Tuscon’s 4 Most Harmful Pests

Tuscon is one of the best places to own a home in the continental United States. Home prices grow more quickly than in many other regions. The weather keeps maintenance cheap and easy. And it’s a great place to live.

Unfortunately, the same climate that attracts humans attracts harmful pests that can turn that cheap and easy maintenance into a costly repair. Be on the lookout for these four Most Unwanted in the Tucson area, so you can call pest control before the can establish a foothold.

Tucson’s Harmful Pests:


Contrary to popular belief, bedbugs don’t only nest in mattresses that aren’t kept clean. They turn up in 5­star resorts just as often as they appear in third­world countries. The only advantage developed nations have is nearby exterminators who know how to get rid of them. Although bedbug bites are usually only annoying, some people can experience severe allergic reactions that put them in the hospital.

Look for bite marks on the face, arms and neck, and for rusty­colored spots on your sheets as early warning signs that bedbugs have made a home in your house.

Pack Rats

Pack Rats build nests up to 5 feet high housing dozens of individuals, a tribe of rodents that can gnaw through your walls, studs, wiring and even plastic plumbing to cause extensive damage. They will ruin food supplies, and their bites can spread a variety of diseases. In Tucson and other desert environs, their feces can contain the deadly Hanta virus.

Pack rats leave telltale gnaw marks and fecal pellets in their wakes. Since they’re active at night, these will be your first visible evidence of a pack rat infestation.


Termites live in every climate and every continent (except Antarctica), but thrive in the dry, reliable climate of Tucson and other parts of the Southwest Desert. According to the National Pest Management Association, they cause $5 billion in property damage each year. Though it would take a single termite more than 3,000 years to eat all the wood in a single 1,000­square­foot home, there are typically far more than 3,000 termites in a single nest.

Look carefully at any signs of water damage in and around your home. In Tucson’s dry climate, what looks like water damage is often the first indication of serious termite trouble. If you wait until termite damage is obvious before calling pest control, the infestation will be full blown and extremely costly.


Cockroaches in Tucson aren’t the refrigerator moving monstrosities you’ll find in Florida or Malaysia, but they love the warm summers and can be a serious pest if not controlled. They cause damage in three major ways: by spreading disease, exacerbating allergies, and by eating and laying eggs in your food.

The good news is cockroaches leave tell­tale signs of infestation all over their feeding grounds. Look for feces, egg casings and dead roaches by day, and listen for the scuttling of their feet at night.

Pest control is a year ­round job in Tucson, because pests love the same weather you do. If you see any of the hints and signs of these harmful pests and possible infestation in your home, call your Tucson pest control pros at Essential Pest Control.

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