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Temecula, Murrieta, Menifee, Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Riverside, Fallbrook, Escondido, San Marcos

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39433 COLLEEN WAY
Temecula
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951-694-8100

Black Knight Termite and Pest Control owners have been residing in and serving the Temecula and Murrieta area for over 20 years.  Their goal is to provide customers with the best quality service through their expertise and professionalism.  They are committed to providing on-time service, competitive rates and thorough inspection

Pest & Termite Control Blog

The Peace of Mind of Black Knight Pest & Termite Control.

A Bed Bug Free Holiday Season

Megan Pinneo

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It's officially November which means that it's officially the holiday season! As you already know, this is the time where travel becomes a lot more frequent and you may find yourself staying in hotels or even guest bedrooms as you visit friends and family for the holidays.

A good rule of thumb when settling in to wherever you are staying it that bed bugs can essentially hide anywhere. Contrary to popular belief, bed bugs are not limited to just beds. Meaning, they can hide in couches, luggage, behind picture frames, in closets, in purses, or even coat racks. Wherever people are, bed bugs can hitch a ride and find a new victim to feed on, which makes hotels a perfect place for this. *Cue look of disgust*

Bed bugs are parasitic insects that feed on blood. The Cimex Lectularius, which is the most common among bed bugs, prefers to feed on the blood of humans. (Kinda like vampires...gross!) You can always tell you have a bed bug problem from the tell tale signs:

  1. Rusty or reddish stains on bed sheets or mattresses caused by bed bugs being crushed.
  2. Dark spots (about this size: • ...)
  3. Eggs and eggshells, which are tiny (about 1mm) and pale yellow skins that nymphs shed as they grow larger.
  4. Live bed bugs.

If you are unfamiliar with what live bed bugs may look like, they are flat, reddish-brown, oval insects up to 4 to 5 mm long or the size of an apple seed. After a meal, they typically swell up and become more of a reddish color.

Bed bugs are tenacious little buggers (pun intended) because they are constantly moving from one victim to another and are pros at hiding. One way that we can eradicate a bed bug problem is using the thermal heat treating method to kill off the mature adults but also the eggs that they've laid, preventing them from spreading. 

Our advise to have a bed bug free holiday season?

1. Always do a thorough inspection of the bed by pulling back the sheets and observing the mattress seams. 
2. Do a brief inspection of the baseboards, outlets and picture frames remembering to inspect the curtains or drapes. 
3. After traveling, never place your luggage on your bed. Always unpack your luggage in the garage or laundry room and do laundry right away to avoid any bed bugs from spreading, preferably with the hottest water setting possible. 
4 . Call Black Knight for a free bed bug pest inspection so we can prevent an infestation from spreading. 

Happy Holidaying!

Effective Ways to Pest-Proof your Home

Megan Pinneo

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You can expect cozy flannels, delicious Maple Pecan lattes and messy pumpkin carving this season, but what you won't expect is the influx in pests in and around your home!

Pests often will seek shelter during the Fall and Winter months, particularly rodents, if you aren't adequately prepared. There are many effective ways to pest-proof your house without doing too much. Aside from maintaining your regularly scheduled pest control visits, some of these preventative measures can be as easy as general maintenance. Here's our advice: 

1.) Remove excess clutter, boxes or trash on the outside your home. Ensuring the lids on outdoor trash bins are closed at all times is also helpful. 

2.) Rake up leaves or excessive foliage that may have gathered around planter boxes and bushes overtime.

3.) Cut or trim back overgrown bushes and trees to help alleviate nesting from happening. Branches that lay on the roof are ideal for rodents to crawl onto your home! 

4.) Close up doggy doors, patch holes and/or fix loose piping that all serve as access points for critters. 

5.) Properly store dog food or cat food, preferably in metal bids with a lid that can't be chewed through such as plastic or cardboard. Rodents love nothing more than automatic feeders that are left outside!

All of these are effective methods to deter critters that are looking to escape from the cold and raise their families. If you find that you are hearing scurrying in the ceilings, there is a possibility that rodents are simply running across the roof of your home from the outside. However, if the scurrying persists or you simply would like to know for sure, give Black Knight a call and we can come out to perform a free inspection of your attic or areas of concern. Simply, Black Knight is here to help no matter what your pest problem is! Stay cozy, our friends.

Attack of the Ants!

Megan Pinneo

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Blame the heat for the ant invasion! According to CBS8 News, "San Diego has been hit with scorching heat, humidity and rain all of which force ants inside, because they don't want to be out in the extreme temperatures." The heat has forced ant colonies to seek refuge inside homes, where they have access to food and water as well as cooler temperatures. Unfortunately the rain hasn't helped much either, causing the same invasive reaction from the six-legged pests. 

Many customers have asked us where they come from when they suddenly appear, uninvited, in your kitchens and bathrooms. Most of the time, they come up through the piping and drains. (Which is super inconvenient, if were being honest.) The best way to eradicate your ant problem is to eliminate their food source by wiping down your counters and keeping pantry items stored away. While sugar is their favorite delicacy, ants are omnivorous which means they will eat whatever edible substance they can find. We understand that no matter how immaculate your home is, ants may still appear in hopes to scavenger something to bring back to their colony. While we can't speak for all ants species, the Argentine ants are the most common within the Southern California region. These are the little black ants that you commonly see crawling around on sidewalks. 

We have been very busy this week responding to ant calls and helping our customers out where we can. Having a pest control service in place is ideal for sporadic heat waves, such as this one, where follow up sprays are complimentary for our customers in between their regular services. We have a couple of different ways of eradicating ant problems (all which are covered under our general pest control services!) so give us a call today and we can partner you with a technician (Erm...hero! Minus the cape.) who can save you from your ant situation.  

Termite Myths

Megan Pinneo

Did someone say "termite season"? While this is a common misconception about the infamous wood-chomping insects that are notorious for costing homeowners thousands of dollars in repairs each year, we thought we would address some common myths that have been circulating around and causing a lot of confusion.

"Termite season" (unfortunately) is year round. Don't be fooled! While the Spring and Summer months have often been associated with 'termite season', this isn't always the case. Termites typically swarm on warmer days following a dry spell, which can occur regardless of season. It should also be known that there is more than one kind of termite, which can make identifying them a bit more tricky. If you are ever concerned if you may have termites, it doesn't hurt to call Black Knight or your local termite company to schedule a complimentary inspection to put your mind at ease. If your home is inspected and termites are identified, it's better to address the termites quickly before they spread and cause additional damage. We should reiterate that a termite inspection is a FREE service for homeowners, so it doesn't hurt to make it an annual routine for good housekeeping. 

For convenience sake, the most common termites within Southern California are typically Drywood termites, Subterranean termites and Dampwood termites. Dampwood termites are a little more rare given the arid, more desert-like conditions that Southern California offers, but there have been a few cases that Black Knight has encountered throughout our 20 years of business. 

Another myth that is often speculated is that fumigation (or tenting) is the only way to eradicate termites from your home. This isn't necessarily true given the many factors that determine what a termite technician would recommend for treatment. There are other termite eradication methods such as Heat Treatment or even Local Treatment. Your termite technician is trained to recommend the best option possible for you and your home, so it's important to discuss with them your options because chances are you have a couple to choose from.

Overall, California is among one of the nine states with the heaviest termite activity which means that having a reliable termite company on speed dial is important. (Or maybe just in your list of contacts.) 

What's All the Buzz About Bees?

Black Knight Pest

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Bees, you can't live with em' and you definitely can't live without em'! Bees are responsible for pollinating trees and plants that produce fruits, nuts and vegetables absolutely essential to the nation's food industry. (Karimi, 2016) In fact, bees contribute to billions of dollars toward U.S. agriculture each year making them a highly valued asset to our economy and (let's be honest) our kitchens and pantries.

As Black Knight has seen a significant rise in bee related phone calls, we wanted to touch upon the importance of bees and why they are so fascinating and essential. We know that having a raging beehive right outside your front door is neither comforting nor welcoming, so we wanted to put your mind at ease. Here are a couple of things to consider when you encounter a beehive on your property and your weighing your options between relocating or exterminating the bees.

Exterminating an entire hive is not always the best option although sometimes necessary given the location of the hive. If the hive is located in a chimney, for example, or even an attic, a professional beekeeper is really limited to preserving the hive or even having appropriate access to the bees. In other cases, if a beehive is located on a fascia board or neighboring tree outside your home, the chances of relocating the bees successfully is very likely. Something to also remember is to never try to exterminate or relocate a beehive yourself. This is very dangerous and just an all-round bad idea. Simply put - just don't do it. 

Surprisingly, the cost of relocating bees is sometimes equal to if not less than if you were to exterminate them. So if you are unsure of which option is more budget friendly, our suggestion is to call around and ask. You may find that most professionals will need to come out to your home first and inspect the area where the hive is located before they can come out and do what they need to do. This is normal, because giving a bid over the phone can range in price, drastically.  

Overall, while we are a pest control company, bees hold a special place in our hearts given the weight of impact that they have on our environment. If you have an active beehive on your property, give us a call and we can help put you in contact with a local beekeeper that we have partnered with. If your interested in learning more information, feel free to check out the clip below which covers Colony Collapse Disorder which is plaguing the bee population, globally. 

 

References

Karimi, F. (2016, October 1). Bees place on endangered species list -- a first in the US. CNN News. Retrieved from http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/01/us/hawaii-bee-species-endangered/

Spivak, M. (2013). Why bees are disappearing. TED Talks. Retrieved from https://www.ted.com/talks/marla_spivak_why_bees_are_disappearing?utm_source=tedcomshare&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=tedspread