We came across a very unusual pine tree ant infestation. The resident of a house in Sonora, on Villas Lane, had been gone a week, and when he came back, found his kitchen floor covered with a fluffy, dusty material.
Examination revealed an infestation by pine tree ants, and oddly, these ants were attacking the insulation around a couple of kitchen appliances, an oven and a dishwasher. Typically these ants excavate in soft wood, such as rotted parts of pine trees, and Celotex ceiling insulation. I’d not seen them try to nest in appliance insulation.
The ants had a handy food source, about 20 feet from the appliances: a hummingbird feeder on the front porch.
23 June 2020
Jason Price brought in samples of drugstore beetles infesting a bathroom in a house in Valley Springs, Calaveras County, California. This is unusual, indicating a food source in that area. The problem started, to my knowledge, at least in May of 2020.
It turns out that this house had a bad mouse infestation in the rent past (prior to the new owners), and we are now going to search for rodent bait or a rodent cache in this area, beneath or within the wall there.
22 June 2020.
Ryles Richards brought in samples of an unusual ant he saw at a home in Pine Mountain Lake, Groveland, California. He said the ants were very fast and ran in erratic paths, not following trails. We took photos and sent them to Dr. Philip Ward for ID. Based on these photos, he thinks they might be Formica aerata.
12 June 2020
We received a call from a customer about thousands of tiny bugs all over the white house trim. When I arrived to get samples, most were gone, but the homeowner did collect a few. See images below.
Thrips are minute, flower-feeding insects. When their flowers start to die off, the trips are forced to fly and find more white flowers (if that is the flower color that species prefers). In this case, there were no more flowers, and the thrips were attracted to the whit trim.
30 May 2019, Groveland California.