Common Pests

Cockroaches spread human disease by depositing disease organisms on food and utensils. The American cockroach, which comes into contact with human excrement in sewers or with pet droppings, may transmit bacteria that cause Salmonella and Shigella. German cockroaches are believed to be capable of transmitting disease-causing organisms such as Staphylococcus, hepatitis, and coliform bacteria. They also have been implicated in the spread of typhoid and dysentery.

Recent studies have found a strong association between the presence of cockroaches and increases in the severity of asthma symptoms in individuals who are sensitive to cockroach allergens. Read More...

Detection and Treatment:
Cockroaches may become pests in homes, restaurants, hospitals, warehouses, offices, and virtually any structure that has food preparation or storage areas. These pests are common even in the cleanest of crowded urban areas and older dwellings. Itís usually not difficult to discover an infestation, because they are often visible. Treatment usually involves sealing cracks and crevices to block entrance; keeping food and trash areas clean to avoid providing food; and the professional application of insecticide and bait on a regular basis. Read More...

Rodents consume and contaminate food. They also gnaw on electrical wires, wooden structures, and tear insulation in walls and ceilings for nesting.

Rodents can also transmit disease to humans, pets, and livestock. They have been found to transmit typhus, leptospirosis, trichinosis, and salmonellosis. Read More...

Detection and Treatment:
The presence of mice and rats is usually detected by the damage they cause to food and structures, by their droppings, and by their nests. Treatment involves eliminating all entry points and population reduction by the application of rodenticides and traps. Read More...


Ants cause various types of damage, depending upon the variety. Carpenter ants tunnel through wood, destroying structures. Pharaoh ants may transmit serious diseases. A fire antís sting is potentially deadly to susceptible individuals, and all ants contaminate the food they infest. Read More...

Detection and Treatment :
Ants build massive colonies, so their presence is generally detected when you see their nests, or the ants themselves. Treatments involve baiting, insecticide, and sealing off entry to buildings. Read More...

Although most spider bites are not life threatening, they can be annoying and uncomfortable, and in some circumstances very dangerous. When itís important to eliminate spiders, chemical control is used, along with destruction of webs and eggs. Since they feed on insects, measures that eliminate unwanted insects will also reduce spider populations. Read More about Black Widow Spiders...

Biting and Stinging Pests
Bees, wasps and scorpions are dangerous because of their painful and potentially harmful stings.

Detection and Treatment:
Wasp nests and bee hives can be removed by professionals with protective gear. Insecticides are also used. Scorpions are treated chemically and environmentally, eliminating their habitat directly around the structure.

Pest identification information copyright Regents of the University of California©
Visit UC IPM Online for more information about additional pests.

Fleas bite to obtain blood for their diet. The bites can itch and become painful or worse if infection occurs. Some diseases are transmitted by flea bites. Read More...

Detection and Treatment:
Flea activity will be most pronounced where pets spend most of their time. Please inform the techncian where your pet(s) tend to rest or spend most of their time. You'll need to prepare and maintain your property and pets to control fleas. Read More...

Springtails can occur in large numbers, becoming more of a nuisance than a health hazard. They generally do not pose a great threat to food or the environment.