4 Harmful New Jersey Spring Pests to Watch Out For

May 24, 2018

Spring is here! Officially anyway. Sure, we’ve had 8 to 20 inches of snow covering the state and temperatures that flirted with freezing, but the weather will soon reflect the calendar. When it does, unwelcome company will be migrating from the south, burrowing up from their winter hideaways and crawling sleepy-eyed from tree holes and logs. To protect your home and keep your family safe, it helps to know about the most harmful of them and how Excel can help you control these pests.

1. Ticks

According to pest control experts, this is going to be a banner year for ticks—which means an increased health hazard for us. Deer ticks, the primary carriers of Lyme disease, thrive in New Jersey. They aren’t looking to set up stakes in your home, but if your property abuts open fields or woods, they will take over your yard, endangering you and your pets. Ticks carry other diseases also, and you may be plagued with a variety of maladies, including rashes, fevers, chills, headaches, muscle aches and dizziness.

The best way to reclaim your yard and control breeding populations of ticks is with professional tick control that includes application of insecticide along the perimeter of your property and along trails leading into the woods or fields.

2. Mosquitoes

There are more than 63 species of mosquitoes in New Jersey, but the “big man on campus” is the Asian Tiger. The females are persistent biters—they need blood to produce eggs. They will leave the usual itchy red bump on the skin—not a big deal, it’ll go away. The real threat is that the Asian Tiger transmits diseases such as the West Nile virus, encephalitis and dengue fever. You can make your yard less attractive to them by not allowing stale water to accumulate in bird baths, flower pots, trash bins and the like. But due to the severity of the diseases they carry, professional mosquito control and treatment is needed to protect your family this season.

3. Termites

The Eastern subterranean termite is particularly fond of New Jersey’s dry wood. Termites don’t take a break during the winter; they need to eat all year long. You might not see them in winter because they furrow deeper into the ground when it’s cold, but an elaborate maze of tunnels provides passageway from their nests to their food sources (the wood in your home). They are quiet workers, so you don’t know that you have been invaded until you see the “spring swarm,” when the winged termites are reproducing and starting new colonies. The swarm is your “red flag” to get on the phone and make an appointment with a professional exterminator for termite treatment. The advantage to a professional pest control company is that they can not only get rid of the termites but keep them away.

4. Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants also love wood. However, unlike termites’ preference for dry wood, they prefer damp wood. (So they don’t fight over “territorial rights.”) Carpenter ants come in an array of sizes and colors, and the large, black species is most common in New Jersey. Also unlike termites, they go dormant in cold weather, but watch out in the spring! They are hungry and ready to chow down. They may not cause the same kind of structural damage as termites do, but the damage is extensive. They burrow deeply into the wood to make room for their growing colonies and are very difficult to exterminate.

The different species of carpenter ants require a different treatment program. A professional pest control company will tailor a carpenter ant treatment solution for your home accordingly.