The whitefly is a rather interesting pest in Redding, California because it’s not what you might think it is. These tiny, white flying insects are most closely related to aphids and mealybugs, and their name can be confusing. Despite their name, they aren’t a species of fly at all, but they are an insect with the ability to take flight.
They are quite tiny at only around 1/12 of an inch long, and they have triangular-shaped soft bodies. You can identify whiteflies by their rather yellowish faces and because they are usually found in clusters.
Whiteflies are active during the day, and they are often found living on plants. Because of this, they can cause major issues on all different kinds of plants including fruit trees. They are unable to survive winter conditions, so they are more prevalent in warmer areas or inside of greenhouses.
Just How Destructive Are Whiteflies?
While there are hundreds of different species of whiteflies, for the moment they only impact certain host plants. However, a few species will impact a wider range of plants.
The giant whitefly is one of these problem species, and it is considered invasive in California. This species will attack and damage many ornamental plants as well as banana and citrus trees.
They are able to reproduce quickly, and this is a problem as whitefly nymphs produce a wax-like substance that covers the leaves of a plant. The adults and nymphs also eat the plant sap which can lead to plant death.
And, if all that damage to vegetation wasn’t enough, they also leave behind a honeydew substance that covers leaves and plant surfaces and can lead to the growth of black sooty mold.
As a result of the issues whiteflies can cause for plants, they can quickly ruin vegetation both inside of your property and out. And, once whiteflies establish themselves, it can be very difficult to get their numbers under control and keep them from coming back.
How Can You Prevent Whiteflies?
Unfortunately, it is nearly impossible to completely prevent whiteflies. This is because they are so prevalent in certain areas and are an invasive species. The key to long-term whitefly prevention is ensuring there are enough natural enemies around to control whitefly populations.
Natural enemies of whiteflies include ladybugs, spiders, hummingbirds, and dragonflies. It is important to try to avoid insecticides that will kill off these helpful insects. You can also try to create a habitat to attract dragonflies and hummingbirds. This has an added benefit as these two species can also control other pests species like mosquitoes.
However, despite the difficulties, there is one effective way to prevent and control whiteflies around your home or business.
Ongoing Help With Whitefly Control
While it can be difficult to completely prevent and control whiteflies on your own, the experts at Redding Spray Service have the expertise and tools necessary to help protect your property from these pesky flying insects. Our trained technicians handle even difficult pests like whiteflies, and we have over 40 years of experience behind our name.
Find out more about what sets our residential and commercial pest control plans apart by giving us a call or reaching out online. We even offer free estimates to make it simple for you to get started.