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A-Landlords Pest Management
Bed Bug

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs have extraordinarily small bodies with a brown camouflage, they lay eggs everywhere, and are easily transferred, allowing them to infest entire homes and businesses. Bed bugs, often found in mattresses, bedding, clothing, furniture, and more can be recognized by the musty odor they exude, the brown and black spots on infected surfaces, blood stains on mattresses and bedding from crushed bed bugs, or their bite marks. Bed bug bites emit a burning sensation and generally are several red marks in a precise line.

Ant

Ants

Carpenter ants are only one species of ants which could infest your home or business. They have large black bodies and typically nest in wood able to retain moisture and easily accessible from the soil like wood porch structures, window frames, and door frames. You have an infestation if you see swarms of flying ants in the spring around wood structures, these are the adult ants leaving the nest to find new territory. Another sign of a carpenter ant infestation is wood dust or small piles of wood shavings found close to older damp wood.

Cockroach

Roach

The American cockroach is the largest species of cockroaches invading homes. They have a reddish brown or mahogany color with a yellow band outlining the area behind their head. Found anywhere food or moisture is present, these cockroaches are about two inches long and both the females and males can fly. They give off a musty smell and as they mature become more reddish brown. These cockroaches will hide in damp dark places.

Wasp

Wasp

There are many species of wasps, ranging from microscopic to 1 ½” in size and ranging in color from black to metallic blues and greens and from reddish-brown to dark red and orange. Most wasps have a pinched waist and two pairs of wings. Wasps will nest in several places surrounding your home including hose reels, electrical boxes, soffits, decks, in the corners of windows, under awnings and porches, attics, crawl spaces, and gas grills. If you have a colony of wasps, there could be thousands of wasps living in the nest.

Mice, Chipmunk & Rat

Rodent

Rodents are among the most adaptable and diseased critters to infest homes. They are extremely difficult to exterminate due to their rapid and constant breeding habits. Several species of rodents have the capability to squeeze into spaces much smaller than themselves, making even the smallest holes or cracks entrances to your home. Like many unwanted pests, rodents will cause severe damage to your home or business, excessive chewing and breeding will take a toll on your home’s structure.

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs have extraordinarily small bodies with a brown camouflage, they lay eggs everywhere, and are easily transferred, allowing them to infest entire homes and businesses. Bed bugs, often found in mattresses, bedding, clothing, furniture, and more can be recognized by the musty odor they exude, the brown and black spots on infected surfaces, blood stains on mattresses and bedding from crushed bed bugs, or their bite marks. Bed bug bites emit a burning sensation and generally are several red marks in a precise line.

Ants

Carpenter ants are only one species of ants which could infest your home or business. They have large black bodies and typically nest in wood able to retain moisture and easily accessible from the soil like wood porch structures, window frames, and door frames. You have an infestation if you see swarms of flying ants in the spring around wood structures, these are the adult ants leaving the nest to find new territory. Another sign of a carpenter ant infestation is wood dust or small piles of wood shavings found close to older damp wood.

Roach

The American cockroach is the largest species of cockroaches invading homes. They have a reddish brown or mahogany color with a yellow band outlining the area behind their head. Found anywhere food or moisture is present, these cockroaches are about two inches long and both the females and males can fly. They give off a musty smell and as they mature become more reddish brown. These cockroaches will hide in damp dark places.

Wasp

There are many species of wasps, ranging from microscopic to 1 ½” in size and ranging in color from black to metallic blues and greens and from reddish-brown to dark red and orange. Most wasps have a pinched waist and two pairs of wings. Wasps will nest in several places surrounding your home including hose reels, electrical boxes, soffits, decks, in the corners of windows, under awnings and porches, attics, crawl spaces, and gas grills. If you have a colony of wasps, there could be thousands of wasps living in the nest.

Rodent

Rodents are among the most adaptable and diseased critters to infest homes. They are extremely difficult to exterminate due to their rapid and constant breeding habits. Several species of rodents have the capability to squeeze into spaces much smaller than themselves, making even the smallest holes or cracks entrances to your home. Like many unwanted pests, rodents will cause severe damage to your home or business, excessive chewing and breeding will take a toll on your home’s structure.

Milwaukee Exterminator Helps You Identify Pests in Your Home

Contact our Milwaukee exterminator if you identify an infestation in your home or business from a pest below.

 


Bed Bug Exterminator Ant Exterminator Cockroach Exterminator
Wasp Exterminator   Milwaukee Exterminator Contact Bee Exterminator
Rat Exterminator Spider Exterminator Boxelder Bug Extermination

Pest Identification Guide

Is that a wasp nest or a bumble bee nest? Does that spider have a poisonous bite, or is it harmless? Does my dog have fleas? Where did all these ants come from?

Use our Pest Identification Guide to figure out what kind of pests we’re dealing with, where they like to live, whether or not they’re harmful, and how to prevent an infestation.

If you have any of these pests in or around your home, call our Milwaukee pest control experts at A-Landlords Pest Management today. Our experienced and knowledgeable exterminators can answer all of your questions and eliminate your pest problem quickly. Rather than risk making the situation worse by trying to get rid of the pests yourself, call A-Landlord’s Milwaukee pest and rodent control experts to end your problem now.

Ants

Carpenter Ants

How to Identify Carpenter Ants

Appearance:

  •  6 legs
  • Segmented bodyCarpenter Ants Milwaukee
  • Black, red, brown, or yellow
  • ¼ to 3/8 inch long

Habitats:

  •  Indoors or outdoors in damp or damaged wood
  • Their burrowing leaves frass (sawdust) outside the nest

Threat:

  • Gain entry through wet wood
  • Build paths through dry wood, causing structural damage

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep your home and yard free of damp wood
  • Keep tree branches cut back from the house

Learn More About Carpenter Ant Infestations

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Field Ants

How to Identify Field Ants

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Segmented body with an unevenly rounded profile
  • Pale yellow, reddish brown, or blackField Ant Hill Milwaukee
  • 1/8 to 3/8 inch long

Habitats:

  • Mounds of plant material
  • Often near trees
  • Shrubs
  • Rocks
  • Sometimes in sidewalk cracks or along foundation walls
  • Field ants rarely nest in homes

Threat:

  • Field ants may bite and spray painful formic acid into the wound

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Store firewood at least 15 feet away from the house
  • Avoid having mulch up against the foundation
  • Keep shrubbery well-trimmed

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Pavement Ants

How to Identify Pavement Ants

Pavement Ants Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Segmented oval body
  • Dark brown, black
  • 1/8 inch

Habitats:

  • In walls, insulation, and floors
  • Outdoors, under stones, and in pavement cracks

Threat:

  • Pavement ants can contaminate food

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep counters and kitchens free from spills and crumbs

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Bed Bugs

Bed Bugs

How to Identify Bedbugs

Female Bedbug Milwaukee

Appearance: 

Adults:
  • 6 legs
  • Flat oval body
  • Mahogany
  • ¼ inch
Nymphs:
  • Nearly colorless
  • 1.3mm to 5mm

Habitats:

  • Beds and other furniture
  • Male Bed Bugs MilwaukeeCracks in the floor and walls
  • May hide in suitcases, boxes, and shoes

Food:

  • Bed bugs feed on blood and need it to reproduce

Reproduction:

  • Process called traumatic insemination
  • Sperm remains in female body for 4-6 weeks
  • Female lays ~5-7 eggs per week
  • Eggs hatch in 6-17 days
  • Insemination process makes female avoid males
    • More likely to hitchhike on clothes and people

Threat:

  • Bed Bug Eggs Look Similar to LiceBedbugs bite and cause red, itchy welts
  • They do not transmit diseases

Preventing/Detecting an Infestation:

  • Examine second-hand furniture before bringing it home
  • Protect suitcases with a trash bag while travelling
  • Check bedsheets for blood spots.

Learn More About Bed Bug Infestations:

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Identifying a Bed Bug Infestation

Bed Bug Extermination in Milwaukee

As a homeowner, when the word pest is mentioned, the first image to come to mind is of bed bugs. These tiny, almost microscopic insects are every homeowner’s nightmare. Once an infestation takes root, it is nearly impossible to get rid of them on your own. Milwaukee bed bug exterminators at A-Landlords have seen these tiny pests along with the havoc they wreak. The intervention of a knowledgeable pest control company has been key every time. Over the counter insect foggers only take care of open areas. Bed bugs, on the other hand, are found in mattresses, furniture, clothing, and a host of other areas foggers can’t touch. A-Landlords pest control locates and removes bed bugs in every spot of your home where the infestation could spread.

How Do You Know If You Have a Bed Bug Infestation?

Bed bugs leave some distinct indicators which make them easy to spot. The first symptom which people complain of is the bites upon waking. These bites tend to group in a distinct line and can present with the blood of crushed bed bugs on bedding. The bites themselves are accompanied by a stinging sensation and itching. Other less obvious signs of a bed bug infestation are the brown and black spots found on infected surfaces, along with a musty odor which comes from the insect.

Bed Bug Exterminators in Milwaukee: How to Remove Bed Bugs

A-Landlords pest management in Milwaukee, WI has been handling bed bugs and pests in general for over 25 years. In this time, they a have seen what happens when good intentioned home and business owners try to tackle the problem on their own. The result is time wasted and money lost before having to call a professional anyway. When A-Landlords arrives at an infected property, they get to work finding any and all bed bug hiding places. These spots vary from large areas like mattresses to the smallest of places like behind light switch plates. Once the hiding places are pointed out to the property owner, it becomes evident why over the counter remedies never work.

Bed Bug Treatment

Living in Wisconsin means there are a host of other pest problems A-Landlord eradicates. Ants tend to be a common issue along with cockroaches and mice. Although we typically don’t think of bees as a pest, frequently they will make a home near residential and commercial buildings, scaring away customers and residents alike. Not all pests are animals; A-Landlord Pest Management will also deal with your lawn’s weed problems as well.

If you are experiencing issues with bed bugs or any other pest, don’t waste precious time. The more time an infestation is active, the harder it will be to get rid of. Call A-Landlord’s professional exterminators today and let them take care of your home or business. 

Contact our Milwaukee Bed Bug Exterminators for expert pest control services eradicating your bed bug infestation.

Milwaukee Bed Bug Exterminators Provide Exceptional Removal Services

Why Take Care of Bed Bugs ASAP? Wisconsin's Bed Bug Ordinance

Wis. Stat. 704.07(3)(a)

"If the premises are damaged, including by an infestation of insects or other pests, due to the acts or inaction of the tenant, the landlord may elect to allow the tenant to remediate or repair the damage and restore the appearance of the premises by redecorating. However, the landlord may elect to undertake the remediation, repair, or redecoration, and in such case the tenant must reimburse the landlord for the reasonable cost thereof."

Milwaukee Bed Bug Exterminator Contact

The responsibility of the repairs and cleanup of any pest problem brought on by the tenant is solely the tenant's/s'. Prevent damage from spreading and having those costs fall on you by calling A-Landlords today to have your bed bug problem taken care of.

If you choose to pursue litigation against your landlord, you need to know the burden of proof is on you, and it's tough to prove the bedbugs were no a problem initiated by you, the tenant. If you can prove the burden is on the landlord, call A-Landlords today to get your bed bug problem taken care of at the expense of your landlord.

How to Treat Bed Bug Bites

Bed Bug Pest Control Specialists Terminate Bed Bug Infestations of All Sizes

Homeowners and businesses attempt to rid themselves of bed bug infestations and these efforts go unnoticed by bed bugs, or, in some cases, can make your bed bug infestation worse, unfortunately. When you have bed bugs, you need professional bed bug pest control to eliminate your bed bug infestation entirely.

Milwaukee Bed Bug Extermination

Remember: what doesn't kill them only makes them stronger.

Bed bugs are highly resistant to commercial products used in their extermination, and because of this, a combination of pest control methods must be used, including product applications, heat, and manual removal.

The Enemy: Bed Bugs

The bed bug exterminators at A-Landlords Pest Management in Milwaukee, WI are experts in identifying and removing bed bug infestations.

In fact, bed bugs are our specialty.

Bed bugs have extraordinarily small bodies colored with a brown camouflage pattern, they lay eggs everywhere, and once an infestation has started, it is hard to resolve without the help of professionals.

Milwaukee Bed Bug Exterminator Contact

Identifying the Presence of a Bed Bug Infestation

  • Bed bugs give off a musty odor
  • Bite marks, with a burning sensation, generally in a straight line
  • Brown and black spots on infected surfaces
  • Blood stains on mattresses in bedding from crushed bugs

Bed Bug Infestations and Resurgence

There are several myths surrounding bed bug infestations, including: once a piece of furniture is infested, it must be thrown out; as well as, bed bugs only affect beds. Neither of these is true. If your bed bug infestation is handled properly, your furniture will be eradicated of the pest within. Bed bugs also do not infest beds alone, they will infest virtually anything they can hide on (fabrics) and find a food source from (you). Bed bugs will gladly hitch a ride on your sweater to your car and office, friend’s house, or child’s school, dropping off and infesting every area they can along the way.

Bed bugs are generally active at night and feed on blood. Without blood, they are not able to grow or reproduce, but they can go months without eating, so leaving your home for a week won’t do the trick. Calling in professional bed bug exterminators is the best option when it comes to handling a bed bug infestation.

Milwaukee Bed Bugs Map

Where Bed Bugs are Commonly Found:

  • Mattresses
  • Bedding (sheets, comforters, etc.)
  • Clothing
  • Furniture
  • Other soft places with convoluted surfaces

Milwaukee Bed Bug Removal

At one point in history, bed bugs were considered almost completed eradicated from North America. Due to an increase in people traveling and a decrease in public knowledge about bed bugs, they have made a surging comeback, infesting homes and business across the nation, including Milwaukee, WI. Another reason for the bed bugs’ comeback is their resistance to many commercial pest control methods; proving the importance of getting professional help with your bed bug infestation, rather than trying to eliminate the problem yourself.


How to Treat Bed Bug Bites

A Guide to Identifying and Treating Bed Bug Bites

Make sure it's a bed bug bite before taking action to mitigate the symptoms. You may have been bitten or stung by some other insect or bug and may to treat the bite differently. A bite from a black widow spider will initially look similar to a bed bug bite, but the way you go about treating each one and the severity of the bite’s consequences are dramatically different.

Identifying Bed Bug Bites

Bed bug bites are not uncommon—especially when your home is in the midst of a bedbug infestation. Finding out whether your mark is from a bed bug bite or not requires some investigation. Ask yourself these questions, and use the answers to determine your course of action.

Q: What do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

A: The bites are raised and red, and have a similar appearance to bites or stings from a wide variety of other bugs and insects: mosquitoes, fleas, chiggers, ticks, centipedes, etc. The list could go on and on. Often, the marks are in clusters, or rows of 3-5 bites (referred to as breakfast, lunch, and dinner).

Bed Bug Bites
Bed Bug Bite Locations

Q: Where are the Bites Located?

A: Bed bug bites are usually located on the extremities, neck, and face since these are the areas most often exposed while a person sleeps. However, bed bugs do not discriminate once they are in a position to bite. If they can bite you on your back, stomach, chest, or other areas, they will.

Q: Are there Bed Bugs in Your Home?

A: Look around. Are there bed bugs present in your home? Is there anything to indicate the presence of some other bug you may have been bitten or stung by? If you check your bed, clothes, and furniture, and don’t see any bed bugs present, chances are high that you’re not dealing with bed bug bites. You’ll want to investigate other insects and bugs as the possible culprit.

Scratching a bed bug bite can cause a secondary infection and could lead to bleeding, sepsis, or, in the worst possible case, death.

**DON'T SCRATCH BED BUG BITES**

Bite marks (the raised, red spots) don't appear until a few days after you've received the bites, and many people misidentify them as acne, rashes from their clothing, spider bites, or just blame it on their dirty sheets. This is because a few days of fasting is not a problem for bed bugs. By the time a person notices the bite marks and feels the itching and burning, the bed bugs are in hiding again. This cycle sometimes repeats for months before a resident makes the connection between the bugs and the marks on the resident's skin. Don't let that happen to you.

Bed bugs are definitely a problem that you want to get rid of once and for all the first time around.

At-Home Bed Bug Bite Treatment:

  1. Wash bed bug bites with soap and water, making sure not to break the skinMilwaukee Exterminator Contact
  2. Make a paste of baking soda and water
  3. Apply paste on bed bug bites
  4. Let paste sit on affected spot for a minimum of one hour
  5. Wash off gently with water
  6. Pat dry to avoid opening the bite

You may have to wait more than just an hour to help your bed bug bites heal with this paste on. For others, this paste may not work at all. It is up to you, the user, of this paste to determine if they did not wait long enough with the paste on, or if the paste simply does not work for you.


Bed Bug Treatment Solutions

The Milwaukee bed bug treatment provided by A-Landlords is the best solution to bed bug infestations and in some cases the only solution. Though our professionals are the best option for your bed bug infestation, there are a few at home remedies you can try to rid your home or business of bed bugs.

Washing all of your clothing and bedding with the hottest possible water your machine will allow and on the longest wash cycle as well as thoroughly vacuuming your infested surfaces has proven to be successful for some bed bug infestation sufferers. It is important to dispose of your vacuum bag in an outside trashcan or to extensively clean your vacuum canister because bed bugs have the habit of infesting vacuums.

You could also try buying bed bug mattress covers in Milwaukee and covering your box spring in urethane material or plastic to form a protective layer. This will keep new bed bugs from getting in and old bed bugs from getting out, and the old bed bugs will die off after some time.

You should always be careful when transferring infested clothing, bedding, or anything else bed bugs might be living on or in. They can easily fall off of the infected surface and start populating a new area.

Keep your home, business, friends' homes, and family’s home safe from bed bugs by having our expert Milwaukee bed bug exterminators eradicate your bed bug infestation.

Contact our Milwaukee bed bug exterminators when you need cost-effective help ridding your home of a bed bug infestation.

Bees

Bumble Bees

How to Identify Bumble Bees

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Oval shapeBumble Bees in Milwaukee
  • Black and yellow striped
  • Fuzzy
  • 1 inch

Habitats:

  • In the ground or in trees
  • Around patios or decks
  • Sometimes in attics or chimneys

Threat:

  • Bees are aggressive and will sting if threatened
  • Bumble bees can sting more than once
  • People who are allergic to insect stings may have a severe reaction

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Carefully inspect potential nesting areas and get rid of harborage materials

More Information:

As the name suggests, bumblebees cause a distinctive hum. Despite a common misconception, bumblebees are perfectly capable of flight. Bumblebees are currently in decline all around the world. As pollinators, this is bad news for farmers and gardeners alike. Conservationists are working to preserve their population before it’s too late.

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Honey Bees

How to Identify Honey Bees

Honey Bees Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Oval shape
  • Golden yellow with brown bands
  • ½ inch

Habitats:

  • Honeycombs in trees
  • Sometimes in attics or chimneys

Threat:

  • Honey bees can only sting once
  • The sting can be extremely painful if the stinger is not removed
  • People who are allergic to insect stings may have a severe reaction

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Carefully inspect potential nesting areas and get rid of materials the bees could use to build their nest
  • Honeycombs can be messy to remove

Learn More About Bee Infestations

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Cockroaches

American Cockroaches

How to Identify American Cockroaches

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Oval shape
  • American Cockroach in MilwaukeeReddish brown, yellowish markings behind the head
  • Up to 2 inches

Habitats:

  • Basements
  • Sewers
  • Drainage systems

Food:

  • Omnivores - eat plants, meats, and other items
  • Cosmetics, plant shoots, soaps, decaying fruits
  • Sweets and starchy items such as adhesives

Threat:

  • Can spread bacteria, parasitic worms, and other human pathogens
  • Can cause allergic reactions and intensify asthma attacks, especially in children

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep your kitchen clean
  • Vacuum frequently
  • Avoid moisture buildup

Solve My American Cockroach Problem

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German Cockroaches

How to Identify German Cockroaches

Appearance:

  • 6 legs; oval shape
  • Light brown with dark stripes on the back
  • ½ to 5/8 inch

German Cockroach Milwaukee

Habitats:

  • Warm, humid places near food
  • Kitchens and bathrooms

Food:

  • Favorites: starches, decaying meats, sweets, fatty foods
    • Will settle for almost any human/pet/processed foods
  • Will also eat adhesives and products with adhesives in them
  • Can live for up to 30 days without food
  • Can live for 2 weeks without hydration

Threat:

  • German cockroaches can spread bacteria, parasitic worms and other human pathogens
  • They can cause allergic reactions and intensify asthma attacks, especially in children

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep your kitchen clean
  • Vacuum frequently
  • Avoid moisture buildup

More Information:

German cockroaches are the most common cockroach family pest. They are easily mistaken for the Asian cockroach and are nearly identical. Asian cockroaches are able to fly gracefully while German cockroaches have trouble flying at all. They cannot survive the cold but manage to survive by finding small, heated areas.

Solve My German Cockroach Problem

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Rodents

Chipmunks

How to Identify Chipmunks

Appearance:

Chipmunks Milwaukee

  • Gray, reddish brown fur with dark and light stripes down the back and tail
  • 7 to 10 inches

Habitats:

  • Holes in the ground
  • Sometimes under patios
  • May move into buildings

Threat:

  • Burrowing causes structural damage and destroys plants

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Remove debris and wood piles
  • Put away pet food to avoid attracting the chipmunks

More Information:

Chipmunks are omnivores, eating everything from acorns to bird’s eggs. If a bird nest has recently been raided, it might be chipmunks to blame. Chipmunks do not need to hibernate and remain active in winter. Like larger squirrels, chipmunks are capable of climbing trees in search of food.

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Mice

How to Identify Mice

Appearance:

  • Short dark gray or brown fur, lighter colored stomach
  • Thin tail
  • 3½ to 7½ inches

Mice Mouse Milwaukee

Habitats:

  • Dark
  • Secluded areas in structures or outdoors
  • Nests are often made of paper products, fabric, and packing materials

Threat:

  • Mice can contaminate food
  • Cause structural damage
  • Chew on electrical wires
  • They can carry and transmit serious diseases, along with fleas, mites, ticks and lice

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep the building clean
  • Fix broken windows
  • Repair cracks in the foundation or walls
  • Remove potential nesting materials, such as newspapers and cardboard boxes

Learn More About Mice Infestations

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Opossums

How to Identify Opossums

Angry Opossum FaceAppearance:

  • Similar in size to a house cat
  • Gray in color
  • White face
  • Hairless tail
  • 1-3 feet

Habitats:

  • Urban and suburban areas
  • Opossums den anywhere warm and dry

Threat:

  • Being nocturnal and cautious, encountering an opossum is rare
  • When threatened, they will “play dead”
  • A survival tactic that renders them immobile from half an hour to far longer
  • This involuntary reaction renders them harmless
  • They can even be moved without being woken up
  • If faced with a pet, opossums can bite with sharp teeth

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Opossums are opportunistic and constantly relocating their dens
  • Make sure to seal garages and patio doors to stop them from getting in to your home

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Raccoons

How to Identify Raccoons

Raccoon Removal Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • Gray and brown with black “mask” over the eyes
  • Ringed tail
  • 2 to 3 feet

Habitats:

  • Dens in forested areas near a water source or in attics or chimneys

Threat:

  • Raccoons can cause property damage when trying to enter a home
  • They often dig through garbage
  • They can carry rabies.

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Store garbage cans in protected areas
  • Use animal-proof covers
  • Repair loose siding or shingles

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Rats

How to Identify Rats

Appearance:

  • Brown, black, gray fur with lighter stomach
  • 6 to 9 inchesRats Milwaukee
  • 6 to 10 inch tail

Habitats:

  • Burrows under buildings
  • Near ponds
  • In garbage dumps
  • Sometimes in roofs or attics

Threat:

  • Bite
  • Transmit diseases
  • Contaminate food
  • Carry fleas and mites

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep the building clean
  • Remove potential nesting materials, such as newspapers and cardboard boxes
  • Keep garbage tightly covered
  • Clear away any fruit from trees in the yard

More Information:

Rats are usually larger than mice, though a small rat might appear to be mouse due to similar fur patterns. Wild rats can carry Salmonella. It is very important to note that there are differences between wild rats and pet (“fancy”) rats. Pet rats tend to have more color variety, such as white and brown, along with different fur patterns. A single pet rat is not a sign of a potential rat infestation.

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Skunks

How to Identify Skunks

Skunks Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • Black or dark brown with white or cream stripes down the back and tail
  • 16 to 37 inches

Habitats:

  • Dens underground
  • In brush piles or logs
  • Under decks, porches, or buildings

Threat:

  • Skunks can spray as far as 10 feet
  • The spray can cause nausea, severe burning, and temporary blindness
  • They can carry diseases like rabies

Preventing an Infestation:

  •  Seal off possible entrances under porches with sturdy wire mesh buried at least 6 inches underground

More Information:

Although skunks are not always black and white, they have what is known as warning coloration due to their smelly defense mechanism. This vibrant display warns predators and people to stay away. Unfortunately, dogs will still often try to attack or play with skunks, resulting in getting sprayed.

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Squirrels

How to Identify Squirrels

Appearance:

  • Usually graySquirrels Milwaukee
  • 6 to 15 inches
  • 4 to 14 inch fluffy tail

Habitats:

  • Mainly trees
  • May invade structures in the winter

Threat:

  • Squirrels rarely pose a health threat even when living attics
  • Outdoors, they can damage electrical and telephone cables

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Seal up possible points of entry around the house
  • Keep tree branches away from the roof

More Information:

There are multiple squirrel breeds in Wisconsin. The most common are the grey squirrel and the red squirrel. The grey squirrels are larger than the red and more aggressive when claiming territory. Grey squirrels will have white underbellies while red squirrels have brown fur there. It is only grey squirrels that are able to climb down trees headfirst.

Learn More About Squirrel Infestations

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Voles

How to Identify Voles

Vole Destroys GardenAppearance:

  • Usually gray
  • Ranging from 3 to 9 inches long
  • Stouter and shorter build than mice

Habitats:

  • Burrows in fields or lawns

Threat:

  • Very little physical threat to humans
  • Can do a lot of damage to yard landscaping
  • Like other rodents, voles have potential to carry diseases

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep your lawn well-maintained
  • Voles will hide under any dense vegetation or in piles of mulch
  • Avoid using too much mulch where they can hide

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Spiders

Bold Jumping Spiders

How to Identify Bold Jumping Spiders

Bold Jumping Spider in MilwaukeeAppearance:

  • 8 legs
  • Large abdomen
  • Black with white/orange spot on back
  • 4-20 mm

Habitats:

  • Exterior walls
  • Rocks and logs
  • Open woodlands

Threat:

  • Presents zero threat to humans under normal circumstances

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Call exterminator to spray perimeter of house

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Common House Spiders

How to Identify Common House Spiders

Appearance:

  • 8 legsCommon House Spider Milwaukee
  • Yellow-brown, dirty white abdomen with dark stripes
  • 1/8 to 5/16 inch

Habitats:

  • Tangled webs
  • Sometimes in houses
  • Often in garages, sheds, barns and warehouses
  • Near light sources to attract prey

Threat:

  • Common house spiders pose no threat to humans

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Seal cracks and use screens on doors and windows
  • Use a vacuum to get rid of spiders, egg sacs, and webs

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Jumping Spiders

How to Identify Jumping Spiders

Jumping Spider Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 8 short legs
  • Compact
  • Usually black with pale markings
  • 1/8 to ¾ inch

Habitats:

  • Loose, saclike webs

Threat:

  • While jumping spiders may bite
  • The bite is not poisonous

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Seal cracks and use screens on doors and windows
  • Remove outdoor harborages

More Information:

Jumping spiders are considered easy to identify compared to other arachnids. They have larger legs in the front, causing them to somewhat resemble crabs. They also have eyes that distinctly face forward rather than all around their head like other spiders.

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Wasps

Paper Wasps

How to Identify Paper Wasps

Paper Wasps Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Brown with yellow markings
  • 5/8 to ¾ inch

Habitats:

  • Paper nests hang from trees
  • Porch ceilings
  • Leaves
  • Attics and the tops of doorframes

Threat:

  • Paper wasps are not as aggressive as bald-faced hornets or yellow jackets
  • However, they will sting if they or their nest is disturbed
  • Paper wasp stings can cause allergic reactions

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Before doing yard work on shrubs, hedges, or trees, check for nests
  • Use repellent oil to keep wasps away from wooden fences
  • Do not attempt to remove a wasp nest on your own

Learn More About Wasp Infestations

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Bald-Faced Hornets

How to Identify Bald-Faced Hornets

Bald-Faced Hornets MilwaukeeAppearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Long black bodies with white pattern
  • ½ to 5/8 inch

Habitats:

  • Paper nests at least three feet off the ground
  • As large as 14 inches wide and 24 inches long

Threat:

  • Sting repeatedly with venom, causing pain, itchiness, and swelling for about 24 hours
  • Stings can cause allergic reactions

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Do not attempt to remove a bald-faced hornet nest
  • The wasps are aggressive, and likely to sting

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Yellow Jackets

How to Identify Yellow Jackets

Yellow Jacket Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Black and yellow bands
  • 3/8 to 5/8 inch

Habitats:

  • Paper nests made of chewed cellulose
  • In the ground
  • Attics

Threat:

  • Yellow jackets are territorial and will sting repeatedly
  • Stings can cause allergic reactions

Preventing an infestation:

  • Keep trash cans covered
  • Avoid sweet-smelling perfumes and scents

More Information:

Yellow jackets are the type of wasp most likely to be confused with honey bees. The best way to tell them apart from bees is to note whether they have hair over their body. Unlike honey bees, yellow jackets do not transport pollen. Yellow jackets are also confused with hornets due to their similar builds. Hornets, however, are usually larger than yellow jackets.

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Other Pests

Asian Lady Beetle

How to Identify Asian Lady Beetles

Appearance:

  • Resembles the lady bug
  • Orange or red in color with black spots or the reverse, black with red spots
  • 5.5-8.5 mm

Asian Lady BeetleHabitats:

  • Fields and leaf piles during warm weather

Threat:

  • Swarms of Asian lady beetles will infest a home during winter for a warm place to hibernate
  • There are rare cases of people being allergic
  • Creates an unpleasant smell and stain when dead
  • Known to bite people

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Check for any possible entryway the Asian lady beetle might find, including cracks in the foundation or torn window screens
  • It is important to check before the first frost

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Black Flies

How to Identify Black House Flies:

Appearance:

  • ~1.3 cm
  • Black with fur and bluish bald spots
  • Black flies transfer disease.6 legs
  • (Similar to house fly, but larger)

Habitats:

  • Indoors during winter months
    • Indoors during summer if enough food is inside
  • Outside during warmer weather
    • Often found near rotting food

Threat:

  • Can spread disease in humans
  • Cover large breeding areas and reproduce quickly

Preventing Infestation:

  • Sadly, there isn't much we can do to prevent black fly infestations; however, we are great at ending infestations once they've begun
  • Keep area clean and free of rotting foods/open containers.

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Blowfly

How to Identify Blowflies:

Blowfly Invasion Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • ~1 cm
  • Shiny black and blue metallic body
  • 6 legs

Habitats:

  • Blowflies make their homes wherever there is rotting meat (carrion)

Threat:

  • Blowflies can spread disease from other animals to humans
  • Many diseases can be carried on rotting, putrid meat

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Keep all used meat scraps well covered and in the correct areas
  • Make sure lids are on your garbage cans
  • Make sure no mice or other animals have died in your walls

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Boxelder Bugs

How to Identify Boxedler Bugs

Appearance:

Boxelder Bug Extermination

  • 6 legs
  • Flat oval body
  • Red and black
  • 1 cm - 1 in

Habitats:

  • Summer - in the trees they feed on
  • Winter - in the walls of your house

Threat:

  • Kill your trees
  • Annoying, bitter

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Seal or spray repellent over the holes over your house's exterior

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Crickets

How to Identify Crickets

Appearance:

  • Distinctive long antennae
  • Dull green and brown color
  • Two sets of wings (front and back)
  • Larger back legs for jumping
  • 2 inches

Habitats:

Common Black Cricket

  • Trees
  • Brush
  • Grass

Threat:

  • Relatively harmless to humans, though they are capable of biting
  • Chirp excessively, causing annoyance, and scavenge uncovered food

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Inspect all window screens to ensure there are no openings for crickets to enter
  • Cover all food that might attract crickets, including dry dog food

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Earwigs

How to Identify Earwigs

Appearance:

  • 6 legs; brown with yellow or pale extremities
  • Distinctive pincer like tail
  • 7-50 mm

Earwig Identification Guide

Habitats:

  • Damp and dark spaces indoors
  • Wooded areas with lots of debris

Threat:

  • Earwigs are scavengers and will eat flowers, plants, and food that are left uncovered
  • They can cause significant damage to foliage
  • They are not known to carry any diseases that are harmful to humans

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Check areas that might be dark and damp for potential eggs
  • Common areas include trash receptacles, window frames, and outdoor furniture

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Fleas

How to Identify Fleas

Milwaukee Flea Exterminator

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Longer back leg
  • Flat shape
  • Dark reddish-brown
  • 1/12 to 1/6 inch

Habitats:

  • Household pets and wild animals
  • Shoes
  • Oant legs
  • Blankets

Threat:

  • Flea bites usually cause painful, itchy red bumps
  • They can transmit bacteria, diseases, and tapeworms, as well as cause allergic reactions

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Clean and vacuum often
  • Groom pets regularly
  • Use flea treatments

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Fruit Flies

How to Identify Fruit Flies

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Ovoid body
  • Translucent, yellow/brown
  • How to Get Rid of Fruit FliesRed eyes
  • Black stripes across back
  • Females ~ 2.5 mm
  • Males ~ 2.0 mm

Habitats:

  • Anywhere rotting food exists
    • Drains
    • Garbages
    • "Empty" containers

Threat:

  • Disease (rare)
  • Annoying

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Make sure all foods are sealed and properly stored when done using them
  • Make sure you clean up all your food messes, including in your sink and garbage

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House Centipede

How to Identify House Centipedes:

Appearance:

  • 1-1.5 inches (body)
  • Light brown
  • Black lines running end to end
  • House Centipede Picture30 legs

Habitats:

  • Under boards, rocks, fallen trees (outside)
  • Any cool, moist, dark space (inside)

Threat:

  • Not life threatening
  • Possesses venom glands and delivery system
  • Rarely bites
  • Bites usually cause mild irritation

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Frequent house centipede sightings suggest plentiful of prey
  • Examine building for abundance of arthropods
    (silverfish, cockroaches, spiders, etc.)

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Japanese Beetles

How to Identify Japanese Beetles

Japanese Beetle RemovalAppearance:

  • Shiny
  • Metallic body
  • 10- 15 mm

Habitats:

  • Originally from Japan
  • They often live in gardens in the eastern USA

Threat:

  • Japanese beetles skeletonize plant leaves and flower buds, ruining gardens
  • Being an invasive species to the United States, they lack natural predators to control their population

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Catch Japanese beetles and place them in a bucket of soapy water
  • Spray beetles with the soapy concoction

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Mosquitos

How to Identify Mosquitos

Mosquito Bites PersonAppearance:

  • 6 legs and one set of wings
  • Resembles the midge
  • Rarely exceed 16 mm in length

Habitats:

  • Marshes
  • Lakes
  • Stagnant water

Threat:

  • Their bites are irritable
  • Mosquitos can harbor diseases such as West Nile virus, malaria, dengue fever, and yellow fever

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Empty out watering pails
  • Remove standing water from containers in your yard
  • Keep gutters and drainage ditches clear after rain
  • Wear long sleeve clothing while out at dawn or dusk

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Ticks

How to Identify Ticks

Arachnid Tick Infestation

Appearance:

  • 8 legs
  • Have a body larger than their head
  • Commonly brown in color

Habitats:

  • Leaf litter found in tall grass, woods, brush

Threat:

  • Ticks bite and consume the blood of humans
  • They are vectors for diseases, including Lyme disease, typhus, and tick paralysis.

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Wear long sleeve clothing when working outdoors and check skin for ticks before coming inside
  • Make sure to check pets as well
  • If a tick is present on the skin and has already attached, remove the tick immediately with tweezers
  • Control tick habitats by moving the lawn frequently, especially around wooded areas

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Termites

How to Identify Termites

Termites Milwaukee

Appearance:

  • 6 legs
  • Soft bodies, scissor-like jaws, can have four wings
  • Creamy white to dark brown
  • ¼ to 3/8 inch

Habitats:

  • Underground colonies
  • Moist secluded areas above ground

Threat:

  • Termites are extremely destructive to wooden structures

Preventing an Infestation:

  • Divert water away from the foundation of the house using gutters and downspouts
  • Avoid contact between wood portions of the house and soil

Learn More About Termite Infestations:

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