Get to know the most common household pests in Malaysia.
What are the most common household pests in Malaysia? Do you know?
A pest is a plant or animal life that can cause great problems in human activities through its habits.
Most people will encounter several types of pests, especially in the household.
No matter how clean your house is, there will always be one of these five common pests lurking around, looking for sustenance.
Depending on the type, these pests thrive when a house is not properly maintained. It can be something as simple as leaving unwashed plates or not vacuuming upholsteries.
Learning more about common pests can go a long way in solving problems related to infestations. After all, to know them is to loathe them, which will lead to the next step: eradicating the creepy crawlies from your home. Ready to arm yourself with some knowledge? Let’s get started!
The breed has survived for 300 million years and there’s hardly anyone on Earth who hasn’t come across this vermin. It can be a major health hazard as it spreads harmful bacteria through its feeding and roaming habits. You’ve probably heard of the term ‘breeding like cockroaches’ — this is precisely why roaches need to be tackled. They multiply rapidly and will lead to an infestation if not dealt with.
It's hard to get rid of roaches once they multiply.
Here are some more interesting facts about cockroaches:
- They can survive subzero temperatures.
- They are mainly nocturnal, and quickly scurry away when lights are on.
- The heaviest cockroach can weigh up to 30 g.
- If a cockroach’s head is lobbed off, it can still live for a week.
- Roaches eat almost anything, from foodstuff to glue, paper and dead insects.
- These creatures can pass through cracks thinner than a 20 sen coin.
- Roaches are carriers of harmful bacteria such as Salmonella and E. coli.
Just because they’re small doesn’t mean they’re less pesky. You’d be surprised at how much stress the ants can cause. They can swarm over countertops, on the floors, in the sinks and over anything edible, and even turn up in your drinking water. Common ant species in Malaysia include the Black House Ant (Ochetellus), Fire Ant (Solenopsis spp) and Odorous House Ant (Tapinoma sessile).
Ants, though small, are unsightly in large numbers.
- Ants’ closest relatives are bees and wasps.
- They can carry objects up to 50 times their bodyweight.
- Ants live in colonies, have a complex social structure and are highly organized.
- An ant colony can hold up to half a million ants.
- Some types can sting and are dangerous for people who are allergic to it.
The Common Bed Bug (Cimex lectularius) is literally a tiny monster. The bed bugs feed on their hosts’ blood and can suck seven times their body weight in blood. An infestation will see these bugs on beds, sofas, curtains and carpet edges.
Bed bugs were nearly eradicated in the late ‘40s to early ‘50s after potent insecticides were used. But now, with newer and less potent pesticides, the bugs have developed a resistance.
Bed bugs feed on the blood of its hosts.
Modern living and affluence have also contributed to the spread of the bed bug. For example, bed bugs love to travel! So if the bed bug ‘hitches a ride’ — such as on to a traveller's travelling bag — the bed bug will just carry on breeding at its next destination. Heaven forbid if it is the traveller’s own lodging this time around!
Interesting facts about bed bugs:
- Bed bugs measure around 5 to 6 mm and will extend to 7 mm after feeding.
- They feed on human blood and love the warmth of the human body.
- Their eggs, whitish cream in colour, will change to black as they hatch to larvae.
- The typical lifespan of a bed bug is about 50 days to over a year.
- Unfortunately, it is a prolific breeder. It will only take a single female bed bug to create an out-of-control infestation in an apartment.
- They inject an anaesthetic when they pierce the skin, so the bite can go unnoticed at first.
These creatures are definitely no Mickey Mouse when they’re found in your house. These furry animals are adept at raiding larders, gnawing on household furniture, and leaving trails of urine and droppings. So, you can already fathom the damage rodents can cause. And we haven’t even covered the part about the diseases and epidemics they can bring!
Rats are carriers of dangerous microbes.
- The most common rodent pests in Malaysia are Black Rats (Rattus rattus) and Brown Rats (Rattus norvegicus).
- The most common rodent-borne diseases are Leptospirosis, Salmonellosis and Typhoid Fever.
- These rodents transmit diseases through bites, scratches, and direct or indirect contact through their excreta.
- Rats can gnaw through electrical wires, wooden structures, walls, ceilings and even iron pipes.
Credit for information: Website of Rentokil Initial Pest Control.
Visit the Pest Control section of Yellow Pages Malaysia listings if you need to get rid of the pests in your house.