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November 9, 2023

Illustration: Mike Right

Illustration: Mike Right

When it comes to the strongmen and dancing ladies of the pest control “sideshow,” it’s the usual gang of suspects for the top rodents, ants, and termites and other wood-destroying insects and organisms. In fact, the only change in our 2024 State of the Industry survey responses vs. last year’s is in the cockroach arena, where smoky brown moved from No. 5 to No. 4, and brown-banded knocked the Australian species off the list.

The change is hardly news to Jim Bartley. “Given our sub-tropical climate in south Florida, conditions are perfect for brown-banded, and they continue to thrive,” says Bartley, owner of Platinum Pest Management, Jupiter, Fla. “We do encounter other species in this area, of course, but German, American and brown-banded easily make my Top 3 list.”

Grady Jones, who operates Honest Termite with his son, Colton, reports construction activity in their market of Las Vegas, Nev., is higher than he’s seen it in his 35-year career. As a result, the rate of displaced animals becoming pests is intense.

“The homes are extending far into the foothills and disturbing natural habitats,” Jones reports. “Gophers are benefitting from lawns, parks and other unnatural root systems and irrigation being brought into homeowner association and master-planned communities. We are seeing more kit foxes, coyotes and snakes as well.”

Bartley notes that constant pest identification training, especially for newcomer species, has helped his team keep pace with control. Termites are a prime example. “Not only do we encounter drywood, eastern and Formosan termites, but we also see dampwood, Asian, conehead and now hybrid-species termites,” he adds. “We’re very fortunate to have great cooperation with the University of Florida and the many researchers there.”

Jones agrees that education is key, helping pest control firms succeed despite fluctuations in the weather and the economy. “There always will be bugs, and there always will be trained professionals to help the public keep them under control,” he says.

Top 5 Revenue-Generating Species


  1. House mice (Mus musculus)
  2. Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus)
  3. Roof rats (Rattus rattus)
  4. Deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus)
  5. Moles (Talpidae)


  1. Carpenter (Camponotus spp.)
  2. Odorous house (Tapinoma sessile)
  3. Pavement (Tetramorium caespitum)
  4. Fire (Solenopsis spp.)
  5. Argentine (Linepithema humile)


  1. German (Blattella germanica)
  2. American (Periplaneta americana)
  3. Oriental (Blatta orientalis)
  4. Smoky brown (P. fuliginosa)
  5. Brown-banded (Supella longipalpa)

Termites & Other WDI/WDO

  1. Eastern subterranean termites (Reticulitermes flavipes)
  2. Carpenter ants (Camponotus spp.)
  3. Carpenter bees (Xylocopa spp.)
  4. Drywood termites (Kalotermitidae)
  5. Formosan termites (Coptotermes formosanus)

About the Author

Heather Gooch

Heather Gooch is the editor-in-chief for PMP magazine. She can be reached at or 330-321-9754.

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