuquerque?

As of now, there have been no reports of Asian giant hornets in the Albuquerque or New Mexico area. The Asian giant hornet is typically found in China, Japan, and several other Asian countries. The first reports of them in the United States occurred in December 2019 in Washington State. It is currently unknown how these hornets first arrived in North America.

What is Being Done About These Hornets?

Scientists are currently leading the way to find, trap, and eradicate this pest before it becomes a major problem in the nation. Even though they haven’t been seen in our area, It’s important to stay away if you believe you’ve spotted one. With any type of stinging insect, it’s important to be very careful and always contact a licensed pest control professional. Pest Defense Solutions is ready to help.

Debunking 8 Common Bed Bug Myths

Learn about common bed bug myths in Albuquerque NM - Pest Defense Solutions

If you’ve had bed bug problems in the past, you know what a pain they can be. Although bed bugs don’t cause the damage or destruction that many pests do, an infestation can definitely cause psychological stress. Because bed bugs are so feared, there is a lot of false information spread about them constantly. To better prepare yourself for possibly getting bed bugs, it’s important to learn the facts about bed bugs. Bed Bug Awareness Week is here, and the team at Pest Defense Solutions is here to dispel common bed bug myths. Read on to learn the truth about bed bugs!

The Truth About These 8 Bed Bug Myths

As a pest control company, we are always happy to answer common questions about pests. However, we also receive a lot of questions that prove how common bed bug myths are. Some of these include:

  1. Are bed bugs nocturnal?
    • No! Bed bugs are active when their hosts are at rest. This usually means overnight, but they are able to adjust their schedule to feed when you are at rest.
  2. Can bed bugs infest areas of your home other than your bedroom?
    • Bed bugs can infest anywhere–including chairs, sofas, cracks in the wall, and even power outlets. They prefer to congregate near where their hosts rest, which is why bedrooms are often where they reside.
  3. Are bed bugs too small to see without a magnifying glass?
    • No. Although nymphs are nearly impossible to see, adult bed bugs are about the size of an appleseed and are definitely visible.
  4. Are bed bugs more likely to infest messy homes?
    • This is a common misconception with bed bugs, and it is not true/ Bed bugs are attracted to blood and warmth, not messy homes!
  5. Do bed bugs jump or fly?
    • No! Unlike fleas and ticks, bed bugs have underdeveloped wings. Instead of flying or jumping, they crawl from one area to another.
  6. Should you throw away infested mattresses or other items?
    • No! In fact, you shouldn’t move infested furniture in the midst of an infestation. Doing so can contribute to bed bugs spreading into other areas.
  7. Can bed bug bites transmit disease?
    • Thankfully, no. Bed bugs may cause you anxiety and even itchiness, but their bites do not transmit any dangerous diseases.
  8. Can you get rid of bed bugs yourself?
    • No! If you want to get rid of bed bugs, it’s crucial to enlist the help of a professional exterminator.

Bed Bugs in Albuquerque

If you have bed bugs, it’s important to act quickly. The team at Pest Defense Solutions knows how pesky these bugs can be as well as how distressing they are for property owners here in Albuquerque NM. DIY methods are never sufficient to control an infestation. Our bed bug treatment options are designed to keep you and your family safe from bed bugs–contact us today to learn more!

Watch Out For These 3 Summertime Wasps

Summertime in Albuquerque means outdoor activities galore: picnics, hikes, camping, barbecues, the list goes on and on! Unfortunately, the warmer weather brings about an increase in wasp activity! Although there are more than 4,000 wasp species in the United States, there are three summertime wasps in particular to be on the lookout for: yellow jackets, paper wasps, and mud daubers. Because wasps can be aggressive this time of year, it’s important to know how to identify them and when to get help from a professional pest control company. Keep reading to learn more about summertime wasps from the experts at Pest Defense Solutions.

Yellow Jackets

These wasps are notoriously aggressive and very common, especially in the late summer. Some things to know about yellow jackets include:

  1. Yellow jackets congregate in colonies of up to or more than 1,000 workers.
  2. Their nests look globe-shaped and are built above ground, often near garages, sheds, and more.
  3. Yellow jackets will not bother you unless they feel threatened, in which case they may sting repeatedly.
  4. Yellow jackets can be best identified by the yellow and black horizontal stripes that run across their bodies.

Mud Daubers

As their name implies, mud daubers are known for constructing their nests out of mud. Although they aren’t as aggressive as yellow jackets, it’s important to know how to identify them:

  1. They are mostly black in appearance but may have light-colored markings. Mud daubers can be identified by their thin, thread-like waist.
  2. Nests are usually located in covered areas such as porch ceilings, sheds, and attics.
  3. These wasps are less social than other types, often preferring to be solitary.
  4. Mud daubers aren’t as aggressive and will only sting when directly handled or threatened.

Common summertime wasps in the Albuquerque NM area - New Mexico Pest Control

Paper Wasps

Paper wasps aren’t as hostile as other wasps, but are common this time of year. Here’s what to know about this summertime wasp:

  1. They are similar in body shape to yellow jackets, but are mostly brown in color with yellow markings.
  2. These wasps are known for the papery nests they build, which look like upside-down umbrellas.
  3. Paper wasp nests often hang from tree branches and twigs, as well as porch ceilings and door railings. They typically contain up to 30 wasps.
  4. Paper wasps aren’t as aggressive as yellow jackets, but they may sting to defend their nests. Their sting is known to be especially potent.

Summertime Wasp Prevention & Removal

To avoid wasps this summer, it’s important to know how to prevent them. Keep food and drinks indoors, seal your trash cans, and know where to look for nests near your property. As soon as you see the signs of wasps or a wasp nest near your home, be cautious and contact the experts at Pest Defense Solutions. Our wasp removal services are quick, effective, and most importantly, safe!

Are Pests Triggering Your Allergies This Spring?

Pests can trigger allergies in the spring here in Albuquerque NM - Pest Defense Solutions

Many people deal with spring allergies this time of year. Runny nose, itchy eyes…the symptoms can range from mild to severe and definitely disrupt our daily lives. With the weather warming up and trees blooming, it’s easy to blame allergies on springtime. But what if there’s more to it? With May being National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month, the Pest Defense Solutions team wants to shine light on the dangers of pest allergens. Spring allergies can be triggered by a number of typical household pests, making it important to know how to prevent them! Read on to learn our top tips for keeping pest allergens out of your Albuquerque home this spring.

How to Get Rid of Pest Allergens

Thankfully, you can prevent pest allergens in your property by practicing basic pest prevention tips! Some of these include:

  • Store food in sealed containers and clean kitchens on a daily basis.
  • Dispose of garbage regularly and use a tight-fitting lid.
  • Seal cracks and holes in homes, including entry points for utilities and pipes, screen doors, and windows.
  • Keep your basements and crawl spaces well-ventilated and dry!
  • Wash blankets, rugs, and bedding in hot water or get them dry-cleaned.
  • Vacuum and dust your property on a regular basis.
  • Keep pet food sealed in a tight container and wash food bowls.

Pests that Cause Allergies

You may be wondering what pests cause allergies in the first place. A lot of research has proven that cockroach droppings, skins, saliva, and more contribute to allergies and asthma, particularly in children. A roach infestation is often known to exacerbate allergic reactions. In addition, stinging insects such as yellow jackets and fire ants can cause allergic reactions for certain individuals.

In any case, it’s crucial to seek immediate medical attention if you suffer from an allergic reaction. Severe symptoms include shortness of breath, dizziness, swollen throat, and wheezing.

Professional Pest Allergen Prevention

Staying safe from pest allergens means staying away from pests in the first place! By keeping pests out of your home, you can greatly reduce the chance of having your seasonal allergies triggered by pests. For help keeping pests out of your property, our team is here to help. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can keep your family safe in spring and all year long.

Is COVID-19 Transmitted by Mosquitoes?

Mosquitoes do not transmit coronavirus. Pest Defense Solutions in Albuqueque NM

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the team at Pest Defense Solutions is prioritizing the health and safety of our communities here in Albuquerque NM. New data is being released every hour about the nature of this virus, but there are still a lot of questions about who and what spreads COVID-19. We’ve seen a lot of inquiries about the possibility of mosquitoes playing a role in the spread. As of now, the CDC sites no evidence to date that suggests that mosquitoes and ticks are transmitting the coronavirus. These insects may be vectors for some of the world’s worst diseases. Thankfully, coronavirus is not one of them. Keep reading to learn more.

Infectious Diseases & Insects

There is currently no scientific evidence that mosquitoes and ticks transmit COVID-19. From what we know from the CDC, COVID-19 is likely being spread from person to person. This most likely happens from droplets from saliva or nasal discharge, often generated when an infected person sneezes or coughs. It can also be transmitted via contact with a contaminated surface and is increasingly considered to be an airborne virus. From what we know, coronavirus is best avoided by avoiding contact with infected persons. The diseases transmitted by mosquitoes and ticks are different, making it important to learn how.

How do Mosquitoes & Ticks Spread Diseases?

Ticks, fleas, and mosquitoes are vectors for infectious diseases, meaning they are organisms that transmit diseases to humans through bites. Ticks and mosquitoes are infamous for their roles in the transmission of historically deadly diseases around the world. It’s important to know what diseases these two insects can cause:

  1. Mosquitoes transmit a number of extremely dangerous diseases, from malaria and Zika virus to West Nile virus, chikungunya, yellow fever, and more.
  2. Ticks transmit Lyme disease, which is currently the most common vector-borne disease in the United States.
  3. If these vector pests feed off a diseased host, they can transmit pathogens that will infect other hosts it subsequently bites. This is how humans are exposed to the diseases mentioned above.

Pest Defense Solutions is Here for You

Thankfully, you don’t have to worry about mosquitoes transmitting COVID-19. Regardless of the pandemic, pest problems are still abound in our communities. It’s increasingly important to take caution in the presence of pests and to always enlist the help of a professional exterminator to prevent dangerous insects. Our team is proud to continue being able to provide essential pest control services during these trying times.

With information about COVID-19 changing every day, we want to encourage our customers to seek more information and follow guidelines released by the WHO and the CDC to better navigate this pandemic.

How to Prevent These 5 Spring Pests

Prevent spring pests by spring cleaning your Albuquerque NM home! Learn more from Pest Defense Solutions.

It’s finally springtime here in Albuquerque! Most people rejoice the return of warming weather. The return of pests, however, not so much. Unfortunately, spring is only the beginning of the major pest season, which can last throughout the fall. Pest problems are obviously a fact of life all year long in New Mexico. With so many people spring cleaning their property, now is the time to implement some pest prevention measures! Keep reading for expert tips from the team here at Pest Defense Solutions.

What Pests are Common in the Spring?

Although some of these pests are active all throughout the year, now is the time that they come out in full force. So what pests do you need to be on the lookout for? The following are just 5 of the typical pest problems dealt with by property owners this time of year:

How to Keep Springtime Pests Away

‘Tis the season for spring cleaning…and pest prevention, while you’re at it. When thoroughly cleaning your property, there’s a few areas to focus on. Clean your windows and doors, and make sure there are no cracks or crevices. Deep-clean your carpets by vacuuming, shampooing, or steam-cleaning them. Thoroughly sanitize your kitchen with a focus on your appliances. Crumbs and spilled liquids are a goldmine for bugs and other pests.

Outside, clean up debris from your yard, gutters, and overhangs. Make sure to trim back tree limbs and shrubs away from the foundation of your home to keep outdoor pests just that—outdoor pests.

Pest Control in the Springtime

With pest season well underway, it’s important to realize that pests will be in full force for the next few months. To fully protect yourself and your home from an infestation, it’s smart to team up with a professional exterminator. Our team will work with you to develop a custom pest control plan suited to the unique needs of your property.

The Real Dangers of Rodent Infestations

Rats chew on wires and create hazards in Albuquerque NM homes. New Mexico Pest Control shares info on the dangers of rodents.
 

Whether you own a home or business in the Albuquerque area, you know that rodents are a problem throughout the entire year. In addition to simply being gross, rats and mice can create a hazardous environment. Perhaps the most dangerous thing about rodents is the fact that they are capable of carrying and transmitting diseases, including hantavirus and salmonella. Because rodent problems are so common in the area all year long, it’s important to learn about the real dangers of rodents.

The Damage Rats & Mice Cause

Rats and mice can wreak havoc in your property with their nesting and chewing habits. These pests aren’t picky and can create a mess digging through your garbage. Additionally, rats have incisors that never stop growing … meaning they never stop chewing! One of the most dangerous things rats chew on are electrical wires. Needless to say, exposed wires can become a fire hazard. Additionally, rats and mice will tear up any type of material to create nests. If you have rodents in your property, you can be sure you’ll have a lot of cleanup to take care of in their wake!

Common Rodent Diseases

In New Mexico and all around the world, there are a number of serious illnesses and health risks tied back to the presence of rodents. These pathogens can be spread directly or indirectly. Mice-borne diseases are spread directly to humans through contact with droppings, saliva, and bites. They are transmitted indirectly through ticks, fleas, and mites. The main three rodent-borne diseases to be aware of include:

  • Hantavirus
    • Most often found in the urine and feces of deer mice, hantavirus can cause symptoms from fever and chills to aches in pains. In serious cases or when it is not treated, it can lead to shortness of breath and kidney failure.
  • Salmonella
    • When rats and mice walk over surfaces, they are tracking dirt and bacteria across other food surfaces. Salmonella, commonly referred to as food poisoning, can cause severe stomach cramps, vomiting, and worse.
  • Rat-bite fever
    • Also known as Streptobacillus, rat-bite fever is usually caused by a bite or scratch from an infected rat. It is also caught by handling infected animals and ingesting food or drink contaminated with the rat’s feces or urine.

How to Get Rid of Rodents in Albuquerque

If you notice the presence of rats or mice inside your property, it’s time to call a rodent exterminator. At Pest Defense Solutions, our mice exterminators have the experience needed to properly get rid of infestations and ensure you are protected from future rodent problems. Our goal is to keep you, your family, and your property safe from the dangers of rodents year-round.

6 Important Pests of 2020

2020 pests to look out for in your Albuquerque NM home this year - Pest Defense Solutions

Hindsight may be 20/20, but when it comes to protecting your family and home against pests this year, you can be proactive with the help of Pest Defense Solutions. We are helping homeowners prepare for the upcoming pest season by offering insight into anticipated pest activity.

At Pest Defense Solutions, we have examined trends, company data and our own field experiences to determine the following six pest predictions. Additionally, we have provided preventative tips to help keep your home pest-free* this year.


Mosquitoes

Disease-spreading mosquitoes, such as the yellow fever mosquito and the Asian tiger mosquito, have recently surged in some Western states. These mosquitoes, as well as the common house mosquito, spread diseases such as the Zika virus, West Nile virus, and Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE). A bite from a mosquito can also spread the parasite that causes heartworm in pets.

Homeowner Tips: West Nile virus and other mosquito-borne diseases, can increase with rising populations. And, mosquitoes only need one tablespoon of water to lay their eggs! To protect yourself and your family, dispose of any standing water around your home and always wear an EPA-approved insect repellent when spending any time outdoors.


Rats

Rat populations have increased over the past several years, and this may be partly due to warmer than usual winters. We can expect to see that trend continue as rodent populations, especially in suburban areas, increase. Warmer winters, a booming construction pipeline, lack of sanitation control, and lack of affordable housing are all issues that have advanced the swell of recent rat activity.

Homeowner Tips: To prevent rodents from entering your home, utilize the following prevention tips: Keep shrubs and trees cut back from home, especially thick ground cover that can serve as hiding places for rats. Ensure that trees do not overhang, touching the roof of your home. Seal any exterior openings larger than a nickel with rodent-proof material such as hardware cloth or flashing. Finally, seal and tie trash bags, placing them into garbage cans with tight-fitting lids.


Termites

Termites are one of the most destructive pests, causing homeowners in the United States $6 billion in property damages each year. These wood-destroying pests are a constant challenge for homeowners in the Western U.S., and this year, termites could prove to be even more damaging. The experts at Pest Defense Solutions have seen an increase in activity from subterranean and dampwood termites in many areas this year.

Homeowner Tips: Earth-to-wood contact provides an avenue for termites to enter homes and structures. To deter termites, eliminate soil to wood contact and avoid moisture accumulations near your homes’ foundation. Termites can be present for years before homeowners ever see signs of their activity, causing considerable and costly damage. Avoid these costs by having a termite protection plan in place. Speak to your pest control provider about risk and protection options for your home.


Cockroaches

Cockroach populations have increased dramatically over the past several years, due in large part to warmer weather and increased rainfall. Cockroaches carry diseases, infest stored food, and then spread these diseases through their excrement. Cockroach removal is vital as infestations can be serious if not taken care of in a timely manner.

Homeowner Tips: To deter an infestation, cockroach-proof your home by sealing small cracks and crevices around windows and door frames with a silicone-based caulk. Keep a clean kitchen, sweeping, mopping and wiping up any spills. Check that door seals, including the one on your garage, are in place and intact. If you’re experiencing cockroach problems, speak with your pest control professional to determine the best solution for your home.


Flies

If you have noticed more flies this past year, you are not alone. Although they’re more active in the summer, house flies reproduce year-round. Filth flies – house flies, bottle flies, flesh flies – generally live and breed near human habitats and their numbers have increased in recent years. Increasing population density, waste management practices that haven’t kept pace with growth, and a general trend toward a warming climate for the fly pressure all contribute to increasing this disease-spreading insect.

Homeowner Tips: The house fly and other types of “filth flies” are not only nuisance pests; they also have the potential to spread the disease to humans and animals. To protect yourself and your family, repair any damaged screens on windows and doors. Keep trash stored away from your home and make sure that all trash cans have tight-fitting lids.


Spiders

Spiders are carnivores, eating other insects and thriving in wet environments. Increased moisture leads to an increase in the insects that spiders eat as a food resource. Heavy rain and warmer temperatures have created the perfect conditions for insects and spiders to flourish. Although beneficial for our ecosystem, most people prefer spiders to stay outside where they belong.

Homeowner Tips: To keep spiders out of your home, keep food put away in tightly sealed storage containers. This will help eliminate ants, roaches and other pests, which will leave spiders with no food source. If the thought of spiders lurking is alarming, try changing your white outdoor light bulbs to yellow light bulbs, which attract fewer insects that can serve as food for the spiders. There are a few species of spiders that can live indoors and need to be controlled by spider removal experts.


The experts at Pest Defense Solutions agree that a proactive approach can help eliminate pest issues before they appear. With these pest predictions in mind, take time to evaluate your current pest control plan and make sure that you have the protection you need to protect yourself and your family from pests this year.