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All Insects Need Water

All Insects Need Water - Maryland Insect InfestationsWater is an essential component for every living creature on earth. Every working cell on the planet has water inside the cell walls, and while many creatures can get away with absorbing water from the air around them or going without water for years and sometimes even decades at a time, water is required for growth and reproduction.

Because of this, there’s always some water involved somewhere when you’re dealing with an infestation. Insects don’t need much water to survive and lay eggs, but if they don’t get any they won’t be able to keep going. Many insects get the water they need from scavenging food or drinking blood, but those that don’t need to get their food from somewhere else. This can come from a leak in your home near the ground or coming in through the attic, or it can come from a leaky pipe or condensation that forms when humid summer air meets the cool temperature of a basement.

There are several ways both homeowners and professional pest control services can exploit this need for water to remove an infestation.

Waterproofing

While a waterproofing of your home can be expensive and involves a lot of contract work, it has several benefits that go beyond stopping infestations. It also prevents mold growth, which waterproofing contractors can remediate, it cuts down on utility costs thanks to insulation, and it can help improve a home’s value.

Diatomaceous Earth

This special material consists of microscopic shells left behind by phytoplankton that lived millions or billions of years ago. These shells have sharp edges, and while they’re too small to hurt the skin or even the digestive system of a human, they’re just big enough to scrape off the waxy coating of an insect’s exoskeleton. This coating keeps the water inside from evaporating, so crawling insects that cross a line of powdered diatomaceous earth will quickly dry out and die. Farmers use it to protect harvested crops from insects because the right blend of diatomaceous earth is safe to eat.

Silica Desiccants

Silica desiccants are very good at absorbing water from their surroundings. That’s why many types of food have silica packets that soak up water so the food stays at the right moisture level. What works on food can also work on insects, and that’s why you can buy silica powders to spread along areas that you know crawling insects cross. Silica works the same way as diatomaceous earth, and while it’s more effective, it’s also more dangerous to humans.

Water is essential for all forms of life. Insects don’t need nearly as much as a human does, but you can take advantage of this need to prevent and control certain kinds of infestation. Just make sure you know how to handle the products you use or let a professional use them so you don’t have to.

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