Southern Arizona is home to more than 1,000 native pollinators making it one of the most pollinator dense regions in the entire world. Although not native to southern Arizona, honeybees are now included in these numbers and can play an important role in our ecosystem and local agriculture. However, research from the University of Arizona indicates that 100% of our wild honeybee colonies in southern Arizona are considered Africanized (Killer) Honeybees and should be treated accordingly to prevent harm to people and pests
If you suspect that there is a honeybee colony or wasp nest in or around your home, you should contact us immediately and one of our highly trained technicians will:
- Inspection and identify the infestation.
- Discuss their findings with you and provide treatment options/recommendations.
- Perform the agreed upon treatment to ensure the safety of you and your family.
- Provide recommendations for preventing future infestations.
When Should You Call a Bee Removal & Wasp Control
It’s very common to have honeybee activity around your home as they perform their pollinating and foraging tasks. However, a large swarm or ball of honeybees on your house or several honeybees coming in and out of voids in walls or trees should be cause for alarm. Wasps flying around outside can also be common, but if you see them hanging upside down under patios or flying around inside the home, a professional should be called.
Specific Signs of Bee Infestation
Africanized bees live in colonies with thousands of members split into three castes – A queen, male drones, and female workers. At least once a year, typically in the Spring, new queens are anointed and, along with hundreds of workers and drones, leave their hives to establish a new colony. This process is
called swarming, and once a swarm lands and begins to establish a new hive the workers become very defensive of their colony. Popular locations for new hives include:
- Protected eaves of structures. Homeowners will typically see a “ball” of bees on the eaves.
- Inside the external walls of a structure. They typically enter through a small gap in the flashing or side of the wall.
- Inside cinderblock walls, water meters, irrigation boxes, or stored items around the exterior of a home. Homeowners will notice hundreds of bees consistently flying in and out of a small opening throughout the daylight hours.
- Inside voids in trees or in high branches on trees. Africanized honeybees have adapted to be comfortable building their hives on open, unprotected branches.
Specific Signs of Wasp Infestation
Paper wasps are the most common wasp found in Tucson, Green Valley, and the greater southern Arizona area. Paper wasps build nests made of paper material upside down hanging from trees or ceilings of patios and eaves of homes. Paper wasp nests are open so it’s common to see wasps hanging from the nests. Another common place where wasps build their nests is in the vents of homes. Starting to find wasps inside your home is a common sign that a nest has been constructed inside a bathroom or kitchen vent in your home
Africanized honeybees were developed in Brazil in the 1950’s in an attempt to increase honey
production. The goal was to cross-breed African honeybees, which were known to be sturdier, but more aggressive due to the climates from which they evolved, with the less aggressive and domesticated European honeybees. However, 26 African queen bees were accidentally released in 1957 and began to produce a new hybrid population with feral bees in Brazil. Since that time, they aggressively made their
way up South America and Central America. Africanized honeybees were first reported in Arizona around 1993 and can now be found throughout the state. Studies out of the University of Arizona suggest that nearly 100% of the feral honey bee population in Southern Arizona are Africanized bees. More recent research suggests that Africanized bees are beginning to take over our native pollinators and change our ecosystem.
Africanized honeybees are extremely aggressive defenders of their colonies. While their colony might send a couple of dozen bees to attack a threat, an Africanized honeybee colony will send hundreds. Although the venom of an Africanized honeybee sting isn’t any more potent than the European honeybee, the number of potential stings is what can make their attacks deadly. Africanized honeybees tend to be more sensitive to noises and have a larger alarm zone than European honeybees. Africanized honeybees are also known to pursue a threat over a greater distance than European honeybees—sometimes more than a quarter of a mile from their hive.”
Due to their aggressive behavior, the State of Arizona has deemed feral honeybee colonies a public nuisance, and dangerous to public health and property owners are responsible for having the bees treated. Never attempt to treat a bee colony on your own. Always call a professional bee control specialist that has the skills and knowledge to properly control the colony and reduce the risk to the public.
What to do if you’re attacked?
If you are ever attacked by bees you should immediately run in a straight line while trying to cover your face for the nearest shelter such as a car, house, or building of any kind and close the door behind you. Try not lead the bees toward other groups of people if possible. Never jump into a pool or other body of water as the bees will hover over you waiting for you to resurface. Once safely inside, proceed to remove as many stingers as possible using a credit card or something similar to scrape them away. Avoid squeezing the stinger with tweezers as this can squeeze more venom into you. If you are experiencing any symptoms of an allergic reaction call 911 immediately.*
Tucson Bee Removal & Wasp Control Services
Bill’s Home Service Company provides a pest control approach that examines active or potential pest activity outside and inside your home. For example, while we might find hives outside, we also check inside the house for signs of further bee infestations or the possibility that one could occur. We make sure that if a bee removal service plan is needed that we tailor it to meet your specific needs, including using non-chemical treatments when possible. Bill’s Home Service guarantees our service and will work to meet your satisfaction.
What Makes Our Technicians So Well Qualified?
Our technicians are certified and trained in incorporating environmentally friendly pest management techniques for bee removal to minimize risk to your family, pets, property, and environment. Our technicians conduct pest management treatment by using chemical, non-chemical, or a combination of both, depending on what is needed. They are also trained to recognize areas of pest activity and only treat those areas.
Protect Your Home From Bees & Wasps with Bill’s Home Service
Once we treat the pre-existing infestation of bees and wasps, we can offer our Pest Plus Program, which provides extra levels of protection to keep Africanized honeybees and wasps at bay. Contact the professionals at Bill’s Home Service Company to help with a bee or wasp infestation or learn about our Pest Plus Program.
*Disclaimer: The content about bee and wasp sting treatments is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of a medical professional with questions you have regarding pest stings/bites and/or allergic reactions.
Rodents in or around your home can not only cause physical damage to structures, but they can also spread disease. If you’re worried that you may have a mouse or rat infestation in or around your residential structure, there are rodent control measures that we can help with to eliminate the problem and keep rodents away for good.
Bill’s Home Service Company has been locally owned and operated since 1964 and is one of the largest local providers of rodent control services in Southern Arizona. Learn more about how Bill’s Home Service can help if your home has a rodent infestation.
How to Spot a Rat Infestation
Pack rats, field mice, and house mice usually congregate where there are food and water sources. If the food and water sources are located in shelter from harsh weather conditions, that’s even better. However, you may never see them because they’re nocturnal, hate bright lights, and are usually active from dusk to dawn. Seeing one of these rodents during the day can indicate a large infestation in your home.
You may not be able to see the rodents themselves, but they do present themselves in other ways. Signs that there may be a rodent problem can include:
- Rodent droppings around food packages that are located in drawers, cupboards, or under a sink
- Gnawed holes in food packaging, stored food, piled papers, or insulation
- Piles of shredded paper, insulation, fabric, or other soft materials could indicate a nest
- Chewed holes in walls and floors that the rodents use as entry points
- Scratching sounds coming from within the walls, ceiling, or floor
When you see any of these signs, contacting a mouse and rat exterminator is important to start immediate rodent control to prevent the spread of disease and avoid further damage to structures.
Dangers of a Rodent & Rat Infestation
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warn that not only can diseases be spread through rodent bite wounds, but diseases can also be spread by touching areas or eating food contaminated with rodent feces, urine, or saliva. In addition, even breathing air contaminated with rodent waste can cause illness and disease.
The most common diseases that are spread by rodents are Hantavirus, an infectious respiratory disease, and Salmonella, a bacterial infection that infects the urine, blood, bones, joints, and nervous system. In addition, the National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) says that researchers have conducted studies on the link between exposure to rodents and increased asthma symptoms. Studies and research have found that exposure to rodents can trigger asthma attacks. In addition, pack rat nests are ideal breeding grounds for kissing bugs which are known carriers of the parasite that causes Chagas disease. Some people also can have severe allergic reactions to kissing bug bites.
Bill’s does not provide medical information or medical advice. Please see your medical provider for any questions about rodent-related illnesses.
Pack rats, also known as wood rats, are one of the biggest rodent concerns in Southern Arizona. Pack rats are about 6 – 8 inches long and are typically gray to grayish-brown with lighter-colored feet and undersides. Their ears are large and hairy, as are their tails which are about the same length as their head and body.
Pack Rats get their name from their tendency to collect small objects, especially shiny ones, to bring back to their nests. The nests are built of cacti and sticks and are usually located in sheltered areas such as rock clusters, the base of trees and shrubs, and around the root systems of cacti. They also build their nests in suitable areas that we provide for them, such as cars, BBQ grills, sheds, and even in attics and wall voids; anything providing shelter that is left undisturbed for a long period of time.
Bill’s can create a specific rodent control plan based on your needs to eliminate rodent problems, including trapping, ongoing baiting service, and exclusion services.
House mice are one of the most common commensal rodents in the U.S. They are smaller than pack rats measuring about 2.5 to 3.75 inches long. They are dusty gray with cream colored bellies, pointed noses, and large ears.
House mice prefer to nest in dark, secluded places and often use paper products, cotton and fabrics, and even wall insulation as nesting material. They normally try to build their nests close to food and water sources like kitchens and pantries.
Our Rodent Removal Process
Professional control for rodent infestations should be sought as soon as an infestation is discovered. Two pack rats can become as many as 72 rats in less than a month based on their reproductive cycle. Mice can reproduce even faster. The licensed technicians at Bill’s have the training and tools to immediately develop a treatment plan based on the type and size of an infestation to effectively gain control of the infestation. As with any treatment we perform, our rodent services are developed with the safety of people and other animals in mind. We only use traps and bait stations that can be securely anchored in the treatment area and cannot be accessed by people, pets, or other animals. We also look for possible entry points and will provide information on ways to make your home or business less appealing to rodents in the future.
Bill’s Home Service: Your Solution for a Rodent-Free Home
Rodent or rat infestations in homes in Tucson and surrounding areas are not unusual. If you discover a rodent infestation, you must start rodent control immediately to keep the people around you safe from disease. Bill’s Home Service Company can help, so schedule a pest evaluation with us today!