Each part of the United States is home to a variety of different pests. While pest control is not a part of being a homeowner that anyone wants to face, it’s unfortunately something that everyone has to deal with. In this article, we explore the most common pests by region, plus methods to prevent and eradicate them in your own home.
The northeast and its ever-changing weather seasons has its own set of common pests to look out for in your home. First, you're likely to have run-ins with wood-eating bugs including termites, woodboring beetles, powderpost beetles, and carpenter bees and ants. To prevent these from destroying the wood structures in your homes, treat wood structures—before sealing—with a borate product such as Bora-Care or Tim-Bor. You should also reduce moisture around these wood products, as that is what attracts these pests. If you already have any of these wood-eating bugs on or in your house, the best way to get rid of them is to either use chemicals that kill them on the spot or to bait them and kill them to stop reproduction.
Other pests you may run into in the northeast are gophers and chipmunks. Although these animals aren’t typically found inside houses, they can do significant damage to the outside of your house. They are known to burrow underneath your walkways or patios, causing structural damage. To prevent this from happening in your yard, use traps, baits, and natural repellents to keep your yard rodent-free.
Bats are a pest that frequent the southeast region. They like homes that are close to a water source and have an abundance of vegetation around them. While bats are not known to be aggressive, they are considered dangerous because they are commonly carriers of rabies. To prevent an encounter with them, be sure to seal up any holes in your roof that could allow them to enter, and cover any siding openings. Should one enter your home, it’s best to call animal control to have it removed by professionals as bats can act unpredictably.
Ants are also a common pest that plague the southeast. They're known as "nuisance pests" because they don’t pose any danger to those around them, but they invade your space in large numbers and are hard to get rid of. To prevent these invasions, keep your home clean and frequently sweep and vacuum to rid your space of food crumbs. Also ensure that you do not leave anything sweet out, such as open sodas or other sugary drinks. Spray water mixed with vinegar around problem areas to keep ants at bay. Should they enter your home, it's hard to get rid of them without the help of an exterminator. To control the problem, use store-bought traps and sprays to get rid of as many of them as you can while you wait for a professional to arrive.
Moths are known to be a problem in the midwest, posing an issue in homes as they feed on natural fibers and cause damage to your clothes and linens. Moths should be dealt with as soon as an infestation is detected, and it's usually best to call a professional to help rid your home of these bugs. You can minimize the risk of moths entering your home by keeping clothes, curtains, and linens clean since moths thrive off of dirty fabrics. Frequently vacuum fabric products (including clothes!) to remove eggs, and switch off your heat whenever possible during the spring to circulate air.
Another common midwest pest is cockroaches. These off-putting creatures are nocturnal and love dark and damp spots. Deter these bugs from entering your home by keeping trash together in a receptacle with a tight lid, vacuuming regularly, and thoroughly cleaning kitchen appliances.
Scorpions are a scary, yet common, pest of the southwest. These critters don’t particularly like living with humans, however, they sometimes end up in our homes by accident. Should you see one in your space, call a professional to have it removed in order to avoid attaining an excruciatingly painful sting.
Rattlesnakes are a rare creature to encounter in your home or even in your yard, but because of increased housing and building development, it’s entirely possible to have a run-in with these animals in the southwest. Thankfully, their “rattle” is a telltale sign that one is nearby, and if you hear it, you should head in the opposite direction. This is another case that dictates calling animal control to ensure you don’t come face-to-face with their venom.
Carpet beetles are frequently found in the western part of the country. These bugs reside in fibers and eat carpets, fabrics, and even items from your pantry. To stop them from making a debut in your home, vacuum regularly, seal cracks leading into your home, and keep your pet’s bed and living area clean. Should these enter your space, immediately wash infected fabrics and vacuum the infested area to get rid of them once and for all.
In the west, silverfish bugs also frequent homes. This is unfortunate as they are highly destructive critters that thrive in damp conditions such as showers, basements, and kitchens. To prevent these crawlers from entering your space, use a dehumidifier and seal cracks and crevices leading into your home to prevent them from entering. Should you experience a silverfish infestation, purchase an insecticide aerosol that is safe for humans and pets.
All of these pests can cause unwanted annoyances in your home, so practice prevention in line with the most common pests of your area. Remember that keeping infestations at bay is the best method for keeping your home the sanctuary you want it to be!
Sara LeDuc is a freelance writer for DoItYourself.com. She also writes for a handful of other websites and platforms. She has been growing her skills and client base for the past two years, but has been passionate about writing for as long as she can remember. She has worked with Internet Brands for over three years and enjoys learning about &mdash; and completing &mdash; DIY projects and keeping up with the latest and greatest home improvement trends.
Besides her work for DoItYourself.com, Sara also has worked with retail, human resources, fitness, commercial, and medical clients to help them increase client engagement, grow their&nbsp;following, and drive traction to their blogs and websites. Sara has furthered her skills and reach by working as an editor with a media company. This has helped her diversify her abilities as a writer and work with additional writers, editors, and a wider range of clients.
Sara enjoys continuously learning and building her skills in the field by working on SEO campaigns and outreach programs to increase the visibility of her freelance clients. She loves being creative, pitching article and post ideas to clients, learning more about the freelance industry, and completing DIY projects.
H.R. Helm is an accomplished DIY craftsman. He has been DIY since childhood and is now a septuagenarian. He is experienced in wood and metal construction, having designed and built several houses and metal buildings. He built every permanent building on his current homestead and did all the plumbing and electrical work.
He has several years experience as a professional cabinet builder, and he is an accomplished auto repairman, having operated an auto repair business for many years. He currently has a home shop where he sharpens and rebuilds saws, repairs lawn mowers, mobility scooters, hydraulic jacks, and anything else that comes along. He also builds custom tools for metal working.
Invention prototypes are another of his many accomplishments. He owned and operated a manufacturing business building Compact Utility Vehicles for homeowner use. H.R. enjoys making jams and jellies during fruit season along with cooking meals. He is committed to outdoor cooking in a Bar-B-Q pit he welded together several years ago. He maintains fruit and nut trees along with helping his wife with a vegetable garden. He farmed commercial garden produce for several years. It helps to have over 50 years of farming and ranching experience.
ASE Certified Master Auto Technician
Cross country truck driver -- over dimensional freight
Design Engineer/Project Manager for injection molded plastic company
Bus Driver/Substitute Teacher
Inventor with two patents (weight training &ndash; anti-rollback for manual wheelchair)
BS in Industrial Technology