Providing Springtail Control to Seattle, Olympia, Tacoma, Bremerton & Puyallup.
Often, one of the questions we get with regard to these occasional invaders is:
“I have hundreds of very small ’bugs’ in my house. They hop around like fleas but I don’t have any pets – what are these?”
They’re springtails, and in the pest control world, they’re considered to be a “nuisance pest” – a pest that generally does not cause economic damage like termites, carpenter ants or major food pests and doesn’t bite people or pets. Although they’re just considered to be a nuisance pest, for the average homeowner they can be a tremendous hassle. We’ve seen infestations numbering in the hundreds or thousands inside a home.
If you think you may have a problem with springtails and want some help, contact us. We’ve solved many difficult springtail infestations and can solve yours as well!
Frequently Asked Questions About Springtails
So what are Springtails, and how can they become a problem?
Springtails are tiny insects, with the adults ranging from 1/32 to 1/8 of an inch in length. They get their common name from the fact that most species have a spring-like structure attached to them that allows them to jump. For example, a 3/16 inch springtail can jump 3-4 inches. Because of this jumping behavior, they’re often mistaken for a flea infestation. Springtails, however, DO NOT BITE.
Springtails’ natural habitat is humid areas. They must live in humid areas because their bodies rapidly lose moisture through their cuticles. They feed on decaying vegetation, bacteria, fungi and algae. Most springtail species occur in the soil and decaying vegetation and in enormous numbers – such as up to 50,000 individuals per one cubic foot in forest vegetation. They will invade a home or other building when their habitat outside becomes dry and they are in search of moisture. They will often be inadvertently brought inside as well via potted plants. Once inside, they’ll seek out the more humid areas of a building – bathrooms, kitchens, damp crawl spaces, basements, and damp wall voids. They’re also attracted to light and will commonly end up in window sills.
How do you avoid getting these inside your home or business?
In the majority of cases, Springtails can be controlled by following these pointers:
- It’s important not to overwater plants inside or outside. Allow plants to dry out between each watering.
- Many homes and businesses have sprinkler systems in the landscape, and the sprinkler heads should be pointed away from buildings.
- Bark mulch around a building outside is a huge attractant for springtails – it must be allowed to dry out as much as possible if not avoided altogether.
- Firewood should be stacked well away from a building.
- Fallen leaves or needles should be cleaned up regularly.
- Any moisture or mold issues inside a building must be rectified in order to discourage springtail infestations. This includes permanently fixing high humidity or mold/mildew issues in kitchens, bathrooms or any other room of the building.
- Any moldy or mildewed bedding, mattresses, couches, stuffed chairs, etc. must be replaced