ST. LOUIS – Phones are ringing off the hook at local pest companies as they head into their busiest time of year after the hot weekend temperatures woke up many of our pests.

The abnormally warm spring temperatures mean our pesky insects and critters got a jump start, leaving homeowners scrambling to get ahead of the problems they cause. Jay Everitt, the technical director for Rottler Pest Solutions, said they feel they’re about three weeks ahead.

“Termites are going crazy. The moles are out there. As the soil warms up there, they’re coming up to the surface. A lot of the ants are going crazy right now too. And even mosquitoes,” he said.

Termites are the most destructive force in that group and require help from professionals.

“If you have large collections of small, flying insects, make sure you get them identified,” Everitt said. “In the garage and in the basements. That’s some of the first places that the termite likes to attack the home. Just look for that little dirt tube. We call it a shelter tube.”

To help with ants and mosquitoes, clean things up around the home.

“Obviously, leaf litter is a great place for these ants to nest. And keeping the pooling water or standing water down. That’ll prevent the mosquito side of things. Making sure the gutters are clean right now,” he said.

Fighting moles can feel like a losing battle.

“They’re a very persistent pest. They’re very difficult to prevent. We do a lot of things to make our lawns look good and, unfortunately, it draws those moles into our lawns,” Everitt said.

It’s a problem homeowners have to stay on top of if they want to keep their yards in good shape.

“There are a couple different tools that are out there. The traps I think safety wise are probably the best for kids and pets. There are some worms that you can buy. Just if you’re going to use those types of products like the worms just read that label and make sure you’re going to put them in areas where the dog can’t get to it,” he said.

April and May are some of the hardest months for pest problems.

“There’s a lot of pressure out there right now. The families are growing. Obviously, they’re out there reproducing and that’s just going to make it tougher on all of our homeowners,” Everitt said.