Bed bug

These insects are common across the globe. They live in buildings and are parasites to warm-blooded animal, that often feed on the blood of humans. When bed bugs exist in great numbers in an area (Such as a bedroom) they excrete a characteristic scent.

The adult insect has a strongly flattened, oval shaped, almost round body. The front wings are only potentially present and there are no rear wings. The females are about 4.5 – 8.5 mm long, the males are somewhat smaller on average. Bed bugs are read-brown in colour; when they have just consumed a blood meal, they are dark read and the abdomen is swollen.

Development and lifestyle
During the day, bed bugs hide under loose carpets, in all kinds of cracks in walls, window sills, furniture, beds, mattresses, behind loose wallpapers, in curtains, and even in switches and outlets of the light, shoes and garments, however mainly in the vicinity of the headboard of a bed. The eggs are stuck in the cracks of furniture, beds, walls, garments etc with the help of a water-soluble secretion. At room temperature, the eggs hatch after 15-22 days; after about 1.5 month the insects are mature. Except on people, they also parasitize on warm-blooded pats and lab animals and birds. At15 – 18’C the animals can survive over 6 months without food. When they get hungry they can travel relatively large distances looking for hosts. At a temperature below 15°C they hibernate, in which they can survive freezing temperatures for a long period of time. A heat treatment at temperatures exceeding 45°C for half an hour kills all stages of these bed bugs.

Bed bugs spread to adjacent houses via cracks and seems in walls or via pipe ducts. However they also spread via luggage, transport of used furniture and the use of scrap wood from buildings with bed bugs. In bed bug control, these aspects must be kept in mind. The result of their lifestyle is that, when the inventory of the house to be treated, as well as clothing, bedding etc, isn’t handled carefully, bed bugs can be spread easily. After detecting bed bugs, these goods should not be removed from the house of the area to be treated, before control measures have been taken. The pesticides should not come into contact with, for instance, toys. Toys must be stowed way prior to the control measures. When treating cabinets, toys can be packed in plastic bags. The control measures for these insects can best be carried out by professionals such as the EWS.

First it must be investigated to what extent the bed bugs have spread to adjacent buildings. After this inventory, the EWS can proceed to draw up the control plan (order of the treatment, control method to be applied and permitted substances etc) and the information provision to the parties involved. All nooks and crannies of beds, walls and floors as well as bedding and mattresses located in areas where bed bugs are found, must be treated with a permitted substance that leaves a residue (active substances such as deltamethrin, permethrin or cyfluthrin) after which the treated areas cannot be entered for two hours. After the control measures, the bedding must be washed or cleaned otherwise. Residents of the cleaned areas must be alert to bed bugs and must alert the PPD as soon as they are found. It is recommended to have checked after several weeks whether the treatment has led to a complete result and, if necessary, a follow-up treatment is required.


In the hot summer, especially in July/August, wasps can be a great nuisance to us. This almost always involves the German wasp (Paravespula germanica F.) or the common wasp (Paravespula vulgaris L).

In a well-developed wasp population, there can be 5000 individuals or more. Wasps can sting when cornered or when their nest is disrupted. Some people are so sensitive to wasp poison that they have to consult a doctor.

Wasps are bright yellow / black and slim. The workers are 10 – 15 mm. in size, whereas the queens are about 20 mm long. A striking characteristic is the so-called wasp waist.

These wasp species belong to the socially living insects. In the spring, the queen makes a nest, usually in the soil or on other shielded places, in sheds, wall cavities, hollow walls, under the roof etc. In the nest, the queen lays her eggs. This results in the larvae and after the pupate phase, the workers emerge.

The workers are female, infertile and provide the cleaning/maintenance/protection of the nest, and care for the larvae and provide food.

The queen remains in the nest to lay eggs. In August / September male wasps are born and subsequently new females, which are fertile (queens). They leave the nest to mate. The male wasps die almost immediately after breeding. The young fertilized females seek a sheltered place for overwintering to found a new colony in the spring.

Around October, all residents of the nest die. The old nest will no longer be inhabited.

Wasps need carbohydrates, sugars from nectar fr instance, honeydew; pulp and the juice of ripe fruits, liquid sweet food and sweets, such as lemonade, syrup etc.

For proteins, they will consume other insects, such as flies, mosquitoes, caterpillars, harvestmen, etc.

Wasps are useful animals, they provide the pollination of flowers and capture a lot of annoying and harmful insects. If the wasps do not pose a risk for people and pets they do not need to be exterminated.

A wasp sting can be painful. A worker will sting when the nest is about to be disrupted, when she is cornered or when you are in her flight path.

Place fly screens in front of open windows and doors;
Close waste bins and containers;
Prevent appealing food
Close holes/cracks in the winter
The wasps will always look for another way out and this may very well be inside your house.

When the wasp nest poses a threat, it can be exterminated by applying so-called wasp powder in the entrances and exits of the nest. This can be the opening of the nest, but also in the exterior wall of a building, such as ventilation openings of the hollow wall or holes near window frames.

The workers come into contact with the powder and take it into the nest through hairs and / or legs. This eventually kills the queen and all others, which will free you of the wasps.

You can do this yourself.
Please keep in mind that wasps are active during the day and can sting you. They will become particularly aggressive when one touches the nest. The best thing to do is to apply the power during dusk or during cool weather. Try not to stand in the flight path.

You can have it done for you.
The professional exterminator of EWS will come to your home and will check what treatment will be most effective. Based on this diagnosis, he will treat the nest. You will be given the guarantee that the nest is treated in a responsible manner and that this treatment works.


Like to be with your pet
Almost every dog or cat has a couple of fleas. Sometimes you will hardly notice it, but in hot weather, a flea can get thousands of offspring in four weeks, which will all start looking for food: blood! A flea plague in the house is almost always caused by the cat flea, which loves to drive its teeth in dogs or other pets as well.

The female puts her small white eggs in the basket of the pet or on the floor. The larvae that come from the eggs seek shelter in seams or cracks or under the edge of the carpet. The larvae eat organic material, which exists in dust. The larvae make a cocoon of their own saliva. After 8-14 days, the adult flea comes from its cocoon. Curious is that the if the cocoon remains absolutely undisturbed, the flea will remain in the cocoon, in a sort of sleeping state. This can last an entire year. This explains the massive attack of fleas when a building has been uninhabited for a long period of time or after a vacation when the house is entered by people or animals. An adult flea feeds on the blood of pets. The flea is a true jumping athlete, sometimes up to 30 cm. Sometimes the flea accidentally jumps on humans, which leads to skin irritation. It bites, but is picky, because it doesn’t like our blood.

How to get rid of them?
Try to keep your pets free of fleas. Animal welfare can advise you. The vacuum cleaner is the best weapon against the flea plague. Vacuum seams, cracks, but also along the plinths. When you leave the house for a long period of time, for instance because you’re going on a holiday, make sure to vacuum the house thoroughly and to destroy the contents of the dust bag. The nest or beds, mats or rugs but also the baskets of the pets should be cleaned and / or dusted frequently. You can also hang mats or rugs in the sun.

When the flea plague in your house persists, you can call the Plagen Preventie Dienst (PPD) to take care of it. In this, you are asked to thoroughly vacuum before the appointment. If you have an aquarium, you must shut down the air pump and cover the aquarium. The entire house is given an anti-flea treatment. You and your fellow residents and pets must leave the house for a period of two hours to avoid any health risks. If you return after two hours, you must properly ventilate the house. Open all windows and doors against each other. Do not vacuum for a couple of days to allow the agent to do its work. Before you enter the house again, make sure to free your pet of fleas as well.


Sleepless nights because of buzzing mosquitoes that love to drink your blood, are not uncommon in the Dutch summers. The result: itchy mosquito bites that can cause nasty skin irritations and sometimes even diseases. Mosquitoes are active during the times you would like to sleep: at night. The females are attracted by the perspiration on your skin and sting. Ammonia at the place of the sting reduces pain and itchiness. The males will not bother you, they mainly feed on plant juices.

Mosquitoes are the most common pest in your house from the early spring to late fall. The mosquito larvae develop in shallow and stagnant water. They multiply at lightning speed and are mainly during the summer a huge plague for everyone. The fertilized females overwinter in basements and in other shielded, moist places.

In all places where what remains longer than a week, mosquitoes can develop. Make sure these places are dry, including buckets, flower pots, gutters etc. Repair leakage. Keep windows and doors closed at night or fit them with insect screens. In ponds, use fish as the natural enemy. During the day, properly ventilate the rooms. Rub bare skin with mosquito repellent.

Dog tick

The dog tick originates from Africa, but is now very common in the tropics and sub tropics, such as in the Mediterranean. The species is also very common in the United States of America (brown dog tick). In our country they were imported in the sixties with dogs. This tick species clearly prefers dogs and is not able to sustain itself with humans. In the Netherlands, their life cycle is entirely indoors.

Imago: 8 legs; red brown colour; about 8 mm long in engorged state and they blue grey in colour. Nymphs: 8 legs and red-brown, dark grey in engorged state. Larvae: 6 legs; blue in engorged state.

Incomplete metamorphosis Egg stadium: eggs are dropped in seams and cracks of ceiling by the female tick after fertilization. These ticks tend to crawl upwards. A female can drop 1000-3000 eggs in her lifetime.   Larvae stadium: after 19 to 60 days (Depending on temperature and humidity) small, 6-legged larvae come out of the eggs. These larvae are actively on the lookout for food, and attach to a dog as soon as they get the opportunity. In 3-6 days, the larvae fill themselves with blood, after which they drop themselves and hide in cracks and seams.   Nymph stadium: after the blood meal, the larvae moult in 6-23 days into 8-legged nymphs. After several days of inactivity, the nymphs attach to dogs and engorge themselves with blood for a period of 4 to 9 days. After this blood meal they leave the host and hide.   Nymphs moult in 12 to 29 days into adult ticks after the food intake.   Adult ticks are very active when they are disturbed. They look for a host, attach themselves to them and stay there for 6 to 50 days. After a blood meal, the egg production is initiated in the female. Lifespan up to several years.   Hunger period up to 200 days.

Dog ticks almost don’t exist in the free nature in our country, but they do exist where dogs live. In the Netherlands, they can survive in heated buildings. In houses: hidden in seams and cracks of walls, behind plinths, under facades, ceiling edges. Food: blood of dogs; sometimes these ticks live on rats and mice.

In exceptional cases, the dog tick can choose people as its host. This tick species can transmit diseases in different parts of the world (from dog to dog); these illnesses include the rickettsioses with which people can be infected as well.

Mainly via the dog, which can easily pick up the dog tick in objects where it is hiding. Also during vacation around the Mediterranean Sea, in caravans, tents etc.

Frequent inspection for the presence of ticks on or near the dog. After detection of these ticks, the veterinarian should be consulted.

There are substances on the market to eliminate ticks on dogs, based on propoxur among other things. In houses where these ticks are found, the house – after inventory of the object – should be sprayed with substances based on deltamethrin, permethrin or cyfluthrin. The attic should not be forgotten in this. Inspection after the extermination action is desired; if necessary, a second treatment can be initiated. In addition, the objects visited by the dogs must be inspected.

Dust mites

The dust mite is very common in the Netherlands in houses, company buildings etc. Until about 1900, the dust mite was only found in tanned hides, but since the sixties, they are also often found in house dust, mattresses and upholstered sofas and chairs.

The dust mite feeds on flakes of human skin. A temperature of 25 degrees is ideal for the dust mite, so the invention of central heating and home insulation benefit it greatly. In addition, 50-75 % humidity is desired. Usually, the dust mite exists in a house in acceptable numbers. Depending on the above-mentioned factors, these numbers can grow significantly however.

In recent years, we have learned that a great portion of the increase of allergic reactions in people (such as asthma) is caused by the dust mite. Mainly the droppings and moult skin of the dust mite cause this. About 10% of the population is hypersensitive to the dust mite. Allergic individuals may suffer from eczema.

It is important to keep the humidity below 50% This is very unpleasant for the dust mites. They dryer (humidity) must have a drain that goes outside. In addition, furniture and upholstery should be as dust-free as possible. The room must be ventilate frequently and organic materials in mattresses, insulation areas and flooring must be limited where possible.

With the help of a test available at the pharmacy, it is possible to detect dust mite, as well as where the largest concentration is and whether control and / or prevention is necessary.

Pesticides usually have no lasting effect against dust mite. However, mite control can help manage the population, which reduces the nuisance to a minimum. The most important is however to carry out the prevention measures after the control measures. This helps you manage toe population after it has been reduced to an acceptable size.


Bees are common in all of the Netherlands. Usually these are the so-called honey bees (Apis mellifera L.). These honey bees are very useful for the cross-pollination of plants and cultivated plants. After all, the food of the bee is pollen and nectar of flowers. Flying from flower to flower, they provide the cross pollination. The collection of honey in particular is an activity of which humans benefit greatly.
The queen produces the offspring. Once enough young queens have developed in the nest, the old queen leaves the nest with part of the bee population, to look for a new home. The entire bee population, with the exception of the males, remains in their hive/nest throughout the cold winter months. In the fall, the males are killer or chased out of the hive. That is the period in which no fertilization takes place, causing the men to be obsolete.
The bee population lives in colonies and can house themselves in the most unlikely places. When you find a swarm, the best thing to do is to call EWS, which will remove and relocate the entire nest, where possible. Only when this is not possible and the bees cause nuisance, insecticides are used. In principle, bees are not dangerous to people. They will defend themselves however when attacked.
Expert help
The professional exterminator of EWS will come to your home and will check what treatment will be most effective. Based on this diagnosis, he will treat the nest. You will be given the guarantee that the nest is treated in a responsible manner and that this treatment works.

Brown-banded cockroach

The brown-banded cockroach often has a maroon colour and a light transverse stripe on the breastplate and abdomen. In terms of appearance they look a lot like the German cockroach. They are about 10 to 15 mm long, excluding their antennas, the wings are well-developed and they can fly. The egg package is pale to red-brown in colour and contains about 16 eggs on average.

What causes cockroaches?
The cockroaches that occur in buildings originate from the tropics and can hide in the packaging of tropical products. In addition, cockroaches can be found in packing boxes, boxes from the supermarket, second-hand goods / household appliances and eve rented videotapes. Cockroaches can also simply ‘hitch-hike’ with clothes or luggage, for instance after the vacation.

In the Netherlands, the brown-banded cockroach is often found in houses and apartment buildings. Another name for the brown-banded cockroach is the house cockroach or furniture cockroach. They need a high temperature of about 26 C°. Like all cockroaches they are undesired, because they contaminate food and can transmit bacteria and fungal spores. They spread an unpleasant odour and are a big nuisance due to the great numbers in which they can exist.

Brown Banded Cockroaches can move very quickly, even across the ceiling, walls and other surfaces. They are less light-shunning than the other species and also live in dryer and higher places. They prefer to feed on food that is rich in starch. In addition, the brown-banded cockroach likes to eat the glue in books and, for instance, of wallpaper. Shelters can be behind paintings, wallpaper, books and in furniture. They can even survive in a clean, hygienic environment. The reason for this is that adult cockroaches can last 40 days without food! If your house is very dirty, the cockroach will thrive and reproduce very quickly due to the abundance of food.

Prevention: How do I repel the cockroach?
Check your goods for cockroaches before you take them into your home; Properly ventilate your house and don’t raise the temperature too high. The cockroach is comfortable at a temperature of 26 C°.   Store your food and waste properly so that cockroaches can’t reach them.   If you use canisters, that prevents other vermin to reach your food as well. Clean your kitchen frequently and thoroughly. Seal cracks, seams and conduit openings of pipes.

After a thorough inspection and inventory of the relevant object, a control plan is drawn up. In consultation with users / residents of the building time of action, preparation etc are agreed on. To kill the cockroaches, a bait gel is applied which will be applied to all possible hiding places. These substances, which are permitted by the government, can only be used by control professionals. The people involved will be informed in advance of the measures to be taken.

Pharaoh ant

The Pharaoh ant is an ant species that originates from the tropics, but was introduced to the Netherlands around 1900. After 1945 in particular, their numbers have increased greatly, due to the application of central heating in buildings, and today they are present throughout the country.

Like almost all ants, pharaoh ants are social insects, and live in so-called states. Within an ant state, there is a clear division of tasks: The queens provide the reproduction and they lay the eggs, the workers (infertile females) provide the food and take care of the larvae and the males inseminate the queens.

Workers 2.2 to 2.6mm. Brown-yellow with a dark coloured abdomen. Queens 3.5 to 4,8mm. Brown-yellow with a dark coloured head. Males 2.8 to 3.1mm. Black-brown with pale yellow legs and antennas, winged. Larvae don’t have legs and are white..

Pharaoh ants feel most comfortable at a temperature of about 30 degrees C and – in the Netherlands – only live indoors. Per population, they have several nests that can often be found at warm places, such as in the vicinity of furnaces, radiators and ovens. They are omnivores and can be found in bread, sugar, dog food and other food, but they prefer meats.

Per nest, Pharaoh ants can have up to 400 queens that can live up to 9 months, by which they will have laid about 300 eggs.

They can be a great nuisance in kitchens and other areas and they can transmit pathogens.

Prevention / control
The only way to fend off Pharaoh ants is to carefully check goods received and to store food in properly closed pots and canisters.

If the presence of pharaoh ants is detected it is important to initiate control measures as soon as possible to prevent them from spreading further. For effective ant control it is necessary to kill all queens, but sprays will not reach the nests. Only the bait method, in which the workers take the bait to the nest, allows for killing both the adult ants and the larvae.

To carry out a control action based on the bait method, you can contact EWS.

Grass fly

This fly species is much smaller than the previous two species. Grass flies are about 3 mm long and have a yellow body with three black stripes at the top of the breast shield. The somewhat rounded wings are fairly large in proportion to the body. The female of these species lay their eggs in the soil in meadows etc. The larvae parasitize on certain types of aphids. The grass fly too has the habit of overwintering in buildings en mass. They seem to prefer church towers.

Prevention / control
To prevent a fly plague in the fall, it must first be made impossible to enter the building; screens in front of windows and doors, weather stripping, sealing holes and cracks in exterior walls and sealing ventilation openings with fine mesh. The (partial) removal of creepers can help as well. Because grass flies prefer ivy and Virginia creeper. Sealing is not always effective. The flies can also enter a building through the roof riles.

If there already is a fly plage, there are different methods to resolve it. If the cluster place of the flies is tracked and well-accessible, the swarm can be removed using a vacuum cleaner. In the spring, it is often enough to open windows against each other. Sometimes the cluster place is hard to reach or inaccessible. In that case, an insecticide is required. EWS can advise you on this.

If, regardless of all control measures taken, the flies keep returning every year, EWS can carry out a preventive treatment early in the fall, with a residual-acting insecticide. The agent is sprayed in seems and cracks, on and near entrances of the flies and – optionally – on walls and frames.