8 Most Common Pests in Queensland and How to Deal with Them

Queensland is a haven for different species of pests, thanks to its near-perfect weather. And the recent weather fluctuations, due to global temperature changes, have helped boost the pest population in the region. This is shown in the significant increase in the number of homeowners and property owners that have sought help for their pest problems from pest control experts.

This article provides information on the common pests found in Queensland and how to deal with them

What are Pests?

A pest is a plant, an animal or a microorganism that pose a threat to humans. It can be a weed, fungi, microbe, insect, bird, fish, rodent, etc. In general, pests are unwanted because cause harm to humans, animals, crops and structures; spread or cause diseases; or interfere with human activities.

Australia is home to a diverse range of bugs, house insects and mammals. These are beneficial to the natural environment, but many of them become pests once they start invading people’s homes and properties.

Most Common Pests in Queensland

Many pests call Queensland home as they thrive in its mild climate. These pests are always around, though you may not see them immediately until the damage that they have caused have become noticeable. Here are some of the pests that may invade your Queensland home and garden.

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  1. Ants

    red ants on a tree branchThese amazing insects are social creatures that live in large colonies. They are essential in their natural environment, but they are a menace in the human world. The small mounds they create out of their excavations are unsightly when they’re seen along garden paths, or balconies or around the skirting boards in the home. Ants can also potentially health risks because they forage for food in unhygienic places.

    The ant species that are often encountered in Southeast Queensland are Black House Ant (usually found in kitchens, garbage bins, dog faeces, etc.); and Coastal Brown Ant (usually builds their nest along pathways, gardens and walls).

    To prevent ant infestations, is to use baits and insecticides to eliminate random ants in your kitchen and other parts of the house. If you suspect that a colony has been established, call your local pest control company for professional treatment.

  2. Cockroaches

    image of cockroachesCockroaches are common in Southeast Queensland that even the cleanest homes can harbour cockroaches. Your home is not safe from the cockroaches that your neighbour has. Cockroaches carry almost 33 different types of bacteria which they spread diseases through contamination.

    There are many species of cockroaches, but the common ones in Southeast Queensland are the American Cockroach, Australian Cockroach and German Cockroach. The American Cockroach is large and is reddish-brown to dark brown in colour. They can be found in houses, but they are more common in compost heaps, sewers and industrial areas.

    The Australian Cockroach is also reddish-brown to dark brown in colour, but is slightly smaller than the American Cockroach. They can be distinguished from the American Cockroach by the yellow stripes on their thorax. They breed well in temperatures above 27 degrees Celsius, a mark that is easily reached in Southeast Queensland.

    The Oriental Cockroach stays mostly outdoors, but they can be found under sinks, refrigerators, and washing machines when inside the home. The Brown-banded Cockroach loves warmer and drier areas like the pantries and closet shells.

    It is important to understand where cockroaches are coming from to prevent an infestation. Check the shopping bags that you bring inside your home because you may inadvertently be bringing in a cockroach from one of your shopping trips. With their flat bodies, cockroaches can easily squeeze into tiny crevices, so make sure to plug any holes in your plumbing pipes as well as around windows and doors.

    More importantly, don’t leave food out in your home, sweep up food crumbs and dispose food scraps properly. Eliminating these food sources will help discourage cockroaches from taking up permanent residence in your home.

    If they manage to gain access into your home, cleaning kitchen or your entire house will not be enough to get rid of them.

  3. Rats and Mice

    image of a ratThe rodents that are considered as pests are not native to Australia. They will take up residence in your walls, attics and roof voids as they search for food, water and shelter. Along the way, they will chew through electric cables, furniture, clothing and anything that they encounter. They are excellent breeders, thus the sight of one or a couple of rats or mice should not be ignored.

    One of the most effective prevention tips for rodent infestation is to eliminate the debris in your yard, garage, and seal the holes or gaps around your property to eliminate their entry points. Rats and mice will also come out from drains, so cover those with metal screens.

  4. Silverfish

    a silverfish with damaged booksSilverfish don’t present any health risk to humans, but they are highly destructive. They come out at night to feed on anything with cellulose in it, including carpets, clothing, paper, books, pantry foods, etc. Silverfish prefer damp areas.

    To prevent silverfish infestations, upgrade the ventilation in your home to keep it moisture levels down, use closet camels and always inspect any items that you bring from outside into your home.

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  1. Spiders

    A huntsman spider on a piece of leafSpiders are feared because some people actually have a real fear of them. Unfortunately, Southeast Queensland has its fair share of spiders – both venomous and harmless species. The region’s warm, humid conditions are ideal for these eight-legged creatures, and they are more of them are weather turns warmer.

    Southeast Queensland is home to many different species of spiders. The Redback Spiders have messy webs that are located under ledges and garden shrubs. They are small, but the females deliver venom that can cause severe illness or death.

    Daddy Long Legs’ thin, tangled webs are located in upper corners of rooms. These spiders were once believed to have the deadliest venom of all spiders, but this has been proven to be false. Gold Orb have big, yellow strong and sticky webs that are located between trees or poles. They are not a threat to humans.

    Other common spiders in Southeast Queensland are Huntsman, Funnel-web, Trapdoor and Tarantula.

    Spiders produce offspring fast that that you need to have your home inspected by a qualified pest control technician. Store-bought sprays may kill spiders, but they will not completely eradicate the infestation. Only pest control experts will know how to combine treatments to ensure a successful eradication plan.

  2. Termites

    a termite in a mudTermites are hidden enemies that can cause more property damage than fires, floods and storms. These pests live underground or inside the wooden parts of your home, slowly and methodically eating away at the foundation of your home.

    The termites in Brisbane build their nests in trees. As they search for food, termites will travel from their nest to your home, attacking the timber structures that they can reach. One of the obvious signs that there is an established termite nest in your vicinity is when you see flying termites. These are reproductive termites that have left their home to look for mates and establish their own nest.

    Because Queensland is highly vulnerable to termite attacks, homeowners are required by law to have certain parts of their house treated for termite infestations. These parts are the framing for roofs, floors and other structural elements; window reveals and frames; door jambs; and skirting and architraves.

    It takes experienced pest control technicians to determine if your home has a termite infestation. With the damage that termites can do to a property, it is highly recommended to have a regular home inspection by experts.

  3. Wasps

    a wasp hovering over a plantLike other pests, wasps are essential in nature, until they are not. They are known to be aggressive and can cause havoc in humans and animals alike. Wasps can sting multiple times and the stings can cause fatal reactions in people that are allergic.

    The saying “Prevention is better than cure” is apt when it comes to wasps. The best way to keep wasps away is to get rid or properly store of surplus food, including pet and bird food, cover trash bins, and eliminate water sources.

    It is also helpful to properly maintain your home, making sure that any broken panels and crevices, which are potential locations for wasp nest, are fix immediately. If you have a severe wasp problem, call a pest control expert to make sure the task is done properly and pain-free.

  4. Mosquitoes

    a mosquito sticking to a leafThe common types of mosquitoes in Southeast Queensland are Saltmarsh Mosquitoes, Freshwater-breeding Mosquitoes and Container-breeding mosquitoes. The Saltmarsh mosquitoes breed in mangrove habitats; the freshwater mosquitoes breed in shallow freshwater pools; and container-breeding mosquitoes are found in backyards.

    Mosquitoes are dangerous because they transmit serious diseases that could be fatal, including Ross River Fever Virus, Bermah Forest Virus, Dengue, Japanese Encephalitis and Zika Virus.

    One of the most effective way to prevent mosquito infestation is to eliminate stagnant water by taking out the water from flower pots, gutters, bird baths, old tyres, etc. where mosquitoes breed, lay their eggs, and where their larvae hatch and develop.

    To avoid mosquitoes, use a repellent if you are going outdoors, or stay indoors around dawn or dusk, the time of day when mosquitoes are more active.


When to call for a professional

Pest problems are very common in households. However, this is not a reason to ignore it, or get help to fix it immediately. You may not see the pests that are disturbing your home, but there are signs that will tell you to call for help from professional pest control technicians.

Property Damage. Pests like rats, mice and termites go after people’s belongings. Holes in clothes, cracks in furniture, damaged mattresses, etc. are a few signs that you have unwanted guests.

Droppings and urine. These products of bodily functions are sure sign of pests like rodents and cockroaches. You might see peppercorn- or coffee bean-like droppings or smell a strange odour while cleaning or dusting. Consider these as signs of a pest infestation.

Scratching and rustling sounds. Rats or mice are probably making these sounds inside your walls or roof voids, especially at night when they are most active.

Mudtubes. The mudtubes that you might see on your walls or garden are created by termites as they travel from their nest to their food source, which includes the wooden parts of structures.

In most cases, professional treatment and solutions are the only effective approach for pest extermination. You will pay for the cost of professional services, but you can be assured that they are being delivered by licensed and experienced pest control technicians.

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