New Zealand Outdoors Summer Insect Pests

Summer and bugs seem to go together. This is because it’s the time of year when a lot of insects multiply rapidly and invade your space bringing with them havoc and distress. Summer means being outdoors for extended periods but this can become less pleasurable if your outdoor space is invaded by crawling, flying or stinging insects.

While some of these can transmit diseases or sting, most of the insects will cause nuisance by just being there. In fact, research shows that about 67% of homeowners become more concerned about pest insects during the summer. This is the barbeque season and also the season that pests are at their most active.

Common Summer Outdoor Insect Pests In New Zealand.

There are several common insects that appear in large numbers during summer.


Although ants are very irritating, the most common species of ants, the garden ant, is not known to carry any disease innately. But since they travel a lot and feed from multiple sources, it is possible that these insects might contaminate your food when they come into contact with it.

Ants are mostly invisible as they build underground nests but when they do come out, they do so in large numbers. They feed on almost anything from food particles to dead insects and animals. Once food has been identified, invasion takes place very quickly.

Identification of the problem is easy as the large numbers that come out to feed can be easily seen. To prevent them from showing up in large numbers, close all food containers and clean up messes involving food or drinks. Rinsing beverage containers before disposing them of in tightly sealed containers will also help.


These two-winged insects thrive in warm climates. They will thus multiply during summer to great numbers, enough to ruin any leisure activities outside your house. They are known to carry diseases which vary with the species of the mosquito. The diseases they spread range from filariasis to dengue. One of the world’s most dangerous diseases – malaria – is known to be spread by these insects.

Mosquitoes have long, thin wings.  And they are narrow bodied with long antennae.
Females have more developed mouthparts and they prefer to feed on the blood of warm blooded animals while the males have rudimentary parts and only feed on nectar and water.

Mosquitoes require water to reproduce as they lay their eggs there. It’s thus important that you properly drain your property and get rid of any containers that can hold water. Control is best done by getting rid of the mosquito breeding places.

Hornets and Wasps

These insects are not known to transfer any diseases to humans but their sting hurts. It may also be lethal to a small population of people (about one in thirty) who suffer anaphylactic shock due to toxins in the sting.

They are a bit hard to identify as their black and yellow striping is mimicked by other insects to deter predators. The mimics are mostly harmless and include day moths, hover-flies and beetles that feed on nectar and pollen.

The most common species of wasps in New Zealand are the German wasp and the Social wasp. In addition to their yellow and black stripes, wasps have two pairs of wings (the hind ones being smaller) and are less hairy than bees. Their body is also more pointed with a well defined waist. Only the females have the distinctive long stinger which they can use multiple times unlike bees. They build nests from chewed wood pulp.


Probably the most annoying of all the insects. They hover around humans and food spreading a multitude of diseases such as typhoid, cholera, dysentery poliomyelitis, viral hepatitis (A & E) to name a few.

Flies reproduce very quickly with the female being able to lay up to 9,000 eggs in its lifetime. This means that in warm weather a small fly problem can escalate into a major headache in just a couple of days.

Being one of the most common insect pests, flies are easy to identify but a bit difficult to control. Hygiene is crucial as flies mostly feed on dead decaying organic matter.

How To Get Rid Of Insect Pests

Preventive measures work sometimes but not all the time. If they do not work, it’s wise to spend a couple of dollars on devices that will help you solve your pest problems. Some of these solutions from Pestrol include:

  1. Pestrol Outdoor Bug Eater – This proven insect trapping system draws in insects into the trap to keep the population at a minimum. It does not use any gases or poisons but rather takes advantage of the insect’s breeding cycle to eliminate the male insect thus preventing future mating and subsequent reproduction. It has the ability to eliminate moths, mosquitoes, flies, sandflies, and midge among others. See more
  2. Pestrol Outdoor Exterminator Mosquito Trap – Mosquitoes find their host by detecting their body heat and the carbon dioxide they emit. The exterminator mimics this by using two fluorescent bulbs that emit warm light and a funnel coated with titanium dioxide that produces carbon dioxide. A noiseless vacuum fan sucks in the attracted mosquitoes into the retaining cage where they starve to death. Read more
    Pestrol Outdoor Exterminator Mosquito Trap
  3. The Shooaway – This is a small portable, battery powered insect pest solution for the outdoors.  Just like the other devices in the list, it is eco – friendly and uses no chemicals. It is thus safe to use around children and pets. The device has soft blades that use unique holographic dots that irritate insects. The blades are rotated by an energy efficient motor powered by 2AA batteries. Read more:


It’s summer! Do not let insects ruin your outdoor activities and barbecues.  Controlling them only takes very little effort with the use of these devices. They require very little input from you, and once they are set up, you can rest easy knowing that your outdoors are well protected from pesky insects.

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