The Buzz on the Bugs of Summer

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The National Pest Management Association shares little-known facts about common summer insects

 

FAIRFAX, VA – Why do fireflies light up? What goes into making a pound of honey? There are many interesting facts you probably don't know about the seasonal insects frequenting backyards this summer. The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) created this list of some unique, but true factoids about the bugs of summer:

  • Ants: Some ants can lift 20 times their own body weight. If a 175-pound man had the comparative strength of an ant, he could lift four tons or almost 9,000 pounds.
  • Bees: Honeybees may make 10 million trips to gather enough nectar to make a single pound of honey. The total distance traveled by all the bees to create this much honey may equal twice the distance around the world.
  • Fireflies: Firefly light is usually intermittent and flashes in patterns that are unique to each species. Each blinking pattern is an optical signal that helps fireflies find potential mates.
  • House Flies: House flies taste with their feet, which are millions of times more sensitive to sugar than the human tongue. House flies also generally stay within one mile of where they were born.
  • Ladybugs: Ladybugs bleed from their knees when they feel threatened. The foul-smelling fluid seeps from their leg joints, often leaving yellow stains on a surface.
  • Mosquitoes: Only female mosquitoes bite humans. They are generally attracted to dark colors and the carbon dioxide you exhale. Males live on plant juices and other liquids from decomposing organic material.

Although these and other insects have fascinating characteristics, some pose health and property risks when taking up shelter indoors. If you suspect a pest infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the problem. 

For more interesting bug facts or for practical tips to help pest-proof your home, visit www.pestworld.org.

The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property.

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