MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) - It's that time of year again--bug season!
"Just like the trees are leafing out now, everything starts growing in the springtime," says Dr. Daniel Suiter, associate professor of entymology at UGA-Griffin. "So the life cycle of many insects is that they begin growing in the springtime, and their populations will reach a peak by mid-summer or fall."
There are two types of bugs in particular that might want to come inside your home. The first is called the Smoky Brown Cockroach.
"The most common Palmetto bug-type roach that we have here in Georgia is called the Smoky
Brown cockroach," says Suiter. "It's a large, inch and a half-long chestnut brown cockroach."
Smoky Brown roaches can be found both in and outside your home, but another type of roach lives its entire life indoors.
"The German roach lays an egg-sac, and in that egg sac is 24-48 roaches," says Dan McCown, owner and operator of Bibb Exterminating Company. "It takes about three months and all of those roaches have matured, and they begin to lay egg sacs."
Now that's a lot of unwanted pests! Any living organism needs just three things to survive: food, water and a place to live.
"German roaches--for instance, they'll show up in a kitchen first," says Suiter. "You'll find them underneath the sink. They'll get into the bathroom, but typically they're there for the food and they're there for the water, so just general forms of cleanliness--doing the dishes before you go to bed at night; making sure the garbage is taken out on a routine basis--will prevent fly problems and cockroach problems."
If there's still a bug problem in your house after you clean up the clutter, experts recommend staying away from aerosol sprays. Instead, baits are better for killing off those unwanted pests. You can find them at your local hardware store.
"You want to put as many as ten of those in a kitchen," says Suiter. "Put them in a drawer, put them beside the garbage, put them in out of the way places where the cockroaches will come out, find those, feed on it and it will slowly get rid of them."
"Any time you're using baits, it's very important that you use small amounts of baits in a lot of different areas," says McCown.
You should also cover any holes on the outside of your home and fill all cracks in walls and in the home's foundation.
"I use a product called 'Great Stuff'", says McCown. "You can pick it up at any builder's supply. It's about $3 or $4 a can. I do recommend you get a little pair of latex gloves, because when it gets on you, it doesn't come off easy, but one can will seal up just about all the holes that you have in your house."
If you follow all these steps and still have a problem, it might be time to call your local exterminator.
You should also be on the lookout for any rotting materials in your home--that could be a sign of termites. Bed bugs and fleas also come out in full force in the warmer months.
Dr. Dan Suiter with UGA says it's okay to handle roach and flea problems on your own, but you should seek professional help to get rid of bed bugs and termites.