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German Roaches

       The German cockroach is a widely distributed urban pest. It is also the most common cockroach species in houses, apartments, restaurants, hotels, and other institutions. Adult German cockroaches are 1/2 to 5/8 inch long and tan to light brown. Although they have fully developed wings, they do not fly. Nymphs are similar in appearance to adults except that they are smaller and lack wings. The German cockroach is best identified by its small size and by two dark parallel lines running from the back of the head to the wings. It is usually found in kitchens (near dishwashers, stoves, and sinks) and in bathrooms of homes. German cockroaches usually prefer a moist environment with a relatively high degree of warmth. The insects are mostly scavengers and will feed on a wide variety of foods. They are especially fond of starches, sweets, grease, and meat products. In many locations, garbage is a principal food source. As with other species, German cockroaches are mostly active at night, when they forage for food, water, and mates. During the day they hide in cracks and crevices and other dark sites that provide a warm and humid environment.

American Roach

The American cockroach is also known as the water bug, flying water bug and, in some areas of the South, the palmetto bug. It is the largest of the common species, growing to 1.5 inches or more in length. It is reddish-brown, with a pale brown or yellow border on the upper surface of the pronotum. Both the male and female are fully winged. The wings of the male extend slightly beyond the tip of the abdomen, while those of the female are about the same length as the abdomen.


Black to brownish-black, about one-twelfth to one-sixteenth inch long; six legs, with many bristles on body and legs; flattened body. They are commonly found on cats and dogs year-round, but most common during warm and humid weather. They readily attack and feed on humans. Mainly because of their overwhelming capacity to reproduce, fleas can become nagging nuisances for 


Western Black-Legged Tick- This tick is found throughout coastal California, the Sierra Nevada range, Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Idaho and Utah. This tick is a vector of Lyme disease and measures in at about 3 mm in length. The female has a dark reddish abdomen and the male has a blackish abdomen.

Brown Dog Tick - This reddish brown tick prefers dogs but will also latch onto humans if given the opportunity. Prior to eating, adult ticks are about 1/8 inch long and recently fed female ticks are about 1/2 inch long with a blueish-grey tint to their body. 

Palo Verde Beetle

Palo Verde root borer, or Palo Verde borer beetle, is a longhorn beetle native to the American Southwest and to northern Mexico. It is one of the largest beetles in North America. They hatch from eggs into grubs, which live underground for as much as three years. They are cream colored to pale green, typically with a brown headcap. The grubs feed on the roots of the Palo Verde tree, causing dieback. As they mature they leave the ground through exit holes around the roots of the tree. Mature borer beetles look like a large cockroach. They can grow six to eight inches, have long antennae, and spines on the thorax which form a collar around the "neck" of the beetle. They range from brown to black in color. They have wings and can fly, albeit awkwardly at times. The adults lay eggs in the soil. Adult beetles come out in the summer time, especially in the early evening when attracted by outside lighting.

Western Boxelder Bug

The western boxelder bug occurs only in central Nevada, Arizona, Texas, and also along the West Coast extending to British Columbia. Both species prefer feeding on female boxelder trees, but they also feed on other maples, including silver maple trees; fruit trees; grapes and strawberries. The western boxelder bug may damage crops of pears and nut trees such as pistachios and almonds.

Carpenter Bee

Carpenter bees resemble bumble bees, but the upper surface of their abdomen is bare and shiny black; bumble bees have a hairy abdomen with at least some yellow markings. Despite their similar appearance, the nesting habits of the two types of bees are quite different. Bumble bees usually nest in the ground whereas carpenter bees tunnel into wood to lay their eggs. Bare, unpainted or weathered softwoods are preferred, especially redwood, cedar, cypress and pine. Painted or pressure-treated wood is much less susceptible to attack. Common nesting sites include eaves, window trim, fascia boards, siding, wooden shakes, decks and outdoor furniture.


The Giant Desert Hairy Scorpion is the largest scorpion in North America, reaching lengths of 6 inches. Their bodies are brown, with yellowish pinchers and legs. They have a long tail that is tipped with a bulb-like poison gland  and stinger as well as large pinchers. Although a common pet species, these scorpions are considered aggressive and will sting frequently. Although the sting is painful, their venom is considered mild and has little effect on most humans. As with all stings, medical attention should be sought if the victim shows signs of allergic reactions, such as breathing difficulty, excessive swelling or prolonged pain. Like all scorpions, they fluoresce a greenish blue under black (UV) lights. These scorpions live in desert regions of California, Arizona, and extreme southern Utah and Nevada. They are able to withstand extremely hot regions because they are nocturnal (active at night.) Rocks are frequently utilized as retreats from the heat of the day.


The bark scorpion is found in southeastern California, Arizona, Nevada, southern Utah, and southwestern New Mexico. The typical "bark" or "crevice" scorpion is encountered in a variety of situations. It is most commonly found under rocks, logs, tree bark, and other surface objects. The bark scorpion (1-3 inches in length) is the most commonly encountered house scorpion. They are common throughout many habitats but almost always in rocky areas. The bark scorpion is also one of relatively few species that are able climbers. The venom of the bark scorpion may produce severe pain (but rarely swelling) at the site of the sting, numbness, frothing at the mouth, difficulties in breathing (including respiratory paralysis), muscle twitching, and convulsions. Death is rare, especially in more recent times. Antivenin is available for severe cases. Certain people, however, may be allergic to the venom and can experience life-threatening side effects when stung (as occurs with bee stings).

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