Navigating Joro Spider Concerns in Virginia

Joro Spider in virginia | loyal pest control

Have you ever walked into your garden to find a colossal spider weaving its web between your trees? This isn’t just any garden spider; its size and appearance are startling, making you wonder what kind of creature it is. You might be facing the Joro Spider, an orb-weaver species that’s been capturing attention as it pops up in various states along the eastern United States – now including Virginia.

In this guide, we dive into the fascinating world of the Joro Spider, shedding light on what makes this species unique and whether you should utilize spider extermination or be concerned about its presence in Virginia.

What Does the Joro Spider Look Like?

The Joro Spider is impossible to miss, known for its considerable size and striking colors. The difference in appearance between males and females is pronounced, thanks to sexual dimorphism.

Here’s how to tell male and female Joro spiders apart:


  • Size: Large, with a body length of about 0.75-1 inch and a leg span of up to 4 inches.
  • Color: Their bodies are brightly colored with yellow and blue, accented with distinct red markings.
  • Web: Builds large, intricate webs that can span up to 10 feet.


  • Size: Much smaller than females.
  • Color: Darker, less vibrant, with more subdued colors.
  • Web: Does not build webs as females do.

The webs of Joro Spiders are unique in themselves, being large, golden, and exceptionally strong, making them highly efficient at trapping insects

Where is the Joro Spider Found?

The Joro Spider has demonstrated a surprising ability to adapt to various environments. Initially believed to thrive in expansive natural areas, these spiders have shown they can also flourish in urban settings, even near highways. This adaptability indicates a potential for the species to spread further, including into urban areas of Virginia.

Is the Joro Spider Dangerous?

Despite their intimidating size and appearance, Joro Spiders pose little threat to humans. Their fangs are relatively small, and they are generally timid, preferring to avoid confrontation. The fear they may evoke is often greater than any real risk, positioning them as intriguing creatures rather than pests.

What is the Origin of the Joro Spider?

Originating from East Asia, it is believed the Joro Spider was inadvertently brought to the U.S. through shipping containers. This accidental introduction facilitated their spread across the eastern U.S., including to areas near Virginia.

What’s Next for the Joro Spider in Virginia?

It appears the Joro Spider is setting roots in Virginia, with its adaptability and successful breeding suggesting it will continue to expand its presence.

Need Assistance with Spiders or Other Pests?

While the Joro Spider may initially cause alarm due to its size and unfamiliarity, it’s crucial to remember they are largely harmless. Their presence in Virginia signifies the dynamic nature of our ecosystems.

Should you have any concerns or need advice regarding the Joro Spider or any other pest issues, our team is here to assist. Offering expert advice, information, and pest management solutions, we’re dedicated to helping you keep your home and community safe. Contact us at Loyal Termite & Pest Control anytime for support with your pest-related concerns.


10 Benefits of Hiring a Professional Pest Control Company

Pest control services in Eastern & Central Virginia - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlPeople often wait until it is too late to look into professional pest control services. No matter what pest you’re dealing with, trying to take care of an infestation on your own can be tricky. If you don’t approach it the right way, you could end up allowing the pests to multiply without any signs of slowing down. Many DIY strategies fall far short of a long-term solution, and improper use of professional pest control products by untrained individuals can lead to serious health risks.

If you’ve been thinking about hiring an exterminator recently, read on for ten reasons to follow through. Our technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control have seen great success servicing homes and businesses around Eastern & Central Virginia and hope to help you, too!

DIY Pest Control and Health Concerns

Hiring certified pest control technicians can eliminate many health concerns that you might accidentally expose yourself to without their help. Our first three reasons to hire professional pest control are in the interest of your health:

  • 1: Controlled pesticide use. A professional will only use pesticides as a last resort, and when they do, they will use them safely. Improper or untrained application of pesticides can expose you and your family to harmful toxins. Loyal Termite & Pest Control is proud to be a Green Pro Certified Company.
  • 2: Decreased chance of illness. Many pests in Eastern & Central Virginia can pass on serious diseases through their bites or droppings. Technicians can help you avoid pest-related illnesses by handling the dirty work for you and your loved ones.
  • 3: Less itching and scratching. Mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, spiders, bed bugs, and more pests in our local area can leave you with itchy bite marks. You don’t have to endure the bites every year! Hiring a professional pest exterminator to rid your home of these biting pests!

Save Time with Professional Pest Control

Hiring professional pest control can eliminate extra tasks from your life in a more efficient manner. Our next three reasons have to do with saving you time:

  • 4: Efficient solutions. Licensed technicians have the necessary experience to resolve pest problems quickly and efficiently, much more so than the average homeowner.
  • 5: Less cleaning. Having pests in your home means constantly cleaning up pest-related debris. Getting rid of them altogether will greatly reduce the time you have to spend cleaning!
  • 6: Safer structures. If you have rodents, termites, or carpenter ants living in your home, you’re likely inspecting your home constantly for new damage. Take that task off of your plate by hiring professionals to remove the pests and stop them from causing more damage.

How Professional Pest Control Helps You Stress Less

Being aware of a pest problem in your home comes with lots of stress. Our last four reasons pertain to your mental well-being:

  • 7: Better sleep. Having a fear of bed bugs or spiders in your home can cause you to lose sleep. Get rid of this worry by finally getting rid of the pests themselves! Professionals also have options to monitor for these pests to catch a problem right at the start!
  • 8: Save money. Sticking to DIY remedies can add up after a few unsuccessful attempts. A professional pest control company can come to remove certain pests in just one session given the right circumstances!
  • 9: Learn about the process. Our technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control not only eliminate pests from your home but teach you about how they do it. We aim to give you the knowledge to avoid pests on your own going forward. Prevention is key!
  • 10: Peace of mind. Once your pest infestation has been dealt with, it feels like you can finally breathe again! Don’t hesitate to have a professional rid of your pest problems—you don’t have to deal with them!

If you’re ready to take the first step towards a pest-free* home, contact your local pest control company. Our expert technicians at Loyal Termite & Pest Control have helped people all across Eastern & Central Virginia live pest-free* since 1960. For a free quote, contact us today!

How do you Check for Bed Bugs at Your Airbnb or Hotel

bed bugs in hotel in virginia | loyal pest controlEmbarking on a traveling adventure offers a wonderful chance to discover new places, immerse yourself in diverse cultures, and create lasting memories. Unfortunately, amid the thrill of exploration lies a frequently underestimated concern, the potential of encountering bed bugs in hotels and Airbnb rentals. These small, stealthy pests can effortlessly tag along back to your home, leading to a nightmarish infestation. Let’s examine the difficulties associated with stumbling upon bed bugs during your travels and the crucial steps to prevent them from taking root in your home.

Bed Bugs and Travel

Renowned for their ability to conceal themselves in small crevices, bed bugs exhibit remarkable survival skills, allowing them to live for extended periods of time without food. They can skillfully hitch a ride in your luggage, clothing, and personal items during hotel stays, rentals, or visits to your friends and family.  

The genuine risk of these pests becomes real once they infiltrate your possessions, easily making their way back to your home. With their rapid reproduction abilities, what begins as a minor infestation can rapidly escalate, causing discomfort with itchy bites, sleepless nights, and heightened stress levels.

How to Check for Bed Bugs at Your Airbnb or Hotel

During your travels, practicing precautionary steps and staying alert can spare you from the potential horror of dealing with a bed bug infestation. Consider the following steps to detect bed bugs in your Airbnb or hotel: 

  • Take a careful look at the bedding, mattress seams, and box springs for any evidence of bed bugs before getting comfortable. Search for small reddish-brown insects, tiny white eggs, discarded exoskeletons, or small black stains (signifying fecal matter).
  • Inspect upholstered furniture, headboards, and nightstands for the same signs of infestation. Bed bugs can hide in any small crack or crevice.
  • Elevate your luggage on luggage racks and avoid placing it directly on the bed. When you get back home, unpack in an outdoor setting or a designated space, conducting a meticulous inspection of your belongings for any potential signs of bed bugs.
  • A flashlight can help you fully examine even the darkest corners for signs of bed bugs.

Preventing Bed Bugs From Hitching a Ride

It’s vital to stop bed bugs from hitching a ride with you. Follow these steps to steer clear of bringing these pests into your home:

  • Seal clothing and items in plastic bags or packing cubes. This forms a barrier, preventing potential bed bugs from coming into contact with your belongings.
  • Bed bugs can easily hide in the fabric of soft luggage. Consider choosing hard-shell suitcases as they are less likely to offer hiding spots. 
  • Wash all your clothes, even those that were unworn, in hot water after returning from a trip. Bed bugs and their eggs are eradicated by intense heat.
  • Before bringing your luggage inside, inspect it for any signs of bed bugs. Vacuum and wipe down the exterior.
  • If you suspect bed bugs, contacting a professional bed bug exterminator is often necessary for a thorough inspection and effective treatment. 

A Call for Professional Help: Loyal Termite & Pest Control 

In the event that you suspect your home has been invaded by bed bugs after traveling, reaching out for professional help is crucial. By taking preemptive actions and teaming up with our pest control experts, we can establish an environment free from pests, granting you the ability to enjoy your travels without the worry of bringing back unwelcome occupants. 

Contact Loyal Termite & Pest Control for expert assistance identifying and addressing bed bug infestations with efficiency, restoring your home to a pest-free* condition.

How to Handle Encounters with Hammerhead Worms

Hammerhead worm in Virginia | Loyal Pest ControlThe Hammerhead worm is a fascinating flatworm with a head shaped like a hammer, which makes it unique. These creatures have a special ability to produce tetrodotoxin, a powerful neurotoxin also found in puffer fish and blue-ringed octopuses. If you happen to come across a Hammerhead worm, it’s crucial to remember not to touch it!

Identifying Hammerhead Worms

The last thing that any homeowner wants is Hammerhead worms infesting their yard. Before handling these worms or squishing them yourself, take the precaution of looking for some identifying features and characteristics of the worm.

  • A head resembling a hammerhead shark. Flat, wide, and with two lobes on either side.
  • Dark brown or grey in color.
  • Several inches in length and a flat body.

If you determine that you have Hammerhead Worms infesting your beautiful Virginian yard, calling Loyal Termite and Pest Control is in your best interest.

The Dangers of Hammerhead Worms

Direct contact with Hammerhead Worms may cause skin irritation in humans and pets. The effects might be even more severe if the toxins enter the body through a cut or an open wound. Pets can get very ill if they ingest them. Hammerhead worms are considered an invasive species. They can have negative impacts on local ecosystems and pose certain dangers. In places where Hammerhead Worms have made their way, they tend to decrease the numbers of earthworms and other soil-dwelling creatures that are indigenous to Central and Eastern Virginia. This shift can throw off the harmony of the ecosystem and have an impact on how nutrients move around in the environment. 

Salt Them, Don’t Slice Them or Squash Them!

When it comes to handling Hammerhead Worms, it’s recommended by experts to use salt rather than cutting or crushing them. These worms have a fascinating ability to grow back from their severed body parts. So if you were to cut or squash a Hammerhead Worm, each piece could potentially grow into a whole new worm. This might unintentionally make the problem worse by creating more worms instead of getting rid of them. Using salt is a safer and more effective way to deal with these invasive worms. Smushing or slicing Hammerhead Worms can also result in direct contact with their toxic secretions, potentially causing skin irritation or allowing toxins to enter your body through cuts or wounds.

Placing Hammerhead Worms in a plastic bag before applying the salt can prevent them from escaping. This containment method ensures that the worms don’t crawl away and continue to potentially impact the local ecosystem. Salt has a unique effect on cells through a process known as osmosis. When salt is used on Hammerhead worms, it disturbs the delicate balance within their cells and causes them to lose water, resulting in dehydration and ultimately leading to their demise.

Contact The Professionals! 

Hammerhead worms are difficult to control and eradicate once they have become established in an area. Their ability to reproduce asexually through fragmentation and their resilience to various environmental conditions make them challenging to manage. If you suspect the presence of Hammerhead Worms in your area, contact Loyal Termite and Pest Control now.

Late Summer Pests

Ants on grassy hill in Virginia | Loyal Pest Control

As the long, lazy days of summer gradually give way to the crisp, cool embrace of autumn, many residents of Virginia assume that the threat of pests also dwindles. However, nature has its own plans, and late summer brings with it a surge in pest activity that can catch us off guard. The weather is still warm and outdoor activity is still in full swing, allowing for pest populations that thrive in summer to take advantage of opportunities to enter our homes.   

Late Summer Pests and Their Habits 

With gardens in full bloom and an increased presence of humans engaging in outdoor activities, pests find easy access to food sources and potential hosts, making late summer ideal for pest infestations. The most common of which are: 

  • Mosquitoes: Mosquitoes thrive in the humidity of summer, and by late summer their numbers have increased drastically. Breeding in any stagnant or standing water on your property, these blood suckers invade your property and can potentially spread diseases like malaria.  
  • Flies: House flies and fruit flies breed quickly and in places that are easy to miss. Unsealed garbage bins, or overripe gardens are beacons for these pests, and they can easily overrun your home.  
  • Bees, Wasps & Hornets: These stinging pests are out en masse having established their nests by late summer. Notoriously attracted to sweet scents, overripe fruit or unsealed food waste will invite these potentially dangerous stinging pests onto your property. 
  • Cockroaches: Preferring warm and humid locations, cockroaches are no strangers to Virginia residents, and they can be near impossible to keep out without professional help. These pests can spread sickness and are very good at hiding, so the sight of even one is worth a call to the professionals. 
  • Termites: Any wood material in a home is at risk for termites, who thrive in warm and damp conditions. Secretive and small, their invasion can take years to notice, at which point the damage they cause may be extensive. 
  • Spiders: Scurrying to find mates for the fall, spiders will be seeking out the milder temperatures of your home to escape the late summer heat and lay their eggs.  
  • Rodents: By late summer, rodents like mice or rats will be looking to take advantage of any holes along your roof, gaps in doorframes, or damaged screens to turn your home into their new nesting place.  
  • Snakes: Predators follow the prey, so where you see increased rodent activity, you’ll also find increased snake activity.  

Professional Help You Can Trust 

The experts at Loyal Termite & Pest Control have 60 years of industry leading experience protecting the homes of Virginia residents. Committed to long-term solutions, our highly trained team of professionals know how to keep your home pest free year-round. Don’t wait, give us a call today for a free quote! 

How to Keep Ticks Off Your Dog and Ensure a Bite-free Adventure

this dog wants to know what it can do to avoid ticks during fun summertime hikesAttention, dog lovers in the beautiful state of Virginia! Are you tired of playing a never-ending game of hide-and-seek with ticks? While it may seem impossible to keep these blood-sucking pests away, with the right precautions you can help your furry friends avoid itchy bites all summer long. Read on to learn expert tips from the tick exterminators at Loyal Termite & Pest Control.

Tick Talk: Why Ticks Are a Big Deal

Ticks may be tiny, but they pack a punch when it comes to harming your furry companion’s well-being. From Lyme disease to other tick-borne illnesses, these sneaky critters can wreak havoc on your dog’s health. To help you out, are some tips for flea and tick prevention for dogs.

Daily Checks for a Tick-free Pup

Make it a daily ritual to give your dog a thorough tick inspection, especially after escapades in grassy or wooded areas. Get hands-on and feel for any suspicious bumps or lumps on their skin. 

Remember to pay extra attention to those ears, neck, belly, and legs. If you spot an unwelcome tick, arm yourself with tweezers or a handy tick remover tool to delicately evict the intruder. If you are worried about accidentally leaving the head behind, contact your veterinarian for advice on clean removal.

The “No-tick” Zones: Dodging Ticks Like a Pro

Treat tick-infested areas like the forbidden lands for your pooch. That means tall grass, bushes, and leafy havens. Steer clear of these hotspots when you embark on your walks or hikes. Stick to well-groomed trails and paths, leaving the tick playgrounds behind. Keep your lawn in tip-top shape by regularly mowing and tidying up any debris, making it a less appealing hideout for those tiny hitchhikers.

Suds and Suds: Bath Time Tick Defense

Who knew bath time could be a tick-busting extravaganza? Grab a mild shampoo made for your furry friends and lather up your furry pal. Rinse them thoroughly, removing any lurking ticks in the process. Add a splash of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice to the water for an extra kick. These natural tick repellents will make those bloodsuckers think twice. 

Fashionable and Functional: the Tick-Proof Dog Vest

If your furry sidekick is an adventure enthusiast, it is time to suit them in style! Introduce your pet to the tick-fighting superhero: the dog vest. This fashionable garment covers your dog’s chest and back, providing a barrier against tick bites. Some vests even come armed with permethrin, a tick-slaying chemical. 

Vet It Out: Tick Prevention Tailored to Your Pup

Your trusted veterinarian should always be your go-to resource for flea and tick treatment products. Schedule a chat with your vet and discuss how to keep ticks off your dog. They will recommend top-notch products and methods ideal for your dog’s needs. The options are endless, from collars, sprays, and drops to pills or vaccines.

Remember, some products can tackle ticks, fleas, and other pests. But be aware of potential side effects and interactions with other medications. Prioritize your pup’s safety by consulting with your vet before starting any regime of flea and tick prevention for dogs.

Tick Invasion? Call In the Pros!

The tick situation can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially in Virginia summers. That is where the tick exterminators at Loyal Termite & Pest Control come in. Their expertise and cutting-edge techniques will give those ticks a one-way ticket out of your furry friend’s life. Not only do they provide exceptional service, but they are also famous for their commitment to eco-friendly pest control solutions and their dedication to customer satisfaction.

Do not let ticks ruin your day or harm your dog’s health. Call Loyal Termite & Pest Control today and get rid of those pesky parasites once and for all.


TAP Insulation – How Does It Compare to Normal Insulation?

a licensed installer installs tap insulation in a virginia homeIf you are a Virginia homeowner considering installing new insulation, you may be familiar with TAP insulation. At Loyal Termite & Pest Control, we are licensed TAP Insulation installers! TAP stands for Thermal Acoustical Pest Control insulation. It is a type of insulation designed to provide homeowners multiple benefits beyond just temperature control. 

What Is TAP Insulation?

TAP insulation is loose-fill insulation made from recycled paper treated with borates and a fire retardant. This insulation increases a home’s comfort and energy efficiency when blown into crawl spaces, walls, and attics. The borate solution provides TAP insulation with several unique qualities.

TAP insulation is a durable, noninvasive, and environmentally safe home pest management solution. It is a popular option among homeowners since it can assist in increasing energy efficiency and lower noise pollution in the home.

How Does TAP Insulation Compare to Normal Insulation?

TAP insulation offers unique benefits compared to traditional insulation. It provides pest control benefits that traditional insulation lacks. That makes it a better choice for homeowners in areas prone to pest infestations. Secondly, it offers soundproofing benefits, reducing noise pollution in noisy places. 

Though more expensive than traditional insulation, TAP insulation is worth the cost. However, note that it requires installation by a licensed pest control company. A homeowner or a general contractor can install traditional insulation.

TAP Insulation Pros and Cons


  • Pest Control: TAP insulation contains borate, a natural pest deterrent. Borate is harmless to humans and pets but is highly effective in controlling pests. Pests like rodents and insects typically enter homes through small gaps and openings in walls, roofs, and foundations. Installing TAP insulation in these gaps and spaces creates a barrier that pests cannot penetrate. This reduces the need for other pest control techniques and aids in preventing pest infestations in your house.
  • Soundproofing: TAP insulation is denser than traditional insulation. This makes it an excellent sound barrier. Its density absorbs sound waves and reduces noise pollution. This makes your home quieter and more comfortable.
  • Fire Retardant: TAP insulation contains a fire retardant that makes it less likely to catch fire and spread flames in the event of a fire. TAP insulation uses a nontoxic fire retardant that is safe for people and animals. TAP insulation can lengthen the time you have to flee in the event of a fire by slowing the spread of the flames.
  • Insulation: TAP insulation provides all the benefits of traditional insulation. It assists in controlling your home’s temperature. Your home will be cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
  • Proper insulation is an eco-friendly choice. It can lower your energy costs and carbon footprint. TAP insulation can also help prevent moisture buildup. This buildup can cause mold growth and other issues.


  • Cost: TAP insulation is generally more expensive than traditional insulation.
  • Installation: Only a licensed pest control company can install this type of insulation.

Call the Best TAP Insulation Experts in Virginia

Are you considering TAP insulation for your home? If so, be sure to contact a licensed pest control company to have it installed. Loyal Termite & Pest Control is a licensed TAP insulation installer in Virginia. Contact us to schedule an appointment and learn about the benefits of TAP insulation.

Mosquito Prevention: What You Can Do

 A person scratching mosquito bites as more swarm around them.Springtime in Ashland is marked by the emergence of blooming trees and flowers. With this beauty also comes an unavoidable truth: the beginning of mosquito season. The increase in temperature and rainfall creates the perfect environment for these pests to begin breeding.

Mosquitoes are opportunistic and can lay their eggs in small amounts of water. It is important to start mosquito prevention early; personal measures and professional pest control together can help you be pest-free* this year! 

The Dangers of Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are not only annoying pests that cause itchy bites, but they can also pose significant danger to humans. These pests are known to transmit several diseases through their bites. Considering mosquitoes feed on a variety of animals and humans the risk for exposure is heightened. Some diseases that mosquitoes can transmit are:

  • West Nile Virus
  • Zika Virus
  • Malaria
  • Dengue Fever

These diseases can range from mild to severe, and in some cases can even be life threatening. Mosquitoes can also cause allergic reactions, such as swelling, redness, and itching around the bite site. Overall, mosquitoes are considered to be one of the deadliest animals on the planet and are responsible for the death of nearly 725,000 people worldwide. Early mosquito prevention is paramount in protecting you and your loved ones from potential health risks! 

Mosquito Prevention Measures: What Works

If you’ve ever tried to get rid of mosquitoes before, then you know that not all DIY techniques work… in fact, many of them don’t. Thankfully, however, there are a few measures that DO work: 

  • Drain Standing Water: Mosquitoes breed in standing, stagnant water. They only need a half an inch of water to create a sufficient nursery. By removing standing water in your yard, you can prevent an infestation. Turn over any buckets, flowerpots, or other containers that can collect rainwater. Additionally, fix any leaky outdoor faucet or pipes. 
  • Use Insect Repellent: If you are spending a lot of time outdoors, make sure to use an EPA-approved insect repellent that has at least 25% DEET or picaridin. These are effective repellents that can keep mosquitoes away from you and your family.
  • Mosquito Netting: Nothing ruins a relaxing breeze on a cool summer evening like a mosquito buzzing around your face. Placing mosquito netting on your doors, windows, or around your outside seating area can prevent mosquitoes and other insects from invading your space. 

Mosquito Prevention: What Doesn’t Work

Unfortunately, not all of the ‘solutions’ on the Internet are actually valuable. A lot of online mosquito prevention techniques simply don’t work – or could even worsen your infestation by attracting new pests. Stay away from these less-than effective control methods: 

  • Citronella Candles: While these candles can be effective if you are directly next to them, they are less than ideal for large areas. Citronella candles lose their potency quickly and need to be replaced often. 
  • Essential Oils: These oils have gained in popularity over the years, but they do little to deter mosquitoes from biting you. There is a lack of standardization among essential oil products so the effectiveness is affected. Instead of trusting essential oils, stick with DEET-containing insect repellents. 

Professional Mosquito Control

While there are many ways you can prevent mosquitoes from settling in your yard, the fastest and most effective method you can use is a professional extermination service. The experts with Loyal Termite & Pest Control have been providing superior customer service since 1960. Trust our expertise to provide you and your family with the most effective mosquito control solution for you. Contact us today to get a free quote and start living your life pest-free*!

Spring Clean the Pests Away!

As the gloom of winter fades many people begin to plan for their annual spring cleaninga basket of cleaning supplies on a windowsil

marathon. Spring cleaning has many benefits such as decreasing stress, reducing clutter and  improving your overall mental and physical health. Additionally, a spring clean is the best time to check for signs of pests in your home and take preventative measures to ensure your home is not attracting any unwanted guests.

How to Prevent Pests in your Home

While you are spring cleaning, it is important to make sure your home is as attractive to pests as possible. Here are a few steps to add to your cleaning routine that will help keep pests out of your home:

  • Thoroughly Clean Areas Where Pests are Common.

Kitchens can be one of the most attractive areas in your home for pests due to the availability of food and warm hiding spaces. When spring cleaning your kitchen it is important to clean areas where crumbs or spills are common. Clean under large appliances like your refrigerator and oven. Food often gets stuck in these hard to clean areas making it an ideal place for pests.

Spring is also the perfect time to clean out your cabinets and throw away expired or unwanted food. Pests such as rodents, cockroaches and ants are known to invade cluttered cabinets and get into food. Ensure open food products are stored in airtight containers and keep an eye out for any holes or cracks where pests could enter when organizing and cleaning the inside of your cabinets.

Bathrooms are another area where pests are common. They are often attracted to easily available sources of water and are able to enter your home through drains or windows. While cleaning window sills and cabinets, check for holes around your windows and leaking pipes or faucets. Some pests will enter through drain pipes, pouring bleach down your drain will help deter any pests from entering.

  • Reduce Clutter

Many pests such as spiders, rodents or ants will use clutter as a place to hide or build their nests. Other pests, like cockroaches, are known to eat paper and other materials that often make up clutter around your home. Reducing clutter within your home not only makes your house look cleaner and decreases stress but it will also make your home less hospitable to a variety of pests. 

In addition to reducing clutter within your home, also clean any clutter around the outside of your home. Some pests will be attracted to piles of leaves or other piles of organic matter you may have in your yard. Other pests, like mosquitos, are attracted to standing water that can form in places like buckets, tarps and kids toys. Emptying and tidying any areas with standing water will help keep mosquitoes from swarming your yard in the summer.

  • Inspect the Exterior of Your Home

Pests often enter a home through even the smallest holes or cracks in the exterior therefore it is important to examine your foundation and walls for any possible entrance points before vegetation begins to grow in the spring and possibly hide any defects. If you find any holes or cracks, make sure to seal them with caulk or sealant.

During the fall and winter gutters can easily be clogged with leaves and organic matter. This debris can cause standing water which is a perfect breeding ground for pests like mosquitos and easy water sources for many other pests. Cleaning your gutters in spring will not only ensure they are effectively collecting water from your roof but also will keep pests away.

Call a Professional Pest Control Service

Spring is the best time of the year to do preventative pest maintenance to ensure pests do not become a larger problem in the spring or summer. If you are concerned about pests in your home, our team can help keep you cleaner and free of springtime bugs and rodents. With our help, we can create a plan to keep your home pest free all year long!

The Kissing Bug: What You Need to Know

A kissing bug on a white background

Kissing bugs may sound romantic, but you’re not going to love the reality of these creepy critters. The reason for their nickname is that these minuscule pests are infamous for biting people in the middle of the night, usually near the mouth. Waking up covered in bites on your face is unpleasant enough but can kissing bugs actually be deadly? The pros at Loyal Termite & Pest Control share the answer as well as advice on how to keep kissing bugs, and other insects, out of your home.

Kissing Bugs: What are They?

Triatomine bugs, sometimes known as “kissing bugs,” are parasitic insects that feed on blood. They’re oval-shaped, dark color, and normally reach lengths of between 1/2 and 1 inch. Although youngsters lack wings, adults have them and can fly. Their long, noticeable beak, which they employ for feeding, is their most distinguishing characteristic.

Kissing bugs are nocturnal so they typically hide close to animals or people who are sleeping. They tend to hide in small crevices. Although females may leave eggs behind, adults are mostly solitary and do not reside in huge groups.

Are Kissing Bugs Dangerous?

Kissing bugs are harmful, just like any other insect that feeds on blood. Although their bites are not extremely painful, they have the potential to spread infections. Chagas disease, which may have chronic consequences lasting a decade or more after the initial transmission, is the illness these insects are best known for spreading.

Chagas Disease: What Is It?

Typanosoma cruzi, a parasite that kissing bugs store in their digestive systems after feeding on an infected organism, is the cause of Chagas disease. The parasite enters the bite wound through the feces that the kissing bug generally leaves behind after feeding; it does not spread while the insect is actively feeding. Chagas disease may be fatal, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Early symptoms of the illness include:

  • Swelling surrounding the bite
  • Fever and exhaustion
  • Body pains
  • Swollen eyelids
  • Headaches
  • Loss of appetite or nausea
  • Swollen glands

Get medical help right away if you think you might have Chagas disease, or another sickness. If you think your pet has been bitten, call your veterinarian right away because other animals might also be afflicted with this illness.

Ways To Avoid the Kissing Bug

The last thing you want to see looking in the mirror in the morning is bite marks on your face from one of these bugs. The best way to avoid being bitten is to keep them out of your home. Here are some methods for keeping kissing bugs at bay:

  • Seal any gaps around your foundation, windows, and doors.
  • Repair or replace any old screens or weatherstripping around windows.
  • Clear the area around your property of rubbish and keep your landscape tidy.
  • Put your yard lights further away from your home’s foundation.
  • Let your pets sleep indoors at night.
  • Check sleeping areas frequently for bugs.

What Should You Do If You Find A Kissing Bug?

Seeing a pest in your house is never fun, especially one as ominous as a kissing bug. The CDC advises against coming into contact with the kissing bug, despite the fact that your first inclination might be to squish it immediately.

Instead of smashing it, place a transparent container on top of it and trap it. After that, call an exterminator. They’ll be able to verify the species of bug and check your home for evidence of other pests. 

Trusted Exterminators in Central & Eastern Virginia

Concerned that you may have a kissing bug in your home? Worried about other pests? Loyal Termite & Pest Control can help. We’ve been providing top-notch pest control services since 1960. Contact us today for a free quote!