Many summer memories are made outside with family. Unfortunately, you may have uninvited guests crashing your barbeques. Like some people, some insects have chosen summer as their favorite time of the year. As temperatures continue to rise, these bugs become more active and are more frequently encountered. We’ve made a list of the most common summer bugs that you could find hanging around your home.
One summer pest that’s sure to put a damper on your outdoor fun is the tick.
Appearance: Ticks grow between ¼ʺ-⅜ʺ and have a brown or reddish-brown body. Its head is much smaller than its body. If ticks have a hard plate on their body, they are considered hard ticks. If not, they’re soft ticks.
Habits: Hard ticks are the species most often spotted on people and animals. They like wooded areas or places with a lot of vegetation. Most ticks live outside and are brought into homes after attaching to clothing, skin, or fur. However, the brown dog tick can live indoors.
Threat: These arachnids feed on blood from animals or humans. In summer, people tend to spend more time outdoors, increasing the chances of being exposed to ticks.
Prevention Tip: Always check for ticks on you or your pet after being outside. Carefully remove them using a pair of tweezers. Keep your lawn trimmed and clean up any lawn debris like leaf litter to eliminate hiding spots.
Treatment: Spraying your yard with a plant-based insecticide, like our Mosquito & Tick Killer spray, will help to kill ticks on contact and provide you with residual repellency.
These bugs may win the award for least favorite insects.
Appearance: Mosquitoes grow between ⅛ʺ-⅜ʺ depending on their species. They have one pair of wings and tiny scales covering their body. They’re known for their proboscis and long, narrow legs.
Habits: These pests love summer because it brings moisture and warmer temperatures. The heat allows mosquitoes to develop at a faster rate. They lay eggs in shallow pools of water. Mosquitoes hide in dark areas including thick bushes.
Threat: Female mosquitoes bite you to feed on blood. Males don’t actually bite. Their bites leave you with itchy, red bumps.
Prevention Tip: Eliminating sources of standing water can help to prevent mosquitoes. They are most active at dusk or dawn, so if possible, avoid being outside during these times.
Treatment: If you’re spending time outside, especially during peak mosquito hours, use an insect repellent like our Natural Insect Repellent. It repels mosquitoes, ticks, and flies.
Though mosquitoes are disliked the most, stinging insects probably frighten more people. During the summer, stinging insects—wasps, yellow jackets, and hornets—reach their highest numbers.
Appearance: Wasps are brown or black and grow up to ¾ʺ. Yellow jackets are typically black and yellow, but some can have white markings. The European hornet is reddish-brown and the bald-faced hornet closely resembles a yellow jacket, but it’s larger and has white markings.
Habits: Stinging insects live in nests. Social wasps place them above ground, while solitary ones build underground. They prefer sheltered areas like trees and attics. Yellow jackets build their nests in bushes and on branches as well as under porches. Hornets build nests in attics, tree branches, and in larger shrubs.
Threat: These pests will sting, but this usually only occurs if they feel threatened.
Prevention Tip: Keep your shrubs and trees trimmed to help reduce nesting locations. Cover your food and drinks when enjoying a meal outside.
Treatment: Our Wasp & Hornet Killer spray reaches up to 18 feet. This will help to eliminate the problem, while keeping you a safe distance away.
This summer bug likes to test your hand-eye coordination. Flies are most active in the summer and it’s also their breeding season.
Appearance: Houseflies grow between ⅛ʺ -¼ʺ. They have four distinct stripes on their hairy body. Fruit flies are about ⅛ʺ in length and have a brown body. Flies have large, compound eyes that provide them with a wide range of vision.
Habits: Houseflies enter homes hoping to avoid the summer heat. They breed in dirty places like garbage and spoiled food. Fruit flies hang around fruits and vegetables because this is where they lay eggs. Flies are hard to swat because of their vision.
Threat: When flies come in contact with food or food prep areas, they can contaminate it.
Prevention Tip: Keep your food in sealed containers or the refrigerator. Regularly remove trash to eliminate potential breeding spots.
Treatment: If flies are bugging you, try using a spray like our Flying Insect Killer.
There’s a chance you’ve spotted these bugs marching through your picnic space. Ants are just as active in the summer as they are in the spring. Little black ants and odorous house ants are the two ants most likely to carry out crumbs from your kitchen.
Habits: Ants begin prepping for fall during summer, which means they amp up their foraging efforts. The odorous house ant gets its name from the rotten odor released when it’s crushed. Odorous house ants prefer sweets and they will use plants to sneak into your home. Little black ants nest outside in soil, but head indoors to catch a break from the heat.
Threat: Ants are more of a nuisance than dangerous. However, if they crawl on your food, you probably aren’t going to want to eat it.
Prevention Tip: Make sure to clean up crumbs and spills to avoid attracting ants. Keep plants from touching the side of your home to make it more difficult for these pests to slip inside.
Treatment: Since ants release pheromones that guide other ants to food sources, it’s important to eliminate the entire colony. Using a bait, like our No Spill Ant Kill, allows ants to carry the bait back to the colony, which will eliminate the source of the problem.
The thought of bed bugs probably made you cringed. While these bugs can be encountered year-round, they are most active in summer.
Appearance: Bed bugs are about 1/8ʺ-3/16ʺ in length, but they will enlarge after a meal. They have a brown, flat, oval body. After feeding, it may have a reddish hue.
Habits: These bugs like to hideout in tiny spaces in your home. In summer, they spread faster because of the increased levels of travel. If undetected, they can slip into your luggage and ride home with you.
Threat: Bed bugs feed on blood, and unfortunately, humans provide them with their favorite meal. Their bites can cause red bumps on your skin.
Prevention Tip: When traveling, it’s important to take time to examine the room. Check the bedding for red, brown, or black marks. If bed bugs have invaded your home, you’ll want to immediately treat the infestation.
Treatment: Applying a dust, like Maggie’s Farm Simply Effective™ Bed Bug Killer, to the mattress, frame, and any cracks and crevice will help to eliminate the problem.You’re not the only one who enjoys the warm summer air. Since many bugs are most active in the summer, it’s not surprising that they are more frequently encountered. Though more bugs are running around, it doesn’t have to ruin your fun. If these summer pests are bugging you, we want to help! Check out our Maggie’s Farm Simply Effective Pest Control products.