Are you thinking about moving to Oregon or just interested in common pests in Pacific Northwest? Either way, pests can be a huge nuisance and give you a head-splitting headache trying to get rid of them!
In addition, most of them are a huge health hazard and can cause a lot of damage! Each part of the US has its specific pests, although some of those are common in more than one area like rats and various species of ants!
So, let’s check common house bugs in Oregon!
Common House Bugs in Oregon
Spiders are generally one of the most common pests in houses across the US. Although spiders have an important role in the ecosystem, they can also be beneficial for our homes because they eat moths, flies, and mosquitoes, which are annoying little insects.
- Hobo Spider
However, most people despise them and the hobo spider is one of the common spiders in Oregon. Hobo spiders are around 1 – 1 and 3/4” in size and have an oblong abdomen that is light to medium brown.
They resemble house spiders and brown recluse spiders so people often confuse them.
Hobo spiders usually attack when provoked or defending their eggs and their sting can be very painful. They usually like to hide in small crevices, cracks, and holes that will support tunnel formations.
Interestingly, they are not very good climbers and will usually find their shelter below the ground level, usually in dark and moist areas.
- Black Widow Spider
Everybody has heard about the black widow spider which is easily recognizable due to its black body with a distinctive hourglass-shaped marking on its abdomen. As you can guess, they got this name because of their habit of eating males after their mating.
Interestingly, the males are much smaller than the females. Unlike brown widows, which are very bold and aggressive, black widow spiders are relatively shy and will attack mostly to defend themselves.
What makes them particularly dangerous is their venom which rarely kills humans but it is vital that you get medical assistance immediately after sustaining a bite.
The area around the bite will swell and itch and the victims of their bite will also experience muscle spasms, cramps, and achiness. These pests usually hide in garages, basements crawl spaces with little light and no disturbances.
If you see one in your garage or around a house, here is an article on what to do!
Did you know that cockroaches can survive radiation? Yup, that is true, these pests are basically indestructible and also present in Oregon. There are three main types of cockroaches in Oregon and those are American cockroaches, German cockroaches, and Oriental cockroaches.
- American Cockroach
The American cockroach is one of the largest species of cockroaches generally reaching 1-1/2 to 2 inches in size.
The adult American cockroaches can be distinguished by their large brown to reddish-brown bodies with wings that cover their abdomen and sometimes these pests can grow over 2 inches.
The American cockroach or generally roaches in the US are called Palmetto bugs or “waterbugs” because they like to live in moist areas such as under the sink. They are very resourceful and are attracted to areas with food, moisture, and shelter; they like nooks and crannies the most.
- German Cockroach
Also known as the croton bug, the German cockroach is one of the smallest species of cockroach reaching 1/2 inch to 5/8 of an inch. The adult German cockroaches are elongated and brown to caramel-brown in color with black stripes.
Like other types of roaches, they also like moist and dark areas. One of the biggest issues with cockroaches is their droppings and urine which can contain viruses and bacteria, posing a health hazard.
In addition, they reproduce very quickly and monthly; it is said that females with their offspring can hatch around 800 cockroaches per year. Exterminating roaches can be a very challenging job, so it is best that you contact pest control if you have found their droppings and urine.
- Oriental Cockroach
The Oriental cockroach is the third most common type of roach in Oregon. These are also known as one of the largest cockroaches and they can reach around 1 inch to 2 inches. Interestingly, males and females are very different.
For example, the wings are rudimentary on the female; they only have pads as wings, while males have wings covering almost most of their abdomen. Similar to their numerous cousins, the oriental roach is also attracted to damp environments, such as the kitchen and bathroom.
In addition, they thrive in areas with food spills and scraps, crumbs, and various other food residues.
Termite is a type of small insect that feeds on cellulose and in nature is usually found in damp and decaying trees and also soil. They are less than an inch in size and they live in colonies with their own hierarchy.
There are three types of termites in Oregon: subterranean, dampwood, and drywood termites. Unfortunately, termite infestations in Oregon are very common especially during the spring season because of the damp and humid spring weather.
Like most termites, they are attracted to moist and damp areas and leaky pipes, improper drainage, and poor airflow in your house, basements, or attics, creating perfect conditions for them to thrive.
As they eat the cellulose they make an intricate system of tunnels similar to the ones found in ants. Termites unlike other pests cannot transmit any disease or make you sick, but they will destroy your furniture and even structural lumber in the house.
If the infestation goes unnoticed, you may be facing some serious financial damage!
4. Ticks and Fleas
Other common insects that tend to squat in our living spaces and garages are ticks and fleas. Ticks and fleas are small parasites that feed on human and animal blood. Both ticks and fleas are very small; ticks are round and can be black and brown in color.
Fleas are flat and have tiny legs and unlike ticks, they can jump pretty high for such a small external parasite. If you have pets that frequent in your living areas you may be exposed to both ticks and fleas.
Fleas lay eggs in animals’ hair and surrounding areas around the host, while ticks like to lay eggs in furniture and coat linings, basically anything that has warmth. In nature, they usually do it in bushes near a trail that is frequented by animals or humans.
The major problem with fleas and especially ticks is that they are carriers of various diseases. For example, flea bites are known to cause and even trigger skin conditions and allergic reactions. Although fleas can transmit bacteria and viruses that rarely happens.
On the other hand, ticks are more likely to carry viruses, and removing them can be a challenge. As you know it is highly important that you remove the entire tick including its head and mouthparts, which sometimes get left behind and cause infection.
5. Bed Bugs
Bed bugs are small, flat, oval, and brownish insects that commonly inhabit and hide in seams of chairs and sofas, cracks in bed frames, mattress seams, and even in electrical receptacles and appliances.
The most common species of bed bug that you may encounter in Oregon is Cimex lectularius, which is one of the only two species of bed bugs that parasite humans. These tiny pests inhabit areas near their hosts or their food source.
As you know, bed bugs feed on animal and human blood and their bites will definitely leave marks on your skin; they are usually small round, and itchy and rarely cause serious health problems and allergic reactions.
On the other hand, if the bite gets infected, that is your clue to visit a dermatologist.
6. Stink Bugs
Commonly hated household pests that you may stumble upon in Oregon are stink bugs. Although you can find these tiny pests throughout Oregon, they are most prevalent in the Willamette Valley.
Native to China, the stink bugs are large oval-shaped insects that emit a foul odor when feeling threatened, explaining why they are called stink bugs.
When infesting homes, these pests like to hide in walls, attics, and crawl spaces, and it is not unusual to spot them next to a window or door. You can recognize a stink bug infestation if you find a large number of dead stink bugs.
During the last year, Oregon had serious problems with stink bug infestation which severely damaged crops and garden plants.
There are various species of ants that are common in Oregon, however, the ones that cause the most trouble to home owners are Carpenter ants and Odorous House ants.
- Carpenter Ants
As their name suggests, carpenter ants tend to ‘carve’ the wood or make tunnels also known as galleries, which is why people often confuse them with termites. Unlike termites, they do not eat cellulose or wood they chew through it to make a shelter and nest inside it.
They are one of the largest ants and can be around 3/8 to 1/2 inches long. Carpenter ants are brown or black and live in large colonies like most other species of ants. Although they rarely bite (only when provoked or defending a nest) their bite can cause a lot of pain and discomfort.
On the other hand, they can cause damage to various wood structures in your house and that is why it is vital to recognize the infestation and exterminate them as soon as possible.
- Odorous House Ants
Odorous House ants are very common in Oregon and like their cousins, they also live in large colonies. They are called odorous because they have a distinctive smell which some compare to a rotten coconut or butter.
Although they will not eat your structural lumber they will make a mass out of your food supplies. They are attracted to sweets and drinks (anything with sugar) and are known to wreak havoc!
In addition, exterminating them is a tough challenge, because when threatened they break off into smaller colonies to survive while also multiplying in numbers so they can defend themselves against the ‘aggressor’.
That said, using sprays and insecticides on them is basically pointless, the best way to get rid of them is to bait them. Click here if you want to learn more about how to get rid of them!
Some of the common pests that you may encounter in homes in Oregon include cockroaches, namely German, American, and Oriental cockroaches, spiders, such as Hobo spider and Black Widow, termites, bed bugs, stink bugs, ticks, fleas, ants.
If you think that your home is infested with one of the above-mentioned pests, you can try to exterminate them yourself and if the job seems too difficult, do not hesitate to call the professionals!
Which pests on the list seem the most difficult to exterminate? Please share your experience with us! If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask!