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Summer is a fun time of the year, but there are some things that are annoying. Some common insects are more worrisome during the summer months than during the winter months.
Here are some of the insects that people might encounter. They are listed in alphabetical order instead of by the most annoying, because they are all annoying.
There are many kinds of ants, and they are all a nuisance. Not all ants bite. Still, no one wants them around. For instance, the sugar ants are found inside your house, but they don't bite. Usually, they are there looking for something sweet to eat.
Crazy ants do not sting, but they move around in a frantic manner. They get their name because of their strange behavior such as chewing through electrical wiring. Carpenter ants get their name from their habit of staying outside in trees or lumber. They prefer roofs and woodwork. Some species are very aggressive, and will sting if their nest is disturbed.
There are many other kinds of ants. Be careful if you come in contact with a fire ant, because its bite is extremely painful.
Bee stings can cause a serious allergic reaction for some people who are allergic to the sting. Therefore, those people should be extra careful when they are around bees. Sometimes a sting will require medical attention.
Some people think beetles are bugs. However, beetles are the largest order of insects. They make up about 400,000 species. That's about 40 percent of all insect. Beetles are seen on warm, sunny days between 9 AM and 3 PM They prefer temperatures from 85 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. If you are working in your garden or on the lawn, you will most likely see some beetles.
Don't be misled by thinking flies don't bite. Some flies do bite and their bites are painful. They have sharp mouths that pierce the skin and suck blood from people and animals. The part of the body that flies bite swells and itches.
Biting flies are often seen on sunny, warm days in the mid-morning. They are also seen in the evening. Flies come around when there is a storm. When they get in your house, it is a challenging feat to get them out.
Mosquitoes are some of the most annoying insects. They are most active when the temperature is above 70 degrees. They are seen mostly from 7-10 days after heavy rain. Mosquitoes can be quite dangerous, because they not only bite, but they also spread diseases. Some diseases may include malaria, dengue fever, and chikungunya. Sometimes mosquitoes carry deadly diseases such as the West Nile Virus and the Zika Virus.
Mosquitoes have a strong antenna that can detect human breath from more than 100 feet away. Mosquitoes can also smell chemicals released in human sweat. Therefore, you don't have to be close to a mosquito for it to know you are around.
Only female mosquitoes bite by piercing human skin and sucking blood. People tend to kill all mosquitoes whenever they come in contact with them. Nobody is going to take time to check to see if it is male or female.
A wasp is neither a bee nor an ant. There are estimated to be over a hundred thousand species of wasps around the world. They are pests that make their nests near or on houses.
Wasps search for sugary foods, and sting people in the late summer when they stop breeding. Their stings are painful, but they are not dangerous unless people are allergic to the string.
Yellowjackets are seen in hot and arid climates. They are more aggressive than other stinging insects. During the summer months, yellowjackets love the same picnic foods as humans. They are drawn to sources of protein, such as hamburgers and hotdogs.
From late summer to early fall, yellowjackets shift their taste to anything sweet, including sugary sodas and juices. A sting or bite from a yellowjacket can be deadly for those who are allergic.
How to protect yourself
While some of the above insects might just be an annoyance, they could be dangerous and even deadly for some people. Here are a few things to do to protect yourself from biting and stinging insects.
- Avoid going outside when you know insects will be around. If you must be outside, wear clothing to protect yourself. Also, spray yourself with an insect repellent.
- Avoid areas with standing water, especially after heavy rain.
- Do not wear cologne and perfume because the scent will attract insects, especially bees.
- Keep sugary foods and drinks away from insects.
- Stay still if bees go in your direction. Fanning at them or running may agitate them. It is a good idea to let them land on you so they can discover that you are not a flower.
- Call a pest control professional if you notice a significant number of insects in your house or around your yard any time of the year, but especially during the summer months.