Prepare to be invaded this summer by an onslaught of creepy crawlies!

The dry winter weather seems to have brought on the bug season a little earlier than normal as they scurry around in search of food and water. In this blog, we’ve put together a list of the most common pests you can expect to find in South East Queensland and share some tips on how to prevent them from taking over your home.

1. Ants

Ants are a common pest here on the Gold Coast and they are one of the hardest to eradicate. They gather around wet areas such as sinks and toilets and are drawn to sugary foods (can we blame them?) which is why they often create a trail through the pantry.

The best way to take care of an ant problem is to try and prevent them in the first place. Keep food items closed and store sugary foods in airtight containers or in the fridge. Keep bathroom and kitchen sinks dry and wipe down benches with vinegar as they don’t like an acidic environment.

And if all else fails, you can buy ant baits from the supermarket. Or make your own natural ant bait using a mix of borax and powdered sugar.

2. Cockroaches

Like ants, cockroaches are also attracted to food and water. Following the above tips for ants will also help to reduce a cockroach infestation. But unlike ants, cockroaches do like to hide. Be sure to clean under appliances and take out your kitchen bin regularly.

The borax and sugar trick can work a treat on cockroaches. But if you have a heavy infestation, consider sprays specifically for cockroaches. Or take it to the next level by using a cockroach bomb from your local supermarket.

3. Spiders

If you spot a spider in your home, it turns out there is another option apart from burning the house down and moving overseas! Unlike ants and cockroaches, spiders are considerably more terrifying because some can be life-threatening if bitten. Maintaining a clean house is the first step to reducing the number of spiders and their webs – the less mess, the fewer places for them to set up their home. Almost all bugs are attracted to light, but spiders especially like to take up residency in light fittings. Clean them regularly and switch the lights off when you’re not in the room.

If you’re brave, you can try the “catch a spider under a glass” trick and take it outside. But for those who aren’t as courageous, try this natural remedy using peppermint to keep those eight-legged friends away.

4. Snakes

Australia is home to a host of pests that can kill you, and snakes are some of the deadliest. As summer approaches, we’ve had an increase in sightings from our tenants of our slithering friends who love hiding amongst the rocks and long grass. Keep your lawns mowed and the gardens cleared so there are fewer places for them to hide.

If you see a snake, it’s best not to touch them and keep children and pets away. If you’re unlucky enough to find a snake inside your home, secure the snake as much as you can, blocking entry and exits through doors and windows. Call a local snake catcher immediately to remove the snake.

5. Bats

Although not crawly, some might consider bats to be creepy. Whether you find bats cute or scary, they aren’t without risks. Although rare, a small percentage of bats carry the Lyssavirus which can be harmful to humans if you’re bitten or scratched.

If you find an injured or deceased bat in your backyard, it’s best not to touch them to avoid infection and call your local wildlife carer to remove the bat. If you have an infestation, once again it’s best to call a professional to remove them.

If you are bitten or scratched, the Bat Conservation and Rescue QLD INC. advises the following:

“If you are bitten or scratched you must immediately wash the wound for 5 minutes under running water and seek medical treatment without delay. The rabies vaccine is effective if treatment is given early.”

With all pests, prevention is the best method to reduce the amount of creepy crawlies taking up residency in your property. Keeping a clean and well-maintained home will provide fewer places for pests to hide. Tenants should report any signs of a pest infestation to their property manager as early intervention is key to preventing further damage to the property. Landlords may also consider completing an annual pest inspection of the property to ensure there are no infestations or termites for greater peace of mind. We’d be happy to organise this on your behalf or answer any questions from tenants and landlords about pest control. Call us on 07 5630 1145.