Miscellaneous Pests in Saco, Portland, Wells & Cape Elizabeth, ME

These miscellaneous pests have a wide variety of habits and behaviors that lend themselves to very different pest control treatment plans. Green Shield Pest Solutions offers many different services to treat them in unique ways. Read below to learn more.

Centipede

Named after: "Centi" is Latin for hundred and "pedis" is Latin for foot. "Hundred-leggers" is a nickname which Americans have sometimes called them.

Identification: 1" - 3," they can have anywhere from 15-177 legs, most commonly brown or reddish but sometimes yellowish. They have an elongated body. They have a pair of legs for each segment of their body and long antennae at the head.

Seasonality: All seasons

Why they are in/near my home: Homes with moisture problems frequently attract centipedes. They prefer dark and damp areas, so basements, closets, and bathrooms are areas they visit. Centipedes are carnivorous, so will hang around places where there are other bugs for them to eat. When outside they will be found in rotting logs, in piles of leaves, or under rocks.

Tips for homeowners: Making sure there are no leaks or humid areas inside your home is key. De-humidifiers are recommended in basements. Also, ridding your home of other pests will leave them no food to eat.

How Green Shield can help: Like most pest issues, treating centipedes involves chemical and non-chemical methods, locating the specific areas they are located and finding their entry points into your home. Your Green Shield service professional will complete a full inspection and then prepare a treatment plan which will best take care of the issue.

Weird fact: "Oddly," centipedes never have an even amount of legs, always an odd amount.

Cricket

Named after: They make a noise that the French originally thought sounded like "criquet."

Identification: 1/8" - 2," light yellowish brown, and have three dark bands on their head. Sometimes they may be brown or black. They have large jumping hind legs with long antennae.

Seasonality: Summer, fall

Why they are in/near my home: They usually live outside but moisture and outdoor lights will attract them inside, squeezing through cracks and crevices on the exterior.

Tips for homeowners: While they can be destructive in agricultural settings, when they get inside, it's more of an annoyance with their loud chirping disrupting sleep. Like the centipede, they prefer damp, moist conditions, so eliminating any problem areas is a good start.

How Green Shield can help: When crickets arrive, it's important to allow a professional like Green Shield to give a full inspection of the problem. They are more than likely getting in near the foundation which is why an external barrier is critical in keeping them out. Your Green Shield service professional will also offer practical advice in order to resolve the issue.

Weird fact: They don't chirp the way you may think. Illustrations of the past depict crickets playing violins and most think they rub their legs together to make that sound. It's actually their wings rubbing together.

Earwig

Named after: In folklore, they were called this because it was believed that they would crawl in human ears and lay their eggs. This is untrue, of course.

Identification: ¼" - 2," dark brown, six long, narrow legs, two pairs of wings, and a small pincher at the rear

Seasonality: Summer, fall

Why they are in/near my home: There are more than 20 species of earwigs in the US, so their habits vary. Like many of the insects on this list, they prefer wet, cool, secluded areas and will feed on decaying vegetation. They usually enter the home when the weather changes.

Tips for homeowners: Clear all clutter which acts as a hiding place for earwigs. Make sure mulch or leaves are not up against the foundation of the home. Make sure landscaping is trimmed to eliminate moist and shady areas.

How Green Shield can help: Green Shield utilizes integrated pest management, which is important when dealing with earwigs, since chemical application alone will not be a quick fix. Using several different products in its different forms will be able to effectively control the issue.

Weird fact: Although they have wings, they rarely use them and are almost always seen on the ground.

Flea

Named after: Unknown

Identification: 1/12"-1/6," dark reddish-brown

Seasonality: Summer and fall

Why they are in/near my home: They won't come into the home on their own. They are transported on dogs, cats, rodents, and clothes. They thrive in humid and warm areas and are able to reproduce at a rapid rate.

Tips for homeowners: Female fleas can lay around 18 eggs per day, so inspecting pet beds, carpet, upholstery is important, as well as cleaning and vacuuming frequently.

How Green Shield can help: Treating fleas on your own is difficult because of how fast they breed and spread. You can often do everything right and still have issues. Green Shield is well trained in taking care of all flea problems and can be contacted to take care of the issue. After a thorough inspection, they will customize a solution for your property.

Weird fact: They're big jumpers and can jump as high as 8 inches.

Millipede

Named after: In Latin, it's "double foot," referring to the two pairs of legs they have on each body segment.

Identification: 1/6" - 4 ½," black or brown with red or orange legs. They look like a worm with legs.

Seasonality: Spring, summer, fall

Why they are in/near my home: They like damp areas outside but will wander in if it gets too dry. They will target basements and come into doors and vents.

Tips for homeowners: They do not bite or sting, but seeing one at night when they are active is not a pleasant site due to their size and slimy appearance. They live in mulch and piles of dead leaves, so clearing those from the foundation is a great start.

How Green Shield can help: A thorough inspection from Green Shield would include examining the basement, storage sheds, crawlspaces, and garage, looking for entry points. After, a product would be applied around the foundation is necessary and advice offered to the customer. Green Shield would return anytime for free if the problem persists.

Weird fact: Millipedes are one of the oldest creatures on earth.

Silverfish

Named after: They are often silvery in color and fish-like in their appearance and movements.

Identification: ½" - ¾," they have horizontal stripes going across their body, resembling scales. They can also be white, bluish-silver, or brown-gray

Seasonality: All seasons

Why they are in/near my home: They are attracted to damp areas and feed on paper products such as wallpaper and books. They like sugars and starches and will often be found in books eating the glue in the binding. They'll either be brought in unknowingly or enter through cracks, crevices, windows, and gaps under doors.

Tips for homeowners: Make sure dishes are cleaned regularly if found in the kitchen. Seal cracks in foundation, windows, or doors.

How Green Shield can help: They reproduce rapidly and are nocturnal and secretive. This combination means that you may not see them for awhile, as they quietly breed behind the scenes. If you see a silverfish, there are more than likely many more and calling a pest control professional like Green Shield is recommended. We will create a customized plan to treat silverfish directly and indirectly (their harborage areas). There are do-it-yourself traps on the market, but those are only good for catching individual silverfish, not getting to the entire population.

Weird fact: They do a strange dancing and chasing mating ritual.

Springtail

Named after: They resemble a flea in the way that they can jump (spring) from place to place.

Identification: 1/16," tiny, resembling a flea, but with a more elongated shape

Seasonality: All seasons

Why they are in/near my home: They can survive the coldest temperatures because of a special protein that acts like anti-freeze. Outside they can be found on warm winter days around the base of trees, looking like pepper in the snow. They will come inside in dry weather or after a heavy rain, getting in pretty much anywhere because of their small size.

Tips for homeowners: Keep your home as dry as possible, sealing leaks and cracks.

How Green Shield can help: Our focus will definitely include a plan to include the interior and exterior of the home. We will locate where they are highest in number and most persistent, which will usually be where moisture is present. In order to fully get rid of them, it's also important to eliminate all excess moisture in that area.

Weird fact: They are actually smaller than fleas, and can be easily crushed due to their softer body.