Insect pests like cockroaches and flies are abundant in big cities where they can easily locate discarded foods and shelter where rotting organic matter provides them with ideal living conditions. For example, the sizable American cockroach thrives in urban sewer systems, and house flies, blow flies gravitate toward landfills and dumpsters behind restaurants where they lay eggs on putrid foods in order to provide their offspring with the nourishment they need upon hatching.
Cockroaches are particularly abundant in large urban centers located in the southern states where high humidity and short winters allow several pest species to thrive. A recent study collected insect pest infestation data from the American Housing Survey in order to determine which US cities see the high rate of insect pest infestations. Unsurprisingly, Atlanta was ranked as the fourth most pest-infested metropolitan area in the country, right behind Houston, New York City, and Washington, DC. Amazingly, the study revealed that 25 percent of Atlanta homes are infested with cockroach pests. In addition to cockroaches, both drywood and subterranean termites are particularly common pests in all areas of Georgia.
Atlanta was recently ranked as the fifth most termite infested city in the US, moving up one place since last year’s nationwide pest abundance report. However, out of the 50 cities listed in the report, Savannah saw the most significant increase in termite infestation rates, as it moved up a whopping 18 spots to arrive at number 30. Almost every home in Savannah is located above subterranean termite nests, but they will not infest structural wood in homes as long as wood remains abundant in their soil habitat.
Most homes more than 30 years old, and many newer homes, are located above massive amounts of lumber scraps generated during construction. Today, most states, including Georgia, require builders to remove all lumber scraps from the ground around newly constructed homes before laying soil around foundations. While lumber scraps may provide subterranean termites with enough food to stave off infestations in homes, removing all lumber scraps prevent subterranean termites from gravitating toward homes in the first place.
Do you have reason to believe that subterranean termite colonies exist beneath your home?