Beetles, ants, spiders, and termites. What do these four creepy crawlies have in common? If you guessed, “They’re bugs!” you’re wrong. Spiders are arachnids. The correct answer: these creatures are some of Iowa’s most prevalent pests. Plenty of Iowa’s homeowners have experienced pest infestations at some point. Beetles, ants, spiders, and termites are only a few common culprits. Infestations aren’t just annoying and unsettling—they can cause significant damage over time. You must address, eliminate, and prevent unwelcome houseguests as soon as possible to avoid long-term consequences and costly frustrations. The experienced team at Janssen Pest Solutions is here to teach you common warning signs of infestation and strategies to keep a pest-free home.

What are some signs of pest infestation?

Pests can be sneaky, but you can outsmart them. Here are a couple of signs to watch out for: Visible pests: Maybe it’s common sense, but an obvious sign of infestation is seeing ants, roaches, or other pests inside your home. Seeing multiple of the same type of pest inside your home indicates others are hiding. However, there’s no need to panic. A residential pest control technician can eliminate pests of any kind, regardless of your problem’s magnitude. If you’re facing this problem yourself, it’s best to call an exterminator sooner rather than later. It’s impossible to know how many critters are lurking unseen. Droppings and urine stains: Visible droppings and urine stains are another clear sign of infestation. It’s best to let a professional know when you see or smell these excrements. Detecting droppings from animals like mice and bats is easy, but bugs poop, too! Cockroach droppings appear similar to coffee grounds, and ant droppings resemble black sand. Flea poop appears as black specks—often found where household pets enjoy resting. Bed bug feces appear as dark streaks on bedding and furniture. Some say these marks resemble ink stains. Let a pest control exterminator know if you notice any of these around your home. They’ll listen to your concerns, investigate your home, and guide you toward the best solution. Damaged plants: Check for wilting and hole-riddled leaves on indoor plants. Carefully inspect the area for insects. Examine the soil and undersides of plant leaves. When bringing new plants into your home, examine them closely to ensure they’re bug-free. It’s easy for pests to multiply once they are in your home. If your plants are in danger of tiny invaders, consider hiring a pest control company that uses eco-friendly or “green” extermination methods. Eco-friendly extermination uses non-toxic and environmentally safe products that won’t compromise your family’s health, the health of your pets, or your indoor plants.  Unexplained bites, welts, itchiness, or stings: If you or your family are experiencing unexplained insect bites or stings, it could indicate infestation. Bed bugs, fleas, and other bite-sized brutes leave their mark in the form of bumps and welts. Often, these injuries are relentlessly itchy. If this problem persists, it’s essential to contact a professional. This kind of problem doesn’t usually go away on its own. It’ll likely continue getting worse. Your best course of action is to get in touch with an exterminator. They’ll be able to diagnose the problem and resolve it promptly.

What are some strategies for keeping a pest-free home?

Preventive measures are the best way to keep your home pest-free.  Seal entry points: Inspect your home for cracks and gaps. If you find any openings, seal them using caulk or other sealants. Additionally, you can invest in screened windows and doors to keep flying insects from entering your home. The more physical barriers, the better. Store food properly: Food sources attract pests—especially ants, cockroaches, and rodents. Proper food storage makes your home less appealing to pests. Use airtight containers whenever possible. Many rodents and insects possess a keen sense of smell, detecting even the faintest odors. Further, storing food items in solid containers adds a much-needed layer of protection. Rodents can chew right through plastic bags and cardboard boxes! It’s essential to keep your food safe from pests. Consuming pest-contaminated food can make humans seriously ill. Inspect your home regularly: Keep an eye out for unwelcome guests. Examine doors and windows, and check for unexpected entry points in your home’s foundation. There’s no need to tear your house apart each month in search of rats and spiders. Instead, simply inspect these common hiding spots on a semi-routine basis:
  1. Inside cabinets
  2. Under sinks
  3. Under appliances 
  4. Attics and basements
  5. Creases of upholstered furniture

Don’t bug out!

A professional exterminator can help with all pest problems, big or small. Janssen Pest Solutions has provided effective pest prevention and control services to Des Moines and central Iowa for 30 years. We offer extermination services to Des Moines, Ankeny, Urbandale, Johnston, West Des Moines, Waukee, and other areas. Contact us today for a free extermination estimate.