Avoid Stinging Pests in Arizona This Fall

Yes, we’re talking about Fall when it’s still 110-degrees outside, but it’s important to be prepared for Fall pests, especially here in Arizona.

We’ve been talking a lot about termites, and in the Fall termites become a big nuisance, wreaking havoc on Arizona homes, particularly around Gilbert, Mesa, Queen Creek and the East Valley.

In the Fall, pests like wasps, bees and termites tend to get a bit grumpy. I know you’re shaking your head, but it’s true. They’ve been working hard all through the summer to keep the queen and her babies happy and healthy. In the Fall, it’s time to move, relocate and find food…

Which could mean more termites and bees and wasps in your neighborhood, especially this year. With the humid and wet monsoon season we’ve had, termites, bees and wasps will be on the move.

At the end of summer and beginning of Fall, which is what we’re coming into, birds, snakes and lizards start to hoard food. They began to get ready for the winter, when food will be tougher to find.

This means that birds, snakes and lizards will be on the hunt for termites, bees, wasps and everything else they can get their hands on…

This is another reason why termites, bees, wasps and everything else will be on the move…to stay safe.

If you think you might have termites migrating to your home, don’t try to deal with these pests yourself. They can cause far too much damage. Call in a Magic Pest Control expert!

Kandice Linwright No Comments

Fire Ants in Arizona?

Fire Ants in Arizona?

With all the flooding and devastation in Houston and all over Eastern Texas, you’ve probably seen a story or two about fire ants and their amazing ability to survive nearly anything. But fire ants are no joke. They attack with ferocious strength and teamwork.

Don’t let their size fool you. Fire ants can be incredibly dangerous….

Here at Magic Pest Control, our main priority is to keep your home free from termites. Termites easily cause the most damage to home and family, leaving you financially burdened after the cleanup. Termites are our number one priority.

Scorpions, black widows, bees…all of these pests do more than bother you, they can be dangerous.

Fire ants are just as devastating.

Fire Ant Prevention: Fire ants love dry, bare and had soil. That’s why you tend to see more ant, including fire ant, activity when it’s over 100-degrees outside. Not so much in monsoon season, but when the air is dry and the ground becomes cracked and compacted, fire ants flourish. Inside your home, it’s also very important to keep things clean. Leaving crumbs lying around makes for happy fire ants.

Fire Ants vs Regular Ants: Telling the difference between fire ants and regular ants is simple; just look for the red. In Arizona, we have the Red Imported Fire Ants and the Southern Fire Ant. In most situations, when you’re seeing fire ants they are the Southern Fire Ant. While still aggressive and dangerous, Southern Fire Ants aren’t nearly as dangerous as the Red Imported Fire Ant.

Fire Ant Sting: If you notice blistering occurring after being stung or after stepping on an ant mound, seek out medical advice. Some people experience an allergic reaction to a fire ant sting. Symptoms may include sweating, slurred speech, chest pain, shortness of breath, hives, swelling, nausea, vomiting, and/or shock.

As with any pest, you’ll want to call in the pest control professionals.

Monsoon Season Termite Check

Termites have been invading Arizona homes for generations. From some of the very first homes built here in Gilbert, to the stucco homes we have now, termites will invade now just as easily as they did then.

While Gilbert doesn’t have an infestation of termites, this monsoon season has given termites a bit more room to wander.

You see, termites love damp and moist and soft dirt. They especially love damp and rotting wood. And as Monsoon season comes to a close, we have a lot of rotting wood to contend with.

Here are some things to look out for:

Rotting Wood: If this monsoon season has left any rotting wood on your home, particularly around the trim or in the attic, you’ll want to get that fixed as soon as possible. Rotting wood, left untreated, is like a calling beacon for termites.

Damp Firewood: Maybe you’ve been collecting firewood for the winter to use in that backyard fire pit. Well, with the monsoon season we’ve had here in Gilbert, Arizona, you might want to double check that wood pile. Check for signs of termites like mud tubes, wood shavings on the ground, and the termites themselves.

Attic Boxes: Termites don’t just go through wood, they love to chew through paper and storage boxes. If you have holiday items in the attic, or boxes of books up there as well, now is a great time to get up in the attic to check for termites.

As monsoon season comes to an end, you want to make absolutely sure that you have no food for termites. Call the termite professionals at Magic Pest Control for more information.

How To Prevent Mosquito Illness

How To Prevent Mosquito Illness

Monsoon season is not over yet, and the mosquitoes are just beginning to become bothersome. But, mosquitoes are more than bothersome, they can be quite dangerous.

From the Zika Virus to the West Nile Virus to more common illnesses, mosquitoes can carry all sorts of dangerous diseases.

Did you know that Magic Pest Control does mosquito fogging? Keep mosquitoes away from your home, pets and family by having a pest control expert come out and fog for mosquitoes. There is no better way to keep mosquitoes away from your family.

While mosquitoes carrying fatal diseases are not incredibly common, there is still a high percentage of Arizona mosquitoes that can be extremely dangerous, particularly to children and seniors.

To help prevent mosquitoes and mosquito bites:

  • Eliminate standing water where mosquitoes can lay their eggs. Check for items outside the home that collect water, such as cans, bottles, jars, buckets, old tires, drums and other containers and get rid of them.
  • Change water in flower vases, birdbaths, planters, troughs, and animal watering pans at least twice a week. Be sure to scrub them out when changing water.
  • Repair leaky pipes and outside faucets, and move air conditioner drain hoses frequently to prevent standing water.
  • If you have a swimming pool, keep it operational. If you must keep it out of use, make sure you remove the standing water, keep it chlorinated, or run the filter daily.
  • Even a short time being outdoors can be long enough to get a mosquito bite. Take extra care to use insect repellent and protective clothing. When outdoors, use an EPA-registered and CDC approved insect repellent.
  • Keep mosquitoes outside by having well-fitting screens on both windows and doors.

If you have mosquitoes at your home, the best thing you can do is give Magic Pest Control a call. We’ll take care of those mosquitoes for you!

How the Solar Eclipse Will Impact Termites, Scorpions and More…

How the Solar Eclipse Will Impact Termites, Scorpions and More…

Today, at roughly 10:35 am, Gilbert, Arizona will see the totality of the solar eclipse. Our Magic Pest Control offices here in Gilbert should see the full eclipse, about 64% of the sun covered, at this time in the morning. We can’t wait.

But, many of our pest control professionals will be at your homes, working hard to make sure when the moon passes across the sun, termites, scorpions and all kinds of bugs don’t run for cover inside your home.

Research has shown that during a solar eclipse, like the one we’ll have today, birds and insects alter their song patterns and behavior. Spiders tear down webs and start building new ones. And animals of all types generally act a little different than normal.

While zoos and animal preserves are being asked to record how the animals behave during the solar eclipse, some researchers and scientists believe that nocturnal animals…those animals who are more active in the evenings…will get confused and start to get active in the middle of the day.

If this is true, termites and scorpions could be more active today than expected. With our high humidity days and active monsoon season, termites have already been very active. With the solar eclipse this morning, we expect termites and scorpions to make their way into your homes at a much faster rate.

If you see any signs of termites or scorpions on your property, call us immediately. Our termite treatment professionals waste no time getting those termites at the source.

Is Your Yard a Breeding Ground for Mosquitoes?

You yard might be infested with mosquito eggs right now, and you’d have no idea. Your neighbor’s yard, or your neighborhood green belt might be infested with mosquito eggs right now, all waiting to hatch and invade your property.

Mosquitoes are resilient creatures, having been around since before the dawn of man (remember the movie Jurassic Park). They are not only resilient, the amazing monsoon season we’ve seen here in Arizona these past two months has made conditions ripe for a mosquito invasion.

With hot and humid temperatures, combined with an enormous amount of rain and soil that seems to remain damp for days on end, mosquitoes are breeding like there’s no tomorrow.

Mosquitoes need water to breed. They need standing water, or in some cases moist soil, to lay their eggs. Mosquitoes need humid environments to keep those eggs healthy. A mosquito life cycle has four stages, all of which depend on water and food.

If you have any standing water around your home, you can apply larvicide and treat the area, although it’s best to call in a pest control expert to do it for you.

Mosquitoes can live up to 8 months, as long as they survive hungry birds and swatting hands. During that time they’ll continue to breed and lay eggs if the environment is right…like right now.

Here are some ways to control mosquitoes around your home:

  • Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers that have accumulated on your property.
  • Empty standing water from used or discarded tires (pdf) that may have accumulated on your property (e.g. tire swings).
  • Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers that are left out of doors.
  • Clean clogged roof gutters on an annual basis, particularly if the leaves from surrounding trees have a tendency to plug up the drains.
  • Turn over plastic wading pools when not in use.
  • Turn over wheelbarrows and do not allow water to stagnate in birdbaths.
  • Change water in birdbaths and wading pools on a weekly basis.
  • Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with fish.
  • Clean and chlorinate swimming pools that are not being used. Be aware that mosquitoes may even breed in the water that collects on swimming pool covers.

If your mosquito problem is beyond control, call in the Magic Pest Control experts. We now fog for mosquitoes!

What Do Termites Look Like?

What Do Termites Look Like?

It’s important to be able to tell the difference between a termite and an ant. Particularly now, when we’ve had such a wet and humid monsoon season, and the ground is soft and easy to dig through…

Termites are loving this weather, and Arizona is seeing more termites this year than in years past. We’ve not only been getting more termite calls than any year in recent history, we’ve been hearing about other pest control companies seeing an influx of termite infestations as well.

Why are termites so active right now in Arizona? Because we’ve had such a wet and rainy monsoon season, which termites love. they might not love the downpour of rain, but they love the aftermath; moist and soft dirt, rotting wood and more cracks in your home and trim.

so, right now it’s crucial that you can tell the difference between an ant and a termite.

The Desert subterranean termite is one of the most common subterranean termites in Arizona.

It does somewhat resemble and ant, and thus can be confused for ants. You don’t want to make that mistake. It could cost you thousands in home damage.

Termite or Ant?

The easiest way to tell the difference between a termite and an ant is their body size and structure. Ants come in all colors, while termites are usually dark brown or black. Termites also have a long, straight abdomen while ants have sections to their body with shorter abdomens.

If you’re trying to tell the difference between a flying termite and a flying ant, the easiest way to tell the difference is by noticing the shape of their wings. Ants have shorter, fatter wings. Termites have longer, skinnier wings, almost like a small dragonfly.

If you’re still unsure whether you’re looking at a termite or ant, and you’ve got dozens of them, or hundreds of them, crawling around, don’t make the mistake of labeling them as the wrong thing. You absolutely need to call in an expert.

DIY Mosquito Repellent: Keep Mosquitoes Away This Season

DIY Mosquito Repellent: Keep Mosquitoes Away This Season

We’ve gotten a lot of rain this monsoon season, and the mosquitoes are out in full force. Technically, it’s not even mosquito season yet, but the rain and the pretty extreme humidity has made the Arizona valley a breeding ground for mosquitoes…quite literally.

Did you know that Magic Pest Control does mosquito fogging? Yes, we have to tools to keep mosquitoes out of your yard and away from your home.

But for today’s blog, we thought we’d give you some DIY ways to keep mosquitoes away from your property, pets and loved ones.

Get Rid of Stagnant Water: After a rain, it’s common to have puddles of stagnant water around the yard. But this is what calls to mosquitoes. This is exactly what mosquitoes need to survive and multiply. Stagnant, standing puddles of water near or around your Phoenix home will attract thousands of mosquitoes who will multiply quickly. If you have any standing water around your home or in your Phoenix yard, get rid of it.

Natural Repellents: There are certain scents and plants that mosquitoes tend to avoid. Citronella candles can partially do the trick, but better yet is to get citronella plants. They secrete a scent that mosquitoes avoid. Lavender also keeps mosquitoes away. So planting planting lavender might be a good idea.

BBQ Party: If you have people coming over this weekend and want some additional DIY ideas to keep mosquitoes away from your Phoenix home, consider tossing some rosemary on the BBQ. As with citronella and lavender, mosquitoes hate the scent of rosemary. Toss some on the bbq before and during your outdoor party, and the mosquitoes will stay away.

Add Some Garlic: In my family, we can never have enough garlic. It’s not only great for your body, it’s also great for your Phoenix home as a repellent to mosquitoes. So toss some more on that burger on the BBQ!

Mosquito Traps: While not as effective as having Magic Pest Control professionals come out and fog your property, mosquito traps can be useful for containing your mosquito problem.

The best solution to get rid of mosquitoes this time of year is to call Magic Pest Control and have us come out to fog.

Coming Out of the Woodworking: Termites in Gilbert, AZ

Coming Out of the Woodworking: Termites in Gilbert, AZ

Termites are a silent devastation to Gilbert homes, and you probably don’t even realize it. All over Gilbert, Arizona, termites lurk quietly in the shadows.

Ok, that sounds a bit dramatic, but it is true that termites can invade your Gilbert home at any time, without warning…especially this time of year. The soil is soft and easy to dig through. The wood on your home might be softer than usual due to the extreme rain we’ve seen this year. And the trim around your house might be cracked and basically yelling to termites “come invade my home.”

Subterranean Termites

These little pests will grow in number by leaps in bounds while invading your home. They multiply quickly, and find their strength in numbers. Before you know it, you’ll literally have thousands of subterranean termites within the walls of your Gilbert home.

While singularly, this type of termite is “less damaging” then other termite types, if your Gilbert home has subterranean termites, their ability to multiply will make the damage that much more devastating.

Dampwood and Drywood Termites

These two types of termites are far more damaging than subterranean termites. In Gilbert homes and businesses that receive the most financial damage from termites, these are the culprits. And, just as their names imply, drywood termites prefer dryer wood, where as dampwod termites prefer softer, wet wood…just the kind we’re seeing right now during monsoon season.

Termites In General…

They are extremely durable creatures, living for thousands upon thousands of years because of their durability. They can survive nearly anything…except our termite treatment.

The best way to avoid costly damage to your Gilbert home is to know the signs of a termite infestation before it becomes too damaging. And call in the experts. Never try to take care of termites on your own.

Monsoon Season Gilbert Brings Out the Scorpions

Monsoon Season Gilbert Brings Out the Scorpions

Monsoon season doesn’t just bring termites in seek of rotting wood. Monsoon season also brings out the cockroaches and the scorpions, all seeking food and shelter. Many of these Arizona pests actually love monsoon season!

Scorpions are on the hunt. They’re looking for dry shelter, but they’re also looking for food. And, since the rain brings out the cockroaches, scorpions are not far behind.

As insects make their way out to find shelter from the rain and flooding of their little homes, scorpions make their way out to eat.

You’ll want to seal up your home this time of year not only from the heat and rain, but also from the scorpions and other summertime monsoon pests.

Anything that lives underground in Gilbert, Arizona and throughout the desert, will come out big time when it rains. And, since we’ve seen a lot of rain recently, scorpions are already out and seeking food and new shelter. You’re not the only one who loves to be indoors during a haboob and torrential downpour.

To keep scorpions out, residents should do something called “exclusion,” such as the following preventative actions:

  • Install door sweeps on exterior doors, including garage doors that don’t close all the way, to keep scorpions out
  • Seal gaps in windows, thresholds and other places that could allow a scorpion to gain entrance to the home
  • Remove debris and clutter from around the exterior of the home, including piles of firewood, yard supplies, vegetation growing close to the house and anything else that would provide a hiding spot and hunting ground for a scorpion

If that doesn’t do the trick, and scorpions are still entering your Gilbert home during monsoon downpours, call us immediately!