FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Ants

 

Do carpenter ants eat wood?

No, they hollow out wood to make nests.  They will still cause significant structural damage as they expand the nest.

How do I keep ants away from my house?

Cutting back trees and shrubs that hang over or touch your house will reduce the number of pathways into your house. Also, keeping distance from the earth to your siding at least 12”, so only the foundation touches the dirt.

Why do I see ants in the winter?

Generally speaking, ants will go into hibernation during the cold months. However, if they are in a warm environment, such as in a wall or under insulation in an attic, they will continue to be active.

Where do ants nest?

Anywhere they can. Outdoors, they will use earth, leaf piles, rotting wood or damaged trees. In your house, they can nest in walls, floors or under insulation.

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Stink Bugs

 

What is a Stink Bug?

The brown marmorated stink bug (Halyomorpha Halys) is an invasive species from Eastern Asia and is commonly found in China, Japan and Korea. Arriving sometime in the late 90’s, they spread north and west from the Carolinas. They feed and reproduce on fruit trees, shade trees and ornamentals.

Why are they in my house?

In the fall, stink bugs will invade homes and other structures to overwinter. It is common to occasionally see them throughout the winter on a warm or sunny day. As spring arrives, you will see greater numbers as they make their way outside to feed and reproduce.

Is there any danger to me or my home?

No. They do not sting or bite. They will not do any damage to your home. However, large numbers of the insects may do damage to trees and shrubs on your property.

How do I get them out of my home?

A vacuum is the best way to remove the occasional bug in your home. Or, grab the insect with a tissue or paper towel and throw it outside or flush it down the toilet. Contrary to internet rumor, crushing one will not attract more stink bugs.

What can I do to prevent them from entering in the future?

Before fall, seal cracks around doors and windows. Make sure all screens are fixed and loose siding is repaired. Caulk openings where cables, utility wires and pipes enter your home. It also a good idea to have all shrubs and trees cut back from your home, for all insect and wildlife control. We can treat the exterior of a building along with trees and ornamentals close to the home in the late summer/early fall.

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Termites

 

How do I know if I have termites?

Termites will often form “mud tubes” from the earth to wood. These can be found around the foundation or inside a basement. Swarming, reproductive termites may be found near an active infestation. In the spring, these are often seen near furnaces or boilers in a basement. After the swarming termites have disappeared, they leave behind piles of wings. The best way to know for certain is to call us for a free home inspection.

How do I get rid of termites?

A certified pest professional is the best way to rid a structure of termites. There are many methods, including baiting systems and injection treatments. A thorough home inspection will determine the severity of the infestation and the best method of treatment.

How do I prevent termites from entering my home?

Termites can enter through the smallest crack in the foundation, making it almost impossible to completely “termite proof” a home, but there are ways to eliminate high risks. First, start by eliminating all wood to earth contact; including any wood near a home – e.g. old fence, fallen trees, and old construction material. Next, make sure you can see the foundation all around the house leaving at least 12 – 18 inches between the earth and siding. Also, cut off any unwanted moisture in the house - damp basement, flooding around foundation, etc.  We can also install termite monitors around the exterior of your home to detect if any termite activity is present. 

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Rodents

 

How do I know if I have mice in my house?

Look for mouse droppings, chewed boxes or packaging containing food or nesting materials.

Can I seal my house to keep mice away?

It is almost impossible to keep mice out of a home they want to invade because the smallest crack or opening in the siding can be a potential entrance. You can reduce the risk by sealing any visible opening around the exterior of the house such as wires, dryer vents or plumbing pipes visible on the exterior siding.

I hear scratching in my wall, is that a mouse?

It could be...a free NPWC inspection can determine if it is.

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Bats

 

I woke up to find a bat in my house, what do I do?

If the bat can be captured and tested for rabies, that is what must be done according to Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess County Health Departments. If this is not possible, anyone sleeping in the house should start a rabies vaccine treatment, since it cannot be determined if the bat came in contact with anyone in their sleep.

How do I get bats out of my attic?

NPWC can perform an exclusion, followed by sealing the entrance to be sure the bats do not return. The exclusion is done without harming the bats.

I have had bats in my attic in the past, will they return?

Yes. Bats will return to roost year after year to the same place.

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Bed Bugs

 

How do I know if I have bed bugs?

People first learn they have bed bugs after developing welts from their bites. A doctor may be able to determine if the bites are from bed bugs. NPWC can perform a free thorough inspection of your home to confirm the infestation.

How did I get bed bugs?

There a many ways to come in contact with bed bugs. Some of the most common ways are hotel rooms, spending time in an apartment or home with an infestation or someone entering your home with the bed bugs on their clothing.

How do I get rid of bed bugs?

There is an extensive pesticide treatment for eradicating bed bugs. Treatment of mattresses, carpeting, all furniture and clothing is often necessary to completely rid a home or apartment of bed bugs.  We also provide a thermal remediation treatment which is a non-toxic and less labor intensive method for the homeowner (i.e. furniture, clothing and mattresses do not need to be removed from the home).

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Wildlife

I saw a raccoon during the day. Does this mean it's rabid?

Not necessarily. A female raccoon may be active during the day while it is nursing its young. A raccoon, or other nocturnal animal, may be wakened from its sleeping area and chased off during daylight hours. However, you should NEVER approach a wild animal for any reason. Besides rabies, animals may carry a host of other diseases and may attack a person out of fear.

I hear noises in my attic at night. What animal could it be?

Besides raccoons, there are many other nocturnal animals that find their way into homes. Flying squirrels, bats and mice may all take refuge in an unoccupied attic or basement. A free home inspection will determine the animal and how best to handle the situation.

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