Protecting Your Family From Pests Since 1974!
Just because it is cold outside, doesn’t mean pest problems have gone away. Certified Termite & Pest Control reminds homeowners that winter is actually a critical time to pest-proof around the house to help keep pests from coming indoors
Although winter is a time of hibernation for many animals, certain pests can be year round issues that homeowners should continuously address to prevent infestations and damage.
As such, Certified termite and Pest Control recommends the following tips for homeowners to ensure their homes remain pest-free this winter:
The Woman Who Collects Dead Bugs To Be Applied To The Face Along With Makeup
There currently exists a wide variety of strange pictures posted on the website known as Instagram. But the pictures posted by makeup artist, Jasmine Ahumada, may be the strangest pictures that you have ever seen. Despite having a self-admitted aversion to bugs, Ahumada has taken to applying bugs to her face in order to add an extra flare to her interesting makeup designs. Ahumada places insects around her eyes that uniquely contrast with the colors of her makeup. Ahumada’s instagram pictures have gone viral and are now gaining widespread media attention.
Although Ahumada has admitted to fearing bugs, she has stressed that she is humane towards the creatures. For example, she only uses dead insects to complement her makeup. Ahumada has made a habit out of collecting dead insect and arachnid specimens from various indoor and outdoor areas for her self-decorative needs. If she spots a dead insect on the ground, she will not hesitate to honor its short life by placing the dessicated corpse on her face for the whole world to see. She also visits pet stores that sell dead insects as snake-feed. Just about any insect you can think of could one day be found on her face.
Ahumada glues the insects onto her face with the same type of adhesive that is used for applying false eyelashes. The insects most commonly found on her face include grasshoppers, crickets and beetles. However, she has even glued dead tarantula’s to her face, which seems like a strange thing for a bug-phobic person to do. Another arachnid that Ahumada has glued to her face is the fierce scorpion. She has also placed dead bees close enough to her tear ducts to make any person cringe. At one point Ahumada even used worms as false eyelashes. Ahumada’s excessively strange and undeniably creepy instagram pics can easily be accessed by anyone who has an internet connection. But be warned as some of the images can make you jump back from your computer screen. Don’t view the images in public.
Have you ever heard of someone who used insects and/or spiders for unconventional purposes?
Scarab Beetle larvae Survive Unnoticed Within Termite Nests
As far as many insects are concerned, termites live the easy life. While most insect species are forced into the same habitat as their predators, termites get to retreat into their relatively safe nests. As it turns out, there are many different species of insect and arachnid that also want to enjoy the benefits of living within a well-built termite nest. Most insects that are looking to casually move into termite nests are rejected by the live-in termites. However, some insects are either welcomed into a termite nest by the termite-inhabitants, or they successfully dwell unnoticed within termite nests. These types of insects are referred to as “termitophiles”. This blog has mentioned termitophiles before, and scientists have long been aware of many different termitophile species. Now, for the first time in history, a type of scarab beetle has been found to dwell within termite nests. This was an interesting find to researchers as scarab beetles were only thought to coexist with other social insects, such as ants and bees. Scarab beetles have never been found dwelling within termite nests before.
There are over four thousand different scarab beetle species known to mankind. Of this four thousand species, only seven have been documented as cooperating with social insects. These social insects include harvester ants, leaf cutter ants, and honey bees. The species of scarab beetle known as Leucothyreus suturalis is a kind of chafer leaf beetle that has recently been found to live within active termite nests. Termite nests belonging to Cornitermes cumulans and Silvestritermes holmgreni termite species can also contain the larvae of chafer leaf beetles. These two types of termites are active in the country of Brazil, which is where the recent discovery was made.
The chafer leaf beetle larvae were found inhabiting areas of a termite nest that are not patrolled by termite soldiers. These areas exist on the periphery of nests where beetle larvae can remain hidden. Although scientists do not yet understand exactly why these beetle larvae prefer to dwell within termite nests, researchers believe that the larvae are feeding on some type of matter that is available in certain areas of termite nests. Most termitophiles feed on routes within termite nests, but this is not the case with the chafer beetle larvae. The larvae would become noticed by termite inhabitants if they fed on a nest’s routes. Instead, the larvae probably feed on a material that termites use to build their nests.
Do you think that the leaf cutter beetles in this study prefer to dwell within termite nests only during their larval stages?
A Former Farmer Invents A Drone That Spreads Predatory Insects Over Crops
When it comes to controlling insect pest populations within large-scale crops, drones are becoming more and more popular. The use of drones as a biological form of insect pest control is still in its infancy, and many countries have not yet approved of this form of insect pest control. Despite the lack of legal framework concerning the use of drone technology to fight insect pests, one former strawberry farmer from Australia has taken drone-related insect pest control into his own hands. Nathan Roy, has not only invented a drone that spreads predatory insects over crops, but he has also been using this technology with great success.
According to Roy, his drone technology will eventually become the only way of spreading beneficial insects across the natural environment. Instead of using his drones to dispense insecticides, Roy has programmed his drones to release predatory insects that, in theory, will eradicate insect pests from crops. Over the course of eighteen months Roy has tested his drone device on various regions of farmland. The drone is an eight bladed helicopter that features a device for spreading predatory insects. According to Roy, operating the drone takes practice, and he still does not have all of the kinks worked out yet.
Roy has devoted most of his time to finding the perfect altitude for releasing predatory insects over crops. If the predatory insects are released at an altitude that is too high, the insects will not reach the desired target. If the drone is too low to the ground when the predatory insects are released, then the target crop becomes saturated with too many predatory insects. Roy is still determining which time of day and which climatic conditions are most optimal for the release of the predatory insects. Despite a few lingering questions, Roy has used his drone with success on a few different farms located in Australia. Roy believes that his drone technology is the future of insect pest control in large-scale crops.
Do you believe that using drones to release predatory insects onto regions of farmland may pose threats to the public?
The World’s Rarest Insects Can Be Found At A Unique Insect Museum In Turkey
The world is full of insect museums, but a particular museum located in Turkey is perhaps the most notable of all. More than fifty thousand insect specimens can be studied at Turkey’s Atatürk University Faculty of Agriculture in Erzurum. This museum may not house the largest number of insects, but there is a good reason as to why entomologists around the world visit Turkey’s museum more often than others. Virginia Tech’s insect specimen collection includes four hundred thousand different insect species. Although Virginia Tech’s entomology museum is home to hundreds of thousands of insects, most, if not all, of the insect specimens located there have already been described in scientific literature. However, most of the insects at the Turkish entomology museum have never been studied before. Some of the strangest looking insects in existence today can only be found within the country of Turkey.
There is an understandable reason as to why Turkey’s entomology museum is home to thousands of insect specimens that are completely unknown to science. Although the country of Turkey borders other countries, many experts consider Turkey to be an island where only the most exotic insects exist. Turkey is home to one hundred thousand different insects living in the wild. Since there are probably well over one million different insect species living in the world today, one hundred thousand insects may not sound like a lot. But the entire continent of Europe does not have an insect population as high as Turkeys. Of the fifty thousand different species that are currently stored in Turkey’s museum, only twenty thousand of them have been described by scientists. This leaves thirty thousand insect species that have yet to be studied. Some of the fifty thousand insects now stored at the museum came from countries other than Turkey. However, the majority of specimens are found only in Turkey and nowhere else. Turkey is a unique country in that its environment is more conducive to a wide variety of different forms of insect life when compared to neighboring countries. If you have ever wanted to discover an insect so that you could name it after yourself, then don’t bother with searching through your backyard; instead just visit Atatürk University in Turkey.
Would you be interested in visiting Atatürk University in Turkey in order to look at certain insects that have never been seen before by experts?
Certified Termite & Pest Control shares information on common pests that invade homes during the colder months
When Old Man Winter arrives, some pests go into hibernation while others move indoors in search of food and warmth away from the impending snowy weather. We encourage homeowners to brush up on some tips to protect their home from a variety pesky invaders over the next few months.
Many people are under the impression that pests don’t cause problems in the winter. However, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, when it is cold and snowy outside, rodents, wild animals and small pests are forced to seek shelter in warm structures, which often include our homes.”
Certified Termite & Pest Control suggests following this simple pest prevention guide to avoid an infestation this winter.
Rats: Norway rats can fit through an opening as small as a quarter. To keep these rodents from sneaking into the home unnoticed, inspect the outside of the home for any gaps or cracks and fill them with silicone caulk and steel wool.
Mice: House mice are known to contaminate food, spread disease and cause property damage by chewing through drywall and wires. Homeowners should be aware of any scurrying sounds in walls and regularly inspect for signs of mice, such as droppings, gnaw marks and damaged food.
Spiders: Many types of spiders are found inside items, such as shoes, gloves and baseball mitts, that aren’t used as frequently as other things around the house. People should store these items inside plastic containers to prevent spiders from crawling inside.
Cockroaches: German cockroaches prefer to live in small areas close to food and moisture, which is why they are commonly found in kitchens and bathrooms. As such, homeowners should keep their counters and floors clean, vacuum frequently and dispose of garbage on a regular basis.
Raccoons: This type of wild animal occasionally enters homes through attics or chimneys in search of a denning site. Homeowners should install a mesh cover or cap over chimneys and other exposed openings to prevent entry. It’s also a good idea to install door sweeps and repair damaged screens in windows.
For more information on winter pests, visit www.certifiedtpc.com
A Chef Finds Several Still-Living Bugs In A Sealed Box Of Cereal
Have you ever opened a brand new, sealed box or can of food and discovered more than just the advertised food is contained inside, mixed in with what you were hoping to be able to eat? It is unfortunately a more common occurrence than you might think for people to find insects buried in their box of food. One Miami chef, Jamie DeRosa, discovered a huge surprise when he opened what he thought was simply a box of Raisin Bran cereal. It wasn’t even the same cereal, and was full of creepy crawlies straight out of one of your worst nightmares.
DeRosa had initially believed he’d purchase a healthy box of Raisin Bran cereal, but was pleasantly surprised when he found a plethora of corn flakes, rainbow colored fruit loops and tasty marshmallows. There was no golden flakes and raisin to be seen. Thinking he’d won the cereal jackpot, DeRosa says, “I’m thinking we scored the golden ticket. I thought of those cereal variety packs you bought as a kid and thought it was some surprise mystery box.”
It wasn’t until after he’d poured a heaping bowl full of the sugary cereal for his daughter, and his wife arrived home to take a closer look at the cereal that seemed a little too good to be true. She noticed that the cereal smelled stale and decided to investigate. Upon closer inspection DeRosa noticed what looked like spider webs clinging to the sides of the bag. Thankfully, he noticed the extra protein included just before his daughter was about to take a bite of the bowl of cereal he had poured her.
DeRosa poured a larger bowl of the cereal and then began to notice movement amidst the marshmallows and fruit loops. He was looking at insect larvae wriggling amongst the cereal flakes. As soon as he saw this, DeRosa rushed his daughter to the hospital, as she has a number of food allergies. She ended up being fine, but DeRosa was concerned about other people purchasing boxes of cereal like his, so decided to post his findings on Facebook. He described it as “Fruit Loops, random stale marshmallows, Frosted Corn Flakes, and a web from a Spider.It literally looks like someone scooped cereal off the floor. That’s my impression of what went wrong in the cereal factory.” What’s more, both the box and the inside bag were completely sealed when he purchased the cereal. DeRosa believes that the insects made it into the cereal by way of cross contamination while it was being packaged.
Have you ever found insects or some other contaminant in a food product that you purchased?
In the decades following World War Two, everyone in the world had been crossing their fingers hoping that nuclear war would not break out between the United States and the former Soviet Union. Now, the Cold War has been over for nearly thirty years, but the current state of international political affairs is anything but stable, and the paranoia that characterized the Cold War seems to be making a comeback. For example, for the past two years, American diplomats serving in Cuba have been hearing strange high pitched sounds that have reportedly caused them unpleasant physical symptoms. After medical tests confirmed that these diplomats had suffered brain damage, rumors began to circulate that the officials had been subject to a new type of weapon that makes use of certain sound frequencies to attack enemies. Understandably, Cuban officials doubted this scenario; instead, Cuban officials claimed that a native cricket species was the likely source of the strange sounds. This theory took a backseat to more sinister explanations that had been released by numerous media outlets. Despite the alleged brain damage suffered by American diplomats, an American researcher has recently confirmed that the so called “sonic attacks” were, in fact, crickets after all.
During 2017, medical professionals claimed that certain brain structures had become altered in American and Canadian diplomats serving in Havana, Cuba. This claim was announced at the same time that the diplomats were said to have heard odd sounds on a daily basis in the island country’s capital. Now, medical professionals are backing off of this claim after a researcher, Alexander Stubbs, from the University of California at Berkeley, debunked the several sinister theories concerning these sounds by analyzing recordings of these high pitched frequencies. According to Stubbs, the sounds were actually the love songs produced by the Indies Short Tailed Cricket, which is a cricket species native to Cuba. This cricket is officially known as Anurogryllus celerinictus and the sounds it makes are identical to the sounds heard in the recordings. While it is a relief to know that Russia is not using Cuba as a testing ground for a new sonic weapon designed to melt Americans’ brains, the alleged brain damaged suffered by the diplomats has yet to be explained.
Do you believe that sound frequencies produced by insect songs could cause brain damage in humans?
The evolutionary relationship between pollinating insects and plants is a complicated one, but researchers have long known that the two have coevolved for millions of years and are, therefore, mutually dependent on one another in order to survive. Researchers have recently demonstrated that plants possess an ability to sense light, mechanical stimulation and chemicals evaporating into the air. In other words, plants have the ability to see, touch and smell, but new research shows that plants can also hear. Specifically, plants can hear the sounds produced by pollinating insects. Israeli researchers have recently demonstrated how night-primrose flowers can rapidly raise the sugar concentration in their nectar in response to the buzzing of bees and the flapping of moth wings.
Since flowers depend on insects for pollination, it is necessary for flowers to attract insect pollinators with the reward of tasty nectar. For example, when the night-primrose flower hears the nearby buzzing of bees or the flapping of moth wings, it increases its sugar production so that its nectar will taste sweeter to bees and moths. The mechanism responsible for this flower’s ability to sense these sounds is not yet understood, but researchers found that the flower’s sugar production always increases when they are exposed to the sounds of buzzing bees and the flapping of moth wings. Not only that, but the increased production of sugar worked to attract more pollinating insects to the flowers. Amazingly, it took only three minutes for flowers to increase their sugar production to the point necessary for attracting bees and moths. Also, flowers alter their sugar production only when the sound of bees and moths reaches a particular frequency. High frequency sounds do not alter sugar production, but lower frequencies did result in higher sugar concentrations, as lower frequencies indicate that insect pollinators are close to the flowers. Although this research is in its infancy, experts believe that further studies will provide more information concerning the coevolution of plants and insects.
Do you think that most, or all, flowers possess the ability to sense the sounds made by pollinating insects?