We all know termites, yellow jackets, fire ants, fruit flies, and black widows are commonly found in North Carolina, but those are certainly not the only crawling, flying, and jumping pests around the state. While we won’t be doing a round-up of the over 900 insects that call North Carolina home, our pest control company in Raleigh is sharing some information about four pests you probably had no idea lived in the Tarheel State. We are including where to find them, signs they’re around, and what you can do if they make their way into your home.
Rodents of Unusual Size – Nutrias
In The Princess Bride, the heroes of the story venture into the Fire Swamp and are attacked by a Rodent of Unusual Size. While we certainly don’t have any rodents quite that large or aggressive, it’s not uncommon for nutrias to be compared to them. They are larger than both muskrats and beavers and can weigh up to 30 pounds. Though these semi-aquatic rodents are most common in Louisiana because of the swamps, they’re found throughout the southeast, including in eastern North Carolina.
Due to their highly destructive burrowing and feeding habits, as well as their rapid breeding, nutrias can lay waste to coastal marshes and wetlands. In many cases they’ve done permanent damage. You probably won’t see a nutria in Raleigh, but if you are near the coast and see one, your best bet is to call a pest control company to trap it.
Pseudoscorpions Aren’t Just Out West
When you think of scorpions, you probably think of them living in the desert, or at least hot, dry climates. You’d be right, too – scorpions in the United States primarily live in the Southwest – west Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and southern California. But in North Carolina, we have pseudoscorpions.
Pseudoscorpions, like their name suggests, aren’t real scorpions, and they have no tail or stinger. The venom in their claws can kill tiny mites, but it doesn’t pose any harm to people – even little children – because they’re only around 1/8 of an inch long! These tiny scorpions are arachnids, cousin to spiders and don’t have wings, so if they want to go somewhere, they have to hitch a ride on a fly or beetle.
These pests are found in the mountainous areas of the state and, due to their diminutive size, it’s not likely you’ll see them. However, if you do, treat them like you would a spider, and call a pest control company to get rid of them.
Rattlesnakes in North Carolina
Like the scorpion, you may think rattlesnakes only live out west or in desert climates, but there are actually three types of rattlesnake found in North Carolina:
- Timber rattlesnake
- Eastern diamondback rattlesnake
- Pigmy rattlesnake
The pigmy rattlesnake lives in the southeastern part of the state, but the other two are located in wooded and overgrown areas throughout the entire area, including the Triangle. In fact, the eastern diamondback is the most venomous and dangerous snake in North America as their venom, called hemotoxin, kills red blood cells.
All three types of snakes tend to live in more remote, overgrown areas and are not known to be aggressive, so you won’t likely see one if you lived in a developed neighborhood or urban setting. That does mean you should be cautious when in the woods or hiking through more undisturbed areas, especially in the spring months as the newly hatched rattlers have more potent, potentially fatal, venom. Take care to wear hiking boots, long pants, and be aware of where you are stepping. If you do come upon a rattlesnake, back away very slowly and steadily.
The Rabid Wolf Spider
Living in North Carolina means you’re probably not a stranger to wolf spiders – the large, pervasive, but primarily harmless arachnid that is found across the state. While there are several varieties of wolf spider, did you know there was one called the “Rabid Wolf Spider,” and no, that’s not a nickname. Known scientifically as the Rabiosa Rabida, it got it’s name due to its fast, erratic movements and aggression.
The rabid wolf spider, like other wolf spiders, are considered harmless to people, and while they act aggressive with prey, they tend to run from lingering threats. As they don’t make their home in a nest and actively search for food, they may find their way inside your home, and they’re easy to spot with a nearly 3/4-inch long body, thick, brown stripes running down the side of their head, and dark brown stripes on a tan abdomen. Even though they are not dangerous, you certainly don’t want them in your home. Fortunately, regular pest control can keep them away.
Schedule Pest Control in Raleigh with Stomp
Whether you have “run of the mill” pests like termites and fire ants, or you encounter a rabid wolf spider, you don’t need them in your home. Instead, schedule an appointment with our pest control company in Raleigh to have a tech come out and treat your home and exterminate pests. Call us at (919) 231-3292 or fill out the form below for an appointment.