860-642-PEST (7378)  
New London, CT • Willimantic, CT • Norwich, CT  

Identify Your Pest





While there are several species in North America, the eastern subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes, is the most prevalent in Connecticut. In nature, termites help convert dead wood and other organic matter containing cellulose, into humus. From this standpoint, termites are very beneficial animals. Termites became a problem when people began building with wood. In some cases, termites also feed on firewood, cardboard boxes, old newspaper, sheet rock, and furniture.

Termite colonies, located five to twenty feet below the surface of the ground, can house anywhere from 60,000 to 1 million termites. The vast majority of these colonies are made up of the damage doers- the workers. Feeding upon the wooden components of a structure, as well as some of the other items mentioned above, the workers return to the colony with their stash and feed all the other members. Termites are constantly foraging for new sources of wood or cellulose, building mud tubes as they proceed. They travel great distances to find any source of sustenance. Termites can attack structures through expansion joists, settling cracks, or pipe openings in the slab. They can also tunnel through hollow block and stone foundations. Termites will often travel directly up the exterior foundation, especially if there is wood-to-ground contact (e.g. siding to the ground). Other common entry points are stoops and porches attached to the house, for they are commonly dirt filled.

Termite swarmers, or termites with wings, are often the first visible indication that termites are present. Young reproductive termites leave the old colony in swarms, to establish a new settlement of their own. The swarmers are attracted to light, and shed their wings, once they have reached their destination. Homeowners often find hundreds or thousands of wings around a windowsill or other light source. Temperature, moisture, light conditions and even barometric pressure can influence swarming activities. As a general rule, swarmers emerge on warm, sunny days when humidity is high, often on days following rain showers.


While most ants are soil dwelling insects, carpenter ants are wood infesting insects. They do not eat the wood, but instead mine it out, and to make their home. Carpenter ants are scavengers, primarily feeding on other insects and honey dew. They are among the most conspicuous ants found in and around homes. The most common species (pennsylvanicus) look like large black ants. Worker carpenter ants vary greatly in size from ¼ to ¾ of an inch long. In nature, they inhabit old growth oaks and maples. Other outdoor sites include stumps, hollow logs, telephone poles, railroad ties, and piles of wood.

Carpenter ants will readily infest homes made out of wood. They will nest in any area where the wood is wet. Poor gutters, faulty flushing, leaky roofs, leaking plumbing or faulty drip caps (above windows and doors) are common sources of moisture. Carpenter ants are commonly found in the kitchen where they're looking for food. Their pheromone trails can be found going right up the foundation wall and disappearing at some point into the structure, but they will also travel into the house via tree limbs or wires that touch it.

Carpenter ant "swarmers," winged ants, appear primarily in the late spring and early summer and can be spotted either inside or outside a structure. The swarmer's sole function is reproduction. They will travel 100 yards or more from their nest for food and will wander throughout your house or building. Carpenter ant nesting activities can weaken building structures, usually starting in areas of water damage or wood decay.

Two rarer species of carpenter ants in Connecticut are the "Little Black Carpenter Ants" and "Red Phased Carpenter Ants." The "Little Black Carpenter Ants" are uniform in size, about a ¼ of an inch. The "Red Phased Carpenter Ant" is similar in size to pennsylvanicus, varying in size from about ¼ to ¾ of an inch long. However, the thorax is red, while the head and abdomen are still black.

Citronella Ants

Citronella ants are orange-brown, about ¼ inch to ½ an inch long, and live in large colonies underground. Surviving off the honey-dew harvested from the aphids they feed on, they have a very sweet citrus scent. These ants are completely harmless.

Citronella ants are commonly mistaken for termites because they have similar swarms. Termite swarmers are black with long transparent wings while citronella swarmers are orange-brown with veiny wings. Unlike termite swarmers, the citronella will disappear after a few days and no treatment is needed.

What is unfortunate, however, is how many times our company goes out to a potential client's house for a termite estimate and it turns out to be undamaging citronella ants. The alarming part is how often we are the second or third company called for an estimate to treat for termites. This means the first and/or second companies were trying to sell a high-dollar termite treatment for harmless citronella ants. BEWARE.


Cockroaches are among the most common insects. Based on fossil evidence, scientists believe that they have been present on earth for nearly 350 million years. Among all of the species of roaches, the German cockroach is the most prominent one in Connecticut. It is found in houses, apartments, restaurants, hotels and other institutions. They are an active species and move quickly within structures. Roaches are transported from place-to-place in such things as grocery bags, beverage cartons, potato and onion bags, food carts, handbags, and the folds of clothing. They usually hide in cracks and crevices close to food and moisture, i.e. the kitchen and bathroom. They are particularly attracted to fermented food and beverage residues. However, if food is scarce, they can survive on scattered crumbs, soiled clothing, glue and even cosmetic products.

Proper treatment for this pest includes a comprehensive fogging and/or dusting of cracks and crevices, pipes, appliance motors, and cabinets in infested areas. Secondly, an application of roach bait is supplied in the same general areas. Roaches will readily eat the bait, and die as a result.


• Mice •
The house mouse, the number one rodent pest, originated in the grassy plains of central Asia. Early trade merchants and immigrants brought the mouse westward on ships. Because of their small size and adaptability, mice are capable of survival in nearly any environment. Their fur is usually dark gray on the back and light gray on the belly, and they weigh between ½ an ounce and 1 ounce as an adult.

In cities, the mouse may spend its entire life within buildings. In suburban and rural areas, the mouse may live outdoors. They can be commonly found among weeds or shrubbery near building foundations, or within storage sheds, garages, and crawl spaces beneath buildings. Once inside, mice set up nests near food sources. Nests can be found within walls, closets, ceiling and cabinet voids, large appliances (e.g., the bases of refrigerators and ovens), storage boxes, bureau drawers, desks, and upholstery of furniture. Outdoors, mice construct their nests among debris or in ground burrows.

A female mouse produces eight litters of 4-7 pups in her lifetime, and a normal life span is 1-2 years. While mice prefer to eat cereal grains and various seed, they will also seek out peanut butter, meats, nuts, sweet liquids, and candies.

• Rats •
The Norway rat, the most widely distributed rat species in the US, is also known as the house rat, brown rat, wharf rat, sewer rat, water rat, and gray rat. Around 1775, European settlers and trading ships first introduced the rat to the United States. The average adult rat has a stocky body weighing 12-16 ounces. Their body fur is generally course, and ranges in color from reddish to grayish brown with buff white under parts.

The Norway rat is a social animal that lives in colonies in ground boroughs. In cities, rats nest in the ground when space is available, but they may also nest and spend their entire lifetime (about 1 year) inside a building. Indoors, the Norway rat prefers to nest around lower floors of buildings, but when populations grow, they will occupy attic areas, suspended ceilings, and upper floors. Nests may be located in wall voids, underneath floors, and in crawl spaces. After mating and a gestation period of 22 days, the female rat can give birth to a litter of 8-12 pups. She is capable of producing 4-7 litters per year.


• Bees •

Carpenter Bee:

Carpenter bees resemble large bumblebees, but have very different nesting behavior. They dig out long tunnels into wood, then drive further into wood cells to lay their eggs. Common nesting sites include siding, eves, wooden sills, doors, telephone poles, fence railings or posts, and even lawn furniture. Treatment requires a thorough dusting of the entry holes and tunnels.

Bumble Bee:

Bumblebees are social insects that generally nest underground in abandoned mouse burrows, piles of grass or leaves, or stones and logs. They seldom become a problem unless the nest is located near a sidewalk or building where they can come in contact with people or pets. Whenever the nest is threatened, bumblebees will go on the defensive, and attack and sting the intruder. Dusting the nest through its opening will solve any bumblebee problems.


Honeybees are considered a beneficial species, and we recommend contacting a beekeeper to solve any problems.

• Wasps •

Paper Wasps:

Paper Wasps build simple nests consisting of one layer, open-faced cells, facing downward. They are usually suspended beneath horizontal surfaces, such as eves of houses, window ledges, or porch roofs. The nest is about 6-8 inches in diameter and can house 100-200 wasps at any one time. Treatment calls for directly spraying or dusting the nest.

Cicada Killer Wasps:

Cicada killer wasps are a large insect, up to two inches long with a black body marked with yellow. The female can excavate a large burrow in the ground, or in flowerbeds. Sometimes, the burrowing takes place between patio blocks, which can cause some minor damage. These wasps can be intimidating but will only sting, if handled. Treatment requires dusting all individual holes that the wasps make.

• Hornets •

Bald-Faced Hornet:

The Bald-Faced Hornet has a black body with white markings. Their nests, which resemble a bloated soccer ball, are usually found hanging from tree limbs or bushes, and have a single opening at the lower point of the nest. This species is among the most aggressive, and will pursue and sting an invader repeatedly, in defense of the nest. It is best to stay away from these hornets and allow a professional to eliminate the problem. The nest has to be dusted through the bottom opening.

Yellow Jackets:

This species typically builds their nest underground in abandoned mammal burrows. However, many times they will nest in the voids of concrete block foundations, below railroad ties used for landscaping, in stonewalls, wall voids, or attics and crawl spaces. They become a nuisance especially in warm weather months when they show up uninvited to picnic areas, parks, and patios. They seek out sources of sugars and other carbohydrates that can be found in beer, fruit, and sweet beverages. Treatment must be directly applied to the nest by dusting through ground openings, or into a hole or crack on the exterior of the building.

Bed Bugs


Egg sizes range from 0.8 to 1.3 mm long, .04 to 0.6 mm broad (visible to the naked eye). Pearly and opaque. eggs are glued to substrate. After hatching, they are opalescent and translucent. They hatch in about 9 days. A female lays over 300 eggs!

There are five nymphal stages and they must feed between each molt. From hatching to an adult is about 60 days. Translucent until fed and then dark red after a blood meal. Development ceases below 60°.

Adults are about 6 mm long and wingless. Shape is small and flattened. Pale tan in color before a blood meal. After feeding, the color changes to a dark red-brown. Adults live up to 1.5 years with regular feeding. They can have up to 6 generations per year.

Customers report red bite marks in a red wheel pattern the following day after being bitten. Small blood spots on bed linens. Casings found in seams and tufts of mattresses or other small hiding places in a home. A foul or unpleasant odor can be associated with a heavy infestation.

Bed bugs bite. Bed bugs forage for a blood meal at night. Requires 10-15 minutes of feeding and is usually not felt by the host.

Affiliations:Connecticut Pest Control Association Inc.National Pest Management Association
Website Designed and Developed by EasyWebCreations.com