10 Most Common Pests in the Carolinas

10 Most Common Pests in the Carolinas

Life in the Carolinas is intricately tied to the beauty of the great outdoors. From spring through fall, our weather is perfect for getting out and exploring nature. Even during winter, it is usually warm enough to spend at least some time outside. When it’s cold enough to snow, you can find the entire neighborhood gathered around the sledding hill from morning till night. 

Unfortunately, sometimes the outdoors gets inside our homes. Bugs and pests crawl, fly, and worm their way into our houses and can bother our families. Some of these pests can cause harm to people and damage to your property. No one wants to find their homes infested with our least favorite part of the outdoors. 


Before we divulge this list, we want you to know if you have an infestation of any of these pests, we can help. Here are some of the most common pests in the Carolinas and what you can do about them. 

Ten of the Most Common Pests in the Carolinas

1) Spiders 

There are approximately 700 species of spiders in the Carolinas. Many of them look frightening but are relatively harmless. There are, however, four types of spiders that can invade our homes and actually cause us harm:

  • Brown Recluses: The most hazardous spiders in our region, without a doubt, are these. Although they tend to live alone, if you locate one, there may be many. You must contact us right away. 
  • Black Widows: These spiders lurk in your home's dark, unfriendly spaces. They should be taken out as soon as possible since they are quite dangerous. They can be identified by their red spot and black hue.
  • False Black Widows: If you see one of them, you probably want it gone, whether it is a real black widow or not. Despite not being as venomous as black widows, they are nevertheless potent.
  • Yellow Sac Spiders: Even though these spiders are the least venomous on our list, you still do not want to have them around your house. These spiders need to be eliminated as soon as possible.

2) Mosquitoes

While these pests are not necessarily the most dangerous, they are among the most annoying. 

The word “mosquito” is the Spanish word for “little fly.” There are 3,500 species of mosquitoes in the world. There are about 1,700 species in North America.” 

Mosquitoes can carry harmful diseases and pass them on to us. Unfortunately, you’re likely to have at least a few of these insects around your home; if you have an infestation, you are going to want them exterminated as soon as possible. 

3) Ants

There are ants everywhere. Some ants are just annoying, but carpenter ants can actually damage your home. If you find that there are soft spots in your floors, mysterious holes, hollow areas in walls, or damage to wood furniture, you may have a carpenter ant infestation. You do not want to delay dealing with this type of ant.

Fire ants react to disruptions quickly and violently, and ant assaults can cause harm to your family when attacked. A single fire ant can repeatedly sting its prey. Young animals and people are more vulnerable to the poison of ant stings. When they build their mounds in your yard, it poses a risk to pets and people alike. 

Among the most common pests in the Carolinas, ants aren’t just annoying; they can pose a threat to your family and property. 

4) Cockroaches 

There are few pests that invoke such a visceral reaction as cockroaches. While they do not carry a venomous bite or pose a direct threat to the structural integrity of your home, they are dirty and carry harmful bacteria. There are several types of cockroaches in the Carolinas:

  • American Cockroach: This is one of the most common types of North American cockroaches. One of the most despised creatures on the earth is these swift, brownish-black bugs. They reproduce fast and survive longer than most roaches, which makes issues worse.
  • Smoky Brown Cockroach: While Charlotte area residents and business owners may encounter these reddish-brown roaches more often than in the most northern parts of our area. 
  • Brown-Banded Cockroach: You could see brown-banded roaches in your living room and bedroom since they don't need as much moisture to survive. They may be identified by their wings and light brown tint.
  • Pennsylvania Wood Cockroach: These roaches, whose name would lead you to assume they are only found in Pennsylvania, spend most of their time outside in and around wooded areas or firewood heaps. However, they could be drawn to lights and food and enter your house or place of business through trash cans or firewood.
  • Flying Cockroaches: Some cockroaches can use their wings to fly for brief distances, which makes them even more disgusting. They could fly right into your home if they notice the light or think there is food on your land.

Cockroaches can be challenging to eradicate. Cockroaches have been known to withstand extreme temperatures and can go without air for over half an hour. 

5) Stink Bugs

There are many annoying pests, but stink bugs may stand and smell above all the rest. They annoyingly buzz around you and your family, but if you annoy them, they will fire off their stinky defense mechanism. They seem to arise out of nowhere, infiltrate every area of your house, and are challenging to get rid of. The key to fighting back is prevention:

  • Seal entry areas: caulk cracks, replace storm windows, replace weather sealing, etc.
  • Leave lights near doors off as much as possible
  • Store food in airtight bags
  • Check clothes and belongings before entering your home
  • Keep branches, shrubbery, and firewood away from your doors and windows
  • Don’t crush them. They emit an odor that can attract others

If you already have stink bugs, you may need professional help getting rid of them

6) Bed Bugs

One of the most important traditions Carolinians enjoy is traveling through the state and region, exploring all that makes our area special. Unfortunately, there is a type of bug that punishes our wanderlust - bed bugs. They attach to our clothes and bags, quietly waiting until we get home to attack. 

You could have bed bugs if you wake up with itching and swollen areas that you didn't have before bedtime. Additional indications that you may have bed bugs include:

  • Your pillowcases or sheets have bloodstains.
  • You see bed bug feces leave behind dark or rusty patches on sheets, mattresses, bed linens, and walls.
  • Bed bug feces stains, eggshells, or shed skin in bed insect hiding places
  • You smell a musty stench emanating from the bug's smell glands.

Bed bugs are a problem in your home. You need to make sure they are completely exterminated. 

7) Ticks

Ticks are one of the tiniest and most fearsome pests in the Carolinas

“A tick is a parasite. That means it survives by biking and sucking the life out of its host. Until they find a host, they prefer to hide and lay in wait in cool, damp places like tall grass, woodpiles, garden beds, pine needles, and shrubs and trees.”

If it is attached for 36 hours or more, the likelihood of it transmitting Lyme Disease or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever increases considerably. Ticks can be dangerous for your pest as well. Here are some of the ways you can try to prevent ticks from being on your property:

  • Cut Your Grass: When you stroll around the yard, ticks wait for you in the thick grass and attach to your jeans. Throughout the spring, summer, and fall, keep your lawn short.
  • Trim Your Shrubbery: Ticks can sit patiently in the shrubbery, ready to attack. Trim your shrubs and hedges regularly. Make sure their leaves don't come too close to your deck, porch, or house.
  • Make Room for Sunshine: Ticks like shaded, cool places. If your land receives enough sunlight, ticks won't thrive there.
  • Develop a Line of Defense: Create a natural barrier around your yard with gravel or wood chips. These locations will be hot and dry, making it more difficult for ticks to move about.
  • Plant Smelly Plants: Marigolds, lavender, and lemon balm all give forth enough smell to keep ticks away from your house.

8) House Flies

The house fly and other varieties of "filth flies" are a nuisance to people and animals, but they can be harmful as they can spread illnesses like food poisoning and dysentery. House flies are annoying and common in Carolina homes. 

9) Termites

We’ve saved one of the worst, most common pests for last - termites. Subterranean termites and drywood termites are the two most typical forms of termites you'll encounter. It's critical to recognize the type of termite you are dealing with since they may need various forms of treatment.

If you suspect a termite infestation, start checking your attic, holes, and cracks in your home. 

  • Hollow Wood: If your wood sounds hollow when you tap or bang on it, which is a very good indication that termites are present. Take a screwdriver and push it into your wood for more provocation. It's not a good indication if it yields easily.
  • Mud Tubes: In order to go from the wood they consume to the earth, subterranean termites construct their own transportation system using mud tubes. You could have termites if you see tiny entrance holes in mud tubes constructed of earth and wood.
  • Swarm Evidence: They shed their wings, frequently in heaps, as subterranean termites start new colonies. Termites may be to blame if you observe a lot of broken wings.
  • Frass: Dry wood termites excrete dry, pellet-shaped waste that resembles sawdust or sand because they feed on dry wood. You could have a termite infestation if you notice tiny termite droppings on your door frames, baseboards, and windowsills.

If you have even the slightest suspicion termites are present in your home, you need to have them exterminated immediately

10) Mice

While the rest of this list dealt primarily with insects and arachnids, this final common pest on the list is a mammal that is an obnoxious opportunist. Mice like to invade warm, dry shelters (e.g., your attic, basement, or kitchen!) ahead of the cold months and make themselves comfy.

Mice can carry harmful bacteria and diseases into your home and make your family less safe. If you have a mouse problem, you can’t just let them turn your house into their home. 

What to Do about Common Pests

When the Carolinas’ most common pests are present in your home, you need them gone as quickly as possible. Rid-a-Bug has decades of experience exterminating common and uncommon pests in the Carolinas. We respond within 24 hours and help you correct whatever attracted the pests to your home in the first place. Contact Rid-A-Bug Exterminating for fast, thorough extermination today!