Whether you’re a homeowner, business owner, or commercial or industrial property manager, chances are you’ve seen something—perhaps in the grass, around the foundation of your building, or even scurrying away to a dark corner—and said: “Hey, is that a . . . ?”
First, see if you can identify what pest infestation you’re facing. Because most household pests are difficult to spot—they often hide from light, sound, and movement—it can be tough to figure out whether you’ve got a problem, and even tougher to identify the pest infestation. Here’s a handy guide to help you narrow the field.
Think of it this way: other than a clear sighting, there’s no better way to identify a pest infestation than by taking a good look at their droppings.
- Squirrels: Squirrel droppings are small cylinders, regularly shaped. They’ll be under ½” long and brown or slightly reddish in color. Look for squirrel droppings in places where they like to eat, such as near bird feeders.
- Bats: Look for bat droppings underneath where bats normally hang or enter your property. They’ll be long and segmented, not unlike wild rice (appetizing, we know!).
- Mice: Mice leave pellets, and they leave a lot of pellets. They’re very small, with tapered ends, and they’ll be scattered around rather than grouped together. Look for them in food preparations areas and rooms with exterior walls.
Warning Signs of a Pest Infestation
Look closely at your building structure for signs of pest infestation. Depending on the pest, you may be able to identify your problem.
- Termites: Regardless of whether your building is constructed of wood, look for signs of termite infestation. Termite damage can appear similar to water damage—buckled or bubbled surfaces and swollen floors or ceilings. Look for the entrances to mud tunnels at the edge of your property’s foundation and for winged insects moving in large clusters around windows and doors.
- German Cockroaches: Ah, the roach. Perhaps the most loathed of all household pests, the German Cockroach infestation is usually noticed when an unsuspecting homeowner turns on a kitchen light at night and sees a giant bug scurrying across the floor. When startled, roaches can even fly. German roaches can be somewhere between ½ to 1 inch long, and they’ll stay out of direct light, so look for quick motion at the edge of the room. There are other warning signs: look for droppings equal to or slightly smaller than mouse droppings, with blunted ends. Additionally, roaches in large groupings may produce a musty odor, which sensitive noses may detect when infestations become serious.
- Bed bugs: The problem with bed bugs is their size. At approximately 4mm, bed bugs are no larger than apple seeds—imagine trying to find a handful of those on a mattress or sofa. Bedbugs can be found, however, if you know where to look. They live in crevices and seams and behind baseboards and electrical outlets. Look for their shed skins and and the brown/black stains of their droppings as well.
Now, take a deep breath. Whatever you saw is a manageable problem, assuming that you hire a capable professional. All of us are surrounded by pests, and it is only when they become invasive to a degree that threatens your health or property that it’s time to call in the troops.
Whether or not you’ve been able to identify your pest infestation problem, call us to help with your pest infestation. We’re good at diagnosing the problem and even better at solving it.