What is a Maggot?
"Maggot" is a word often used to describe the small, worm-like larvae of flies. It is not a technical term and is rarely referred to in entomology. It can be mistakenly used to refer to larvae of other insects that are not flies, such as the larvae of mosquitoes or clothes moths. If you believe that you have discovered "maggots" in your home or business, the larvae of flies are often the result of decaying flesh or other organic matter.
What are these small, red biting bugs on my azaleas?
Azaleas are home to several plant pests but one specifically draws the attention of gardeners in Maryland and Northern Virginia. Rhinocapsus vanduzeei --otherwise known as the “Azalea Plant Bug” is a beneficial insect that feeds on other insects. When prey is limited, it will also feed on the stamens of Azalea blooms in the spring.
American Pest recommends wearing long sleeves and gloves when pruning Azaleas in the spring as the insect is known to inflict a painful bite when disturbed.
Silverfish are insects that get their name from their fish-like shape and 'rising and falling' movements. They are typically drawn to sugars and starches as their primary food source and for this reason present themselves as pests when they feed on book bindings, glue, wallpaper, paint, coffee, cotton, and some types of carpeting.
I have spotted brown, black, and white beetles in my home that look like lady bugs. What are they and why are they in my closets?
It sounds like you are describing the varied carpet beetle of the family Dermestidae. Carpet beetles can be a serious pest in large numbers because of their tendency to feed on the fibers that make up our clothing, bedding, carpeting and drapery.
In low numbers, one sign of their presence can be the discarded molt shells of the quickly growing larvae. Greater numbers can usually be found in closets and other places where clothing is stored.
Sometimes called sprickets or criders for their superficial resemblance to both spiders and crickets, camel crickets are usually found in basements or otherwise dark, cool and damp areas.
While these insects have poor eyesight, they will jump towards humans and pets in an attempt to frighten them away! These insects have no ability to bite or sting humans and despite their boldness are entirely harmless.
Earwigs are small, flattened insects with a pair of forcep-like pincers at the end of their bodies. The name "earwig" likely stems from the old wives tale that these insects live in wigs and emerge at night to lay eggs in human ears.
No part of that story is true and earwigs generally do not seek out human contact. They live in cracks and crevices feeding on decaying organic matter and only invade homes occasionally. Though the pincers at the back end of their bodies may look fearsome, these insects are entirely harmless.
Are house centipedes dangerous?
While somewhat fearsome looking and very fast, house centipedes are largely harmless and are only considered pests based on their ability to frighten us.
Centipedes are not insects but belong to a group called myriapods meaning "many legs". House centipedes are predators of unwanted insects such as crickets, silverfish, ants, termites and roaches and if tolerated can be quite beneficial as a form of pest control in their own right. They are capable of delivering a minor bite when they feel threatened.
What are scabies?
Scabies are mites that feed primarily on humans and domestic animals. Scabies mites are virtually invisible to the naked eye but when left undetected, will cause severe itching. Scabies is spread easily from person to person contact and require medical attention. If you suspect that you have scabies, please seek the advice of a medical professional, such as your primary care physician.
I have had treatment for roaches, why do I see more?
There is more than one way to answer this question, but it is safe to say that whenever treating for German cockroaches, follow-up treatments will be necessary.
It is also important to mention that the female German cockroach will drop her egg capsule after carrying it around for a few weeks.
The egg capsule contains 30-40 ready-to-hatch roaches, just waiting for the right moment. While the first treatment is aimed at killing all adult roaches, it is common that the unhatched eggs will emerge within weeks of the initial treatment--therefore rendering a necessary follow-up treatment.