Attack of the Spiders

Spiders on attack in middle Tennessee

Brown Recluse SpiderWhy do we have so many spiders, one may ask?  The answer to this question is a simple one.  Spiders feed on insects, and the hot summer days cause many insects to procreate, and this provides an ample food source for the spiders.  When you see spiders and spider webs, there are other insects in the vicinity.  The spiders are natural pest control.  Go green, grow spiders!  The problem is, most people prefer not to have spiders as pets.  So, we are tasked with controlling the spider population, and to do this we must control the other pests, too.

Brown Recluse and Black Widow Spiders, Oh My

Most spiders in middle Tennessee are pretty harmless.  The two spiders that have a health importance in our area are the brown recluse spider and the black widow spider.  These two spiders can cause harm when they bite humans.  Most of the others are either unable to bite through human skin or the bite does not cause a major reaction.

Spiders are beneficial in nature and we believe that they serve an important role.  They help to reduce insect population and also provide a food source for larger predators, such as birds, lizards, and frogs.  They only become a pest when they enter into an area that the spider is unwanted, undesired, or can cause harm or damage.  This is when pest control is necessary and you call The Bug Man.  Our trained technicians have the knowledge and training to identify the problem and provide the solution.

Treatments for Spiders

Treatment strategies for spider control can differ depending on the type of spider, level of infestation, and treatment locations.  With all pest services, we always recommend removal of clutter, as this gives the pests areas to hide and these areas are very difficult to treat effectively.   One of the most successful treatment strategies for spider control is the use of insect monitors, also known as glue traps.  The monitors capture the spiders and other insects, help identify the level of infestation, what parts of the structure are infested, and remove every insect that is caught from the house.   When used as part of a full treatment plan, the insect monitors play an important role in keeping a home pest free.  The Bug Man’s certified technician will design a treatment stately for each situation after an inspection is complete.

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Don’t worry… bee happy about beneficial insects!

Children Embrace our beneficial insects. Shouldn’t you?

Children are so fun and curious about bugs!  Little Johnny often doesn’t think twice about picking up a spider by the leg and running to show his mommy. When he shows her his discovery, mom will often scream and run as far away as possible. Johnny will inevitably laugh, uncontrollably, while mom yells “Get that thing out of here!”

Beneficial insects are fun for the children to study and read about

It’s a common story that we hear over and over.  There are so many exaggerated horror stories about various insects: Brown recluse spiders will cause your leg to fall off. Termites will eat your house down to the ground. You will surely die a terrible disease if bitten by a mosquito. Who knows where these stories come from or why. But, they create a fear in some folks that are hard to shake.

The honey bee and other beneficial insects have an important role in our environment

Take the honey bee, for example.   They are the pollinators for our food crops. Their population has been in a steady decline in recent years due to a number of factors such as viruses, parasites, poor nutrition, limited access to clean water and exposure to pesticides. WHAT??? Exposure to pesticides?? Yes, it is true. We all (including us) have a huge responsibility in taking care to protect the honey bee and other beneficial insects.

In the spring you will sometimes see huge swarms of bees in the bushes and flowering trees. Sometimes they will stick around for a few minutes and then be gone. Sometimes they will stay for a few days. It’s easy to grab that jug of bug juice or call an exterminator to get rid of them. But, if they are not in an area that will harm you or your loved ones then it is usually best to leave them to collect the pollen. The additional benefit is that your plants and flowers will be even more beautiful later on.

There are a variety of other insects that are beneficial. Usually, most people first think of ladybugs or the asian lady beetle. Absolutely! Did you know that there are more than 400 species of the lady beetles in North America? There are also lacewings, parasitic wasps, spiders, tachinid flies, pirate bugs (aaaargh!) and ground beetles, just to name a few.

Honey bee gathering pollen: We must protect our beneficial insects.
Honey bee gathering pollen: We must protect our beneficial insects.

Protecting the environment and people at the same time

As a pest control professional, our goal is to protect your home from a pest invasion. If there is a pest problem in your living space then, yes, there is a cause for concern. You will want to eliminate the problem to prevent disease and illness/injury in your family. But, if we can keep your environment safe without having a negative impact on the rest of Murfreesboro, middle Tennessee, and beyond, then we are all winning.

Technician Spotlight – Marcel Deshaies

Marcel Deshaies is The Bug Man technician of the week.

Marcel DeshaiesMarcel is originally from Kirkville, New York, but has made Lebanon his home for 20 years.  Marcel has two sons, Brandon (9) and Steven (10), and enjoys fishing, auto mechanics, and wood working.  His spirituality and love of nature is inspired by his Mohawk Indian heritage.  Marcel’s family is part of the Wolf Clan from the St. Regis Indian Reservation in upstate New York.

Marcel Joins The Bug Man and Services Wilson County

Marcel joined The Bug Man Team in January 2011 after running Advantage Pest Control for 10 years.  In 2011, The Bug Man acquired Advantage Pest Control customers and Marcel joined our team to continue servicing the Wilson County area.  Marcel currently services the cities of Lebanon, Mt. Juliet, Hermitage and Watertown.   Marcel is a licensed pest control technician and has been working in the pest service industry for 17 years.

Education and training and teaching children

Marcel is all about education, training, and teaching children.  Marcel regularly attends training classes to continue his education in the pest service industry, and then puts that education to use when out in the field.  Ants are his favorite pest.  Marcel enjoys the persistence it takes to track the ants down, locate the nests, and eliminate them.  Many times with ants, it can take multiple visits to locate and eliminate all the colonies, and that is what Marcel enjoys.  Of course, Marcel is also skilled at servicing for other pests, such as the spiders, centipedes, roaches, crickets, termites, mosquitoes, ticks and fleas.  He just really enjoys the ants.

pest_controlAnd when it comes to children, Marcel enjoys educating them on why the pests and insects are around, what can be done to prevent them, and the difference between a dangerous pest, a nuisance pest, and the beneficial insects that are found around the home.  Marcel likes when the kids look forward to his arrival, asking “When is The Bug Man coming back?”.

Marcel says he is a problem solver by nature, that his enjoyment for this career is not from just killing bugs, it comes from helping to solve the problems that his customers have with the bugs.  At the end of the day, The Bug Man and our employees all are empowered to help others.

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What Pests Eat When They Are In Your House: A Food Chain Factoid

Have you ever stopped to wonder what bugs eat? You know you see ants in your kitchen from time to time, but what are they after? And what in the world do spiders think they can find inside your house? What’s so delicious about hanging out in the corners of your rooms?

 

Here’s a quick food chain factoid for what pests eat when they are in your house!

 

Cricket

Cricket

Crickets: Fabrics, especially those full of perspiration

Cockroaches: Sweets, cheeses, meats, grease, and starches. Vegetables and fruits. Household items like leather, beer, glue, dried skin, books, paper, human dander, and a lot more

Brown Recluse Spiders: Other bugs, like cockroaches and crickets

Black Widow Spiders: Their mates! (Actually, that’s a myth. They don’t eat their mates). But they do eat other insects.

Carpenter Bees: Wood! Nope. They actually don’t eat wood. They just bore into wood to lay their eggs. They eat pollen.

Ants: Sweets, eggs, oils, and fats

Bed Bugs: You. They feast on you for a blood meal. They will also dine on animals.

Termite

termite

Fruit Flies: Decaying fruits and vegetables

House Flies: Liquids. They can also turn solids into liquids and then eat the liquid form of that food.

Silverfish: Paper, glue, clothing, flour, and oats

House Centipedes: Flies, spiders, and plant tissue

Fleas: Cats, dogs and humans

Rodents: Grains, fruits, seeds, chocolate, random items in your trashcan

Termites: Cellulose: A polysaccharide consisting of long unbranched chains of linked glucose units: the main constituent of plant cell walls and used in making paper, rayon, and film

After reading this diverse list of what pests eat, it makes a lot of sense that they’d look for food inside your home. To keep pests out, call The Bug Man. You can reach us by phone at 615.217.7284 or find us online at Facebook.com/TheBugManTN orTwitter.com/TheBugManTN.

The Bug Man Finds a Black Widow Spider in an Unexpected Location

A black widow spider is tricky and elusive. It invokes terror into many Murfreesboro-ans, Smyrna-ans, Antioch-ans, Lebanon-ans, La Vergne-ans, and most hum-ans in general. Let’s face it, black widow spiders get a bad rap most of the time!

In order to help our office staff become more familiar with what our technicians do out in the field, we occasionally take field trips with the technicians to see how and why they do what they do.

As the writer of this blog, I love learning more about our pest control process so I can speak to our customers in an informed, yet understandable way.

On my latest field trip with technician Daniel Lambert, I learned a lot! I’ll be sharing pictures and videos from my field trip adventure over the next several weeks. Today’s topic is: the black widow spider.

When we arrived on the scene, one of the first things Daniel did was get rid of the webs on the exterior of the home with a brush. This simple, yet effective action added quite the cosmetic upgrade to the home.

One of the bonuses of hiring a pest control professional like The Bug Man is getting the expertise of the technician.

Our technicians are trained to expect the unexpected and look for problem pests that could potentially harm our beloved customers.

As we were making our way around the house to inspect, Daniel pointed to a plastic drainage container under the gutter and said, “I bet there’s a black widow spider under there. I almost always find a black widow under those.”

As I looked on, Daniel swiftly picked up the drain and flipped it over. And, to his credit, there was in fact a black widow spider underneath it. And, wow! It was a hoss! A large, round, ugly-looking-behemoth arachnid.

Black widow spider

Here’s a closer view of the angry 8-legger. Notice how some of it’s legs are raised in an attack-like stance. Eeek!

Angry black widow spider

Shortly after this photo was taken, the angry black widow became a formerly-angry and currently-dead black widow.

Thanks for letting me re-live my field trip with you, blog reader. I’ll keep you posted on what else happened on this knowledge adventure. Check back next week. If you’ve got questions, please post them in the comments below.