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2020 Will See More Rats and Mosquitoes, Says Western Exterminator

ANAHEIM, CA (December 10, 2019) - When it comes to pests, hindsight doesn't have to be 2020 in 2020. To help homeowners defend against pest infestation, Western Exterminator's entomologists have compiled these six pest predictions for the new year. 

A longer mosquito season. Disease-spreading mosquitoes species have surged in some Western states and are adapting to survive in drier climates, lengthening the mosquito season. 

Prevention tip: Remove standing water and have barrier treatments conducted on your property to reduce activity.

Year of the rat. In 2019, rat populations surged in major metropolitan areas. Expect that trend to continue and for rats to push outward into suburban areas. 

Prevention tip: Trim trees back away from buildings, seal exterior openings larger than ¼-inch with hardware cloth or metal, and ensure garbage cans have well-fitting lids.

Termite trouble. This year saw an uptick in subterranean and dampwood termite activity in many areas; if that trend continues in 2020, it could spell trouble for homeowners.

Prevention tip: Have a termite protection plan in place. Avoid wood-to-ground contact. Eliminate stumps, lumber, etc. from your yard. 

Meet the Turkestan cockroach. The Turkestan cockroach, first discovered in the U.S. in the 1970s, has flourished in the Southwest and Southeast and is now gaining a foothold in California. 

Prevention tip: These large cockroaches don't fly but can crawl inside, so seal cracks around windows or door frames, where pipes enter your home, and along the roofline. 

Increasing flies. Filth flies – house, bottle, and flesh flies – boomed in 2019. Increasing human populations, insufficient waste management, and a warming climate will bolster fly activity in 2020.

Prevention tip: Screen windows and doors. Keep trash at a distance from structures in cans with secure lids. Clean up pet waste in yard areas.

Don't fear orb weaver spiders. Increased flying insect activity means more food for orb weavers, large outdoor spiders that spin giant webs, giving a boost to their numbers. These spiders pose no threat to humans.

Prevention tip: Change your white outdoor light bulbs to yellow light bulbs, which attract fewer insects – and that may mean fewer spiders.

Use these predictions to review your pest control plan and be sure it offers the best protection against pests for your home, family, and pets.



Western Exterminator was founded in 1921 by Carl Strom in Los Angeles, California. Today, Western Exterminator has grown to more than 30 local offices across the Western U.S. In addition to general pest control, the company offers bed bug, termite control, integrated bird management, vegetation management, bioremediation, and TAP (thermal, acoustical, pest control) insulation services. Western Exterminator is part of Rentokil Steritech, a Rentokil North America company.