Common Pests in Washington State

Ant in Washington

There is no doubt that Washington is an ideal place to live for many people, as it has a diverse geography and many enjoyable activities to enjoy. The Pacific Northwest has numerous pests, and if you are considering moving here or already living here, you should be aware of them. Here is a list of the most common pests in Washington State.


The state of Washington is home to a large number of spiders. Spiders typically become more of a pest when they start moving around in the fall. Spiders are very good at catching flying insects and other common household pests. They usually feed on mosquitoes, flies, moths, beetles, and other troublesome insects that can sneak into your home. Spiders in Washington state do not pose a threat to humans, however, there are two dangerous spiders in the area you should keep an eye out for:

  • Yellow Sac Spider: These spiders spin their webs into silk tubes or sacs where they hide during the day. Yellow sac spiders hunt their prey rather than capture it in webs. Their bite is usually very painful and causes a burning sensation that can last up to an hour.
  • Black Widow: Black widows are not aggressive by nature and attack in order to defend their eggs and web. There is no doubt that black widow venom is one of the most notorious in the world. You may experience severe pain, burning, and swelling as a result of the venom attacking your nervous system. It is possible to experience a combination of rare but severe symptoms, including difficulty breathing, stiff muscles, tremors, and fatigue. 


There are several types of ants in Washington. From tiny sugar ants to large carpenter ants, ants come in all shapes and sizes. There are many pests that can enter our homes, but ants are one of the most frequent visitors.

Pharaoh Ants

The pharaoh ant is one of the most common ants in Washington and one of the most difficult household ants to control. They are yellowish brown in color and measure less than 1/16 of an inch in diameter. Among the foods that attract them are meat and sugary snacks. 

Pharaoh ants can nest inside buildings where they have easy access to food. Generally, pharaoh ants nest in damp, shaded areas such as under leaves, fallen trees, mulch, and landscaping ties. They prefer nesting in warm, humid places near their food sources, such as behind baseboards and wall voids, under floors, and in crawl spaces.

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants are large black ants that live in rotting logs and trees in the wild. Their preferred habitat is moist, damp wood between your walls and floors. A colony will remain active until the queen is killed, so getting rid of it is very difficult. Left uncontrolled, carpenter ants can cause extensive damage to wooden structures.

Roaches and Beetles

Most Washington residents would agree that the worst pest to find inside your home is cockroaches. Over the millennia, cockroaches have adapted exceptionally well to their environment, which makes them very difficult to eradicate. They are capable of going months without food and even surviving without a head for a couple of weeks. In addition to being dirty creatures, roaches can transmit diseases, cause asthma attacks, and even cause allergic reactions due to their feces.


As the days start getting cooler, rodents start to become more active as they search for warm places to spend the harsh Washington winters. Common rodents in Washington state include squirrels, rats, and mice. They gain entry to your home by squeezing through small cracks and holes in your roof, vents, or chimney. Once inside, they can cause damage by chewing up insulation and paper materials to make their nests. Over time, their urine and feces can irritate allergies and cause asthma. They can even carry parasites and diseases.


Termites are tiny, destructive insects that can do extensive damage to a home before they show any signs of infestation. Here in Washington, there are two types of termites that can get into your home; drywood termites and subterranean termites. 

Common signs of termites include:

  • Discolored drywall
  • Frass (sawdust-like droppings)
  • Hollow-sounding wood
  • Peeling paint
  • Pinpoint holes in the drywall

Fleas and Ticks

In Washington, fleas and ticks are common and can pose a threat to you, your family, as well as your pets. In addition to carrying a variety of diseases, they can be a significant nuisance when they enter your home. It is common for fleas and ticks to enter homes by riding on our pets when they are outside.

Fleas and ticks can reproduce quickly and the infestation can spread to other rooms or units in the building. If you notice a lot of fleas in your home you should contact a flea and tick exterminator before the problem gets out of control.

Bees and Wasps

Bees and wasps can sometimes build their nests in locations that are not safe for them or for humans. Unless you disturb their nest, honey bees are generally harmless. They feed on plant nectar and only sting if their nest is disturbed. 

In contrast, wasps are aggressive species that feed on small insects, including bees, and nectar. Despite popular belief, wasps do not die when they sting. As wasps hunt with their stingers, they are capable of stinging multiple times when threatened. Wasps tend to be more of a problem to homeowners as they will build their nests almost anywhere and in the most inconvenient places.

Common Places To Find Wasp Nests:

  • Under eaves
  • Under roof soffits
  • Between fascia boards
  • In sheds
  • Under decks
  • Lawn furniture 
  • Pipes 

Get Professional Pest Control

If you are experiencing a pest problem, call the professional exterminators at Sound Pest Control. We have years of combined experience dealing with common Washington pests. We have pest control options for nearly any type of pest. Give us a call today at 360-698-2658 or leave a message on our site.

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