Infestation Signs: Identify Australian Household Bugs and Rodents

Suspect you have an unwanted house guest?  How do you know if it’s time to call in Brisbane City Pest Control?  Brisbane’s warm, sultry climate attracts household bugs and rodents so there’s every chance you’ve got a creepy crawly infestation.  Don’t panic!  The first step is to identify the kind of pest infestation you’re dealing with so you can figure out the best way to get rid of your household pests.

Here are the signs of household bugs and rodents common to Brisbane (we apologise for how itchy you’ll feel reading our household bug identifier list!).  Don’t see your particular signs of infestation listed?  Don’t worry Brisbane City Pest Control is here to help.

Pest ID – Rodent and Household Bug Identifier

Signs of Rat Infestation

In Brisbane, rat infestations tend to happen in ceilings, walls, gardens, and commercial spaces.

Signs of Rat Infestation

  • Scratching sound in ceiling or walls
  • Rough edged gnaw marks on food packaging, walls, and other surfaces
  • Urine smell
  • Clumps of shredded paper and fabrics used as a nest

What does rat poo look like?

Fresh rat poo is dark and moist, approximately a centimetre long, jellybean shaped with smooth edges.  It becomes “rougher” in appearance as it ages.  It is smaller and smoother than possum poo.

Signs of Mice Infestation

Mice infestations can take place in your house, ceilings, walls, gardens, and commercial spaces. 

Signs of Mouse Infestation

  • Scratching sound in ceiling or walls 
  • Small gnaw marks on food and food packaging. 
  • Small gnaw holes in walls 
  • Urine smell  
  • Clumps of shredded paper and fabrics used as a nest

What does mouse poo look like?

Mouse poo is dark (commonly black) and dry, approximately half a centimetre long, rice shaped with smooth edges.  It becomes “rougher” in appearance as it ages.  It looks almost identical to wild black rice.

Signs of Ant Infestation

Ant infestation is very common in Brisbane.  Infestations can take place in your house, ceilings, walls, gardens – everywhere! 

Signs of Ant Infestation

  • Ants everywhere, especially around small holes in walls and ceilings – ants are among the most visible pests
  • Ant “dust” on floors, especially around small holes in floors, walls, and ceilings
  • Insect wings around doors and windows 
  • Piles of soil or dirt (ant nest) 

What does ant dust look like?

Ant dust is small piles of sand-like dust created by ant poo and by-product of ants gnawing a pathway through your home.  Ant dust is finer than termite dust but should be investigated immediately. 

Signs of Bed Bug Infestation

Bed Bugs are among the most annoying and difficult pests to be rid of.  Bed bugs usually arrive with houseguests who have stayed in an infested hotel and can take months to properly infest your home. 

Signs of Bed Bug Infestation

  • Small black beetle like bugs in, and under beds. 
  • Tiny drops of blood or bed bug poo on your sheets 
  • Itchy, inflamed bites, often in clusters, often (but not always) on your upper body – bed bugs are likely blind and gravitate to the smell of your breath

What does bed bug poo look like?

Bed bug poo looks like clusters of small reddish brown smudge marks on your sheets.  

Signs of Cockroach Infestation

Brisbane is synonymous with cockroaches.  Big flying cockroaches.  Little cockroaches.  Brisbane has cockroach infestations everywhere.

Signs of Cockroach Infestation

  • Scattering cockroaches when you turn on a light
  • Cockroach poo in moist areas or areas near where food is stored or disposed of
  • Small, rough bite marks in food
  • Bean shaped brown “egg cases” about half a centimetre long
  • Cockroach poop in damp areas or areas, around food storage or bins.

What does cockroach poo look like?

Cockroach poo can resemble coffee grounds or look like dark brown smudges.  You’ll often find it in “clusters” and while usually rough and cylindrical in shape, different species of cockroach leave different sized, shaped and coloured droppings.

Signs of Flea Infestation

You’ll likely find fleas in bare dirt areas like under your home, in carpets, curtains, soft furnishings, pet bedding and your bedding.    

Signs of Flea Infestation

  • Flea bites, often but not always on your legs that are small, round and intensely itchy 
  • Visible fleas (approximately 1-2 millimetres long, dark brown in appearance) 
  • Pets scratching incessantly

What does flea poo look like?

Referred to as “flea dirt” you may notice very small, round, reddish black “pebbles” in your pet’s fur.  Flea droppings are very small so difficult to spot in carpets and furnishings. 

Signs of Silverfish Infestation

Silverfish are grey in colour, are 1-2 centimetres in length and look very much like a very small Moreton Bay Bug. They prefer dark, humid areas.  They love food like cereal so keep an eye out for damage to cereal boxes. 

Signs of Silverfish Infestation

  • “Chewed” paper, cardboard, or clothing (generally natural fibres) 
  • Shed “skin” – silverfish shed their outer layer and you may find semi-translucent “shells” or brown smudges where the layer has been shed
  • Yellow stains around damaged paper or material

What does silverfish poo look like?

Silverfish poo is similar in size to cockroach poo but generally a lighter colour.  Silverfish poo resembles small sesame seeds and will usually be found in clusters around damaged paper or material. 

Signs of Spider Infestation

Not all spiders pose a threat to humans and pets. In fact, most Brisbane spiders are very effective pest controllers, eating everything from flies to cockroaches.  The kind of spider infestation you have will determine the best treatment option.  

Signs of Spider Infestation

  • Most, but not all spiders have webs. The most common Brisbane spider is the huntsman, it doesn’t build webs. They’re big and hairy, but not dangerous
  • Small tight webs in concealed areas or large expansive webs across paths or near lights 
  • Because there are so many species of spider, some helpful, some deadly, it’s best you don’t investigate too much, simply call in Brisbane City Pest Control to advise

What does spider poo look like?

It all depends on the spider!  Generally, a tiny splatter of dark droplets (in white, grey, brown or black) could be a red flag that a spider has been past. 

Signs of Termite Infestation

Unfortunately, there may not be any sign until it’s too late and these bitey little blighters have done significant damage to your home.  They love timber homes and prefer a humid environment.  Brisbane is the perfect habitat for termites. 

Signs of Termite Infestation

  • Mud-like tubes, lumps or trails around cracks or holes in your walls, floors or exteriors 
  • Softening of building materials, usually but not always, wood.  The damaged materials may look cracked, discoloured, buckled, bubbly, sagged, blistered, flakey or have developed holes
  • Floors may be excessively squeaky or have hollow sounding “softer patches”
  • Swarms of flying insects or ‘mud tubes” around trees in your yard. 

What does early termite damage look like?

Unfortunately, you often don’t know you have termites until they’ve done considerable damage.  Regular termite treatments are the best way to avoid massive damage bills. 

Signs of Wasp Infestation

Wasps are usually found in gardens, sheds, garages and on exterior walls. The most common wasps in Brisbane are paper wasps and varieties of mud wasps.  Around the coast you may also find sand wasps.  

Signs of Wasp Infestation

  • Small clay-like tubes in the mortar of brickwork (often with a small exit point hole) 
  • Dangling “paper like” nests with honeycomb style chambers
  • Some wasps will cause damage to timber

What to do if you see a wasp nest 

Different kinds of wasps build different nests but most Brisbane wasps pack quite the sting.  Attempting to destroy a wasps’ nest may well anger said wasps. Best to leave them be and call in Brisbane City Pest Control to handle the problem.

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