The Dangers of Fleas & Ticks in Vermont

Ticks and fleas are dangerous and can transmit disease in Vermont - Vermont Pest Control

Fleas and ticks may be tiny insects, but they can be two of the most dangerous pests. This is because they are parasitic, meaning they have to feed on the blood of their hosts to survive. As if this wasn’t scary enough—fleas and ticks are capable of transmitting some of the world’s most dangerous diseases. Cats and dogs are most commonly affected by fleas and ticks, but are they dangerous to people as well? Unfortunately, yes! Ticks in particular can transmit blood-borne diseases (including Lyme disease) to people. For this reason, it’s very important to do everything in your power to prevent fleas and ticks on your family and pets.

Diseases Spread by Fleas

When you think of fleas, you likely think of your pets. In addition to getting on your pets, fleas are often brought into the home on rodents if you have an infestation. Although it’s rare, fleas can get onto humans, too. These tiny, reddish brown insects can cause itchy bites and, in serious cases, allergic reactions. Fleas have been linked back to typhus, plague, cat scratch disease, and tapeworms. Because these diseases can be dangerous for you and your pets, it’s essential to prevent fleas.

Tick-Borne Diseases

Ticks can similarly latch onto pets or people, especially outdoors in areas with high grass. There are several types of ticks, and many of them are able to transmit disease. The most common of these is Lyme disease which, if left untreated, can cause damage to the heart and nervous system. Other diseases associated with ticks include Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMDF), Ehrlichiosis, and Tularemia. With such a list, it’s crucial to stay aware of ticks whenever you are outdoors.

How to Prevent Fleas & Ticks

To prevent fleas and ticks, the number one thing you can do is regularly check your pets for them. Especially after a walk or hike, look at your cat or dog’s fur for these tiny insects. Also consider getting preventative medicines from your veterinarian. Fleas and ticks are most often carried by rodents and wildlife. To prevent the parasitic insects, you must also prevent nuisance wildlife infestations. To do so, try implementing the following tips:

  1. Keep a tidy and clean landscape by avoiding piles of debris, mowing the lawn, and trimming back trees and foliage.
  2. Ensure garbage cans are securely stored with a tight-fitting lid.
  3. Don’t leave pet food—or any other food for that matter—outside.
  4. Because fleas cannot survive in direct sunlight, keeping your home and yard sunny may be a natural deterrent.
  5. Seal holes and any areas of entry into the home to detract rodents from getting inside. 

Preventing Fleas and Ticks in Vermont

Vermont is home to both of these dangerous insects, making it important to learn how to effectively prevent them. If you notice flea or ticks nearby and have more questions, the residential pest control experts at Vermont Pest Control are here to help. Contact us today to learn more!

Identifying Different Wasp Nests

Summertime in Vermont means more insects buzzing around. While this is to be expected, it’s important to keep an eye out for an increase in wasp activity. If you’ve observed a growing number of wasps flying to or from a certain area near your home, there’s a likely chance a nest is nearby. Wasp nests should never be approached—doing so puts you at risk of being stung.

Regardless, it’s important to learn how to identify the many different types of wasp nests you may see near your Vermont property. Read on to learn everything you need to know about wasp nest identification with the experts at Vermont Pest Control.

What Do Different Wasp Nests Look Like?

Different wasps build different nests, and it’s easy to confuse them. Here are the main types of nests we see in our region:

  • Paper wasps. Their nests famously look like upside-down umbrellas. These nests are often open and can get quite large in size. They are typically supported by a single stalk and consist of a paper-like material.
  • Yellowjackets. Nests are a papery material and have a single opening. The inside of a yellowjacket nest can have up to 100 tiers of cells. Yellowjackets can also build underground nests that can be enormous in size.
  • Mud daubers. True to name, these nests are made out of mostly mud. The nests are small and tubular in size, often looking like organ pipes. They are typically found in cracks or crevices.
  • Bald-faced hornets. These nests are almost always at least three feet off the ground. They are made of chewed wood fibers mixed with saliva. They often grow to be the size of a football or basketball.

Wasp nest infographic - Vermont Pest Control

Are Wasp Nests Always in Trees?

No! Wasp nests certainly can be in trees, but they often are built on buildings and in other spots as well. Paper wasp nests can be located under and within the eaves of structures, in attics and wall voids, and in other enclosed areas. Yellowjackets favor areas near the ground, in hollow trees, under porches, and a number of other areas.

Mud daubers tend to build their nests in sheltered areas, including under eaves, garages, attics, or on the sides of buildings. Lastly, the bald-faced hornet builds its nest oftentimes in trees, bushes, or wooded areas, but they also can build them on buildings.

What to Do About a Wasp Nest Near Your Home

If you noticed a wasp nest on or near your property, don’t panic. For the most part, wasps will not sting unless they feel threatened. Therefore, attempting to knock down a nest on your own is never recommended. Always call your local wasp control experts for help with any type of stinging insect.

Here’s How to Prevent Mosquitoes This Summer

Here's how to prevent mosquitoes in your Vermont property this summer - Vermont Pest Control

What is better than summertime in Vermont? Beautiful weather encourages everyone to spend more time outdoors. Unfortunately, mosquitoes love the summertime as much as you do. With mosquito season gearing up, now is the time to learn how to prevent mosquitoes in your yard. These pesky insects aren’t just a nuisance–they can be dangerous, too. The team at Vermont Pest Control knows how frustrating mosquitoes can be, which is why we are providing you with our best tips to prevent mosquitoes this summer. Read on to learn more!

Prevent Mosquitoes in 5 Steps

Mosquitoes are picky when it comes to choosing a place to breed and inhabit. By reducing the things around your yard that may attract mosquitoes, you can potentially avoid an infestation. Our best tips to prevent mosquitoes are:

  1. Maintain your yard. Regularly maintain your garden and lawn to keep the grass short. Also keep plants and bushes trimmed to prevent mosquito resting spots.
  2. Eliminate all standing water. Get rid of standing water in buckets, flower pots, bird baths, tarps, and more. Mosquitoes use standing water to breed!
  3. Install screens on windows and doors. Installing screens on your doors and windows can keep mosquitoes from getting indoors every time you try to get some fresh air.
  4. Place fish in ponds and agitate the water. Certain types of fish will feed on mosquito larvae. In addition, adding an agitator will stop mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water.
  5. Use fans in your outdoor spaces. Mosquitoes hate wind and are not strong fliers. Use fans to help force them away from your outdoor areas.

How to Prevent Mosquito Bites

We all know that mosquitoes tend to go after certain individuals. Even if you’re not prone to getting bitten, it’s important to take precautions regardless. Try to avoid going outdoors at dusk and dawn, as this is when mosquitoes are most active. When you do go outdoors, wear long-sleeved pants and shirts. It’s also smart to wear light-colored clothing. Following the manufacturer’s instructions, consider applying insect repellent that contains DEET. If you plan on using it on your children, always consult your pediatrician before application.

Mosquito Control in Vermont

Whether you have an upcoming outdoor event or a family barbecue, it’s smart to prepare for mosquitoes to make an appearance. By getting rid of the things that attract mosquitoes, you can keep your family safe. If you need more info on mosquito prevention, give us a call today!