Merchant Grain Beetles

Merchant grain beetles are typically not found in grain products, but instead like to attack cereals, cake mixes, macaroni, cookies and chocolate. Merchant grain beetles are dark brown and have six saw-like teeth on each side of their bodies. They can grow to be one-eighth of an inch long and have very flat bodies.

merchant grain beetle

Merchant Grain Beetle Facts
Color | Brown
Legs | 6
Shape | Narrow oval
Size | 1/10" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | No
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
The merchant grain beetle's body shape allows it to crawl into packaging to eat, live and have babies.

Habitat
Merchant grain beetles are found in pantries or in food processing areas or warehouses.

Threats
Merchant grain beetles can infest stored food products and can contaminate food.

Prevention
Discard infested packages. Clean spilled grain and food sources.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

Powderpost Beetles

Powderpost beetles lay their eggs in cracks of wood and the larvae tunnel into the surface, filling it with a very fine powder-like dust. Powderpost beetles have long, narrow, flat bodies that allow them to easily attack wood surfaces. These beetles are reddish-brown in color.

Powder post beetle

Powderpost Beetle Facts
Color | Reddish brown to black
Legs | 6
Shape | Narrow oval
Size | 1/8 to 1/4" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | All 50

Habits
Adult powderpost beetles are very active at night, enjoy flying and are attracted to the light.

Habitat
Powderpost beetles often attack hardwoods, and can be found in hardwood floors, timbers and crates, antiques and other objects made of hardwood materials.

Threats
Some researchers believe that powderpost beetles are second only to termites in the United States in their destructiveness to wood and wood products.

Prevention
Powderpost beetles can be prevented through vigilant inspection of wood sources in the home.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

Varied Carpet Beetles

Varied carpet beetles get their name from the rainbow of color on their back surfaces.

Varied Carpet beetle

Varied Carpet Beetle Facts
Color | Black centers, with white, brown and yellow patches in an irregular arrangement
Legs | 6
Shape | Round
Size | 1/16" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | No
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
These pests enjoy dining on carpets, wool fabrics, dead insects, furs, hides, feathers, horns, hair, silk and bones. It can take 249-354 days to three years for varied carpet beetles to grow from an egg to an adult.

Habitat
Varied carpet beetles are found in homes in attics, Oriental carpets, tapestries and wood-based wall-to-wall carpeting.

Threats
Varied carpet beetles feed on dead insects, but also feed on upholstery and carpet, so they can damage those materials. They can also damage clothing fabric.

Prevention
As with moths, to avoid varied carpet beetle infestations, store clothing in plastic containers. Dry clean clothing thoroughly before storing for long periods of time.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

American Cockroaches

The American cockroach is the largest of the house-infesting cockroach.

American Cockroach

American Cockroach Facts
Color | Reddish brown, with a yellowish figure 8 pattern on the back of the head
Legs | 6
Shape | Oval
Size | 2" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
American cockroaches are found in food processing areas and food storage areas, as well as other types of buildings. They are active when the temperature is 70 degrees or higher, but they can survive lower temperatures with the right conditions.

Habitat
American cockroaches are often found in sewers and basements, particularly around pipes and drains.

Threats
Cockroaches have been reported to spread at least 33 kinds of bacteria, six kinds of parasitic worms, and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces. Germs that cockroaches eat from decaying matter or sewage are protected while in their bodies and may remain infective for several weeks longer than if they had been exposed to cleaning agents, rinse water, or just sunlight and air. Recent medical studies have shown that cockroach allergens cause lots of allergic reactions in inner city children. They were even shown to cause asthma in children. These allergens build up in deposits of droppings, secretions, cast skins, and dead bodies of roaches.

Prevention
Good sanitation and habitat reduction, along with vacuuming, surveillance, a baiting program, and some sealing of cracks can usually quickly reduce or eliminate a cockroach population.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

Brown banded Cockroaches

Brown banded cockroaches get their name from the two lighter bands they have across their dark brownish bodies. In addition to the distinctive banding, males have full wings, which reach beyond the tip of their rather pointed abdomens. Females have underdeveloped wings, much shorter than their broad, rounded abdomens. The lighter band markings are much more distinct in nymphs than in adults of either sex.

Brown banded cockroach

Brown Banded Cockroach Facts
Color | Brown, with pronounced banding across wings
Legs | 6
Shape | Oval
Size | 1/2" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
Male brown banded cockroaches have been observed to fly indoors. Among cockroach species, brown banded cockroaches have the most distinctions between sexes. Females have larger abdomen and shorter wings than males. Brown banded cockroaches often hide their egg cases in or under furniture.

Habitat
Within a room, these roaches tend to prefer warmer, drier, and higher locations than do any of the other urban pest roaches. They are often found in upper cabinets or in other rooms than the kitchens (food preparation areas) or bathrooms.

Threats
Cockroaches have been reported to spread at least 33 kinds of bacteria, six kinds of parasitic worms, and at least seven other kinds of human pathogens. They can pick up germs on the spines of their legs and bodies as they crawl through decaying matter or sewage and then carry these into food or onto food surfaces. Germs that cockroaches eat from decaying matter or sewage are protected while in their bodies and may remain infective for several weeks longer than if they had been exposed to cleaning agents, rinse water, or just sunlight and air. Recent medical studies have shown that cockroach allergens cause lots of allergic reactions in inner city children. They were even shown to cause asthma in children. These allergens build up in deposits of droppings, secretions, cast skins, and dead bodies of roaches.

Prevention
Good sanitation and habitat reduction, along with vacuuming, surveillance, a baiting program, and some sealing of cracks can usually quickly reduce or eliminate a cockroach population.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

German Cockroach

German cockroaches are quite common in Alberta. They are light brown to tan in colour, and have two black stripes down their back, starting just behind their heads. They are oval, with six legs, and can be ½ to 5/8 of an inch long.

German Cockroach

German Cockroach Facts
Color | Light brown to tan, with dark stripes from head to toe
Legs  6
Shape | Oval
Size | ½” to 5/8” long
Antennae | Yes
Region | Canada and the United States

Habitat
German cockroaches love food! They are often found in kitchens and enjoy warm, humid places with moisture.

Threats
German cockroaches can spoil food through their feces and other secretions. They can cause severe allergic responses as a result.

Prevention
Keep dark corners free of moisture and ensure that food is well-sealed in tight containers, as well as absent from surfaces.

Fruit Flies

Fruit flies feed on decaying fruits and vegetables.

Fruit flies

Fruit Fly Facts
Color | Tan/ light abdomen
Legs | 6
Shape | Small oval
Size | 1/8" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
Fruit flies feed on decaying matter, especially fruits and vegetables.

Habitat
Fruit flies are small pests that are commonly found in homes, restaurants and other facilities where food is processed. They are found on moist, decaying matter that has been stationary for several days.

Threats
Fruit flies are found in unsanitary conditions, so they are a potential health concern, especially when present in health facilities.

Prevention
Fruit flies are best prevented through vigilant sanitation practices. Remove kitchen trash daily, and keep counter surfaces clean.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

house Flies

House flies get their name from being the most common fly found around homes. Adult house flies can grow to one-quarter of an inch long and usually live between 15 and 25 days.

house flies

House Fly Facts
Color | Dark gray
Legs | 6
Shape | Small oval
Size | 1/4" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
They are only able to feed on liquids but have the ability to turn many solid foods into a liquid for them to eat. House flies taste with their feet, which are 10 million times more sensitive to sugar than the human tongue.

Habitat
House flies tend to stay within 1-2 miles of where they were born; however, they have been known to migrate up to 20 miles to find food.

Threats
These insects have been known to carry over 100 different kinds of disease-causing germs, which makes them very bad house guests.

Prevention
House flies can be controlled through vigilant sanitation. Remove trash regularly and use well-sealing garbage receptacles. Clean up pet waste immediately. Use fine mesh screens on doors and windows to prevent fly entry.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

centipedes (house Centipedes)

Centipedes (Scutigera coleoptrata) are sometimes called “hundred-leggers” because of their many pairs of legs; however, they can actually have anywhere from 15-177 pairs of legs, depending on the species. Interestingly, centipedes always have an odd number of pairs of legs.

Centipede

Centipede Facts
Color | Yellowish to dark brown, sometimes with darker stripes or markings
Legs | 15-177 pairs
Shape | Elongated, flattened, worm-like
Size | 1/8 – 6” (4-152 mm)
Antennae | Yes
Region | Found throughout Canada and the USA

Habits
Most centipedes are nocturnal, and prey primarily on flies, spiders, and sometimes plant tissue.

Habitat
Centipedes are found throughout North America and the world. They are typically found in areas of high moisture, such as in rotting logs, under stones, in trash or piles of leaves/grass. When they invade homes, centipedes are most commonly found in damp basements, crawlspaces, bathrooms, or potted plants.

Threats
Centipedes are generally considered just nuisance pests, as they do not pose significant health or property threats. However, all centipedes have poison jaws with which they inject venom into their prey. If handled roughly, some larger species can inflict a painful bite that can break human skin and causes pain and swelling, similar to a bee sting.

Prevention
The most effective way to prevent centipede infestations is to reduce areas of moisture in and around your home. Remove leaf piles and grass clippings. Store firewood off of the ground. Provide adequate ventilation in crawl spaces.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

box elder beetles

Box elder beetles become a nuisance during the fall months, when they seek out houses for their warmth. They can enter warm buildings through cracks and stay in the walls, appearing in the home in spring.

Box elder beetle

Box Elder Beetle Facts
The box elder beetle is a half-inch long and one-third of an inch as wide. They have a black body, three red lines on the thorax, a red line on the border of each side, and a red line on each wing. Eggs are usually deposited on box elder trees and are rusty red in colour.

Habits & Habitat
In the summer, these beetles feed on flowers, leaves and seed pods of the box elder tree or silver maple. In August and September, numbers of almost fully grown nymphs are at their maximum, living on box elder trees. Adult migration occurs at this time.

Threats
These pests are just that—only pests. They do not eat anything inside a house and will not bite or in any way harm you. They cause little damage to trees.

Prevention
It is best to avoid having female box elder trees on your property. Male trees can be purchased from a nursery, if you must plant a box elder tree. The beetles are controlled by spraying the nymphs on the host tree, before the adults move into your warm house. Pest control should be performed in the summer/fall time period; pest control is usually not effective on box elder beetles that have already moved into the home.

Camel Crickets

Similar crickets include stone and cave crickets. Most of these crickets are of the species Ceuthophilus.

Camel Cricket

Camel Cricket Facts
Color | Brown with the typical humpbacked appearance
Size | ½" to 1 ¼" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | No
Region | worldwide

Habitat
Found worldwide and commonly encountered in crawlspaces, basements, storage sheds, garages, outbuildings and other damp, protected areas. Also, under decks in humid weather. They are active year-round in warmer climates. They are more active at night.

Threats
These crickets can frighten people because they will jump at a person instead of away from a person. They do minimal damage but are a nuisance.

Prevention
Baits are very effective. Dehumidification may also be effective, where applicable.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

earwigs

Earwigs got their name from the myth that they crawl into sleeping people's ears and tunnel into their brains. The long cerci, or clippers, on their backsides easily identify an earwig.

Earwig

Earwig Facts
Color | Dark brown
Legs | 6
Shape | Long, narrow
Size | 1" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | No
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
Earwigs hide during the day and feeds on leaves, flowers, fruits, mold and insects at night.

Habitat
These insects live together outdoors in large numbers. They can be found under piles of lawn debris, mulch or in tree holes. They gain entry to a structure through exterior cracks.

Threats
Contrary to folklore, earwigs do not crawl into ears and eat peoples' brains at night. They do not spread diseases, but their menacing appearance can be alarming to a homeowner.

Prevention
Remove harborage sites such as leaf piles, mulch piles or other vegetation. Seal cracks and crevices well to prevent structural entry.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

indian meal moths

The Indian meal moth was given its name after an insect scientist found it feeding on corn meal, also known as Indian meal.
From wing tip to wing tip, adult moths measure from five-eighths of an inch to three-fourths of an inch long.

Indian meal moth

Indian Meal Moth Facts
Color | Copper reddish coloring on outer part of wings
Legs | 6
Shape | Elongated oval
Size | 5/8" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | Yes
Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
These moths like to feed on dried fruits, grains, seeds, nuts, chocolate, candies, bird seed, dog food, powdered milk, dried red peppers and candy.

Habitat
Attracted to the light, these bugs are found worldwide in areas where food is stored, such as grocery stores.

Threats
Indian Meal Moths infest foods and can contaminate food products.

Prevention
Dried food products should be inspected thoroughly for signs of moth infestations. Discard infested foods in outdoor trash bins. Clean infested cupboards thoroughly with a vacuum and soap and water. Store food in sealed containers.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

millipedes

Millipedes (Oxidus gracilis) are sometimes called “thousand-leggers” because of their many pairs of legs, but they can actually have anywhere from 30-90+ pairs of legs, depending on the species. The leggiest is Illacme plenipes, which can have more than 333 pairs of legs.

millipede

Millipede Facts
Color | Blackish or brownish, some red, orange or with mottled patterns.
Legs | 30-90+ pairs
Shape | Long, cylindrical and wormlike
Size | 1/16 – 4½ ” (2-155 mm)
Antennae | Yes

Region | Found throughout U.S.

Habits
Most millipedes are nocturnal. They are primarily scavengers, feeding on decaying plants and occasionally dead insects. In the autumn, millipedes are known to migrate in great numbers.

Habitat
Millipedes are found throughout the world, with about 1,000 species occurring in North America alone. They are typically found in areas of high moisture and decaying vegetation, such as under trash, in piles of grass clippings, flower-bed mulches, piles of leaves, etc. Millipedes do not usually survive indoors for more than a few days unless there are high moisture conditions and a food supply is present.

Threats
Some millipede species give off an ill-smelling fluid through openings along the sides of the body. In some instances, this fluid can be toxic to small animals and pets, and can cause small blisters on humans.

Prevention
The most effective way to prevent millipede infestations is to reduce areas of moisture in and around your home. Consider running a dehumidifier if you have a damp basement. Keep lawns mowed so that grass does not retain moisture, and water lawns in the early morning to allow grass to dry during the day. Remove leaf piles and grass clippings. Store firewood off the ground.


*Article from Pest World

pillbugs

This pest is the only crustacean that has become completely adapted to spending its life on land. Pillbugs have oval bodies and seven pairs of legs. They are easily recognized by their back, which is made up of seven hard individual plates. Pillbugs are sometimes referred to as rollie-pollies.

Pill bug

Pillbug Facts
Color | Dark brown to black
Legs | 14
Shape | Oval; round when rolled up
Size | 3/4" long
Antennae | Yes
Flying | No

Region | Canada and the USA

Habits
Pillbugs eat decaying vegetable material and are most active at night. They are known for their ability to roll into a ball.

Habitat
Pillbugs live in moist locations. They are found under damp objects or under vegetable debris.

Threats
Pillbugs do not spread diseases or invade food products. However, the pillbug is often considered a pest when it gains entry into a home.

Prevention
Pillbugs can be avoided by eliminating food sources such as vegetable or plant debris. If pillbugs enter a structure, they will often dry out and die.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

silverfish

This insect gets its name from its silvery, metallic appearance and fish-like shape and movements. Silverfish (Lespisma sacchrina [Linnaeus]) have no wings, but are able to run very fast. They tend to hide their presence from humans which means any damage they have caused could go unnoticed as well.

Silverfish

Silverfish Facts
Color | Silver to brown
Legs | 6
Shape | Oval, elongated
Size | 3-4" long
Antennae | Yes
Region | Found throughout Canada and the USA

Habits
Silverfish tend to feed on paper items, glue, clothing and food items, such as flour and rolled oats. Silverfish can live up to a year without food, but require a high humidity environment. They move fast and are typically nocturnal.

Habitat
Silverfish are found throughout Canada and the USA and are typically seen in moist, humid areas in the home, such as bathrooms, basements, and attics.

Threats
While silverfish are mainly a nuisance pest, they can contaminate food and damage paper goods such as wall paper and books.

Prevention
Consider a dehumidifier for your home, repair leaky pipes and drains and eliminate or repair any moldy or wet wood. Don’t keep old books and magazines in areas where silverfish are usually found like basements, attics and garages. It’s also important to keep food items such as flour and sugar in tight containers.


*Information from the National Pest Management Association

Address

33146 Meskanaw Road

Rocky View County, 

AB T4C 1A2

Phone

Calgary | 403-273-3025

Cochrane | 403-932-4383

Hours

Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed

Serving: Calgary, Alberta and surrounding areas

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