Tiny pests that can be a big nuisance
Insects play an important role in the environment. They’re a source of food for other animals, they pollinate fruit, vegetables and flowers, and they clean up decaying organic matter.
But when they invade our homes in large numbers, these little creatures can become a huge problem. Insects may be a lot smaller than other household pests such as rats and mice, but they still wreak havoc by:
- Spreading diseases.
- Contaminating food.
- Triggering allergies and asthma.
- Damaging the structure of buildings.
- Ruining clothes and furniture.
There are more than 20,000 known species of insects in the UK. This is what can happen if some of them decide to move in with you.
Fleas are blood-thirsty bugs that infest bedding, carpeting and upholstery, and feed on us and our cats and dogs.
In the UK, they don’t usually spread disease but flea bites can lead to a lot of discomfort through itching, and their saliva can cause a bad allergic reaction.
Ignoring a few fleas in your home can quickly lead to an infestation. Female fleas live up to two years, laying around 1,500 eggs.
Once fleas have infested your home, getting rid of them can be an uphill battle without the help of pest control professionals.
Signs of flea infestation
- Flea bites – small red marks on your body, usually the feet or lower legs.
- Fleas hopping on furniture, curtains or carpets.
- Pets scratching incessantly.
- Visible signs of fleas – tiny reddish-brown insects – in your pet’s fur.
Cockroaches bring filth and disease into homes from sewers and drains, posing a direct threat to our health.
They’ll contaminate anything they come into contact with, including food, kitchen utensils, and food preparation areas.
This can result in medical conditions such as salmonella food poisoning, staph skin infections and strep throat.
And, as one of the most common sources of indoor allergens, cockroaches can trigger asthma and allergies.
Signs of cockroach infestation
- Shed skins.
- Egg casings.
- Damage to food or food packaging.
- Foul smell – with a large infestation.
Ants are relentless home invaders in their hunt for food.
The 50 types of ant species in the UK include carpenter ants (Formica ligniperda), which live inside wood.
In their natural environment, these big black or black-and-red ants build nests by carving out tunnels inside trees, usually where wood has rotted.
But if they nest in your home, they can chomp their way through wooden furniture and even cause structural damage in timber.
Signs of carpenter ant infestation
- Small piles of sawdust or wood shavings.
- Faint rustling noises inside wooden structures.
- Ants crawling out of crevices in your home.
Fruit flies invade our homes in search of warmth, and an infestation can quickly get out of hand. These insects multiply fast. Females may repeatedly lay up to 500 eggs at a time.
Fruit flies can contaminate food with bacteria and other organisms that cause disease, and they’re attracted to ripe or rotting fruit and vegetables such as bananas, melons, tomatoes, apples, potatoes and onions.
Signs of fruit fly infestation
- Adult flies flying around your house, especially the kitchen.
- Flies near rubbish bins.
- Flies near fruit bowls.
Clothes moths often fly into homes through an open window or door on a summer night.
If they appear in greater numbers, though, it’s likely that moths in the larva stage have been brought into your house in someone’s clothes or shopping. It’s these juvenile moths that damage clothing and household textiles, not the adult moths.
Signs of clothes moth infestation
- Holes in clothing or upholstery.
- Furrows in wool clothes and other woollen fabrics.
- Excessive shedding of fabric material.
- Larva casings – tiny tubes – stuck to fabric.
Weevils – small beetles with pronounced snouts –are pantry pests that hitch a ride in grocery shopping or crawl through gaps to get into homes.
They burrow into stored grain products to feed and lay eggs, and unsealed dry foods such as flour, rice, cereals and pasta are a magnet for weevils.
Signs of weevil infestation
- Weevils crawling on walls and window sills.
- Damage to foodstuffs.
- Discolouration of stored food through mould or damp.
Ending the misery of bug infestation
Ringwood-based Pests, Birds and Bugs helps families and businesses in Hampshire and Dorset eliminate insect infestation.
Our residential and commercial pest control company is member of the British Pest Control Association (BPCA) and all our operatives hold Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH) qualifications.
Call us on 07388 892414 or contact us online for a free quote and details of how we’ll get rid of those tiny creatures that are making your life a misery, and the steps we’ll take to prevent reinfestation.