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 www.bedbugcertified.com/
Bed bug bite pictures in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest Control
Photo via www.bedbugcertified.com/

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!

8 Common Breeding Grounds for Mosquitoes

Pots of standing water can attract mosquitoes to homes in Sevierville TN - Johnson Pest ControlHere in Eastern Tennessee, mosquitoes are a fact of life in the summertime. They are active at dawn and dusk, and will gladly take up residence in your yard if given the chance. Female mosquitoes need just a half inch of water to be able to lay their eggs in. This means any container on your property capable of collecting water is likely to invite mosquitoes. Thankfully, you can work to eliminate these common breeding grounds for mosquitoes and, in turn, keep mosquitoes away from your yard!

Main Breeding Grounds For Mosquitoes Around Your Home

Once they breed, female mosquitoes can lay anywhere from 100-300 eggs at a time. Once the larvae hatch, the mosquitoes will become adults within two week’s time. Because they can reproduce so quickly, it is very important to learn how to stop them from breeding in your yard in the first place. Some of the main areas they will breed include:

  1. Old tires
  2. Tree stumps and wood piles
  3. Children’s play sets
  4. Trash cans
  5. Birdbaths
  6. Gutters
  7. Mud pots
  8. Pools & spas

Mosquito prevention tips for homes in the Sevierville TN area - Johnson Pest Control

5 Ways to Stop Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are pesky and can quickly take over your yard, keeping you from wanting to venture outside at dawn or dusk! In addition to getting rid of standing water, there a number of ways you can prevent mosquitoes in your property:

  1. Install screens on doors and windows to keep mosquitoes outside
  2. Avoid going outdoors at dawn and dusk
  3. Fix water leaks or drainage issues promptly
  4. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed and neat
  5. Following the manufacturer’s instructions, apply repellent containing DEET

Other Ways to Prevent Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are a nuisance in the summertime. No one wants to deal with hoards of them every time they step out into their backyard, making it important to do all you can to stop them. If you’ve done everything you can to get rid of common breed grounds for mosquitoes and still are dealing with them, contact the mosquito exterminators at Johnson today. Our team has what it takes to keep mosquitoes away for good.

Mosquito Prevention Tips and Tricks

Remove standing water from bird baths to help prevent mosquitoes in your Sevierville TN home - Johnson Pest ControlApril is National Pest Month, and the pest season is just beginning! In the months ahead here in the Sevierville area, pest problems are going to become more and more frequent. With the weather warming up, mosquitoes are a huge threat for homeowners. Thankfully, there are several things you can to lessen the risk of getting mosquitoes in your yard.

The mosquito control experts at Johnson Pest Control are sharing their top mosquito prevention tips in honor of National Pest Month–read on to learn more!

Top Mosquito Prevention Tips

Mosquitoes can be a big nuisance in the warmer months of year. But they’re much more than a nuisance–they can be dangerous, too! To protect you and your family from mosquitoes in the coming months, implement the following mosquito prevention tips into your home maintenance routine:

    1. Keep a tidy yard. Regularly maintain your garden and lawn to keep the grass short. Also trim back all plants and bushes to prevent mosquito resting spots
    2. Eliminate standing water. Dump out standing water in buckets, flower pots, bird baths, tarps, and more. Mosquitoes use standing water to breed!
    3. Install screens on your windows and doors. Doing this can save you the grief of getting mosquitoes inside every time you open a window or door.
    4. Add fish to your ponds and agitate the water. Certain types of fish will feed on mosquito larvae. Also consider placing an agitator, which will stop mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water.
    5. Get the air moving! Mosquitoes hate wind and are not strong fliers. Use fans to help force them away from your outdoor spaces and patios.

Preventing Mosquito Bites

One of the biggest concerns of mosquitoes is their bites, which can be dangerous. Whether you’re camping or going to a nearby lake, it’s important to do your best to prevent mosquitoes when outside. Some ways you can do this include:

      • Avoid going outdoors at dusk and dawn, which is when mosquitoes are most active.
      • Try to stay away from swampy areas or spots with standing water.
      • Wear light-colored, long-sleeved shirts and pants.
      • Following the manufacturer’s instructions, apply an EPA-registered insect repellent.

Professional Mosquito Prevention

If you have done all you can to prevent mosquitoes in your yard but still notice them, it’s time to call your professional mosquito exterminators. At Johnson, we understand how frustrating mosquitoes are and will work with you to develop a custom mosquito prevention plan. Give our team a call today!

Do Mosquitoes & Ticks Transmit Coronavirus?

Mosquitoes and ticks do not transmit COVID-19 in Sevierville TN and worldwide. Learn more from Johnson Pest Control.Here at Johnson Pest Control, we know that our communities are going through many difficulties in the time of COVID-19. As always, we continue to focus on our commitment to protecting our Sevierville TN neighborhoods. As this current pandemic unfolds, there is a lot of information coming out each hour as we learn more and more about this virus. One of the main concerns is, of course, how it is spread. We’ve noticed a lot of inquiries about whether insects can transmit COVID-19 or not. Although data is changing constantly, there is currently no evidence or proof that mosquitoes and ticks transmit coronaviruses. These vector pests are infamous for transmitting diseases worldwide, but COVID-19 is not one of them.

Our team is committed to the health and safety of our customers. In this blog, we’ll explore the differences between vector-borne diseases and COVID-19.

Diseases Caused by Mosquitoes and Ticks

Vector pests are organisms that transmit diseases to humans. Mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas are common vectors in that they spread diseases through their bites. Ticks and mosquitoes in particular are known to spread some of the world’s most concerning diseases. Mosquitoes transmit malaria, Zika virus, West Nile virus, chikungunya, and yellow fever, among others. Ticks, on the other hand, are responsible for transmitting the nation’s most common vector-borne disease: Lyme disease.

Are Insects Transmitting COVID-19?

The information about coronaviruses is changing constantly, but one thing’s for sure: COVID-19 is not spread by vector pests like mosquitoes and ticks. Some things to know about the coronavirus pandemic include:

  • All research points to the fact that COVID-19 is a respiratory virus that is spread through person-to-person contact.
  • Coronavirus spreads through droplets in the air from saliva or nasal discharge, which is often generated when an infected person sneezes or coughs. It is also able to be transmitted through contact with contaminated surfaces.
  • SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) and now COVID-19 are all known as zoonotic coronaviruses – viruses that have jumped the species barrier from their normal animal hosts to humans.

Pest Control in the Time of Coronavirus

Disease transmission from insects is certainly concerning. Thankfully, mosquitoes and ticks do not transmit the coronavirus from what we currently know. Regardless, we know how distressing mosquitoes can be and are here for you during these uncertain times. It’s important to take caution in the presence of pests and to always enlist the help of our professional exterminators for all your pest control needs.

With the safety of our communities and customers at the top of our priority list, we encourage everyone to seek more information on COVID-19 and follow guidelines released by the WHO and CDC when it comes to navigating this pandemic safely.

5 Prominent Pests in 2020

Pest predictions for your Knoxville TN home in 2020 - Johnson Pest Control When it comes to protecting your family and home against pests, hindsight doesn’t have to be 20/20. Johnson Pest Control is helping homeowners prepare for the 2020 pest season by offering insights into anticipated pest activity.

The experts at Johnson Pest Control have used their field experiences and examined trends and company data to determine these five pest predictions. Along with the predictions, we are offering quick tips for homeowners to help keep their homes pest-free in 2020.


Mice

Warmer than usual winters over the past several years may be to blame for increased mouse populations. With warmer weather predicted for the winter of 2020, mice will continue to reproduce at an alarming rate, which is bad news for homeowners. Mice are year-round pests that invade homes looking for food and shelter to nest.

Homeowner Tips: Mice can squeeze through small openings and gaps under garage doors, door frames, windows, or pipes and cables that penetrate your house. Rodent-proof your home by sealing small cracks and crevices with a silicone-based caulk. Exterior gaps of ¼-inch or larger can be repaired with copper mesh, hardware cloth or metal flashing.


Stinging Pests

Alternating climates cause rippling effects in the pest world, and with mild weather, experts are seeing more yellow jacket and hornet nests. Female yellow jackets and hornets can successfully overwinter in freezing temperatures and will invade structures and manmade or natural voids. When the weather warms up in spring, stinging insects will emerge from their hiding places, ready to start populations earlier in the year.

Homeowner Tips: Since stinging insects can overwinter, they may be out and about at the first sign of warmer weather. Stay alert and look for stinging pests, utilizing a professional pest control service as soon as you spot activity.


Ticks

With outdoor activities, like hiking and camping on the rise, and years of warming winters, humans and their pets may come into contact with ticks more frequently in 2020. The deer tick or black-legged tick, the Lone Star tick, and the American dog tick are ticks of special concern. Nearly 50,000 cases of human tick-borne diseases such as Lyme Disease, Ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever were reported in 2018. Pets are also at risk for some of these diseases.

Homeowner Tips: When spending time outdoors, wear an EPA-approved insect repellent. It’s also a good idea to wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and socks, in areas where ticks may be active. Perform tick checks on yourself and any family members, including pets, after spending time outdoors.

Mosquitoes

If you noticed more mosquitoes this past year, it wasn’t your imagination. If we have another relatively warm, wet winter and spring, mosquito populations could increase by late spring and early summer. Areas of the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest are predicted to have above-average rainfall, while most of the U.S. is predicted to be warmer than average this winter.

Homeowner Tips: With an increase in mosquitoes comes the risk of mosquito-borne diseases, such as the Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) reported in 2019. To protect yourself and your family, eliminate standing water from your property and always wear an EPA-approved insect repellent when spending time outdoors.


Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites are the most destructive termites in North America, and they are also the most common termite in Tennessee. According to experts, the two main weather factors that affect termite populations are temperature and rainfall. With warmer and wetter weather predicted for spring, the termite swarming season will be ramping up soon.

Homeowner Tips: To deter subterranean termites, eliminate earth to wood contact and avoid moisture accumulation near your home or structures’ foundation. Because termites can cause such extensive damage, raising homeowner awareness around the need for proactive protection for their homes is critical to prevent costly repairs.


Expert Pest Predictions

The experts at Johnson Pest Control agree that the best step any homeowner can take to prevent pest issues is to have a proactive approach to pest control. With these 2020 pest predictions in mind, utilize the new year to evaluate your current pest control plan and ensure that you have the coverage you need to protect yourself and your family from pests in 2020.