Pest Czar was rated as one of the best pest control companies in Baltimore by ThreeBest Rated! ThreeBest Rated rates companies based on factors like history, reviews, cost, trust and overall reputation. Read about us here: https://threebestrated.com/pest-control-companies-in-baltimore-md.
It's official! We are now licensed by the Department of Energy and Environment to provide pest control services in Washington, D.C.!
Pest Czar customers who refer friends, family, property managers and business owners who are located in Washington D.C. will receive a 10% discount off their next service! With this development, we plan to seek more customers throughout Columbia, Silver Spring and Landover as well. If you see our trucks on 495, please give a honk and a thumbs up!
Do you know how to handle your stinging insect problem? Effective and efficient treatment of stinging insects involves the following:
•Obtaining adequate information and photos about the pest issue
•Identifying the insect by their looks, their nests, and behaviors
•Knowing good times to treat aggressive insects
•Knowing where these insects may build their nests
•Being prepared with proper equipment
If you have a problem with stinging insects, you should contact a pest control professional who can properly identify and safely treat your issue. Often special dusts, sprays, tools, equipment and safety gear are needed to treat stinging insects.
Facts about wasps, hornets and bees in Maryland:
•Can sting several times, not just once.
•Have black and yellow body, not furry
•Build their nests in places like hollowed out trees, underground, and sometimes in walls or under roofs. Nests are often hidden and not visible.
•They build nests with hexagonal cells. They chew wood to make a paper-like pulp to build their nests
•Has a queen for every nest. Nests are usually about the size of a soccer ball and can house around 4,000-5,000 workers who feed and protect the queen.
•Lives in the nest during the spring/summer, then the colony dies off in the winter months.
•Typically eat nectar and fruit, sometimes eat other insects, and can be attracted to sweet human food, might fly around garbage cans
•Most active/aggressive during daytime hours
•Black with white markings on their body, with a largely white “bald” face
•Have enclosed nests about the size of a soccer ball and are grey and paper-like. They build their nests off the ground, often in hedges, trees or on the outside of a building.
•Have worker hornets can be seen flying in and out of the nest, with the larger queen hornet staying protected inside.
•Can become very aggressive when they sense a threat and can sting multiple times
• Most active/aggressive during daytime hours
•Is not as aggressive as some other stinging insects though may attack if threatened.
•Has a black or brown and yellow body
•Creates open comb nests out of wood pulp that look papery
•Build usually small nests in sheltered areas, such as the eaves of a house, the branches of a tree, or on the end of an open pipe
•Usually eat nectar and other insects
•Common name comes from their habit of boring into wood.
•Do not eat wood but cause damage to structures by drilling circular holes to create tunnels inside wood.
•Unlike other common bees, such as honeybees and bumble bees that live in colonies, this insect is not social and builds individual nests into trees outdoors or into the frames, eaves or sides of buildings.
•Large, slower moving, black/brown body with yellow fur
•Larger than most stinging insects, bodies are brown with yellow stripes on their abdomens, brownish tint to wings
•Can sting multiple times
•Attracted to fallen fruit, tree sap
•Unlike most stinging insects, these are most active at night and might require an evening inspection
•Attracted to exterior lights, or may bang into windows when attracted to interior lights. Using yellow bulbs on exterior is advised to keep them away
•Create nests in hollow trees, barns, out buildings, hollow walls of houses, attics and abandoned beehives. Nest has a brown, papery look though is often hidden.
•Usually about ½ to 1 inch long. Black with pale markings or a blue metallic luster. Has a “thread-waisted” body, meaning the segment is very thin between the thorax and abdomen. Clear or dark wings.
•Constructs nest of mud, sometimes in cracks and holes in buildings. Can be found low to the ground or high up in buildings like in the sidings, door frames, or attics.
•They are not typically dangerous, but other more dangerous stinging insects can take over their nests
•Solitary insects, do not live in colonies
•Solitary bees that create underground galleries, often creating large amounts of holes in yards
•Have a furry black and tan body
•Create entrances to the nests that are small piles or patches of bare soil. They do not form hives
•Queens do not defend their nesting areas and are very docile and unlikely to sting, posing little or no threat to people.
•Males can be very active and seem aggressive, they lack a sting and are also harmless.
•Forage for nectar and pollen from flowers
•Larger than most other wasps– they can be up to 1 ⅝ inch in length.
•Orange tinted wings and can have a noisy buzz.
•Have a sting that paralyzes cicadas.
•Females that can sting when threatened, but males that don’t sting
•Commonly found from July through September.
•Create burrows in the ground. Holes can be found in spots such as beneath shrubs or close to sidewalks.
•Furry golden-yellow colors and brown bands.
•Create wax hives are often located in the holes of trees and on rock crevices when in the wild. They can also build hives inside walls of buildings
•Do not hibernate during cold periods unlike other bees. Instead, they remain inside the nests huddled closely together.
•Can sting if threatened
•Call a beekeeper to remove honeybees. Do not contact a pest control company, you do not want to kill beneficial insects.
Just the sight of a hornets nest can be disconcerting, and when it's on your property, it's even more worrisome! In Maryland, if you see a hornet nest on a tree or outside of your home, it's often the work of a bald-faced hornet.
Bald-faced hornets are a relative of the yellow jacket and are black with white markings on their body, with a largely white face which is why they are called "bald-faced". Their nests are about the size of a soccer ball and are grey and paper-like. They build their nests off the ground, often in hedges, trees or on the outside of a building. Worker hornets can be seen flying in and out of the nest, with the larger queen hornet staying protected inside.
Bald faced hornets can become very aggressive when they sense a threat and can sting multiple times. Often, a ladder or extension pole is required to reach the nest. It is best to contact a pest professional if you have a bald-faced hornet nest on your property so they can safely treat and remove the nest.
Pictured above: Our technician Cody removing a bald faced hornet nest from a customer's hedge.
Now that the weather has dried up a little, we can get back to doing one of our favorite services: yellow jacket elimination!
Fun facts about yellow jackets:
A typical yellow jacket service starts with a technician identifying the location of the nest, which is usually best done in the middle of the day when the insects are most active and we can see them flying in and out of the nest. The treatment, however, is usually best done in the early morning or late evening when most yellow jackets are inside the nest and not active, which reduces the risk of them getting aggressive during the treatment. Our technicians wear a bee suit and gloves for protection, then use contact/flushing agents to kill any yellow jackets in the nest on contact. We also apply a residual dust that will continuously eliminate yellow jackets that come in contact with the product, so if any yellow jackets come back to the nest, they will die.
In jobs where the nest is underground, we are often able to remove the entire nest from the site, but in cases where nests are inside walls, we will leave the nest behind but all yellow jackets will be killed. Sometimes when yellow jackets are inside walls in a home, we need to use a thermal imaging camera to find the exact location before cutting into the drywall to treat the nest.
If you have yellow jackets on your property, contact a pest professional to help. Yellow jackets can be very aggressive and their stings can cause allergic reactions. Climbing ladders and killing yellow jackets should be left to the professionals!
Warm weather is upon us, and most people are itching to get outdoors. However, the itch from mosquito bites can deter many homeowners from enjoying their own backyard. Luckily, we offer easy tips and safe mosquito treatments to reduce the population of mosquitoes around your property.
The best way to reduce the number of mosquitoes in your yard is to eliminate stagnant water. A mosquito only needs a bottle cap full of water to breed. Follow the 5 T's to keep mosquitoes to a minimum around your property:
Following through with the 5 T's is your best chance to prevent mosquitoes. Of course, if you want extra protection from the pesky insects, you can take additional common sense measures like the following:
Contact us if you would like more information on our monthly mosquito sprays during the mosquito season (May through October). Our formulas are safe to use on plants and does not endanger humans, animals or bees!
Cockroaches are one of the most dreaded pests. Seeing a cockroach in your home can cause feelings of stress, shame, fear, and just being dirty. Having cockroaches in your home also poses increased risk of asthma and allergies as their saliva, feces and shedding body parts can cause symptoms when you come into contact with them. Cockroaches are nocturnal and are often spotted in dark moist places, so can be an unwelcome sight in your kitchen. Seeing cockroaches in the daytime could mean you have a more serious infestation. They are omnivorous and feed on food scraps, pet food and even book bindings. They are often seen around sinks and kitchen appliances and can quickly flatten their bodies to squeeze into wall cracks, leaving you wondering how to get rid of them.
There are 3 species of cockroaches found in Maryland: German, Oriental and American. German cockroaches in particular are very common in homes, restaurants, and businesses in the Baltimore area.
German cockroaches are light brown and are about 10-15 mm in length. They depend on humans for survival and thrive in places like kitchens and bathrooms. Like all cockroaches, German cockroaches reproduce quickly. A pregnant female cockroach will create an egg casing called an ootheca which stays attached to its body until the eggs hatch. Each ootheca contains dozens of baby cockroaches (nymphs), usually 30-50 nymphs per ootheca. Each female cockroach produces an average of 4-6 oothecae in its lifetime, which is one reason why cockroach infestations can be so difficult to control.
The best way to eliminate cockroaches is to prevent them from appearing at all. Be diligent about cleaning your kitchen surfaces. Seal up cracks/gaps in areas that are prone to infestations. Fix water leaks immediately. Sometimes, even while being proactive against pests, cockroaches can still be introduced into your property through a delivered package or by overflowing from your neighbors. Once cockroaches have entered your home, call a pest professional so we can resolve the issue effectively and efficiently.
The temperatures are slowly warming up in Baltimore and around Maryland, and that means more pests! Spring is a time when many pests and insects in particular re-emerge and become active again. The population of ants, termites, stinging insects, and fleas will be blooming along with springtime flowers very soon. Read the following information to help you get ready for the pest surge:
ANTS AND CARPENTER ANTS
When the temperatures warm up, small odorous ants which normally live in the soil may enter your home if they detect the slightest amount of food. Their colonies will grow over time, so the best solution is to be meticulous about cleaning food scraps and seek professional pest control treatment for stubborn ant problems.
Carpenter ants feed on wood and are usually found on the exterior of homes. They can create nests and colonies nearby or in your home and cause damage by creating tunnels in the wood. Try to keep extra wood and debris away from your home to keep them from damaging your structure. Once you have a carpenter ant problem, you will generally need a pest control professional to treat the affected area for you. Carpenter ants are likely to recur every year, so be diligent about treating them at the first sign of activity.
Many people don't realize that wasps, hornets or yellow jackets may find shelter in attics and wall voids during winter. Once springtime hits, they will become active again and start reproducing. If you do see a stinging insect in your home, look for gaps around your home to determine where the insects are flying in and out.Get a good look at the insects and take pictures of any insect bodies or nests so that a pest control professional can more easily identify which species is nesting in or around your home. Properly identifying the insect is the first step to treating the problem.
Spiders are often found in basements, garages, porches and other sheltered places. You may notice an increase in spiders during the spring because there are more insects around for them to eat. Though spiders may be scary to look at, you may want to keep them around as they are beneficial insects that can help you control the amount of other insects in and around your home.
HOUSEFLIES AND FRUIT FLIES
Once flies are in your home, there is not much that can be done, so prevention is key. Keep your doors closed to prevent flies from flying in. Window and door screens should also be installed and should have no rips or tears. Also, make sure you are disposing of excess/rotting food and water so that you are not attracting flies or other pests. Luckily, flies don't live very long, so once you remove the source that's attracting them, you should see a quick decrease of flies.
Termites become most active in the spring and summer. Termites can cause significant damage to your home by eating wood and leaving behind "mud tubes", often in the basement. Fortunately, they can be controlled by ongoing monitoring and baiting, or liquid treatments. Homeowners often describe termites as "winged ants", because they can look like ants with wings, however make sure you call a pest control professional as soon as possible at the first sighting of termites or termite damage.
Fleas can become a big problem in the spring. Make sure you are regularly grooming and treating your pets to prevent fleas. Also, simple good housekeeping like vacuuming and cleaning floors frequently will reduce the risk of a flea infestation. Flea infestations are difficult to treat on your own, so contact a pest control professional at the first sign of fleas before the issue gets worse.
RATS AND MICE
Rodents are a year-round problem, but sometimes they appear in homes for the first time in the spring. Make sure your doors fit well and seal any gaps around your home prevent pest entry. Also make sure your food and pet food are tightly contained.
Wildlife like birds, snakes,squirrels, and groundhogs may appear on your property in the spring. If they enter your home or burrow around your structure, seek a wildlife professional to remove the animals before they start causing damage to your home. Proper vent covers on vents and chicken wire or lattice work under your sheds and porches can deter animals from creating havoc.
Christmas is almost here! If you haven't picked out your Christmas tree yet, you will want to watch this interview with Pest Czar's Owner, Sasa Milenkovic. The segment aired on December 5 on Baltimore's ABC2 News station. Though extreme infestations do not often happen, there could be up to 25,000 pests (usually aphids, mites and spiders) in one Christmas Tree. Pest Czar has advice for keeping these uninvited guests out of your home.