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Seasonal Invaders

Seasonal pests typically infest a property because they are looking for shelter.  Because of this and the variety of creatures involved, they really need a professional hand to remove and prevent infestations.  When it comes to seasonal bugs, identification of problem areas is the key to infestation prevention.

Some of the most common problems associated with seasonal infestations are:

  • Nuisance
  • Bites and Pinches
  • Allergic Reactions
  • Damage to Plantlife

Types of Invaders

Seasonal pests are a nuisance common in and the treatment of them varies. Depending on their species, some of these pests are a simple nuisance and some of them can be damaging and dangerous. Others, like house centipedes, can actually be helpful in identifying an underlying problem because they often feed on other, smaller pests – that doesn’t necessarily mean you want them living in your home, though. Some of the most common seasonal pests in Central Wisconsin are:

Box Elder Bugs

Box Elder Bug

Although they specialize on Acer seeds, they may pierce plant tissues while feeding. They are not known to cause significant damage and are not considered to be agricultural pests. However, their congregation habits and excreta can annoy people; for this reason, they are considered nuisance pests. Removal of box elder and other Acer species can help in the control of bug populations. They may form large aggregations while sunning themselves in areas near their host plant (e.g. on rocks, shrubs, trees, and man-made structures). This is especially a problem during the cooler months when they sometimes invade houses and other man-made structures seeking warmth or a place to overwinter. They remain inactive inside the walls (and behind siding) while the weather is cool. When the heating systems revive them, some may falsely perceive it to be springtime and enter inhabited parts of the building in search of food, water, and conspecifics. In the spring, the bugs leave their winter hibernation locations to feed and lay eggs on maple or ash trees; aggregations may be seen during this time and well into summer and early fall, depending on the temperature.

Lady Bugs

Lady Bug

Most Lady Bugs have oval, dome-shaped bodies with six short legs. Depending on the species, they can have spots, stripes, or no markings at all. Seven-spotted coccinellids are red or orange with three spots on each side and one in the middle; they have a black head with white patches on each side. In the United States, coccinellids usually begin to appear indoors in the autumn when they leave their summer feeding sites in fields, forests, and yards and search out places to spend the winter. Typically, when temperatures warm to the mid-60s in the late afternoon, following a period of cooler weather, they will swarm onto or into buildings illuminated by the sun. Swarms of coccinellids fly to buildings in September through November depending on location and weather conditions. Homes or other buildings near fields or woods are particularly prone to infestation.

House Centipedes

House Centipedes

The Scutigeromorpha are anamorphic, reaching 15 leg-bearing segments in length. Also known as “house” centipedes, they are very fast creatures, and able to withstand falling at great speed: they reach up to 15 body lengths per second when dropped, surviving the fall. They are the only centipede group to retain their original compound eyes, with which a crystalline layer analogous to that seen in chelicerates and insects can be observed. They also bear long and multi-segmented antennae. Adaptation to a burrowing lifestyle has led to the degeneration of compound eyes in other orders; this feature is of great use in phylogenetic analysis.

Stink Bugs

Stink Bugs

Stink bugs are described in several different ways. They are characterized as both “large, oval-shaped insects” and “shield-shaped insects.” Adult stink bugs can reach almost 2 cm in length. They are nearly as wide as they are long. Their legs extend from the sides, so this makes the adult bugs appear even larger. The brown marmorated stink bug is a brownish stink bug. It has lighter bands on the antennae and darker bands on the wings. Adult stink bugs are good fliers and fold their wings on top of their body when they land. Nymphs do not have fully developed wings. The wings appear when the nymph becomes an adult. Fully developed wings are a way to identify adult stink bugs. Immature stink bugs, called nymphs, are very tiny when they hatch from their eggs. Nymphs of the brown marmorated stink bug are yellow and red. As they grow, the yellow fades to white. They have bright red eyes during the nymph stage of their life cycle. The nymphs molt or shed their skin five times. Each time a stink bug nymph molts, it becomes larger. By the last molt, the nymphs are almost as large as adult stink bugs.