North Carolina summers are perfect for pests. If you’re seeing more bugs than usual scurrying around your house, you’re not alone. Homes across the state are starting to see more and more bugs. Luckily, if caught early and routinely managed, your pest problem can disappear.

The most common pests you need to be on the lookout for this summer include:

While there are some effective DIY treatments you can use to help mitigate pest problems, if you have persistent issues, a pest management professional will be able to identify the best treatment method for your situation.

North Carolina Summer Pest #1: Mosquitoes

Not only are mosquitoes annoying, but they can also carry deadly diseases such as West Nile Virus, dengue fever, and malaria. A pest control company will have special treatments that will help you manage mosquito infestations in your yard.

Active Months

Mosquito season in North Carolina begins around April and lasts through October— usually when the weather is warm and humid. Our warm weather supports their rapid breeding, leading to an infestation in no time.

Signs of Infestation

Luckily, mosquito infestations are relatively easy to identify. Like most insects with wings, mosquitoes make a high-pitched buzzing sound as they fly around. This noise comes from the rapid movement of their wings.

You may also see thick swarms around any standing water around your home. Standing water isn’t the only place they’ll swarm, though. You may find mosquitoes circling any food you’ve left on your counter— particularly anything sweet, such as fruits.

Another obvious sign is mosquito bites!

At-Home Methods to Try

Most of what homeowners can do to help control mosquito populations around the home is prevention. First, eliminate all standing water around your home. This can include diverting water away from your home through the use of downspouts, changing the water in your birdbath regularly, and keeping water in ponds and other water features moving.

Avoid being outside during dusk and dawn as these are peak mosquito hours. If you have to be outside during those times— or at all during the day— wear repellant.

When Should You Start Treating

It’s best to start removing standing water around your home before mosquito season even starts. From there, treatment should last the entire mosquito season.

Did you know Kil-Mor Pest Management offers mosquito control in the Triangle and Triad? Contact us today to live your mosquito-free summer!

North Carolina Summer Pest #2: Ticks

Another pest that’s known for carrying disease, ticks make their presence known during the summer, as well. The most common tick in North Carolina is the Lone Star Tick. The females are easy to identify, they have a white spot on their backs that gives them their name. The males are harder to quickly identify.

Active Months

Ticks are the most active in the spring, summer, and fall— even winter if it’s a mild one! However, more specifically, people are likely to be bitten from April to late September. This tends to coincide with when more people are spending time outside in a tick’s habitat.

Signs of Infestation

Ticks are capable of breeding quickly. A female can lay anywhere between 2,000 eggs to 18,000 eggs. Because of how quickly they can breed, you should start preventative treatment before ever seeing a tick. The signs of a tick infestation may mean it’s too late: you’ll just find a large number of ticks on you, your family, and your pets.

At-Home Methods to Try

If you suspect you have ticks, the best thing to do is to call a pest management professional. In the meantime, there are a few things you can do to keep ticks from biting you:

  • Wear insect repellent when outside, make sure it will repel ticks, as well.
  • Wear light-colored long-sleeved shirts and pants. The light color allows you to see any dark ticks crawling on you.
  • Stay up-to-date on your pets’ flea and tick medications— even if they spend the majority of time indoors!
  • Check yourself, your children, and your pets for ticks before coming indoors.

Because their ideal habitat is long grass and tall shrubs due to the elevated humidity, you’ll want to make sure your grass is cut and shrubs are well maintained throughout the year. Ticks may also reside in leaf litter, foundation cracks, or other secluded places until they’re hungry.

When Should You Start Treating

Start treating ticks at the same time you treat mosquitoes! Treating both at the same time, keeping the same schedule, will ensure your yard is never left unprotected.

North Carolina Summer Pest #3: Ants

Ants can quickly overrun your home thanks to their fast reproduction and how difficult it is to find their entry point. While they can be a nuisance, they’re also an unfortunate health hazard in your home, carrying bacteria that can contaminate your food or cooking areas.

There are a number of common ant species in the Triangle and Triad, including:

  • Acrobat ants
  • Argentine ants
  • Pavement ants
  • Black ants
  • Odorous house ants
  • And more

Active Months

Ants typically are the most active in the spring and the fall, when they find their way into your home in search of food. They come out early in the day and try to find a warm place with lots of food sources to stay the night. However, during the summer they make their way into your home looking for water sources. 

Signs of Infestation

The average ant colony has 300,000 to 500,000 ants, which means a small problem can get big quickly. There are several signs to look out for:

  • A few ants are hanging around your home— where there are some, there are many!
  • Sawdust trails, a great indicator you have carpenter ants
  • Piles of soil and dirt, aka an anthill

At-Home Methods to Try

Some tips may be easier to DIY than others, though a professional will help you get to the source and eliminate the problem for good.

First, you want to erase all traces of the ant trails. Ants navigate to food sources by using scent trails other ants leave behind. Sweeping and mopping aren’t enough to eliminate the trails, you need a stronger solution. Mix 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water in a spray bottle, spraying wherever you see ants. This will help stop ants from entering your home, though you will need to eliminate any ants that are already nesting inside your home.

When Should You Start Treating

In the winter, a professional ant exterminator may sprinkle professional-quality granules around the exterior of your home to discourage ants from ever entering to begin with once spring arrives.

With ants, proactive treatments are always better than reactive treatments.