Read and Learn More About PestsHow To Control Springtail Bugs In Your Yard
Springtails are a bunch of very small insects about 1/16 of an inch in size. They have forked appendages and are often white or gray in color. Perhaps the reason why they are called Springtail bugs is that the appendage they have tend to move suddenly causing them to jump; a motion that makes it look like they are springing.
Springtails tend to be a huge nuisance in and around the home during the summer and/or spring months. They tend to swarm in shockingly large numbers and congregate around:
- Under any organic matter or soil
These pests are so frustrating because even after you have carpet bombed any large congregation Springtail treatment and thought that you have eliminated them, you are most likely going to find another huge pile of Springtail bugs in the very same spot even before traces of the bug spray disappears.
They have well-hidden habitats that house these creatures and, for some reason, large clusters tend to detach themselves from these habitats and migrate to different sources of moisture. So, unless you eliminate the habitat, which is often very difficult to find, you will always end up with more and more swarms in and around your home.
What is the Nature of Springtail Infestations?
Springtail bugs like moisture. They are particularly fond of feeding on fungi, mold, algae and decaying vegetation. They are often found in very large numbers around potted plants or organic matter that has been mulched.
If you have a swimming pool or a hot tub, the chances are that you have already seen swarms of these insects on the surface of the water, especially after a prolonged rainy spell.
They form clusters that look like scum or mats on water surfaces. One of the craftiest of characteristics attributed to these insects is that, although the insect clusters themselves are quite conspicuous, their source of home ground is often very well hidden.
Springtail habitats are not easy to find unless you know exactly what to look for and how to identify these sources. In order to get rid of them effectively, a Springtail bug infestation must be attacked at the source. Otherwise, you will continue to see pile-ups over and over in the very same places.
Do Springtail Infestations Cause Damage?
The truth of the matter is that Springtail bugs do not cause any damage to your property. These insects feed on algae, mold, and decaying vegetation; hardly things that you would care to preserve.
The problem is that they are amazingly annoying. Imagine wanting to take a dip in the swimming pool on a hot summer afternoon only to find the surface of the water is covered by an army of insects? That is the sort of thing that Springtail bugs do; they make life very uncomfortable for you especially around water sources such as hot tubs, swimming pools and bathtubs. Plus, they can swarm the inside of your home in very large numbers, and no one wants insects jumping about indoors when they are having a dinner party.
Why Are Springtail Bug Infestations So Frustrating?
Tweets like these show you just how frustrating these little insects can be:
Me too. Only got a few hours of sleep. Mainly cause these springtail bugs keep finding their way in. I don't know how.
— Kev The Upperclass Twit of the Year (@KevTheUprCTOTY) May 31, 2013
It’s the sheer numbers! That is one of the main reasons why Springtail infestations can be so annoying and frustrating. They come in large numbers, and they are not that easy to eradicate. Here are some of the main reasons why these little insects will have you tearing out your hair:
Springtails invade in the thousands: They swarm in their hundreds or thousands and they do so very quickly. Within a number of minutes, your home could become a complete mess especially when these insects get into their migratory mode. What makes it even worse, is that they tend to do so at the worst possible time.
Mostly during dinner when you have guests or on hot summer afternoons when you really need that swim in the pool. Let’s not even talk about those fine evenings when you just want to relax and maybe impress a lady friend with your brand new hot tub
Springtails are difficult to eradicate: No matter how much bug spray you use and no matter how residual the bug spray is, after two or three days, you will see yet another huge congregation of these insects in the very same place. The problem is that they come in very large numbers and unless you eliminate their hideouts or source, which you are not likely going to find in a hurry, then you will keep doing the same thing over and over while getting no permanent results.
Springtails are a good source of food for other insects: Yet another reason why you do not want these insects on your property is that they will attract other insects. Ants, cockroaches, beetles, and crickets all like to dine on springtails meaning that they too will invade your property while in the pursuit of this large cluster of food.
Not every pest control company is equipped to handle Springtail bugs: This is because these creatures are mainly misunderstood. Because they do not cause damage to your property, most pest control companies only use repellants to get rid of the visible Springtail bugs. This, as we have already discussed, does not cure the disease.
You need to find the source and eliminate that otherwise, they will just keep coming back. This is something that most pest control professionals are not willing to do because these habitats can be very well hidden.
That is why you need to hire a pest management professional who specializes in dealing with these kinds of infestations. Once you find someone who specifically deals with Springtail bugs, they will know exactly what to look for when trying to find the habitats. They will also give you some useful pointers on how to try to keep these buggers out of your home.
How to Control and Get Rid of Springtail Bugs in Your Backyard
The very first thing you need to know is that Springtails love moisture. So, your first line of defense is to identify all the moist areas in your yard and eliminate them. Once the water dries up, the springtails will pack up and find another source of moisture.
But because this might take a few days, or weeks, here are some other excellent tips on how to control or get rid of springtails in your backyard as well as home in general:
Determine Where They Are Nesting:
Unless you find their source, this whole thing will be an exercise in futility. When it comes to identifying Springtail nesting sites, there are two things you need to know: it will be somewhere damp and it will be very close to where you find huge clusters or pile-ups of these insects. Here is a list of some possible nesting sites that you may want to investigate:
- Under moist soil or mulch
- Around pool decks
- Under patio slabs
- Under wooden decks
- Under wood chips, logs, and pine straw
- Around your hot tub or Jacuzzi
- In wall voids and damp crawl spaces
- Under bathroom or kitchen sinks
- Under bathtubs
- Under linoleum
In short, any place that is prone to being moist is a good place to start.
Treat Multiple Sites at Once
Once you have identified several potential nesting grounds, you need to treat them all at the same time. Springtails are migratory and tend to form large clusters that seem to quickly replenish their numbers, as long as they still have nesting ground available. The best course of action is to try to eliminate as many nesting sites as possible all at once.
Reduce moisture: Moisture reduction should be your number one priority. Not only because it helps eradicate springtails but because it might save your property from water and mold damage overall. You can fix leaks, install more ventilation to dry up crawl spaces or mop up any stagnant water to keep the surface dry. You should also seal any areas that could be letting in moisture or rainwater such as leaky window sills.
Use your favorite insecticide: Although not as effective as professional pest control companies, you can use insecticides such as those at home improvement and gardening stores to treat all the identified possible nesting grounds.
What you need to realize is that some locations simply spraying your favorite insecticide on the surface will not do the trick. Places such as under concrete slabs in your patio or walkway require a bit more ingenuity to get the job done.
That is why it is always a good idea to contact a pest management professional once you suspect that you might have a Springtail bug infestation or an insect infestation of any kind. With insects, the fact that you are seeing one is always an indication of more just hiding and waiting to come out.
It is often best to get ahead of the problem and have it eradicated before it becomes a full-blown nuisance. Give us a call today if you have a Springtail infestation. We have the expertise, the manpower and the time to help you reclaim your home from these annoying vermin once and for all.