The Cost of Bedbugs

Bedbugs aren’t just a nightmare because they are extremely difficult to get rid of and multiply so fast that by the time you’ve discovered you have bedbugs they’ve already taken over your entire home. They attack one of the most important things in our lives – money. These guys cost lots and lots of money. Here are just a few ways they can bankrupt you.

When bedbugs start using you as a meal, things can get pretty ugly. You are more likely to react to their bites the more you are bitten, and with the way they reproduce, that number can get very high very quickly. Most people suffering from bedbug bites simply treat them with over-the-counter remedies such as hydrocortisone cream. However, that doesn’t always work. The more bites you have, the more likely one could become infected, which means you’ll be doling out cash for some seriously costly medical care.

Bedbugs can be so traumatizing that the torture won’t end even after you get rid of them. Many people who suffer from bedbugs are haunted by the thought that millions of bedbugs are crawling all over their body long after they’ve been eradicated. The trauma from dealing with them can be so bad that it is quite common for people to seek psychological help after a bedbug infestation. Just because you get rid of the bedbugs doesn’t mean they’re not still costing you money.

How much have you ever had to spend because of a bedbug infestation?

Tucson Pest Control

Brutal Insect Decapitators!!?

One dung beetles species, the Canthon virens, goes specifically after queen leafcutter ants. The female beetles will pounce on her victim, and after a short tussle, brutally rip her head off. What comes next is just plain gross. She will then take the head and a male beetle suitor and bury them all underground. She then uses the head as a sort of larder for the young beetles that will hatch from the eggs she lays.

Another dung beetle, the Deltochilum valgum, specializes in decapitating millipedes. And it’s method of removing the head is rather barbaric even for an insect, if you ask me. The dung beetle forces the head up and back, and then saws through the tissue connecting the head to the millipedes next body segment. This usually causes the head to pop off mid-saw. Gross.

Can you believe the inhumanity of these beetles? It makes me think of Henry VIII. Why do you think these guys are so obsessed with heads?

#Bess are buzzing in #Tucson! Call a professional! 886-PEST

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Evolution in Insects

For a long time scientists have believed that the hierarchical structure (queen vs. worker) in social insect groups such as ants, bees, and wasps is pretty much set in stone. However, a new study reveals that for ants and wasps that isn’t the case. In a recent study, researchers examined the genes of ants and wasps to see if their social class could be determined by variations in gene expression, in the same way that honeybees are controlled by their queen.

However, no master gene was found that pointed out which insect would be the queen of the group. Instead, many genes help to determine social behavior. Because their genomes remain flexible and open, ants and wasps are able to switch between roles. One day one wasp might be the queen and the next another might take their place at the top of the social hierarchy. As larvae honeybees are fated to step into a certain social role when they become adults, but ants and wasps can change social roles at any point in their lives. Scientists think this is an example of the first stages of caste evolution in these insects. Think about it. This could mean these insects are slowly evolving similar to humans. Who knows, one day they could be ruling the world instead of us.

Have you ever considered the thought that we might not be at the top of the food chain someday? It could very well be ants who rule the world. What are your thoughts on this find?

  • Install screens and weather stripping on windows and door sweeps on doors.
  • Fix any cracks in siding and walls, especially where pipes or wires enter the home.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house.
  • Wear heavy gloves when moving items that have been stored for a long period of time.
  • Inspect items such as boxes of decorations and grocery bags before bringing them indoors.
  • Store clothing inside plastic containers and check shoes before putting them on, as spiders often hide in these items.
  • If you suspect that a spider has bitten you, contact your primary care physician for medical advice.
  • If you have a spider infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional.

The hot summer weather is fast approaching, which is the ideal environment for the Aedes aegypti mosquito, the carrier of the Zika virus, to breed, multiply, and hunt down humans for a quick bite.  So far the U.S. has been told that the virus will likely spread here, but that we don’t have too much to worry about, as it should stay mostly around the southern climates and our use of air conditioning and screens on our doors and windows will prevent it from spreading rapidly as it has in other countries. However, health officials from the CDC and other organizations are now claiming that we are underestimating this disease.

While the president has re-appropriated a portion of the money set aside for the Ebola virus to use to fight the Zika virus, the funds are a long way from the 1.9 billion needed. They have also already taken $589 million leftover money from the Ebola epidemic funding to put towards fighting the Zika virus. But, according to Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, we still don’t have nearly enough money. He claimed on Monday that, “I don’t have what I need right now.” We need to be prepared for the possibility of the virus spreading rapidly and widely during the hotter months of summer.

And the news just gets worse. The CDC has also discovered that the Zika virus isn’t just linked to microcephaly, but a “broader set of complications” in pregnancy. Among these complications being reported are premature births, as well as blindness and problems with the eyes. Women who have been infected with the Zika virus during their pregnancy are the women having babies with these conditions. It’s clear that we need to get a lot more serious about this virus than we have been.

Are you worried about the spread of the Zika virus to the United States? Do you think Americans should be more concerned than they are right now?

Insect Corruption – Teeny Tiny Panama Papers

The recent leek of the Panama Papers served to remind humans all over the world that corruption does exist, and there are plenty of cheaters out there trying to get ahead without actually working for it. Well, the insect community has its own cheaters; corrupt ants and bees that don’t follow the rules, and cause other insects to suffer because of it.

Ants seem to be the very model of a cooperative society, with every ant working together at their specific duty for the greater good of the colony. However, a study in 2008 on leaf-cutter ants revealed some very uncooperative behavior going on inside the seemingly harmonious colony. Previously researchers believed that all ant larvae are born containing the same chance of possibly developing into a queen ant if fed the proper diet. Instead, the researchers found that after studying the DNA of all the ants, there appeared to be certain male ants, whose offspring had a greater chance of developing into a queen. They had a developed a “royal” gene that gave their offspring an advantage and, as the gene is very rare, cheated most of the other ants out of their chance to be queen.

Did you know that cheaters existed outside the human race? What do you think of that?

The Hottest Insect in the World

Being able to withstand scorching temperatures is no small feat. Humans, with our air conditioner and ceiling fans, have it easy. Insects, on the other hand, have to rely on their own bodies when it comes to the heat. And a few insects have an impressive ability to withstand temperatures that humans would shrink at. So, what insect can take the heat better than any other? The tiny Sahara desert ant is the winner of this competition.

The Sahara desert ant can withstand temperatures of up to 70 degrees C for short periods of time. It capitalizes on this amazing ability by waiting in the shadow of its burrow until the temperature outside becomes so unbearable that other animals can’t go outside. Then it emerges to feast on the other dead insects that have succumbed to the incredible heat. While everyone else is cooling their heals in the shade, this little guy acts like vulture, feeding on the dead while its predators are hiding from the hot sun. The Sahara desert ant manages to avoid overheating by constantly counting all of its steps and following his keen sense of smell to find its way back to its home quickly.

Can you handle the heat? Did you know that such a tiny creature had these superhuman abilities?

Mealworms Doing Their Part to Help Save the Planet

You know all that unrecyclable stuff you have to throw away that ends up going to a landfill so it can pollute our earth by sitting there for a million years? Well, as it turns out, a new solution has arisen to this problem in the form of mealworms. While they may seem gross and you might feel the need to quickly step away at the sight of one, these guys have secret super powers that just might help save this planet.

Researchers have found that mealworms can biodegrade Styrofoam and other plastics that would otherwise sit in a landfill and slowly kill our planet for millions of years. We may be able to tackle plastic pollution by simply feeding it to worms. Mealworms can actually safely eat this stuff and even derive energy from it. In fact, researchers have found that mealworms can biodegrade materials that scientists had formerly thought to be impossible to biodegrade. The other amazing discovery was how fast these little guys can break down this stuff. It took them less than twenty four hours to turn a huge pile of Styrofoam into CO2. The researchers found that the secret to their super powerful gut is an enzyme secreted by the microbes in the worms that acts like sledgehammer against anything they eat.

What do you think about mealworms saving the planet?

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