Tag Archives: Insect Identification

It’s Box Elder Bug Season – What NJ Homeowners Need to Know

What You Need to Know about Box Elder Bugs.
What You Need to Know about Box Elder Bugs.

As summer ends and fall arrives, box elder bugs become more active. These outdoor pests are ones that you might need NJ pest control services for if they become a nuisance, so it’s best to learn more about them.

Box Elder Bug Appearance

You can tell that you have box elder bugs if you see insects that are black and have orange or red markings covering their back. Box elder bugs grow to be about a half-inch long as adults, and they have a long, thin body shape.

Box Elder Bug Behavior

Box elder bugs tend to gather in large groups where it’s warm, such as in trees or sunny parts of building exteriors. They typically gather when they’re looking for a place to spend the winter months. When they find a suitable spot, they travel to it as a group and remain there throughout the winter.

Box Elder Bug Diet

Box elder bugs often feed on box elder trees, which is where they get their name from. They also lay eggs in these trees during the summer. Their diet mainly consists of developing leaves and seeds, which can affect the appearance of the trees they feed on. They also eat fruits from apple trees and other fruit trees.

If you have box elder bugs in your home, please contact Allison Pest Control to learn more about our NJ pest control services.

Are Yellow Jackets Bees or Wasps?

Are Yellow Jackets Bees or Wasps?
Are Yellow Jackets Bees or Wasps?

During the summer months, Monmouth County NJ pest control companies deal with yellow jackets and other stinging pests. Although you might hear yellow jackets referred to as bees, they’re actually not. These pests are a type of wasp.

Yellow Jacket Identification

Do you have honeybees or yellow jackets in your yard? You can tell yellow jackets by their yellow and black coloring and their smooth appearance. These pests don’t have the hairy legs and abdomen that honeybees have. Some yellow jackets also have more of a white and black coloring instead of yellow white, which also sets them apart from bees.

Yellow Jacket Behavior

Yellow jackets are known for stinging multiple times, which bees can’t do. Honeybees lose their stinger after stinging once, causing them to die. Yellow jackets don’t lose their stinger, so they’re able to sting repeatedly. They tend to attack if they feel threatened or if you get too close to their nest. Despite the threat they pose to people, especially those who are allergic, they also do some good. Yellow jackets get rid of several insect pests that are found in NJ.

If you have a problem with yellow jackets or bees this summer, Allison Pest Control is here to help. As one of the top Monmouth County NJ pest control companies, we’ll make sure you and your family are safe from these stinging insects.

Invasive Insects: The Asian Tiger Mosquito Arrives in New Jersey

Confused on What the Asian Tiger Mosquito Looks and Acts Like? We Explain Here.
Confused on What the Asian Tiger Mosquito Looks and Acts Like? We Explain Here.

Having a problem with native mosquito populations is enough to prompt homeowners to hire Ocean County pest control services. However, an invasive species could be causing even more problems for NJ homeowners this summer. This species is known as the Asian tiger mosquito.

What Do They Look Like?

Asian tiger mosquitoes have a similar build as native mosquitoes, but they also have noticeable black and white stripes on their legs and a white stripe that runs down their thorax. These mosquitoes are usually less than an inch long.

How Do They Behave?

Asian tiger mosquitoes bite humans just as native species do, but their behavior is typically much more aggressive. These mosquitoes don’t wait for it to get dark outside before they start flying around and biting. They’re also known to attack people during the day.

Are They Dangerous?

Asian tiger mosquitoes can spread illnesses through their biting behavior. These illnesses include West Nile virus, which can cause serious complications in some people. These mosquitoes are also a threat to native mosquito populations.

Prevention Tip

Homeowners can prevent Asian tiger mosquitoes from invading by getting rid of any sources of stagnant water, such as bird baths and pet dishes.

If Asian tiger mosquitoes invade your yard this summer, contact Allison Pest Control for help. We offer safe and dependable Ocean County pest control services for mosquitoes, ants, bees and other summer pests.

Termite or Wood Destroying Beetle? What You Need to Know.

Not Sure Which is Which? We Can Help Clear That Up For You Here!
Not Sure Which is Which? We Can Help Clear That Up For You Here!

When you see signs of wood damage in your home, your first instinct might be to get help from a NJ termite specialist. How do you know if termites are really the cause of this damage, though? Another type of pest, known as the lyctid powderpost beetle, also destroys wood in residential buildings.

Powderpost Beetle Appearance

Adult lyctid powderpost beetles are roughly a quarter-inch long and brown in color. While you might see adults in your home, keep in mind that it’s the larva that cause the most damage to wood. Powderpost beetle larva have a creamy white color and a curved shape.

Powderpost Beetle Behavior

Powderpost beetles feed on several kinds of hardwoods that are used in home construction, especially for flooring and trim. In many cases, these pests are present as homes are being built and manage to stay hidden inside walls until months or years later. Powderpost beetles are mainly drawn to certain types of woods, such as walnut and oak, and tend to lay eggs in unfinished wood.

Detecting and completely eliminating powderpost beetles can be difficult. Pest control professionals will make sure that infestations of these pests are thoroughly dealt with.

If you have wood damage in your home, Allison Pest Control can help. Our NJ termite specialist can help you determine if you have a termite or beetle problem in your home and take steps to eliminate these pests.

Sowbugs and Centipedes Are Closer to Crabs Than Insects

To Treat a Problem You Must First Know What the Problem Is!
To Treat a Problem You Must First Know What the Problem Is!

Some of the pests you find around your home aren’t necessarily insects, even though they look very bug-like. Centipedes and sowbugs are examples of bugs that aren’t really bugs. Instead, these critters are arthropods that are related to crabs, lobsters, and other crustaceans. Keep in mind that our Tom’s River exterminator can help get them out of your home.


Sowbugs are small and have a brownish-gray coloring. If you look closely at them, you’ll notice that they actually look like small armadillos due to the plates that cover their backs. Sowbugs can only live in damp environments, so you’re not likely to find them hanging out in the main part of your home. You might find them in your basement, though, or around the outside of your house and on your lawn.


Centipedes are long and have many pairs of legs on their bodies. They’re yellowish-gray or brown in color and have stripes on their legs. These critters, which prefer to live in damp, dark places, feed on bugs and other arthropods. You’ll most likely see centipedes scurrying across walls in your home as they move from one hiding spot to the next. Centipedes are capable of biting people, but rarely do.

If you’re having problems with centipedes, sowbugs or other pests, a reliable Tom’s River exterminator can help you get rid of them. Contact Allison Pest Control to learn more about our services.

Know the Carpet Beetle – a Pest Frequently Confused with Bed Bugs

Don't Confuse These Pests With Bed Bugs!
Don’t Confuse These Pests With Bed Bugs!

Carpet beetles look very similar to bed bugs in size and shape, but they are nowhere near the nuisance when it comes to health hazards for humans. Your clothes are another story, since carpet beetles larvae like to munch on animal fibers such as wool and fur.

Where to Look For Carpet Beetles

The name of this pest gives away its preferred hiding place – your carpet – though they can often be found anywhere there is a significant amount of cloth. Closets are another favorite hangout for these tiny pests, which are slightly different in size and color than bed bugs.

Feeding Sources

Fortunately, carpet beetles don’t bite humans. Animal fibers are their main food source, which is why you probably need to talk to a Tom’s River exterminator if you do see strange holes in your clothing that you know are not being caused by moths. Most of the time, all it takes is a single spraying to get rid of this type of pest since they generally cannot reproduce fast enough to cause an infestation. At least not without you being aware of it relatively quickly.

Get In Touch With a Tom’s River Exterminator

Our team at Allison Pest Control can help you take care of carpet beetles, or any other insects, in Monmouth and Ocean Counties. Give us a call at 1-800-564-4585 or fill out our web contact form for a consultation.