Types of Pests
This ant gets its common name from the fact that it’s legs very hard to see because of their pale color. The head and the thorax are dark and the gaster and appendages are light in colour; almost translucent. They move rapidly and erratically in a manner that resembles small spiders. The workers are small, approximately 1/16” (1.3-1.5 mm). They are common household pests and a colony can range from 100 to 1000 individuals with numerous queens. Some of their nesting areas include cupboards, soil, rotten wood, potted plants, bread boxes and behind baseboards. They enter buildings either by being transported in or in cracks around windows and doors and other structural flaws. Workers move freely between nests along pheromone trails. They excrete a distinct Tapinoma odour that smells like rotten coconuts. Baiting is the best approach to controlling this pest. Use of aerosols and liquid repellent pesticides, may cause budding resulting in further spread of the population.
This cockroach is probably the most wide spread and difficult to control in St. Lucia. They are light brown to tan in color except for two dark, almost parallel strips on the pronotal shield. Approximately 1/2 – 5/8” (13-16 mm). They can be found primarily kitchens where daily access to food and water if not limited can result in their proliferation to all areas in a structure.The German Cockroach produces more eggs per case than any other structure infesting cockroach and their young complete their life cycle in a shorter period. The female carries her egg case until it is ready to hatch and it is dropped in relatively humid areas distant from other cockroaches. This behavior may facilitate the spread of the cockroach population. German cockroaches are thigmotatic and leave in cracks and crevices. Baiting and exclusion are two of the best approaches to controlling this pest.
They are among the most important pest of household and commercial establishment apart from being a nuisance they are known to be capable of carrying many common diseases pathogens as well causing allergic reactions in many people. They prefer living in areas such as sewers, food storage areas.
Adults are about 34-53 mm long, reddish brown in color, nymphs (immature stage) uniformly grayish to reddish brown in color.
Ticks are blood sucking ectoparasites that go through larval and nymphal stages before becoming adults. larvae have six legs while the nymphal stages and adults have eight legs. Ticks transmit the most diseases to domestic animals among disease transmitting arthropods and are a close second to mosquitoes as transmitters of diseases to humans. They are divided into two basic families: hard and soft ticks. Hard ticks feed on blood once for each of its stages of development, while soft ticks feed periodically through all life stages.
Dogs do not acquire ticks from other dogs, they pick them up from affected areas and once they have engorged with blood drop of the animal to molt or lay eggs. a female lays from 100 to 5000 eggs below baseboards, carpets and other tight spaces where they hatch. Immature stages and adults can survive a long time without blood. Treatment of this pest should be to areas where domestic animals frequent and crack and crevices where eggs are laid and larval and nymphal stages start their development. The brown dog tick is common on dogs, approximately 1/8” (3 mm) long but enlarge up to ½ (12 mm) long when engorged with blood. When fully engorge body change to grey-blue or olive color.
Adult flees feed exclusively on blood and as such must fins a warm blood host to survive. They are approximately 1/8” (2.5 mm) body laterally flatten, wingless and brownish black to black, they cause discomfort by biting and can transmit several diseases such as the plague and murine typhus.
The roof rat is the smaller of two commensal of rodents found in St. Lucia (bigger Norway rat) the body length from head to tail is approximately 19-25 cm with the tail being longer than the head and body combined, it is usually brown to grey to black with underside white, grey or black, with a muzzle mouth with eyes and ears pointed.
It is the larger of the two commensal rodents found in St. Lucia and is generally more common than the Roof Rat. In addition to it damaging and destroying food material by gnawing and contamination, it is an important carrier or vector of diseases. Approximate length of adult from head to tail is 18-25 cm with the tail being shorter than the head and body combined. It is brown with scattered black hairs with underside grey to yellowish white, the mouth/muzzle is blunt, eyes and ears small. The adult droppings are capsule shape with blunt ends.
These flies receive the common name of “house” for being the most common fly found in and around homes. Adults are approximately 4-7.5 mm long with female usually larger than male, dull grey in color.
These flies are small in size and are fond for fruits as egg laying and developmental sites. The adults are about (3-4 mm) long, including the wings, color dull, tan to brownish yellow or brownish black. Females lay their eggs an average about 500 near the surface of fermenting fruits & vegetables or near the cover crack of imperfectly sealed containers.
Asian Subterranean Termite
They are also known as imported termite; they form very large colonies and have the ability to consume large amounts of wood in a relatively short period of time. They produce very large evening flights of swarmers. Swarmers are about (12-13 mm) long including wings, color pale yellow to brownish yellow.
This bug probably received its common name from its close association with human sleeping beds; they normally feed on humans additionally they will feed on poultry and other mammals and birds. The adult is (4-5 mm) long broadly oval and flat. Color brown to reddish brown (after feeding). Female bed bug lays 1-5 eggs per day in cracks, on surfaces, etc. Adults can survive for several months if they are well fed.