Common NZ Pests Quick Facts
Ants are a big problem because of their massive numbers and they tend to invade homes during the hottest weather. Ants can enter a home through the smallest of cracks and leave invisible scent trails for others to follow. They can make nests anywhere near your home including under your home’s foundation and can number up to 500,000 with entire colonies uprooting and moving quickly if there is a perceived threat.
It’s no wonder that we are instantly disgusted when we see flies circling our food. Depending upon their species, flies can live 8 days, 2 months or a year. Flies can produce about 1 million offspring in a few short weeks. Half a billion microorganisms are found on a fly’s body and legs. They deposit bacteria everywhere they land each time that they land.
Although cockroaches are important natural recyclers, most people do not want to find them in their home. These repulsive insects can carry a variety of diseases because they are commonly into the garbage. Tropical species of cockroaches can measure over 2 inches in length, have six legs, two antennae and some even have wings. Cockroaches can make sounds like clicking or chirping and give off an unpleasant odour.
Eggs are generally laid in standing water, which can be anywhere around your home as long as the water is not changed regularly – stagnant is preferred. Larvae feed on small aquatic organisms or may consume each other. They are attracted to humans by the CO2 that they give off as they breathe out. Exposure to sunlight can cause them to dehydrate and die. Mosquitos do not tend to infest homes.
It seems that they appear suddenly overnight and they are so difficult to get rid of. The adults are 3 – 4 mm long and can have dark or red eyes and a tan thorax. They have an abdomen that is grey underneath and black on top and they may appear brown or tan in colour overall.
Their larvae feed on the feces of adult fleas which contains blood that is undigested. Carefully examine your pets and look for bites, adult fleas and flea feces.
They hide in bedding, furniture, bed frames, mattresses, baseboards, carpets and bedroom clutter. They are often seen in the seams of mattresses or in the box spring. The most common way that bed bugs are spread is through luggage and this allows them to be transported great distances.
There are many different types of wasps, but most varieties have two sets of wings and a pinched waist. They can be black or metallic green and can be extremely small or several centimeters long. Predatory wasps consume other insects and dead animals while parasitic wasps lay eggs in bodies of live spiders and caterpillars. Once larvae hatch they feed on their living host.