Crane Flies vs Mosquitoes: A Case of Mistaken Identity

Crane Fly in Tennessee

The onset of late spring leading into summer often invites various insects into our surroundings, some more welcome than others. One common case of mistaken identity occurs when crane flies are misidentified as mosquitoes. While these long-legged insects may resemble their bloodsucking doppelganger at first glance, distinguishing between can save you some worry, and even help your soil. 

What’s the Difference? 

At first glance, crane flies and mosquitoes might seem almost indistinguishable, especially when observed in the dim light of dusk or dawn. They have similar appearance and grow in similar environments, however there are a few key differences. 

Crane Flies 

Commonly referred to as “mosquito hawks” or “mosquito eaters”, crane flies are a species of fly that have no relation to mosquitoes despite their nicknames. Here’s how to spot them: 

  • Long legs with multiple joints 
  • Can grow up to 3 times larger than mosquitoes with some species spanning up to 1.2 inches long 
  • Long and narrow abdomen 
  • Wings set on side of body and do not fold when at rest 
  • No proboscis (long pointed mouth) to bite with 
  • Poor fliers 
  • Live in adulthood for 10-15 days 
  • Eat nectar 
  • Attracted to light, nectar, and moisture 

These gentle giants are generally slower and easier to catch than their smaller lookalike, and completely harmless. They cannot bite, and do not spread disease. Males spend their entire adulthood seeking out females for mating and eating nectar, while the females seek out nectar and high moisture areas ideal for their eggs. In their larvae state, crane flies are highly beneficial to soil because they eat decaying organic matter, and their presence has been noted to improve the lifecycle of plants and flowers.  


These blood sucking pests are a nuisance more trouble than they’re worth. In their larvae state they can provide some benefit as a nutritious snack for fish and by adding nitrogen to the water they inhabit, but that’s where the benefits end. How to identify them: 

  • Short legs with multiple joints 
  • Never bigger than about half an inch 
  • Short and wide abdomen 
  • Wings set backwards and fold when at rest 
  • Long proboscis (pointed mouth) for biting 
  • Strong fliers 
  • Need organic material from blood for their eggs 
  • Spread deadly disease like malaria, dengue, and Zika 

Mosquitoes thrive in areas of high moisture with standing or stagnant water and pose a health threat to you and your family. They are tiny, and often go unnoticed unless in swarms or if they have already bitten you, leaving behind itchy welts in their wake.  

Your Partners in Pest Control 

At Johnson Pest Control, we understand not wanting to take a chance with your health. Tennessee’s first company to receive the National Pest Management Associations Quality Pro Company of Choice award, we have been dedicated to providing quality service to our community for over 30 years. With innovative solutions and leading technology, we know how to keep your home pest free year-round – even the non-dangerous ones. Don’t hesitate to request a professional evaluation, give us a call today for a free quote!

DIY Home Mosquito Repellents for Summer

a mosquito on the rim of a pot outside

As we approach the warm season in East Tennessee, it’s easy to fantasize about backyard barbeques and long nights on the porch. But the last guests you want invited to the party are mosquitos. These bloodsucking pests will ruin any shindig and leave your yard virtually uninhabitable. 


What can you do to treat a mosquito infestation? You likely know by now that companies like Johnson Pest Control can treat mosquitoes in yards and properties across East Tennessee, but is it possible to handle an invasion on your own? Are there any DIY mosquito repellents that actually work?

Do DIY Mosquito Repellents Work?

There are a variety of home mosquito control “solutions” touted across the internet. With so many conflicting voices out there, it can be difficult to discern what is and isn’t actually useful. Let’s go into more detail about a few supposed life-hacks and determine if they work, and to what extent.


Citronella is a divisive tool in the world of pest control. In plant form or concentrated into an oil, it can be effective at repelling mosquitos and other pests. Even as a candle it can work, but only in a very small radius. The main problem is it’s only a temporary deterrent. Citronella won’t keep mosquitoes from reproducing on your property, and when the smell is gone, they’ll be back.

Clearing Standing Water

Mosquitoes need standing water to reproduce, so if you can get rid of any pools or puddles of water in your yard you can get rid of mosquitoes. But it’s not so simple. It can be hard to address every source of standing water in a single property, as these bloodsucking pests can breed in bodies of water as small as a thimble. But by eliminating as many as you can, along with bird baths or other pools of water, you’re greatly reducing the options for any passing pests.

Light Traps 

You can buy a bug zapper and see it kill all kinds of small insects – including mosquitoes. But if there is an infestation on your property, killing a few mosquitos in a very specific radius isn’t going to be very helpful. In fact, the light of the zapper might actually work against your favor by drawing them closer to where people congregate.

Box Fans

Mosquitoes are a nuisance, but they’re a small nuisance that can easily be deterred by a strong current or breeze. So if you want to create a sting-free zone, you can set up a box fan and leave it running. This small addition can reduce mosquito bites by upwards of 65 percent, but like citronella it won’t stop them from breeding elsewhere in your yard. 

Your East Tennessee Mosquito Exterminators

If you’ve tried any or all of the solutions above without any relief from mosquitoes, that’s okay. These pests can be relentless and difficult to treat on your own. Luckily, if you’re a property owner in East Tennessee, you have a friend in the expert mosquito extermination team at Johnson Pest Control. We’ve been combating mosquito infestations large and small for over 40 years, and we have skills and experience that can’t be beat. 

Summertime in East Tennessee can be beautiful. With our help, you can enjoy it outside whenever you want – without the risk of bug bites. And that’s something worth celebrating. Contact us today to learn more!

Common Pests of the Late Summer

A gray squirrel

Late summer feels like the season when we should finally be left alone by pests, but this is not actually the case. All kinds of critters are capable of taking advantage of the lingering warmth and growth from previous months to sustain themselves or even continue to thrive. If you want to make sure that the last of your summer isn’t overrun by pests, you have to make conscious and regular efforts to defend yourself against them. Learn about the most common late summer pests in Eastern TN and what you can do about them from our experts at Johnson Pest Control!

Pests We See in Late Summer

Although late spring and early summer are commonly regarded as the most pest-ridden seasons, there really is no time of the year in which you can completely avoid pests. This August and September, you can expect to deal with the following:

  • Ticks: Because ticks breed in the early summer, the late summer is when we can expect to see their populations in full swing. Watch out for ticks when walking around tall grass or dense vegetation.
  • Bees and wasps: As long as people are cooking or congregating outside, bees and wasps will be present. Leaving out sugary or protein-rich food will attract these insects or even incentivize them to build a home nearby.
  • Mosquitoes: If mosquitoes can establish a breeding population in a relatively undisturbed area, they can stick around until temperatures drop below 50°F. This means that they can continue to thrive in the late summer.
  • Wildlife: Animals that hibernate during the winter have particularly active summers. Raccoons, opossums, squirrels, and more all cause regular issues for local home and business owners.


Contact us today to help with your late summer pest problem!


Preventing Pests in Late Summer

It’s important to remember that any serious pest infestation should be addressed by a professional pest control technician, but if you want to pest-proof your property before any problems arise, we have some prevention advice for you:

  1. Seal entry points: Look around your property for gaps in roofing, fencing, siding, foundation, and more places that pests could get through. Sealing gaps with a silicone-based caulk or fixing window openings by adding screens will help prevent pest problems.
  2. Be careful with trash: Taking out the trash regularly will help prevent indoor pest problems and using sealable lids on your outdoor bins can keep bees, wasps, and wildlife away from your yard.
  3. Keep a neat yard: By trimming your trees and shrubs, getting rid of grass clippings and leaf piles, and decluttering in general, you can prevent all kinds of pests from finding temporary shelter.
  4. Eliminate standing water: Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water pools, so monitoring your yard for buildup in gutters, planters, and elsewhere can help prevent breeding ground establishment. If you have a pool, spa, or birdbath, it’s wise to cover it up when not in use.

Expert Late Summer Pest Control

If your summer has been full of pest problems despite your prevention efforts, you might have a problem that has to be addressed by your local pest control company. We have seen it all here at Johnson Pest Control — our licensed, certified, and highly-trained technicians will have no problem assessing your property to identify vulnerabilities and develop a sweeping pest removal plan. To learn more about how we can help you and receive a free quote, contact us today!

7 Houseplants to Keep Bugs Away

A venus flytrap in Eastern TN - Johnson Pest ControlWith all of the at-home and DIY pest control solutions that you can find on the internet, it can be hard to tell what actually works to keep pests away without professional intervention. If you’re looking for a reliable source, you’ve come to the right place! The technicians at Johnson Pest Control have been serving the Eastern TN area with inspections, preventative maintenance, and extermination services for nearly 40 years.

Over this time, we’ve developed an intimate understanding of the habits and features of local pests in the area. As such, we’ve learned how to repel them and can help you do so on your own. Read on to learn more about houseplants that you can keep around to prevent pest infestations!

7 Houseplants that Can Repel Pests

It’s important to preface this information by saying that simply placing houseplants in areas where you commonly experience pest infestations will not be the final answer to your problem. Some plants can, however, discourage certain pests from establishing breeding grounds or being active at sites that might otherwise be hotspots. Here are 7 plants that you can use to repel bugs:

  1. Citronella: You’ve probably seen citronella candles marketed as insect repellent products in stores. The plant itself has the potential to deter mosquitoes, flies, and other insects.
  2. Basil: This is another plant that works particularly well against flies and mosquitoes. It will also prove useful in your kitchen!
  3. Spearmint: This plant is easy to grow, smells fresh, and is proven to deter aphids, moths, fleas, ants, and more.
  4. Dill: Sticking to the trend of traditional garden herbs, dill is a helpful herb to repel aphids, spider mites, and other insects that commonly infest gardens.
  5. Catnip: Catnip can be difficult to grow indoors, but with the right amount of sunlight it can protect you from ants, beetles, cockroaches, and more common household pests.
  6. Venus flytrap: Although they are high maintenance plants, venus flytraps are fascinating organisms that will snatch up flies and other pests in your home if they get too close.
  7. Pitcher plants: Pitcher plants are other kinds of carnivorous plants, but are quite difficult to grow. These are a better option for an advanced gardener.

Reliable Pest Control Options for Your Home

Although the thought of using plants to safeguard your home from pests is a fun, non-toxic, environmentally friendly option to consider, it will not provide your property with optimal protection. If you’re looking to keep pests out of your home year-round in Eastern TN, ask your local pest control company for help. Our team at Johnson Pest Control is equipped to deal with all sorts of bugs and wildlife in the area with comprehensive strategies and advanced technology. Contact us today for a free quote!


Gnats vs No-see-ums vs Mosquito Bites — How Do They Differ?

A mosquito on the water in Eastern TN - Johnson Pest ControlWhether you’re sleeping or awake, inside or out, getting active or just hanging around, the pests are out and biting this summer! Winged insects are some of the hardest to avoid when it comes to biting because they can attack us from all angles. We’ve heard a lot about no-see-ums, gnats, and mosquitoes being a nuisance this season, so we’re here with some advice from our Johnson Pest Control technicians on how to identify these pests and their bites.

Gnats vs No-see-ums vs Mosquitoes: Identification

These three pests are some of the most irritating insects found in Eastern TN. Although you’ve probably encountered all of them before, they can be hard to tell apart, especially from further away. Here are some features that you can use to identify them:

  1. Gnats: Gnats are a type of fly with bodies ranging from gray to black in color. They move in swarms of thousands during the spring and summer.
  2. No-see-ums: These insects are actually a certain kind of gnat. They are very small—at only 1/16” in length, they can infiltrate our homes through even the smallest gaps in walls and screens.
  3. Mosquitoes: Much bigger than the other two, mosquitoes are the most easily identifiable of the bunch. They have a needle-like proboscis, upward-slanting wings, and a hunched back.

Telling Apart Bug Bites

Learning how to identify bugs around your home based on the symptoms of the bites that you experience is another quick way to determine the best pest control approach you should take. Mosquito bites, gnat bites, and no-see-um bites vary in these ways:

  • Gnat bites: Gnat bites are small, dark red, and rough-looking. They last for a week or more depending on how much they are scratched.
  • No-see-um bites: These bites look very similar to gnat bites, of course, but are more likely to be clustered together and in more uncommon areas, like your face.
  • Mosquito bites: Mosquito bites are smoother and lighter in color. They start as a raised white welt and flatten out as they darken to a pinkish-red in a few days. They are most common on areas of exposed skin, like your arms and legs.

In summary, these bites can be told apart by their color, their location, and the length of their effects.

Keeping Safe from Bug Bites in Eastern TN

Using EPA-approved bug sprays using up to 20% DEET can work well to avoid insect bites here in Eastern TN. However, sometimes these products fail to do the trick, especially if you have a continual problem around your home. In this case, you can rely on your local pest control company to help you get rid of any pests on your property! For a free quote or more information from the experts at Johnson Pest Control, contact us today!

Prevent Summer Pests From Ruining Outdoor Festivities

Pest infestation in Sevierville TN backyard - Johnson Pest ControlThey may not be on the guest list, but many pests including ants, flies, mosquitoes, and other stinging insects are likely to disrupt outdoor festivities this summer. Pest season is in full force during the summer months here in Sevierville TN. Spending time outside can sometimes be a gamble considering the heightened pest activity.  Unfortunately, plenty of pests are attracted to our food, so they tend to frequent our outdoor cookouts, but there are ways to prevent these uninvited guests from crashing the party. To keep pests away from your outdoor living space this summer, keep reading for expert tips from Johnson Pest Control.

Common Backyard Pest Problems

In our region, we are used to dealing with all types of pests all year long. However, the summer and early fall are known for their influx of insects. This includes right in your backyard! The most typical pests you may encounter right in your backyard include:

Keep Pests Away From Your Yard

The good news is that keeping pests away from your yard can be simple when you take the time to make your property less attractive to the pests in general. The National Pest Management Association, a nonprofit organization committed to the protection of public health, food, and property from household pests, offers these tips to help pests from ruining your summer gathering: 

  1. Prior to the summer months, check screen doors and repair any holes.
  2. Remove sources of standing water in your yard, including birdbaths, wading pools, or garden ponds.
  3. Have insect repellant containing an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET or Picaridin available for you and your guests.
  4. Adorn your deck or patio with citronella candles that can help minimize the presence of mosquitoes.
  5. With guests coming in and out of your house, make sure the doors close behind them.
  6. Plan to serve food and beverages indoors, and reserve outdoor space for eating and entertaining.
  7. Keep food sealed in containers whenever possible, and wipe tabletops frequently.
  8. Clean trash, spills, and crumbs immediately from tables and other surfaces.
  9. Bring utensils and dishware indoors shortly after the meal.
  10. Rinse all beverage bottles and cans, and dispose of them in tightly closed garbage containers.

Outdoor Pest Control in Sevierville TN

We all know that pests are a fact of life, especially outdoors and especially in the summertime! If you’ve done all you can to keep pests away from your backyard to no avail, it’s time to enlist the help of your local pest control experts. At Johnson Pest Control, we will work to keep pests out and away from your yard for good. Contact us today to get started!

What Do Bed Bug Bites Look Like?

Bed bug in Eastern TN - Johnson Pest ControlDiscovering bug bites of any sort on your skin can be distressing. But how do you know what bit you in the first place? Many bugs will bite sight unseen—meaning you won’t know what bit you until you see the symptoms of the bites on your skin. One of the main types of bug bites is bed bug bites. In fact, seeing bites on your skin are oftentimes one of the first signs you have a bed bug problem in general. For this reason, it’s crucial to learn how to identify bed bug bites against other types of bug bites. In this article, the bed bug experts at Johnson Pest Control are here to share their knowledge on identifying bed bugs through their unique bites.

Behaviors of Bed Bug Bites

Bed bugs are unique in a number of ways. For one, their bites are typically not felt whatsoever. Here’s what to know about bed bug bites:

  • Bed bugs will likely bite you during the night. This is not always the case, but it is their normal behavior. So if you are waking up at in the morning with bites that were not present before bed then bed bugs can be a possible problem.
  • Bed bugs will feed on exposed skin, not through clothes or sheets. However, if you wear loose clothing they can crawl underneath clothing to find optimal spots to bite you.
  • When a bed bug bites you they will insert saliva, which keeps your blood from clotting. This process allows the bed bug to fill up on your blood while biting you, and also numbs any pain associated.
  • Bed bug bites do not pose immediate health hazards to a person. The allergic reaction a person has can be the most immediate concern. As an infestation grows the amount of bites one receives can be the largest nuisance leading to potential health hazards.

Pictures of Bed Bug Bites

Many times people do not have reactions to bed bug bites and may only have some white or small red bumps. For other people bed bugs will cause an allergic reaction that will cause larger, more inflamed, red bumps. Below are some photos to help identify bed bug bites.

Bed Bug Bite Pictures in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest Control
Photo via
Bed bug bite pictures in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest Control
Photo via

Flea vs Mosquito vs Bed Bug Bites

Flea Bite Pictures vs Bed Bug Bite Pictures in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest Control
Flea bites can look like bed bug bites. Look at secondary circumstances to help determine what problem you might actually have.

Bed bug bites can look very similar to mosquito or flea bites. If you have a pet in the house and they are scratching feverishly throughout the day and/or night then your problem is likely fleas. If that pet sleeps on your bed then chances increase that fleas will claim your bed.

Mosquito bites can produce similar red bumps. Usually, those bites will occur on exposed skin during the dawn and dusk hours. If you happen to have bites showing up high on your thighs then you can eliminate mosquitoes as your bug problem.

Do You Have Bed Bug Bites?

If you are noticing bed bug bites on your skin, it’s important to contact your local bed bug control team immediately. Getting rid of these pests on your own is—more often than not—unsuccessful. Because the bites are one of the first signs of their presence, an exterminator can quickly get rid of the problem and save you from the frustration of continued bites. Contact Johnson Pest Control today to get started!


Are You Prepared For Spring Bugs?

Spring pest-proofing in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest ControlThis April, we at Johnson Pest Control are proud to celebrate National Pest Management Month. We honor this tradition set forth by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) every year to acknowledge the pest control industry’s commitment to serving the public and eliminating health threats caused by pests.

April is also right around the time that many people start to notice an explosion of pest populations around them. From ants, to termites, to mosquitoes, to bed bugs, there is no shortage of pest activity in the Sevierville area come springtime.

Spring Cleaning to Prevent Pests

This year, incorporate some pest-prevention tactics into your spring cleaning routine. You might notice a pleasantly surprising drop in insects around your home! Here are a few of the ways that we recommend you pest-proof your home for spring:

  • Keep a neat yard: Tree branches and shrubbery should be trimmed so that they don’t provide an insect access point from your yard to your house. Keep all mulch at least a foot and a half from your foundation. Additionally, limit the amount of yard waste or piles of firewood laying around, or store them as far away from the house as you can.
  • Limit exposed food and garbage: Ants and cockroaches are both very likely to find any garbage or food that is left out for too long. Sealing your food in airtight containers and taking your garbage out regularly are two important ways to prevent them from taking refuge in your house.
  • Complete any necessary repairs: Make sure that the make-up of your house isn’t inviting pests itself. Seal any cracks on the outside of the house with a silicone-based caulk. Check for any gaps to fill at entry points for pipes and other utilities. Replace any rotted shingles that could be giving pests a pathway through the roof.

Common Spring Pests

Certain pests in the warmer, moister climate of the Sevierville spring. These are three pests to look out for this April:

  1. Mosquitoes: When the temperatures rise in the spring and summer, mosquitoes come back to bother us again. Mosquitoes lay their eggs on standing water, so covering your pools, spas, and birdbaths and pouring out any unnecessary still water will prevent them from hanging around you.
  2. Termites: They usually remain hidden, but in the spring, termite swarmers in your home are an indicator that there is a colony growing within your walls. Look out for tiny, brown flying insects, or their discarded wings.
  3. Ants: In the springtime, ants will start to capitalize on any food left out or unsealed in your house. They also seek out moisture, so keeping your house clean and properly ventilated are good measures to take to prevent ants at any point of the year.

Professional Pest Management in Tennessee

If the start of your spring has been particularly plagued by pests, talk to your local exterminator about the right plan of action for your home. Our technicians at Johnson Pest Control are trained annually to assess the many pest problems that Tennessee homeowners might have and swiftly deal with them. Contact us today for a free quote before your infestation gets out of hand!

Afraid of Rodents and Bugs? 2021 May Not Be Your Year

Johnson Pest Control - Quality pest control services in Sevierville, Knoxville TN and surrounding areas.Entomologists from Johnson’s parent company, Rentokil Provide their Pest Predictions for 2021

READING, Penn. (Jan. 4, 2021) — As if 2020 didn’t present enough challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 could be a banner year for pests around the country.

To help residents prepare for 2021, entomologists from Rentokil used field knowledge and data to provide their predictions for pests in the upcoming year.

1. Rodents, Rodents Everywhere:

With shutdowns across the country, it’s no surprise that rodents are on the rise nationwide. Empty buildings, the scarcity of food and warmer winters have combined to create a rodent apocalypse.

“We’re seeing more rats in urban, suburban and rural settings because of the shutdowns,” said Marc Potzler, Board Certified Entomologist. “Food sources are cut off, and rats are having to travel to scavenge for food. We’ve seen rats out in public during the day, which is highly unusual.”

Warmer winters have also allowed for mice populations to boom in residential areas as it allows for a longer breeding season and there is a lower population loss due to hard freezes.

“Right now is the perfect time to rodent-proof your home,” said Potzler. “Make sure to repair any gaps on the exterior of your home, such as around garage doors, windows or pipes.”

2. Mosquitoes on the Move:

Mosquitoes populations have been increasing over the last few years. Aedes species, which are disease-carrying mosquitoes, are also moving to new areas. These mosquitoes can carry West Nile Virus, Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) and Zika virus, among other diseases.

“There is an increase of mosquitoes across the country, but notably on the West Coast, and they are adapting each year,” said Eric Sebring, Associate Certified Entomologist. “We have seen evidence of behavior adaptation, where mosquitoes lay their eggs strategically to hatch throughout the season.”

Protect yourself and your family from mosquitoes by removing any standing water on your property. Mosquitoes can breed in as little as one teaspoon of water. Also, wear EPA-approved insect repellent while spending time outside.

3. Bed Bugs:

The chatter about bed bugs was quiet in 2020, but that’s not because they have gone away.

“As people begin to travel again, we will start to hear about bed bug infestations,” said Sebring. “Bed bugs can be dormant for several months at a time, so they can emerge when a food source, humans, become available.”

Bed bugs are considered hitchhikers, traveling from place to place on people, luggage, clothing and other personal belongings. Homeowners and businesses such as hotels, colleges, hospitals, senior living facilities, retail stores, and libraries have experienced problems with bed bugs.

If traveling, inspect the bed by pulling back the sheets to examine the mattress. Check your luggage before packing and unpacking, and look for signs of living or dead bugs the size of an apple seed or black fecal smears.

4. More Time Outdoors = More Pests.

From hiking to gardening to dining al fresco, there is no doubt that the pandemic has forced people to spend more time outdoors.

In 2021, we will see the outdoor pest pressures continue:

Ticks: Ticks are responsible for transmitting several diseases, including Lyme disease, to humans and animals. These small insects are found in grassy areas and in the woods, so it is important to inspect yourself and your pets after spending time outdoors. Cover as much skin as possible while outdoors, wear long pants, long sleeves, closed-toed shoes, and tuck pant legs into socks. Light-colored clothing will also help any ticks you pick up stand out.

Ants: “As soon as the weather starts to warm up, we will see an increase in ant populations,” said Tom Dobrinska, Board Certified Entomologist. “Most of the ants we are dealing with are odorous house ants. When spending time outside, make sure to clean up any food, water or sugary substances and ensure that your home is free of any holes or cracks for them to enter.”

Stinging Insects: Stinging insects, such as wasps and yellow jackets, emerge at the first sign of warm weather, and as warm weather seasons are getting longer, stinging insects have more time to create issues. Make sure you check for nests early in the spring as they are smaller and get early nest treatment. Make sure to keep windows and doors shut, and secure outside bins so stinging insects are not attracted to the contents.

5. Termites Aren’t Going Anywhere

Termites are a pesky problem, and unfortunately, are not going anywhere. Termites can cause extensive damage to structures, especially homes. As people are moving out of cities during the pandemic to more suburban areas, education about termite protection is key.

“We received more calls for termites this past year than we have in many years,” said Potzler. “It’s important to raise awareness for homeowners now to have proactive protection to keep from costly repairs in the future.”

6. Pests in the News:

There are a few pests that will continue to steal the limelight in 2021.

The Brown Marmorated Stink Bug is an invasive pest that has been making its way across the country since it was first introduced from Asia in 2001. Besides its pungent odor, this stink bug has become a nuisance for homeowners as it gathers in large numbers on the sides of houses and buildings and enters through small cracks in the home. “The brown marmorated stink bug is here to stay,” said Dobrinska. “We will continue to see this species emerge in late spring in large numbers.”

The Spotted Lanternfly will continue to wreak havoc across the Northeast and beyond. The invasive pest, first found in Pennsylvania in 2014, is spreading across the Northeast, with New York reporting its first sighting this year. The pest can significantly damage trees and plants.

“The Spotted Lanternfly is becoming a big problem in the Northeast, and it will continue to spread,” said Potzler. “It can be devastating for agriculture and is a nuisance for homeowners.”

The egg masses look like a smear of mud on trees and outside of homes. It’s important to scrape the egg mass off, put it in a bag with rubbing alcohol and throw it away, and then call the state department of agriculture.

The infamous “Murder Hornet,” also known as the Asian giant hornet, grabbed many headlines, causing homeowners to panic trying to decipher the difference between stinging insects in their yards and this aggressive species. The Asian giant hornet is the largest hornet species in the world, growing up to 3 inches in length. Currently, the Asian giant hornet has only been found in the Pacific Northwest.

“We know that there was one colony found and eliminated in Washington State,” said Sebring. “Unfortunately, if there is one, there will be more.”

While your chances of being stung by an Asian giant hornet are fairly low, the sting can be dangerous as the venom volume is higher, causing more pain. The hives are primarily built underground or in hollows in trees. If you suspect it is an Asian giant hornet or any stinging pests, call your pest management provider to assess the situation as soon as you spot activity.

How to Be Pest-Free in Your Backyard

Learn to be pest-free* in your Sevierville TN backyard with tips from Johnson Pest ControlIf you are spending more time in your backyard than ever this year, you’re likely noticing just how many pests are outdoors! Especially in the late summer months here in Sevierville, insects are out in full-force. Unfortunately, they can quickly put a damper on your outdoor plans. Whether you’re spending time barbecuing outdoors at night, or your kids are playing on a swing set, it’s important to know how to keep pests away from your outdoor living space.

Insects & Pests in the Backyard

Your backyard can be a haven for many pests and insects, especially this time of year. Whether you’re dealing with mosquitoes infesting your birdbath or ants surrounding your outdoor dining set, pests are at full-force. The most common pests you’ll encounter in your yard are stinging insects (bees, wasps, and hornets), ants, spiders, mosquitoes, ticks, fleas, flies, and more. Any of these can be a nuisance to deal with, but mosquitoes and ticks are especially dangerous to be in your yard.

8 Ways to Prevent Pests in Your Outdoor Living Area

No one wants pests infesting their outdoor living areas. While it can be hard to avoid pests when spending time outdoors, there are a few things you can to do help steer them away from your property. Our top tips are:

  1. Apply an insect repellent. Any repellent with DEET will help repel mosquitoes and ticks.
  2. Get rid of standing water. Mosquitoes only need a half inch of standing water to breed.
  3. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed. Overgrown grass or vegetation provides mosquitoes and ticks with shelter.
  4. Inspect your yard for ant hills. Even a tiny mound can contain thousands of ants inside.
  5. Inspect wood structures. Your deck or porch may be vulnerable to termite or carpenter bee activity.
  6. Clean your patio or space regularly. Crumbs or spilled liquids will attract ants and other insects.
  7. Light up some citronella candles. While not a long-term solution, this will repel mosquitoes during outdoor activities.
  8. Consider replacing your light bulbs. Yellow bulbs or sodium vapor lights will not attract as many insects as bright light bulbs do.

Professional Outdoor Pest Prevention

If you have endless pests in your backyard, it’s best to contact your local exterminator. An expert can pinpoint areas of your yard that may be conducive to pest problems as well as help you prevent them! The team at Johnson is happy to help–contact us today!