Does Mold Attract Bugs and Other Pests to Your Home?
Is there a connection between mold and bugs? When people have mold in their homes, they often notice an increase in the number of bugs. Is it just a coincidence? No, it is not.
If there is mold in a home, there is a noticeable rise in bugs and other pests. Mold does tend to attract certain types of insects. But this is not the only reason why homes with mold also have more insects. One of the reasons has nothing to do with mold at all, but with the home’s condition.
Conditions That Favor Mold Growth Also Attracts Insects
Incidentally, bugs are often attracted to the same type of environments that favor mold growth. Mold thrives in warm places with high levels of moisture. It prefers environments with a relative humidity of at least 70 percent. This is why mold is usually found in the damp corners of a home, explains Markham Services. Places rarely touched by direct sunlight and are poorly ventilated, are magnets for mold growth. Some examples of these are cellars, attics, basements, closets, spaces behind a wall, or floor tiles. Mold can also hide the underparts of sinks and tubs.
Unfortunately, these same conditions are favorable to the survival of many insects. Cockroaches, centipedes, camel crickets, and subterranean termites cannot survive in a place unless it has a lot of moisture. All insects are cold-blooded and are more likely to hide in places that aren’t exposed to direct sunlight. Insects that are mostly active at night, do not have the ability to handle sun exposure. Furthermore, some insects hate habitats that are open to air currents; they prefer unaired hideouts. This is because a more exposed environment would leave them vulnerable to predators.
Mold and Bugs Often Eat the Same Things
In addition to sharing similar environmental conditions, some insects feed on the same things as mold. People often do not realize that mold needs food. Like every living thing, mold needs food to grow and multiply. But what does mold eat? It feeds on whatever it is growing on. In fact, it grows on a surface or material because it breaks down and ingests that material. Mold does this whether it is growing on brick, drywall, shingle, leather, cloth, food, or wood. It is only able to grow on the material because it can feed on it. Many times, mold eats the same objects some insects feed on. Mold feeds on any material that is porous enough to let its roots get in. Some insects hang around moldy places because they feed on the organic matter that mold has broken down. Cockroaches eat paper and mold breaks down the paper. Paper that has been broken down by mold is easier for cockroaches to digest. This is why cockroaches are drawn to mold. Mold and insects also feed on any form of decomposing matter, like those found in the pantry or refrigerator. If bugs and mold are present in a home, they must be feeding on something. If the bugs aren’t sharing mold food, they may be feeding on the mold itself.
Mold Attracts Some Insects
Many insects are attracted to mold because they feed on mold or it benefits them in some way. Insects that feed on mold often have names that describe the relationship between the two. Perfect examples of these are “Mold Mites” and “Fungus Gnats”. Mold mites are related to dust mites. They not only feed on the mold but are just as damaging as mold. Booklice and mold are usually found together in moldy books. This is because while mold breaks down the paper, the booklice feed on the mold. Booklice are also found in other moldy places, such as under wallpaper and moldy windows corners.
A lot of other insects are attracted to mold, but not because they feed on them. Termites, for instance, are drawn to the musty smell of mold. The smell that humans associate with mold comes from microbial volatile organic compounds (MVOCs), a gas released by the mold. Termites follow this odor to find mold. They do this because mold breaks down wood, making it easier for termites to pass through the wood. This in turn allows the mold to go deeper into the wood.
Getting Rid of Mold and Bugs
Preventing conditions in the home that encourage mold growth will automatically decrease the number of bugs. This means addressing the sources of moisture inside a home. Mold removal or bug extermination should be done to get rid of mold and bugs. But attempting these without dealing with the root cause, which is moisture, is a waste of time. Leaks and drips - anywhere in the home - should be immediately repaired. Spaces behind wall and floor tiles or cracks that serve as potential bug hideouts should be inspected. Moisture issues inside crawlspaces should be fixed.
Your Mold and Bug Solution Conclusion.
This blog was written by Markham services who have been a leader of the mold inspection industry servicing Orlando and greater service areas for over 20 years. With comprehensive mold inspection services and testing, they are able to offer essential services to help minimize ill health effects and protect loved ones and your family.
For those suffering from bugs, Imperial Pest Prevention has also been the go-to pest control company servicing Volusia and Flagler Counties Of Florida.