Invasive Pest Species in Virginia

Mouse Versus Rat Infestation

With warm weather most of the summer and humid conditions, Gainesville, Bristow, and other areas around Virginia have a perfect environment for many species of bugs. Seeing insects in your yard and the occasional rodent may be a frequent occurrence, and there are likely certain species that you have come to expect in your neighborhood.

In reality, many of the most often spotted bugs and wildlife in Virginia are not native to the area. They have been introduced over the years, brought from other parts of the world. Their aggressive natures and adaptability have enabled these invasive species to flourish in our area until they become a troublesome invader at local homes.

Common Invasive Pests in Local Home Infestations

Invasive species of bugs, plants, and animals most often arrive in America by accident. Historically, they would ride on ships, traveling from Europe, Asia, and Africa. Now, many pests arrive through shipping, coming into the country in crops, livestock, and other goods.

These bugs and wildlife are survivalists and are able to quickly establish themselves in a new habitat. Since many of them come from hot and humid climates in Southeast Asia, Virginia is a particularly good area for them. This has led to residents in the area seeing an abundance of:

  • Roof Rats – Roof rats were one of the first invasive species to arrive after they rode from Europe to America on early sailing ships, which is why they are also called “ship rats.” Then as now, roof rats spread a variety of diseases as they invaded new areas.
  • Fire Ants – The red imported fire ant originally came from South America, and likely arrived here in the 1930s, perhaps by riding in the ballast of a ship. Fire ants have spread throughout much of the country and cause extensive damage to local insect populations and structures, in addition to their painful bite.
  • German Cockroaches – Despite the name, German roaches probably came from Southeast Asia. They first came to Europe, and then to North America with early explorers. With their ability to lay 50 eggs at one time, German cockroaches were able to grow their population quickly and are now one of the leading causes of cockroach infestations.
  • Stink Bugs – The brown marmorated stink bug is an expected pest in homes during the winter months now, but is a recent arrival to the area. It first came from East Asia on shipping material in the 1990s, and now causes millions of dollars of crop and plant damage every year.
    Asian Tiger Mosquito – Another recent arrival, these mosquitoes came from Asia inside of tires in 1985. Now they are the most widespread mosquitoes in Virginia and are known for biting during the daytime and carrying several mosquito-borne illnesses.

Invasive bugs and rodents are already a problem for the local area. Because they are so good at surviving and not part of the original ecosystem, invasive species can soon displace the helpful bugs already in the area, or decimate plants and trees.

They are also more likely to cause a difficult infestation, using their adaptability to find food and hide in your home. Our team at ExtermPRO has been fighting invasive pests and native insects that infest local homes. As pest species have changed, our methods have as well to make sure we are always providing effective pest control. Let us help with the invasive species in your home today.