Pittsburgh, PA Pest Control Services
Hersh Exterminating Stops Pests in Pittsburgh
Pittsburghers enjoy four seasons, and so do their pests. Regardless of whether the skies are raining icicles on Heinz Field, snow is waist deep on Roberto Clemente Bridge or the sun is beating down on the Three Rivers Regatta, rodents, termites and even bed bugs find ways to make the most of any situation or condition. During warm, temperate months, our area provides plenty of natural habitat with access to water. When cold weather sets in, however, tons of homes and businesses with vulnerable nooks and crannies stand ripe and ready. Pests don’t care if the place is clean or dirty. All they care about is access, and once they’re in, they’re hard to get out.
Rodents — Mice and Rats
An average rodent can produce 10 little baby rodents up to 10 times a year. A mouse or rat in a protected environment — your home — can live for 3 years. Meanwhile, their primary mission is to reproduce. Somehow, they know, too, that in an unprotected environment, they’ll be lucky to last a year. That’s why they’ll take advantage of every crack and crevice that their beady little eyes can devour.
Few things are more inviting than open man or garage doors or unscreened windows, but just as often, rodents alone can spy the gap in the dryer vent or that warm, dry spot just beyond the crack in your foundation. Any pipe that runs to or from your house, any shrub or vine that touches the bricks, any tree branch that comes near an attic vent, any area where caulk has failed, all are targets of opportunity for rodents that will chew through walls and electrical wiring, travel the length and breadth of your house, and leave filth behind as they continue to multiply.
Some experts estimate that up to half of all electrical fires with no other obvious cause are due to rodents and their need to chew. Their need to excrete causes problems, too. Those little pellets can carry disease. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website lists 26 diseases that rodents transmit either directly or indirectly to humans.
With all the hotels, visitors and special events the Pittsburgh area hosts, bedbugs can become a concern for anyone. The only thing this tiny brown, flat, six-legged insect wants is human blood and to reproduce. A female can lay five eggs a day, live up to a year and lay 500 eggs in a lifetime. Many times bedbugs hide between the mattress and box spring, but any dark crevice or space that will conceal their 4- to 5-millimeter body will do. They place their eggs in similar places, sometimes even gluing them to bedframes or other vertical surfaces. They are incredibly difficult to exterminate. They can live up to 550 days without feeding, and unless you find every single one, you probably still have bedbugs.
Bedbugs hide in everything, from seams in wooden floors to paper in a wastebasket. Many infestations have happened simply because a guest unknowingly brought an egg or two attached under a luggage flap. The eggs hatch, and you’re now host to an infestation. If someone else’s home is infested, a bedbug could hitch a ride on a purse or in a piece of clothing you’re going to borrow. That bag of clothes you offered to drop at Goodwill for a friend could carry them. The same for the blanket your child’s friend brings for a sleepover. The key is knowing what to look for and catching it quickly.
While typically bedbugs are most active at night, they are creatures of opportunity when a warm body is involved. Many people never feel the bite because bedbugs inject a numbing substance along with an anticoagulant to keep the meal flowing. Instead, victims scratch and wonder at the itchy hive-like welts or rashes that cover their arms or shoulders. While medical authorities debate whether bedbugs carry disease, all agree that the unbearable itching and resulting scratching can lead to infections or hyperallergic reactions requiring medication.
Say the word “termite,” and many people immediately think of the South, but these insects can prove to be costly pests in Pennsylvania and Ohio, too. Although their job title sounds like an ecological benefit — decomposers — termites are disastrous if they decide to set up a subterranean colony near your foundation and feast on your house. All they need is plant matter or wood to eat and access to a water source, often nothing more than condensation or a slow leak.
Most people have no idea these bugs are literally consuming their home until spring brings out a swarm of paired termite kings and queens ready to form new colonies. Sometimes, homeowners are lucky, and the swarming insects have tiny waists and bulbous abdomens, making them flying ants. However, if the wings are all the same length and the bodies are straight, you have termites. As for how you got them, there are some primary suspects. Leaves or mulch piled against the foundations, rotting tree stumps in your yard, firewood stacked nearby or debris in or on spouting can offer food and most likely a home. You may never even know a royal pair spotted that punky trim board by the back door or the pinhole in the foundation mortar until another swarm appears.
Because termites often go undetected for years, they can compromise a home’s structure and safety. They attack anything that is wood, but all too often it’s your structural timbers, such as beams, floor and ceiling joists, subfloors and wall-supporting studs. In our area, the first place to look if you think you might have termites is in the basement, inspecting all wooden features. Although sometimes you may see signs of tunneling, more often only a few minor pinholes in the wood will give them away. This is why an expert will often bring a tool to tap suspect wood and listen for that telltale hollow plunk.
Battling the Colonies
Your pests are an army devouring you and your home, so you shouldn’t have to try to battle them alone. These three pests in particular require specialized, extensive treatment to ensure every last one is gone and that none will re-establish the colony. They are often unresponsive to remedies purchased from big box stores, and many poisons are not only ineffective on them but can be dangerous to people and pets, too. Hersh Exterminating can solve these and any other pest problems that are frustrating you and causing costly repairs, and we can do it safely and effectively. We understand the bites these pests are taking out of your wallet and your peace of mind. Call us, and let us show you how we can help.
Remember, we serve customers in Pennsylvania and Ohio with residential, commercial and industrial locations in Pittsburgh, Butler, Beaver Falls, New Castle, Hermitage, Youngstown, Columbiana, Salem, Warren, Newton Falls and their surrounding communities.