Tips for Bug-Free Outdoor Living

Stay bug-free in your Springfield VA backyard with tips from Ehrlich pest Control, formerly Connor's.More than ever, families are looking to spend time in their backyards, porches, and patios. With the weather still mild, you likely want to take advantage of outdoor activities as much as possible. Unfortunately, pests are out in full-force right now. Wasps, mosquitoes, ticks, and flies can quickly turn an enjoyable time spent in your outdoor living space sour! For that reason, it’s important to learn how to implement pest prevention into your backyard maintenance routine. At Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s, we want to help our customers comfortably enjoy their time spent outdoors without the presence of pests. Keep reading for our top bug-free outdoor living.

What Pests Are in My Backyard?

If you are going to be spending time outside, you can be sure pests will be out and about as well! Insects are drawn to a number of things right in your backyard. The most common pests you are likely to come across in your backyard include: 

8 Ways to Get Bug-Free Outdoor Living

Pest prevention is just as important outside as it is inside your home. To keep pests away from your garden, barbecue area, deck, or other outdoor living space, implement the following tips.

  1. Apply an insect repellent. Any repellent with DEET will help repel mosquitoes and ticks.
  2. Remove standing water. Mosquitoes only need a half inch of standing water to breed.
  3. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed. Overgrown grass or vegetation provides mosquitoes and ticks with shelter.
  4. Be on the lookout for ant hills. Even a tiny mound can contain thousands of ants inside.
  5. Thoroughly inspect wood structures. Your deck or porch may be vulnerable to termite or carpenter bee activity.
  6. Regularly clean up your outdoor space. Crumbs or spilled liquids will attract ants and other insects.
  7. Burn a few citronella candles. While not a long-term solution, this will repel mosquitoes during outdoor activities.
  8. Try replacing light bulbs. Yellow bulbs or sodium vapor lights will not attract as many insects.

Staying Pest-Free in Your Yard

It can be overwhelming to know how to keep pests away from your outdoor living space. If you find yourself with a full-blown pest problem, it’s time to contact your local exterminators. Here at Ehrlich, our team is committed to providing our customers with pest-free living both inside and outside their home.

The Surge of Summertime Cockroaches

Cockroaches are a common summer pest in Springfield and Sterling VA - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sDid you know that cockroaches are more active than ever in the summertime? While roaches are certainly a year-round pest, the summer heat encourages them out even more. Here in Virginia, both homeowners and business owners deal with cockroach problems, especially in the summer months. Although roaches breed year-round, the reproduction rate goes up during the summer. They also will come inside to escape the heat, making an infestation more likely during these months than ever. To learn more about the surge of roaches in the summer and what all you can do to keep them away, keep reading for tips from Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s.

Cockroaches in Virginia Summertime

Cockroaches are one of the most common pest problems in residential and commercial properties. They also can adapt to a wide variety of climates and environments. So why are they more populous in the summer? Most roach species are drawn to warm or moist environments, which is why they frequently inhabit bathrooms, kitchens, and basements.

Many cockroaches are less active in the winter, but rising temperatures encourage them to resume activity. When there is extreme heat, cockroaches that otherwise stay outdoors will flood inside in search of food, water, and shelter. This is why we get so many calls for roach infestations in the summer.

Prevention Tips for Cockroaches

A cockroach problem is anyone’s worst nightmare. To avoid the frustration of a roach infestation in your property this summer, follow these tips to keep them out:

  1. Clean your property regularly. Make sure your kitchens and bathrooms are free of any spills or crumbs. Avoid clutter and messes.
  2. Thoroughly inspect the perimeter of your home and seal cracks and crevices. Seal windows and doors or install screens.
  3. Always pick up pet bowls after feeding times, and avoid leaving the pet food out overnight or for days at a time.
  4. Securely store food items in airtight containers, and refrigerate any unsealed food.
  5. Ensure your garbage is sealed with a tight-fitting lid, and routinely take it out when full.
  6. Quickly fix any leaky pipes or clogged rain gutters to avoid moisture problems that attract roaches.

Need to Control a Summer Cockroach Infestation?

Seeing just one cockroach in your property is usually a bad sign there are many, many more nearby. If you are dealing with a cockroach problem this summer, it’s not just their presence you need to worry about. Certain roaches carry bacteria and germs that can contaminate food and sicken members of your family. They also are tied to allergic reactions! To get rid of a summer roach problem, contact your local cockroach exterminators for assistance.

4 Types of Wasp Nests in Virginia

Wasp nest identification in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sVirginia summertime is known for its sunny weather and, unfortunately, influx of insects! Wasps are a common summer pest, and their activity can be a nuisance when you’re spending time outdoors. More likely than not, you’ll come across a paper wasp, mud dauber, bald-faced hornet, or yellowjacket this summer. That said, no one wants a nest built on or near their home. It’s important to know how to identify different types of wasp nests in order to know what you’re dealing with. The team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s has tips on identifying the different kinds of nests you may encounter this summer–read on to learn more!

4 Common Wasp Nests

Many wasps are confused for yellowjackets, but they’re all different in several ways. The easiest way to identify them is to learn what their nests look like:

  • Paper wasps
    • Look like upside-down umbrellas
    • These nests are more open, with cells visible
    • They are typically supported by a single stalk and made out of a papery substance
    • Found beneath eaves of structures, in attics and wall voids, and in other enclosed areas
  • Mud daubers
    • Nests are built by female wasps only
    • They are small and tubular in size, often looking like organ pipes.
    • Typically found in cracks or crevices that are sheltered
    • Often found under eaves, garages, attics, or on the sides of buildings.

Learn how to differentiate between different wasp nests in North Springfield VA - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor's

  • Yellowjackets
    • Consist of a papery material and have a single opening
    • Interior can contain up to 100 tiers of cells
    • Also nest underground, sometimes with thousands of members
    • Otherwise build nests in hollow trees, under porches, and a number of other areas
  • Bald-faced hornets
    • Almost always at least three feet off the ground
    • Consist of chewed wood fibers mixed with saliva
    • Can grow to the size of a football or basketball
    • Usually in trees, bushes, or wooded areas, but also can be on buildings

How to Remove Wasp Nests Safely

DIY nest removal is never a good idea. Not only could there be thousands of stinging insects inside the nest, they also could be aggressive and sting repeatedly. This is especially dangerous for anyone who is allergic to wasp stings. When you notice a nest forming on or near your home, try to stay away. Always call the wasp removal experts at Ehrlich for assistance and advice. Our team has the experience needed to provide quick, safe nest removal services.

Common Mosquito Breeding Grounds

Common mosquito breeding grounds in Northern VA - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sMosquitoes can cause a lot of frustration for Virginia homeowners in the summertime. They can quickly become a problem in your yard when they find a suitable place to breed. Unfortunately, they are opportunists and need just a half inch of stagnant water to lay eggs. For this reason, it’s crucial to eliminate mosquito breeding grounds in your yard if you wish to avoid a mosquito infestation. Thankfully, three are a few ways you can make your property less hospitable to these dangerous blood-suckers.

Keep reading for expert tips from the team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s on getting rid of common mosquito breeding grounds.

Top Breeding Grounds for Mosquitoes

Female mosquitoes can produce anywhere from 100-300 eggs at a time, and their life cycle takes just two weeks for larvae to become adults. For this reason, it’s crucial to know how to stop mosquitoes from breeding in your yard. If any of the following items are harboring standing water, you can be sure they will attract mosquitoes:

  • Birdbaths
  • Gutters & clogged drains
  • Mud pots
  • Tree stumps & wood piles
  • Children’s play sets
  • Trash cans
  • Old tires

How to prevent mosquitoes in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor's

How to Keep Mosquitoes from Breeding

Any of the above items can easily welcome mosquitoes to breed and lay eggs if there is enough standing water. On a regular basis, it’s important to inspect your property for areas conducive to gathering water and dump them out. Also consider placing covers over items that tend to gather water. In addition, install screens on windows and interior doors of your home, reduce outdoor lighting at night, fix water leaks, keep your lawn trimmed, and use mosquito repellents following the manufacturer’s instructions. 

Summertime Mosquito Prevention

Mosquitoes are always looking for areas to breed. If you eliminate their availability to do so in your backyard, they will be forced to look elsewhere! Mosquitoes can be dangerous and will surely ruin any outdoor events you plan on having in the summer, which is why it’s so important to do all you can to keep them out. If you need help eliminating mosquito breeding grounds around your home, contact the team at Ehrlich today for mosquito control.

Tips to Prevent Ants This Summer

Tips to prevent ants in the summer here in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sNo one wants to deal with ants in the summertime. Unfortunately, they tend to overwhelm homes in Virginia this time of year. If you’ve had an ant infestation before, you know they can be downright frustrating. They tend to infest kitchens, bathrooms, and often can be seen crawling in trails along your floorboards. As the number one nuisance pest in the nation, it’s important to learn how to prevent ants this summer and all year long. The team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s has years of experience getting rid of these pests and is here to share expert tips to prevent ants this summer.

Prevent Ants with These 5 Tips

No one wants ants inside their home. Ants can be ruthless and the infestations never-ending, making it important to know how to keep them out in the first place! To prevent ants, try the following tips:

  1. Keep a clean home. Sweep your floors regularly to get rid of crumbs. Ants are attracted to sugary food sources and a few crumbs will keep them coming back for more.
  2. Store away food. Avoid leaving food out uncovered. Keep food in airtight containers or store them safely in cupboards and fridges.
  3. Seal entry points. Ants can crawl through the tiniest of cracks. Inspect your property and use caulk to seal any gaps, holes, or potential entry ways.
  4. Get rid of excess moisture. Areas with standing water or leaks will attract ants quickly. Attend to broken pipes and clean up spills quickly.
  5. Trim back trees and vegetation. Plants close to your home can encourage ants to come in. Make sure tree branches, shrubs, and bushes are trimmed away from the perimeter!

What Types of Ants Are Common in the Summer?

There are more than 700 species living in the U.S., which is why it’s crucial to know which one you’re dealing with in order to properly get rid of them! An infestation from any of these can be a major pain to deal with, making it important to know what you’re coming up against. A few of the most common types of ants you’ll likely encounter in our area are odorous house ants, carpenter ants, fire ants, and pavement ants. For help identifying these pests, it’s best to get the help of a professional.

What to Do When You Can’t Prevent Ants

If the ants are flooding into your property despite your best efforts to keep them out, it’s best to contact a professional ant exterminator. At Ehrlich, we have the experience and resources needed to prevent ants not just in the summer, but all year long. To learn more, call our experts today!

True or False: Bed Bug Facts

Learn about bed bug myths in Virginia from Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sA bed bug infestation is likely one of the most grueling pest problems you can experience. They may not be as dangerous as termites or as destructive as rodents, but they certainly can cause a lot of psychological distress! Bed bugs incite a lot of fear in people, but they aren’t as terrifying as you may have been led to believe. To better prepare yourself for the possibility of one day getting an infestation, it’s important to learn what’s fact and what’s fiction when it comes to bed bugs. The team at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s is here to dispel common bed bug myths.

8 Bed Bug Myths

  1. Bed bugs only feed at night. Bed bugs are active when their hosts are at rest. This usually means overnight, but they are able to adjust their schedule to fit yours!
  2. Bed bugs are only found in your bedroom. Bed bugs tend to congregate near areas where people rest. This includes sofas, chairs, cracks in the wall, and even power outlets!
  3. Bed bugs are too small to see with the naked eye. Adult bed bugs are perfectly capable of being seen. They are the size of an apple seed and often grouped together, making it easier to spot an infestation.
  4. Bed bugs can jump and fly. Fortunately, bed bugs cannot jump or fly as other pests can. They have underdeveloped wings, and instead move from one spot to the other by crawling or latching onto a moving item.
  5. Bed bugs are attracted to messy or dirty homes. Unfortunately, anyone can get a bed bug problem. Unsanitary conditions will not lead you to get bed bugs in your home!
  6. Bed bugs latch or travel on people. Although bed bugs are known to hitch a ride on your purse or suitcase, they do not attach to people as fleas or ticks do.
  7. Bed bugs can live a year without feeding. While they definitely can survive months without a meal, they won’t make it through an entire year unless under optimal conditions.
  8. Bed bugs transmit dangerous diseases. Bed bugs may cause you anxiety and even itchiness, but their bites do not transmit disease as other pests do.

The True Danger of Bed Bugs

Bed bugs may not transmit disease or latch onto you like a flea, but there’s still cause for concern. A bed bug infestation is notoriously difficult to get rid of without the help of a professional pest control company. At-home or DIY treatments for bed bugs are, in a word, ineffective. To control an infestation, it’s important to use the best bed bug treatment options provided by an expert.

What to Do When You Have Bed Bugs

If you have bed bugs, you’re undoubtedly going to want to get rid of them as soon as possible. The team at Ehrlich can help. Our professionals will provide a thorough bed bug inspection before determining which treatment is best for your situation. Contact us today to learn more.

3 Summertime Wasps You May Encounter

Learn about summertime wasps in the Virginia area - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor'sEveryone looks forward to summertime in Northern Virginia. Warming temperatures bring about more opportunities to spend time outdoors. Unfortunately, wasps love the warmer weather as much as you do! There are three summertime wasps that tend to be most prevalent this time of year: yellow jackets, mud daubers, and paper wasps. If you see signs of stinging insect activity or nests built near your home or business, it’s important to stay away and call your local pest control company. Keep reading for facts on these summertime wasps from the experts at Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor’s.

Common Wasps in the Summer

Yellow Jackets

Yellow jackets are the most common and most infamous type of wasp. In the summer, particularly late summer, these wasps can get very aggressive. Their nests can contain upwards of or more than 1,000 workers, making them very dangerous to knock down without the help of a professional. These wasps usually will not bother you unless they feel threatened. When they do sting, yellow jackets are capable of stinging repeatedly.

Mud Daubers

Just as their name suggests, mud daubers build nests out of mud. These wasps can be easily told apart from other stinging insects because they are mostly black with light-colored markings or a metallic sheen. Their bodies are long and slender with a thread-like waist. Their nests are often located in covered areas, particularly sheds and attics. Mud daubers are less social than many types of wasps, and are also less aggressive–they will only sting unless threatened or handled.

Paper Wasps

Paper wasps construct umbrella-shaped nests in a paper-like material. These nests often hang from tree branches and twigs, as well as porch ceilings and door railings. A mature nest can have between 20-30 adult wasps living inside. While social in nature, paper wasps are not as aggressive as yellow jackets. However, they may sting to defend their nests, which can be rather dangerous. Paper wasp stings are especially potent and could trigger an allergic reaction, making it important to avoid their nests.

Common summertime wasps in Virginia - Ehrlich Pest Control, formerly Connor's.

Tips for Preventing Summertime Wasps

To prevent encounters with wasps this it’s important to regularly keep an eye out for nests that may have formed on or near your property. To avoid getting stung when you go outdoors, it’s important to stay away from things that attract wasps. Avoid leaving food or drinks outdoors, seal your garbage cans securely, and install screens on your windows and doors. Never swat at wasps to avoid making them more aggressive and likely to sting.

How to Stay Safe From Wasps

If you do notice a wasp problem or a nest, always contact a professional wasp control expert. Wasp nests can contain many more stinging insects than you think, making it a risk to attempt to knock it down yourself. The team at Ehrlich has the experience needed to provide wasp control services in a way that is safe for you and your family.