As a fairly rural state, Oklahoma has a lot of field and farm pests for people to deal with. It also has a lot of house bugs, however, in both urban and rural areas, and many of them can be quite problematic. So, let’s go over the 9 common house bugs in Oklahoma and some key facts about them you should know.
9 Common House Bugs in Oklahoma
Whether you live in Oklahoma City or in the middle of McClain County, you need to make sure that your home is safe from insect pests that can bite and sting, spread diseases, contaminate your food supplies, cause structural damage, or just be a general nuisance. While such pests can vary depending on exactly where you live, these are the main offenders Oklahomans need to be careful with.
Crickets aren’t insects most people in other states are used to seeing as pests but they can be quite the annoying house bug in Oklahoma. There even is a cricket species called “house cricket” (Acheta domesticus (Linnaeus)) because of how often they get into people’s houses.
- House crickets thankfully don’t pose any direct physical danger to people.
- These insects also don’t transmit diseases such as cockroaches and other pests.
- House crickets are known to cause structural damage to people’s carpets, furniture, clothes, drapes, and other fabrics, however, which is why they are considered pests.
- Crickets don’t seem like they’d be difficult to spot but large congregations often surprise people in crawlspaces or inside large furniture pieces.
- The ways to prevent a cricket infestation include better landscaping, reducing the humidity levels in your home, and using screens for your windows and doors.
Oklahoma is home to quite a lot of the ant species common in the US as a whole and that can be an issue for homeowners as there are some ants you really don’t want invading your property.
- Ants don’t suck blood but they can bite when provoked. Most ants’ bites aren’t an issue but some – such as the carpenter ant – can be quite painful.
- Some ants, such as the notorious imported red fire, don’t just bite but actually have stingers that can deliver potent venom that can cause nasty pain and even health problems. People still call getting stung “fire ant bites” out of habit but it is indeed a sting.
- Ants of all kinds frequent both people’s food supplies and their trash. So, just like other pests on this list, ants can indeed contaminate our food and spread diseases, albeit not as commonly as other pests do.
- Some ant species are easy to deal with via regular means such as chalk, traps, and insecticide sprays. Others – carpenter ants and fire ants, in particular – will often require the help of pest professionals and the sooner that’s done the better.
All three common US pest roaches can be found in Oklahoma – the Oriental cockroach, the American cockroach, and the German cockroach. Unfortunately, all three of these insects aren’t just repulsive to look at but bring some very nasty problems with them.
- Cockroaches are prime disease spreaders as they dwell in and move through some of the most disgusting and dirty places in cities – the sewers, trash, crawlspaces, basements, piping, and more. So, getting rid of a roach infestation as soon as possible is always a must.
- Cockroaches are attracted to high-moisture environments. Dehumidifying your home can therefore help prevent an infestation but even then a roach nest can form in the sewage systems under your home.
- Roaches are food scavengers and can eat both trash and food scraps. A good prevention tip, therefore, is to make your trash cans inaccessible for pests and to reduce other scavenging opportunities by not leaving food scraps or pet food just lying around.
- These are stealthy insects that avoid going out in broad daylight unless the colony has reached a really large size. So, seeing even just one or two roaches in the middle of the night can indicate a much larger cockroach presence nearby and should necessitate immediate action.
- Roach infestations can be difficult to deal with if left unchecked for even just a while. Early on they can be tacked with regular insecticide sprays and traps but often require heavy fogging.
Spiders are technically neither insects nor pests or parasites. Instead, these arachnids are usually quite beneficial as they prey on actual insect pests – they are effectively nature’s pest control company. However, they can also sometimes cause us problems too.
- Most spiders don’t have venom in their bites that’s strong enough to harm people – not even kids. That’s why most spiders don’t even try to bite us and are, at most, just a nuisance.
- There are some species of spiders in Oklahoma that have more potent venom, however, and can cause pain or even health problems. Some prime examples to avoid include black widow spiders, brown recluse spiders, and wolf spiders.
- Spiders are typically lone hunters and are rarely encountered in large numbers. Some spider nests can indeed get to huge sizes, however, and can be found in people’s crawl spaces, basements, backyard sheds, and other such unfortunate locations.
- When you encounter a single venomous spider outdoors, it’s best to just steer clear of it. If you’re dealing with a large nest on your property or in your home, however, it’s best to call a professional pest control company.
5. Bed bugs
These bugs are another common problem for a lot of homeowners. They don’t seem like much at first but they require professional bed bug control very often.
- Bed bugs live, lay eggs, spread, and feed all in one place – usually our mattresses and box springs but often also in our furniture, carpets, and cloth piles.
- Because they only (or mostly) feed on people, bed bugs don’t really spread diseases. Their bites can be very itchy and unpleasant, however, especially when they are quite a lot of them.
- Bed bugs spread from one home to the next by hitching rides on people’s clothes and luggage. So, they don’t effectively traverse the outdoor world on their own.
- A standard bed bug treatment usually involves fogging your home and heat-treating your bedding and clothes. Professional help is often required, however, especially in the case of really nasty infestation.
6. Pantry bugs
There are many common pantry bugs to watch out for such as Indian meal moths, flour beetles, and others. These can be very frustrating to encounter and dealing with them usually includes throwing away the infected food supplies.
- Pantry bugs don’t typically spread diseases as they dwell almost exclusively in food supplies.
- Such bugs also don’t really bite, meaning that the main issue people have with them is merely their presence in our food supplies.
- Proper prevention against pantry bugs usually includes double-checking all grain, flour, cereal, nut, and other such products before bringing them into your home.
7. Stinging insects
While many insects can sting, what people usually mean by that term is honey bees, wasps, and hornets.
- Such insects will typically only sting in self-defense but their stings can be significant enough that medical attention is often required.
- Bees aren’t considered a pest and are even very beneficial insects. They also sting, however, and are closely related to the other two which is why they get grouped with them.
- Wasps and hornets are typically seen as pests as they don’t have the beneficial function of bees and they are also more aggressive.
- Destroying a wasp or hornet nest is best left to professionals as it can be dangerous. Bee hives, on the other hand, should ideally be relocated rather than destroyed – something that’s also best left to professionals.
Termites will very often require the help of a pest control service as their large colonies move almost exclusively underground and are very difficult to spot before it’s too late.
- Termites neither bite nor spread diseases, however, they can cause immense property damage in a very short amount of time.
- Termites are attracted to high-moisture areas that offer ample food sources.
- The best prevention against termites is reducing the moisture levels in the soil near your home – mainly by fixing and avoiding pipe leaks – and by removing any potential food sources from the ground such as old tree logs, firewood, old wooden shacks, and so on.
The quintessential flying and bloodsucking pest, mosquitoes are a major problem in any area with open still-water containers and enough mammals to prey on.
- Only the females bite people whereas males feed on plant nectar.
- Mosquitoes spread a lot of diseases, many of which are very harmful to people.
- Preventing mosquitoes from entering your home is easy, thanks to the existence of screen panels for windows and doors. Preventing mosquitoes from breeding and spreading near your home is more difficult, however, as it involves removing all possible egg-laying grounds such as any open body of water.
Naturally, there are way more than just 9 types of insects in Oklahoma. There are many other bugs that can also present huge issues that we just wouldn’t call “house bugs”. Ticks are a common example – these blood-sucking pests are very frustrating to deal with and can transmit a whole host of dangerous diseases but they don’t really nest and spread in houses.
Mice, rats, and other rodents are also common house pests but they aren’t insects, and dealing with them is a whole other issue that should be tackled separately. So, the 9 bug types above are the insects homeowners should be most careful about invading their houses and apartment buildings and take measures against.