Photo: Aaron Marsh/ Fleet Owner
Spider at sunset by Aaron G. Marsh

It's Pest Management Month. Do you know where your critters are?

April 26, 2018
Verizon Connect tracks pest control fleet activity to zero in on the services they provide

Seems like there's a month for everything. But this one makes some sense: in spring, just as the mercury and humidity prepare to climb, it's National Pest Management Month. You might not realize just how much pest control fleets get up to — and where.

To find out, fleet management company Verizon Connect pulled together 2017 data from its customers providing pest control services and sampled data from more than 5,500 of their vehicles. It turns out they covered 85.3 million miles on their routes and made 7.8 million stops for clients.

And a majority of those were in the South, where you'll find hotter, stickier climates just perfect for pest activity. Some 62% of the nation's bug and rodent issues were in the South, while the West had a 17% share of pest problems. The Northeast and Midwest were about even and had smaller numbers, with 11% and 10%, respectively.

The top six states for pest control services were Florida, Georgia, Texas, California, Arizona and Alabama. States from Arizona to California and Texas to Florida combined accounted for fully half of the nation's pest activity. 

Breaking down specific pests, however, each of those states had its particular offenders:

—Florida's biggest problems were with termites, fleas and spiders.

—For Georgia, it was ticks, termites and stink bugs.

—Texas battles its termites, beetles and ants with the usual Texas fervor.  

—California has to deal most with ants, termites and cockroaches.

—In Arizona, watch out for those termites, ants and scorpions. 

—And in Alabama, the most common "pests" weren't just pesky, they're a good way to end up sick or six feet under if you get a little too close. There, pest control fleets dealt most with black widow spiders, cottonmouth snakes and rattlesnakes.

About the Author

Aaron Marsh

Before computerization had fully taken hold and automotive work took someone who speaks engine, Aaron grew up in Upstate New York taking cars apart and fixing and rewiring them, keeping more than a few great jalopies (classics) on the road that probably didn't deserve to be. He spent a decade inside the Beltway covering Congress and the intricacies of the health care system before a stint in local New England news, picking up awards for both pen and camera.

He wrote about you-name-it, from transportation and law and the courts to events of all kinds and telecommunications, and landed in trucking when he joined FleetOwner in July 2015. Long an editorial leader, he was a keeper of knowledge at FleetOwner ready to dive in on the technical and the topical inside and all-around trucking—and still turned a wrench or two. Or three. 

Aaron previously wrote for FleetOwner. 

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