Posts Tagged spider control

Dangerous Spiders and How to Avoid Them

Posted by on Wednesday, 12 March, 2014

Mike Bonds is the technology director for NYC Pest Pros, a NYC based pest control company that focuses on education, awareness and green sustainability.

There are literally thousands of spider species in North America, all of which are important parts of a healthy ecosystem. While most pose no threat to humans and pets, there are a handful of species that are considered pests and can cause serious health problems or death. Here are some of the most common dangerous spiders and what to do about them.

Widow Spiders

Black Widow Spider

Widow spiders (Latrodectus) are members of the comb-footed spider family and can be identified by their messy, tangled webs. The black widow is the most familiar widow species and is typically found in the American South and Southwest. However, there are also other varieties of the black widow that can be found in Northern states. Two other widow species, the false widow and the brown widow, are also located in many portions of the country.

All but the false widow posses the characteristic hourglass pattern on their undersides. Interestingly, only the females are dangerous. The small, drab-colored males are harmless. That said, any pest control company will tell you that the female widows bite can cause serious problems. These include severe pain, fever, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headaches and severe muscle cramps. In small children, the elderly and those with compromised immunity, the bite can be fatal.

Recluses

recluse spider

The most well-known species in this group (Loxosceles) can be identified by the telltale violin pattern on its head, or cephalothorax. These spiders are mainly restricted to the Southern states. However, there are other recluse varieties in many portion of the US that pose little or no threat. True to their name, recluses prefer to stay hidden and aren’t aggressive.

They’re wandering hunters, which means that they don’t spin webs. The danger of these spiders, while real, is dramatically over-blown. It’s common for people to mistake insect bites, MRSA and certain skin conditions as recluse bites, even when these cases occur outside of the spiders’ natural range.

Even if you live in an area where the recluse population is abundant, few actual bites occur. In one case, exterminators found more than 2,000 brown recluses in a family’s home. In the eight years the family had been living there, not a single bite occurred. Even if someone is bitten, the bite doesn’t always result in infection and necrosis. In healthy individuals, little more than time and an ice pack may be all that’s needed.

Hobo Spiders

Female hobo spider

The hobo spider (Tegenaria) is restricted to the Pacific Northwest and is part of the funnel-web family, not to be confused with Australia’s Sydney Funnel Web. They look strikingly similar to the average wolf spider, with the exception that they build and inhabitsheet-like webs with a funnel at the end. There are many other types of funnel-web builders that are harmless, however, so learning to properly distinguish them is important.

Asking a pest control company how to distinguish them is a good start. With hobo spiders, the males are more toxic than females, particularly the subadults. Bite symptoms can include pain, fever, nausea, vomiting, swelling and necrosis.

If these spiders or any of their variants are in your area, it’s important to be cautious. Never put your hands in places you can’t see into, and always wear thick leather gloves when handling wood or debris. Keeping clutter out of corners and eliminating entry points is also recommended. It’s also a good idea to call in a pest control service to spray your home against this pest problem.

Controlling Spiders

It’s best to take preventative measures instead of having to deal with one of these intimidating creatures in person. Avoid having piles of junk or clutter in your house or garage. Never stick your hand into boxes or anywhere where you can not see into the space. These are prime places where spiders take up residence. It’s best advised to not deal with these types of spiders on your own as they are no easy feat for the average homeowner.

Seek out professional help from a local company. If you are dealing with a spider situation in an outdoor garden, there are some excellent eco-friendly pest control techniques that you may employ. Additionally, there is no shortage of excellent resources online where you can find more helpful information on dealing with these dangerous spiders and other pests.

How To Keep Pests Out Of Your Christmas Decorations

Posted by on Thursday, 20 December, 2012

Christmas decorations

Creepy Crawlies In Your Christmas Decorations

The holidays are in full swing, and before you know it you will be left with the daunting task of putting away all of those Christmas decorations. Did you know that those beautiful Christmas wreaths, lights, ceramic nativities, and even your artificial Christmas tree can be a favorite hideout for pests all year long?

There are a few simple and inexpensive steps you can take now, so you don’t end up with a serious pest infestation later. The last thing you want is to create a safe haven for rodents, cockroaches, silverfish, spiders or scorpions.

How To Keep Pests Out Of Your Christmas Decorations

Use proper storage bins. When storing your Christmas decorations, avoid using cardboard boxes. The tape, cardboard, and glue are a favorite food among roaches and silverfish. They can easily slip through the crevices of these cardboard boxes too. Opt instead for plastic tubs with tight fitting lids. These will surely help keep the bugs out of your decorations.

Use a Christmas tree bag. Again, toss the cardboard box your artificial Christmas tree came in, and use a Christmas tree bag that will tightly zip. Rodents like mice, squirrels, and rats love nesting in artificial trees year round. These trees provide pests with a safe shelter, much like they’d find in the wild.

Quickly throw away your real tree. That wonderful smelling Evergreen you chopped down on a family outing needs to be quickly disposed of; before rodents and other pests take notice, and take cover inside.

Seal linens in plastic bags. Your stockings and Christmas tablecloths can offer a quick meal for pests like clothing moths, and cockroaches. Make sure items like these are sealed in plastic bags to keep out any humidity which can also attract pests.

Throw away edible decorations. I know you spent hours on that beautiful gingerbread house you made, but pests like mice and rats will quickly make a meal of it. The same goes for those candy canes you used to decorate the tree. Edibles will only attract pests.

Inspect storage area. Before you start stacking those plastic tubs of Christmas decorations in your garage, basement, or attic; look for existing signs of pests nearby. Rodent droppings, spider webs, and dead insects are a dead give away of a pest problem.

Clean, clean, clean. After inspecting your storage area for signs of pests, and before you start stacking the plastic tubs, make sure the area is clean. This simple act can go along way in keeping the bugs and pests away.

Get pest control. If you see any signs of pests where you are storing your Christmas decorations, get help from an Austin exterminator. Scorpion control, roach control, and spider control treatment plans can keep those pests away from your décor all year round. You don’t want to get bit or stung when you get them out for next season.

Austin Pest Control

Bulwark Exterminating
209 East Ben White Boulevard
Austin, TX
(512) 291-1200
bulwarkpestcontrol.com

A Wildlife Pro
3803 Speedway
Austin, TX 78751
(512) 914-7287
austintxanimalcontrol.com

Terminix
1905 Kramer Lane,
Austin, TX 78758
(512) 236-5008
terminix.com

$1 Million Hospital Bill After A Brown Recluse Spider Bite

Posted by on Thursday, 1 November, 2012

Spider Bite Horror Story

A former law student is urging the public to be more conscious about spiders after she is slapped with a $1 Million hospital bill– The result of a Brown Recluse spider bite. 

Jane Hefferan had been dealing with a running injury for some time, so she thought nothing of a swollen knee. As her knee began to change colors, first turning a deep red then to a dark purple, she began to get a little more worried. Hefferan kept putting off the discoloration and burning feeling she felt in her leg, because she was busy studying for the bar exam. That was until her physical therapist realized she was dealing with something a little more serious than a bruised knee and urged her go seek medical attention as soon as possible. 

While at the hospital it was immediately determined that Hefferan had been bitten by a spider, and not just any spider but the very poisonous and sometimes deadly Brown Recluse. 

Hefferan was quickly treated with antibiotics, and had surgery to remove some of the dead rotting tissue around her knee that the spider’s venom destroyed. Doctors had to cut down to the bone, removing all the infected tissue, and use skin grafts to cover the exposed knee. The problem worsened as the bite continued to fester and bleed, due to a autoimmune disorder which she had. On top of it all, doctors also discover another spider bite. The two bites had left Hefferan with a leg that was basically just bone, having most of the living tissue deteriorate. 

After a four year battle consisting of 20 different surgeries, a couple dozen blood transfusions, and a $1 Million hospital bill, doctors were able to save Jane Hefferan’s leg. It was determined that the woman was bitten in her sleep; the place where 38 percent of Brown Recluse spider bites take place. 

Brown Recluse  ("Fiddleback" or &quo...

Brown Recluse Spider Bites

A bite from a Brown recluse spider will usually be painless and unnoticed at first, just like Jane Hefferan’s bite was. A day or so after the bite, the victim may begin to notice a reddening of the skin with the bite developing a red bull’s eye. The skin will begin turning colors, ranging from purple, brown, black, or blue, and look much like a bruise. As the skin deteriorates and dies, it will eventually turn white. At this point the bite can begin to become very painful. The discolored area will begin oozing a discharge as well. 

A Brown Recluse spider bite can be deadly, but it is uncommon. Brown Recluse spiders are common throughout most of the Southern United States, including most of Texas.

The Value of Pest Control in Austin

I recently wrote about a scorpion sting that left an Arizona woman with an $83,000 hospital bill here. Now we hear this unfortunate news where this Michigan woman is stuck with a $1 Million hospital bill because of a spider bite. Unfortunate situations like these can be avoided with pest control. 

Most pest control companies offer a spider control service. Bulwark Exterminating offers two distinct service plans – every month and every other month. A one year every month plan will cost a total of $623, significantly lower than a $1 Million price tag resulting from a spider bite. Don’t risk the pain of dealing with a spider bite, and don’t be stuck with a $1 Million hospital bill. Get Austin spider control!

Austin Spider Control

Bulwark Exterminating
209 East Ben White Boulevard
Austin, TX
(512) 291-1200
bulwarkpestcontrol.com

A Wildlife Pro
3803 Speedway
Austin, TX 78751
(512) 914-7287
austintxanimalcontrol.com

Terminix
1905 Kramer Lane,
Austin, TX 78758
(512) 236-5008
terminix.com

 

Spiders Give More than Bites

Posted by on Wednesday, 30 September, 2009
Spider Silk used to weave this beautiful tapestry

Spider Silk used to weave this beautiful tapestry

This is a 11-by-4-foot tapestry made completely of spider silk!  It took 4 years to make it and the help of over 1 million spiders.  While these particular spiders were farmed and harvested in Madagascar, Texas has very similar orb spiders.  Yes, they do bite and they are very large.  Austin orb spiders can weave massive webs.  When threatened they will actually swing/jump their webs.  This action makes them seem fearsome and aggressive.  My advise is not to play with them too much.  They may not be poisonous, but that doesn’t stop the bite from hurting.

And if you are not planning on spending the next four years weaving a spider silk tapestry then I would suggest not housing the Texas Orb Spiders in your home.  Better to call your local Austin spider control company.

Austin Spider Control

Pest Control Round Rock 2800 La Frontera Blvd Round Rock, TX 78681

Black Widow Spider Austin TX

Posted by on Saturday, 11 July, 2009

Want to control Black Widow Spiders? Check out this informative video on Spider Control and specifically black widows:

A few Quick Black Widow spider facts:

1- While they are one of the most deadly spiders, Black widow bites are not usually fatal. If you do feel sever reactions then call your local poison control center, or visit your local hospital.

2- Black widows get their name because they have been known to eat their mates after mating. However, this ritual is not the norm. I guess most husbands are smart enough to run away these days… and FYI male black widows are not always black, they are usually a combo of brown, white, and black with spots and/or strips.

3- Black widows are reclusive by nature. They don’t actively hunt prey. They wait for the prey to come to them. So black widow bites are not common. Usually you have to be antagonizing the black widow in order to be bitten.

4- Black widows are notorious for the red hour glass on their underside, but not all black widows carry this mark. Some only red markings on their bellies, some have red spots on top, and some have no red at all but are pure black. The Black widow does have an overall look is unique to their species, so if it looks like a black widow, red hour glass or not, then it most likely is a black widow.