Pests for Which to be Grateful This Thanksgiving

Admittedly, the word “pests” doesn’t connote benefits. However, certain insects have merits for us and our environment. In fact, scientists have identified 29 helpful bugs. 1* Here’s a look at some critters and their life-giving attributes.

Impressive Credentials

If a beneficial bug were to write up its resume, here are some abilities it might profess:

  • pollination
  • decomposing matter
  • ingesting bugs that harm food sources
  • creating useful byproducts
  • controlling insect populations
  • increasing crop yields 2*

Below are eight hardworking insects, including some that sustain our very lives.

Spider

This insect consumes several types of pesky bugs, including aphids, caterpillars, mosquitoes, mealybugs, roaches, flies, earwigs, fleas, mites, moths, centipedes, and whiteflies. Spiders spare farm crops from obliteration by other pests. In fact, if spiders became extinct, our lives would be endangered by famine.

Ladybug

This beetle feeds on aphids, mites, mealybugs, whiteflies, and Colorado potato beetles. Both adults and larvae have voracious appetites. Over the course of a lifetime, a ladybug can eat 5,000 aphids. 3*

Bee

Bees perform the vital function of cross-pollination. By transferring pollen between flowers, they fertilize blooms, enabling plants to mature and yield crops. Bees also sustain our food supply by spreading seeds.

Honeybees produce the elixir that sweetens our food, moisturizes skin, and prevents infection. Honeycomb is the source of many household products, such as candles, furniture polish, and cheese wax.

Termite

While termites in the house are a serious problem, in nature, they help maintain forests. By chewing dead trees, they decompose wood into fertile earth, which nurtures new vegetation. Termites improve soil health by aerating it, helping plants to absorb water and nutrients. Without termites, rain forests would cease to exist.

Ground Beetle

This crawler protects food crops from bug destruction. Ground beetles feast on asparagus beetles, corn earworms, cabbage worms, Colorado potato beetles, slugs, root maggots, snails, and cutworms. Some ground beetles forage on weed seeds.

Butterfly

Butterflies sip flower nectar, pollinating flowers in the process, to our good fortune. The most alluring blossoms are yellow and red, with strong fragrances. Some butterfly species, such as the harvester, eat aphids.

Dragonfly

Living near freshwater, the dragonfly snacks on mosquitoes, gnats, aphids, midges, flies, moths, swarming ants, and swarming termites. Dragonflies are like hawks regarding their keen vision. As the fastest flying insect ever clocked, they can zip around at 35 miles per hour. 4*

Praying Mantis

Cleverly camouflaged in brown or green, this bug appears to pray before eating. With front legs bent, it patiently waits for grasshoppers and flies to happen by, and then quickly strike. The praying mantis also devours moths, caterpillars, and crickets. With a unique ability to turn its head 180 degrees, nothing gets by this bug!

Selective Control

At Impact Pest Elimination, we only target problematic pests, those jeopardizing your health, comfort, possessions, sanity, and the structural integrity of your home. Even with a severe infestation, we refrain from using products that harm people, pets, and our ecosystem.

The key to our success is integrated pest management. This strategy focuses on preventive techniques, such as home repair and creating unfavorable conditions for pests. When insects are rampant already, we use effective treatments such as biologic controls, minimizing risk to you and your household. By employing responsible solutions, we strive to protect useful insects. You can safely entrust your pest dilemmas to us.

References

1/ http://www.insectidentification.org/helpful-insects.asp

2/ https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beneficial_insects

3/ https://www.organiclesson.com/beneficial-insects-garden-pest-control/

4/ https://www.si.edu/Encyclopedia_SI/nmnh/buginfo/incredbugs.htm