A Brief History of Ants

Even though Antworks Pest Control prides itself on the removal and control of all sorts of pests, we started off specializing in some serious home defense against ants. Ants are fascinating creatures that have diverged into the 12,000 known species of resilient, hard-working bosses of the bug world. But as we know too well they are also extremely pernicious mainly down to the fact they have evolved constantly over the course of 150M years to meet environmental change. Let’s face it, you don’t get anywhere in this world if you’re not willing to ride the times!

These days, ants can be found on just about every landmass on Earth barring Antarctica and a few remote or inhospitable islands. Their success can be put down to their social organisation, ability to change their living arrangements quickly, seek resources, and – with some – defend themselves. All of this means that ants create one massive home defense and extermination issue worldwide; that goes for us here in Vancouver, WA too.

Ants evolved from wasp-like ancestors in the Jurassic period and hit the big time after the rise of flowering plants and fruits in the spring of 100M years ago. While wasps went on to use their rear ends to deliver venom the ants used their’s to deliver new life. There are an estimated 22,000 species in the world with only half having been identified.

Over time, different ant species chose different ways of life; some burrowed, some lived on dead vegetation, and some lived in trees. Despite all sorts of climate change (including whatever killed off the dinosaurs) ants thrived. A 49.5M year-old fossil of a winged queen ant is testimony to their evolutionary success; discovered in Wyoming in 2011, Titanomyrma is a prehistoric giant ant about the size of today’s hummingbirds (3-5 inches long).

During the Cretaceous period ants were scarce in comparison to the populations of other insects making up only about 1% of the world’s bug population, but by the Oligocene and Miocene (100M years later), ants made up 20–40% of all insects found in major fossil deposits.

One of the biggest reasons ants can be so hard to control as a pest is their love of living together in colonies which can range in size from a handful of individuals to millions. This way of living is called Eusociality and is in fact the best type of social organisation that some believed was akin even to our own way of life. It’s thought that ants became grouped as eusocial insects through an evolutionary phenomenon which allowed them to work collectively to benefit the gene pool rather than themselves as individuals.

Colonies are exceptionally well-run affairs with castes (groups) all specialized in one particular area of nest maintenance including reproduction. Similarly to ants, termite colonies are eusocial but the two are not related except through a primitive biological line. Termites are thought to have existed 251M years ago, more than 100M years before ants; when ants were getting stuck into the new fruit craze, termites were already working on their caste system. Their colony habits are similar but only by coincidence; termites are actually more closely related to cockroaches and mantids.

Are ants dangerous or should we protect them?

Humanity considers ants to be pests, and some nasty ones at that. And sure, ants are not good in the home of any person, but they can be extremely useful in nature. So we should try to keep them away from our home, however we should respect them in nature and leave them alone! The reality is that ants live in society, just like we do, and they have distinct individual tasks that they have to attend to. This alone shows that ants are more than just a simple pest, they are intelligent insects that managed to create their society. In fact, they even have their kind and queen.

On top of that, ants are very resistant. Some studies have shown that ants, as well as cockroaches, might even be able to resist nuclear attacks, all thanks to their durable exoskeleton.

Aside from that, ants are very useful for the environment. They protect nature, and they help create the compost needed by forests as well. Plus, ants are also known for being some great collector of items they found on the forest floors, and that’s why you can find quite a lot of stuff in ant nests, to begin with.

But it’s the cooperative behavior and the unique hierarchy system that intrigues most people. And that’s for a magnificent reason because ants are known to be social beings, yet despite that, no one will expect them to be so well-organized. In fact, ant societies work pretty much like a well-oiled machine, and they do have a variety of tasks for each member.

Ants are also known for helping plants pollinate, and they play an active role in keeping nature in a thriving state, just the way it is at this point. In fact, some ants help with the prevention of other pests! If you are even remotely interested in saving the forest and making sure that these ecosystems thrive on their own, you have to let ants live as they are an active part of this system. These ants are very important, and they will be able to bring you the help and success you need.

Are there any institutions that help protect ants? Yes, there are quite a lot of them in the US, here are some of the most important ones:

  1. Myrmecological  
  2. LSU AgCenter Research and Extension
  3. Texas A&MJ AgriLife Extension  
  4. University of South Bohemia and Biology Centre CAS 
  5. University of Florida 
  6. Purdue University 

As you can see, lots of organizations study ants all the time, and it’s easy to understand why they do that. Even if they are considered as pests because they end up creating a nest very close to our homes, ants have a pivotal role in our society. We need to respect these amazing insects if we want to preserve nature and wildlife because they are actively implicated in the wellbeing of our planet. Killing ants won’t solve our problems; we need to understand why these amazing insects are useful and, with their help, we might be able to create a better future. If you want to find out more about ants, it can be a good idea to use the research links above!

Why pest control is so important to you?

Pest control is highly important to anyone. No matter wherever you are living in the world, you need to take measures in order to keeps the pests away from you. We always hear that there are pest management and pest control companies around you but find ourselves reluctant to take their services. Some of us think that it is a waste of money while others may think that “what harm a pest can do” to them. In this article, we will take a peek at the significance of pest control and why pest control is important.

Pest management and control

Most of us associate the pest control to residential sites. However, for the commercial and agricultural property, the control of these creatures is as important as it is to residential properties. Following are some reasons why you must immediately call a pest control expert:

  • Take the food that we have in this world as 100%. Now, eliminate 20% from it. That 20% food, when we put into the account, is highly significant. However, it is the one that rodents consume every year.
  • Rodents tend to carry dangerous diseases along with them. The fleas, ticks and mites are certain pests that are attached to the rodents. These micro-organisms come with the diseases that can be transmitted to the human body.
  • Around 500,000 people go to hospital emergency rooms per year due to insect bites and stings. The number of Americans allergic to the pests is about two million. Each year, 40 to 150 deaths occur because of dangerous animal stings.
  • When you talk about the deadliest animal in the world, which one comes into your mind? A lion, or perhaps a tiger? Or maybe snakes? But the most number of deaths each year are caused by mosquitoes which make them deadliest animal on planet earth.
  • Not only the deaths are caused by these animals, they are a large contributor to property damage. Pests such as termites do around $5 billion damage to property each year ($5 billion is estimated repair cost for the damage that termites do each year).
  • There are around 45000 people that are victim to rat bites each year. This leads to the development of multiple diseases such as rat bite fever, salmonella etc.
  • If pest control was not put into action, we have over 59% of world food crop eaten each year by pests.
  • If the pest control was not there, the food sanitation and regulation would have never been put into practice with so much efficiency.
  • Cockroaches possess allergens. They are a growing cause of child asthma. Along with the flies, the cockroaches are considered as the filthiest creatures that exist today.

Final words

So, these are certain reasons why pest control is important. In short, you get to have more food, fewer health issues, minimal chances of catching allergies and diseases and better food sanitation. Millions of pathogens and dangerous micro-organisms are transmitted to humans each year by these animals. So, better control them before you get into any trouble.

Contact best Portland`s pest control company for more info (11124 NE Halsey St #400, 97220 Portland, OR).

Top Reasons Fall Pest Control is so Important

Most homeowners already realize the importance of securing their homes against pests as the summer turns into fall. However, there are quite a few that don’t realize just how important it is to call in some form of reputable pest control to make sure their homes are secure and not going to be overrun by everything from rats to spiders when the temperatures start to plummet. With that being said, if you are one of those who doesn’t realize the importance of pest control in the fall read on below for some of the top reasons that fall pest control is extremely important.

Termites and the Long Winter Months

The first thing you need to know is that termites can do damage to your home all year long. However, in the winter months, it is less likely that you will find them all cozy and snug in their nests because you aren’t out and about in the yard as you are at other times of the year. Termites aren’t bears; they don’t hibernate. Instead, they are busy destroying your framework, and by spring you could have thousands of dollars’ worth of damage to repair. Calling in reputable pest control can save you tons of money when the flowers start to bloom once more.

Rats, Mice, and Diseases

Another important reason to have fall pest control performed on your property is rats, mice, and diseases. As the weather starts to cool, these rodents will start looking for places to build their nests. Your home is warm, safe, dry, and comfortable. They will quickly take up residence in your attics, basements or anywhere that they can carve out a hidey hole for themselves and their young. If you will, think about all of the diseases that rodents carry. You certainly don’t want a rodent that has been crawling around in gutters, sewers, and trash piles crawling across the counters of your kitchen when you and your family are sleeping. Calling in fall pest control can prevent that from happening before it ever begins.

Insects Galore

When the leaves start to fall, and the fireplaces are lit, ants, spiders, fleas, and other insects start looking for a place to get warm and ride out the winter. The nooks and crannies of your home are the perfect places for these insects to hold up until the winter is over. The only problem is they won’t leave when the flowers start to bloom, and your home will be infested before you know it, which will cost you a ton in the long run to have the place exterminated. Why not just call in a pest control company to safeguard your home against unwanted pests before the fall is done.

These are just a few of the reasons that fall pest control is so important. You don’t want to share your home with all sorts of pests over the winter. For more information on reputable pest control, contact the professionals at Antworks today.

Tips to Prevent Rodents from Invading Your Home this Fall

vegetables-928970_960_720Tips to Prevent Rodents from Invading Your Home this Fall

 

Fall is right around the corner, and most people are already picturing bonfires, hoodies, and mugs of hot chocolate by the fireplace. What people aren’t prepared for is the rodents that try to make their way into your home as the weather starts to get chillier. As the weather turns cooler, rats and mice start looking for warm places to build their nests and a safe place to find food. While these creatures, especially mice, may seem harmless and even cute and cuddly, they are actually anything but.

Left to their own devices, they will destroy the wiring and foundation of your home. Rodent’s also carry diseases that you don’t want to expose your family to as well. With that being said, read on below for a few of the top tips for preventing rodents from invading your home this fall.

Rodent Proof Your Home

If there is nowhere to sneak into the home, the rodents will try to find somewhere else to crash for the fall and winter. Below are some tips for barring entrance to your home:

  • Walk around the outside of your home. Any holes, cracks are crevices you find need to be filled so that the rodents can get in.
  • Install caps on your chimney.
  • Any vents that are open should be covered with screens.
  • Walk around and find any screens that are torn or missing from windows and replace them.

Remove the Temptation

Rodents are attracted to clutter. So removing those temptations will make them less likely to choose your home as a hotel for the upcoming winter.

  • Make sure that all storage areas and garages are neat, orderly, and free of clutter.
  • Trash any cardboard boxes that are lying around.
  • Store firewood far away from your house, storage areas, and garages.

Take Away Their Food Source

If there is no food for the rodents to sniff out, they will most likely move onto greener pastures. Below are some tips on how to remove their food source.

  • As the temperatures cool, remove bird feeders from your property.
  • Consider using artificial decorations, instead of using edible items such as pumpkins to decorate for fall.
  • Always store your food, including food for pets in airtight containers.
  • Put trash in containers that can stand up to the gnawing of rodents and be sure to take it out the way you are supposed to.

Regular Pest Control Inspections

One of the best ways to keep rodents out of your home this fall is to contact your professional pest control company and have them do regular inspections of your home. In this way, you are assured that any signs of rodent infestation will be found early and can be taken care of right away. This is the best prevention for you.

These are just a few tips for preventing rodents from storming your home as the summer turns into fall. For more information, contact the professionals at All About Ants today.

Top 3 Reasons You Might Need to Call Pest Control

When you see a large army of ants crawling across your kitchen floor, your home has been infiltrated. Of course, ants aren’t the most difficult pest to deal with as you might already know. While noticing the army of ants is a good reason to call a pest control service, you need to know the other important reasons, too. Maybe you’ve been thinking about making an appointment with an exterminator, but you just haven’t done so yet. If you notice any of the following signs, don’t hesitate to make that call.

Anything related to termites should be reported and dealt with immediately. It doesn’t matter if you see one single termite because where there is one, there are more. Any signs of termite damage or any signs of termites means that exterminator needs a phone call right away. Termites are one of the most damaging pests when it comes to homes. They will eat your home right out from under you if you don’t take action at the first sign of trouble.

Termites and other critters like bedbugs can be some of the most problematic pests. However, not all pests are bugs, and not all pests are that small. Remember, there can be mice and even rats. The last thing you want is to find out you have a rather large mice population on your hands. If you start seeing mice, well, that’s your queue to call pest control. You have to realize that the longer you let a mice problem go on, not only are you having to put up with them, but they can damage your home.

They can do more than damage your home, too. One of my friends who lives in a rural area once left a truck unattended for months out in the barn/garage. The mice ate away at all the wires and pretty much destroyed the truck. Imagine if that can happen to a truck what mice can do to your home. Remember the general rule when it comes to pests about when you see one, there are more of them in hiding.

Another reason why you might want to call pest control is because of another rather large pest. Those squirrels might look all cute playing around in your front yard. They are lovely creatures indeed until they are crawling around inside your roof wreaking havoc. You don’t want them causing damage, and there are simple and easy ways for the pest control companies to help get the squirrels back outside and playing on your front lawn.

There are other types of pests that can be problematic enough to make you get in touch with an exterminator immediately. Any type of pest infestation is reason enough, so don’t wait too long. You might be inclined to want to try and handle all your pest problems on your own, but why don’t you handle the maintenance phase instead. That would be much easier, and you would have a much better chance of keeping the pests away. Contact All About Ants for more information today.

Top 3 Signs that You Have Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are definitely one group of pests that can be the most problematic in a home. It’s not just what they do that is bad but also the fact that it can be difficult to get rid of them. In fact, it’s not a problem you want to take on yourself, as there is a certain removal method required that a professional exterminator must handle for you. That being said, you don’t want to wait until they are feasting on you before you notice you have a bed bug problem. When you know the common signs that a home has bed bugs, you can call the pest control service right away.

Have you ever noticed small blood stains on your pillows or sheets before? You’re certainly aware small blood stains on a pillow can also occur from a nighttime nosebleed, but you’re going to look for multiple signs. Besides, nose bleeds and any other blood stains are often going to look different than the traces of blood that bed bugs leave behind. If you notice blood stains on your bedding materials, then it’s time to get to know the rest of the signs that you may have a bed bug infestation.

Naturally, if you do see those blood stains, you definitely want to be paying attention to your body. Hopefully, you don’t have any bites yet, but be on the lookout. You need to be familiar with what bed bug bites look like so that you can know. You also need to be on the lookout for the bugs themselves. However, you should know that bed bugs love to hide during the day. However, you can find their eggs, too. While their eggs are quite tiny, you should be looking or them in your bedding material, in crevices of your mattress and in other places.

Not only can be looking for the bed bugs and bed bug eggs, but it’s the skins that you need to be watching out for as well. If you see any of the signs mentioned so far, start looking for the other signs. As you get to inspecting your bedding more closely, you’ll start to get more easily an idea as to whether or not you’ve got bed bugs. Remember, they can be elsewhere in your home, too.

You’re going to need to call the pest control service, but you can also do certain things before they arrive. However, don’t try to handle the problem entirely on your own without calling the professionals. If you do, you’ll likely be fighting the battle all over again. The reason for this is that to get completely rid of the bed bugs; a thermal heat treatment is necessary.

You’ve done your part by spotting the bed bugs as early as possible. Now let the exterminator do his part, and your home will be bed bug-free. The last thing you want is for those blood suckers to keep multiplying. Now you know what signs to watch out for. Visit All About Ants for more information today.

Summer is Coming! Tips for Ridding Your Home of Fleas the Right Way

Summer is the best time for soaking up the sun, working in the garden, picking watermelons, and swimming in the lake. However, what isn’t so great about summer is the constant problem with fleas that most of us have to battle when you have pets. You can’t get rid of your pets of course, so you have to find some form of pest control in Portland, Oregon to rid your home and yard of these pests for good.

Of course, the pest control company can only do so much, and the rest is up to you. With that being said, read on below for some tips on how to prevent and control fleas from invading your yard, home, and pets this upcoming summer season.

For Pets

 Keep Them Healthy: Remember that parasites are only drawn to the weakest of species so keeping your animals healthy is the first line of defense. Keeping your pet’s immune system strong is imperative to keeping fleas out of your home and yard.

For Inside of the Home

 When fleas travel on your pets and into your home, it can be quite a chore to get them out again. They quickly lay eggs in the carpeting and before you know it, your home is infested with creatures that bite. The best way to get rid of fleas, of course, is to call in an exterminator to help with the process of ridding your home of fleas.

If you want to prevent them from invading to begin with, then you need to keep your carpeting vacuumed well at all times, this includes vacuuming your curtains, upholstery, and furniture on a regular basis as well. Remember, that once a flea gets on your pet and travels into your home, or gets on your pants in the grass, it will proceed to lay eggs in your carpeting or other areas that are soft and before you know it, you will have a full-blown infestation on your hands.

Make sure as well to wash all linens, pillows, and blankets that your pet is exposed too, especially in the summer months when fleas are most prevalent.

For the Outside of the Home

 The best way to prevent fleas from infesting the inside of your home is to stop them from getting into the home to begin with. Fleas usually start in your yard, attach themselves to your pet or pants legs, and then invade your home to populate and bite the people who live there. Once they are in the carpeting and upholstery, it’s beyond hard to get them out again.

Making sure to keep leaves raked and not to let them build up and become moist and damp under porches or in and around doghouses can help quite a bit. Calling in your exterminator for help is also recommended.

If you are searching for reputable pest control options, make sure to contact All About Ants today for more information.

 

 

Common Household Pests and What You Can do About Them

The pests you can find when you are spring cleaning will make many homeowners skin crawl. Of course, if you are taking advantage of the services offered by All About Ants in Portland, Oregon you don’t have to worry as much as the next guy. However, if you just haven’t had the time to get to making that call yet, or you would like to know something about the common pests you can find during spring cleaning lurking in your home, then read on below for a few of them.

Cockroaches

Even the word cockroach is enough to send most homeowners scurrying for the phone to call All About Ants in Portland, Oregon to come exterminate and manage the problem.

These critters can be brought in on grocery bags or even crawl in out of the trees outside in cold or hot weather looking for food and shelter. You can sprinkle boric acid in the area that you have seen a roach in so that they will eat it and die quickly. Boric acid isn’t poisonous to kids, plants, or animals. However, it is still best to call your local exterminator to try and find the source of the problem.

Silverfish

Though these are common pests that you don’t hear that much about, it is possible for them to be under your sinks if you have a leak. They love wet places and especially places that are water damaged. Rosemary can keep them away, but an exterminator is needed to take care of the problem when they are discovered.

Spiders

Seeing a spider scurrying under the wall of your home is awful enough, seeing quite a few of them in a few days’ time is even worse. While spiders do a lot to help keep bugs out of your home, and they have other benefits to the environment, a spider infestation cannot only give you the creeps but can be dangerous to the health of your family as well. If you suspect you have an infestation of spiders, calling in pest control is your best option.

To keep an infestation from happening, make sure to clean surfaces with vinegar, as they are rumored not to like the smell. Also, make sure to keep your home uncluttered and to vacuum and dust on a regular basis, especially in dark corners and the tops of curtains.

Ants

If summer right around the corner, the ant population will be on the rise. Having a reputable exterminator will help of course, but you also need to take some preventive measures of your own. Make sure to keep dishes clean and never to leave sticky messes on your counters or floors. If the ants have nothing to eat, they will move on to the family next door in short order.

These are just a few of the common pests that you might see in your home, especially as the weather starts to warm up.

If you are searching for reputable pest control, make sure to reach out to the professionals at All About Ants. They are standing by to help you with all of your pest control problems.

Tips for Choosing the Best Pest Control Services

A good pest management strategy should be aimed at complete and effective extermination of all pest species. It entails the development of the most appropriate methods that can help suppress and mitigate the pest population. Additionally, good pest management practices should also factor in the territoriality and integrity of other species. Your preferred pest management service provider should be the one that saves you time and used the best pest control practices and conserves the environment. Due to the increased demand for pest management services, there has been an increase in the number of companies offering this service. To ensure that you have chosen the best pest management service provider, here are some of the aspects that you need to consider.

  • Safety Standards on Offer

Although the main aim of hiring these professionals will be to remove ants, wasps, spiders, rodents, or whatever pest that may have invested your home, you also need to be concerned about the safety of the techniques used by the professionals. This includes the precautions employed by the professionals while exterminating the pests. To effectively evaluate the safety standards of any provider, you need to look into the following:

  • The type of approach used
  • The protective measures applied
  • The method of chemical application used.

If you are hiring a provider online, you should also take the time to read the reviews left behind by the clients the company has served in the past, specifically the ones related to the safety measures applied by the provider.

Guarantee

The pest control company you opt for should offer a guarantee of the services they provide. For example, if the company has placed some rodent traps in your home, they should be willing to check them regularly to see whether they are working. In most cases, the quality of services offered by these professionals is proportional to the type of guarantee they offer.

Insurance and Licensing

Normally, pest control companies apply various treatment strategies that are rather complicated and may end up affecting your property. Working with an insured contractor will give you peace of mind, in case something happens. Additionally, you should ensure that the company and its staff are duly licensed by the relevant bodies. Licensing is an important point of consideration because it ensures that the professionals you are hiring are skilled and qualified based on the national and international stand.

The Pest Management Tactics Used

Even if you are not knowledgeable in this field, this is an aspect that you need to look into keenly. You have to ensure that the professionals you are hiring are well trained and completed in implementing the latest Integrated Pest Management strategies. This will guarantee the use of the most appropriate pest management tactic in your home. For instance, if the situation requires a physical management strategy, the professionals will not recommend a chemical pest management strategy.

The main aim of hiring pest management professionals is to get rid of the pests that have invested your home. While this is the case, you still need to ensure that pest control tactics used by these professionals are safe for your home and its inhabitants. This is why you need to search carefully for and only hire skilled, experienced and professional pest control companies.