Ants, Termites, Roaches & Rats—Pests! 30 Reasons Why You Can Continue To Hate Them
by Lou-Ann Jordan Sep 9, 2019
Ants, termites, cockroaches and rodents are aptly named—pests.
Most of us find the existence of cockroaches and rats offensive to our sensibilities. These unwanted guests invade homes and settle in with permanency in mind. Even more alarming, is their lack of sensitivity. No area is off-limits.
Roaches get into cupboards, dishware and food packaging. They’ve also been known to creep into refrigerators.
Ants are no less annoying. It’s easy to view them with less disgust; however, think about it, they traverse the very same areas roaches do—toilets, garbage cans. And, because they are tiny, they’re able to get into more spaces than cockroaches.
An infestation of ants, termites, cockroaches or rats should not be taken lightly. While some pests may restrict their damage to structures, others cause health complications. For example, leptospirosis is a disease that humans contract by coming into contact with rat urine.
We wanted to give you the inside scoop on some of the most harmful pests. To this end, we sought out Nigel Jordan, manager of Infinite Pest Solutions.
We need to know what we’re dealing with, so Nigel has provided some facts about four long-existing pests.
Nigel’s fact on four persistent pests
- Ants are powerful. They can carry 50 times their weight.
- Ants can swim, though not all of them. However, they can hold their breath underwater.
- Ants live on every continent except Antarctica.
- Ants squeeze juice from foods as they cannot consume solids.
- Ants cannot survive without water.
- Ants’ habit of foraging for food takes them into unhygienic areas.
- Ants tend to infest the bathroom and kitchen in homes.
- Pharaoh ants transmit Salmonella, Staphylococcus and Streptococcus.
- Drywood termites attack sound, seasoned wood.
- Drywood termites inhabit coastal regions.
- Termites consume cellulose from living trees, seasoned timber, books or grass.
- Termites tend to attack untreated wood.
- Termites’ work mostly goes unnoticed. Usually, by the time the damage is visible the timber, has been eaten away.
- Subterranean termites can gain entry through small passages. Hairline cracks in concrete slabs around plumbing and electrical conduits are a common entry point.
- There are approximately 3500 species of cockroaches
- Of the 3500, only five or six species of cockroaches are pests of homes.
- Cockroaches can live decapitated for at least one week.
- They can hold their breath for 40minutes.
- These insects can survive for half an hour if submerged underwater.
- Cockroaches can run up to three miles within an hour.
- They’ll survive on virtually anything—fruits, meat or even other insects.
- Cockroaches have been around for millions of years. They are highly adaptive insects.
- Rats can gnaw through buildings, furniture, books, cables, equipment and machinery.
- Rats can attract snakes as they are eaten by various species.
- They transmit many types of diseases including the bubonic plague, salmonella, Murine typhus fever, Weil’s disease and trichinosis.
- Rats spread diseases through their urine and faeces as well as through scratching or biting.
- Female rats can give birth to up to 15 litters a year and can be impregnated within 24 hours of having given birth.
- Rats and mice can squeeze through openings as small as half an inch in width.
- They are known to be very intelligent. They are capable of memorising routes and solving puzzles.
- Rats can hold their breath underwater for a long time, and can even tread water for up to three days.
Don’t ignore traces of pest infestation in the home or office. For health reasons, it’s best to deal with them swiftly.
While there are many DIY remedies for persistent problems, it’s always best to call in professional pest control exterminators.