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Top 15 Most Common Household Pests In Australia

Australia has garnered itself a bit of a reputation for being home to different types of creepy crawlies. From redbacks to whitetails, Aussie homeowners have likely seen all manner of unwanted and potentially deadly guests skittling around the house. But what are the most common household bugs in Australia?

The Most Common Household Bugs and Pests in Australia

Our pest control specialists are here to answer this question today, drawing partly from their own experience with offering pest control services in Melbourne and regional Victoria as well as referring to national statistics.

Read on to learn which common household pests you can expect to see the most in and around your home.

  1. Rodents
  2. Spiders
  3. Termites
  4. Ants
  5. Bed Bugs
  6. Cockroaches
  7. Flies
  8. Mosquitos
  9. Possums
  10. Birds/ Bird Mites
  11. Bees/ Wasps
  12. Silverfish
  13. Moths
  14. Foxes (regionally)

1. Rodents (Mice/Rats)

rodents (mice/rats)

Unsurprisingly, rodents take the cake as one of the most disruptive household pests in Australia. Both rat and mouse infestations can cause damage to your property if left unchecked. And given how elusive these critters can be, it can be all too easy to find yourself deep into a rodent infestation before you even realise they’re in your home.

Mice are typically nocturnal creatures and aren’t very fond of bright lights. Because of this, it’s unlikely that you’ll see any in your home during the day. If you do see any, then you should assume that there are many more hiding in a nest somewhere on your property. Spotting even one mouse is grounds for enlisting mice removal services.

Homeowners are also advised to look out for streaks of dirt along the lower walls or wainscoting in their properties. As rodents like to hug the walls of your home rather than scamper out into open spaces, streaks left by the dirt or oils on their fur can accumulate on the surfaces of your home.

Other tell-tale signs that you may have a rodent infestation include:

  • Rodent droppings in and around pantry or kitchen spaces
  • Signs of chewing or gnawing on food packaging
  • Holes chewed in the walls or flooring of your home
  • Nesting materials (i.e. shredded paper, fabric, or plant matter)

Learn more about how to get rid of mice and rats via our in-depth blog.

2. Spiders

spider on tree

The signature creepy crawly to beat them all, our arachnid friends are common unwelcome house guests whenever the weather gets either stiflingly hot or bitingly cold. These eight-legged critters are pretty fragile when exposed to the elements, which is why spiders are amongst the most common garden pests to seek refuge in your home during seasonal extremes.

Thankfully, even though spiders are always inevitably trying to get into your house, there are ways that you can deter them from doing so, as well as natural and simple ways to get rid of spiders. It’s all about reducing the overall points of entry that are available to these opportunistic creatures. This means keeping windows shut and covered with fly screens, making sure that there are no holes in your screen door, and clearing out the vents in your home regularly.

It’s also a good rule of thumb to learn the identifying features of some of Australia’s most dangerous or venomous spiders. After all, it’s one thing to have a daddy’s long legs in the top corner of your bedroom ceiling, and another thing entirely to have a funnel web spider in your toilet bowl.

3. Termites

termite control

Termites are renowned for being one of the most destructive common household bugs in Australia. And even though termite infestations are pretty easy to spot, the damage you can’t see is likely to be far more extensive (and expensive!).

Even so, knowing what to look for when detecting termites in your home, can help reduce the risks of your home’s wood foundations being destroyed by these wood-chomping ‘white ants’. And that’s one tip on its own – knowing what termites look like.

Homeowners should also familiarise themselves with the key differences between drywood and subterranean termites, and the distinctions in the warning signs for each of these different types of termites.

If you have suspicions that your home is currently facing a termite infestation, then don’t delay in securing professional termite removal services as promptly as possible. This is one household pest that you should aim to eradicate upon initial detection.

4. Ants


Moving from white ants to black ants now, it should be no surprise to see these particular critters on this Top 15 list. After all, ants are amongst the most populous creatures on Earth, with an estimated global population of around 20 quadrillion. It’s just a mind-boggling number, so it stands to reason that there are at least a dozen or so ants in your home at any given time.

The issue with ants is that where one goes, the rest will follow. And anybody who’s ever had an ant infestation knows all too well that these uber-common garden pests never want to leave the garden party. There are also around 1300 different species of ant here in Australia, and some of them won’t hesitate to bite you – and it’ll sting.

Thankfully, regular cleaning and conscientious food handling can help reduce your risks of experiencing an ant infestation at home. But if you do find yourself inundated with lines of ants, then be sure to secure ant extermination services for your home to ensure that matter doesn’t get out of hand.

Learn more about how to get rid of ants!

5. Bed Bugs

bedbugs on mattress

Everybody hates bed bugs. But sadly, bed bug infestations are on the rise here in Australia. These common household pests are notorious for hitching a ride on tourists and travellers.

But even if you haven’t travelled abroad recently, you can still be at risk of bringing bed bugs back home with you. How so? These opportunistic little pests can also be transferred in any public environment where people may be sitting or lying down in close quarters. This includes hospitals, hotels, and even cinemas and theatres.

And of course, it’s easy enough to tell if you have bed bugs because you’ll likely be itching every morning and throughout the day. Sadly, it’s near-impossible to tell if you’re actively being bitten by a bed bug as their bite injects an anaesthetic and anti-coagulating substance into your skin. You’ll only begin to feel your bites hours later when they start to itch out of nowhere.

This delayed reaction also makes it difficult to pinpoint the origin of any bed bug infestation. All you can do is just control your bed bug infestation, be it by calling bed bug removal services, cleaning or throwing out infested bedding and sheets, or all of the above.

Learn how to get rid of bed bugs here!

6. Cockroaches

cockroach removal-melbourne

As some of the most hardy common household bugs in Australia, your home has likely housed some of the 400 known species of cockroaches at some point or another. Cockroaches are one of the most prolific pests down under, mostly because our subtropical climate provides the perfect breeding and feeding environment for them.

And speaking of feeding, cockroaches are known to eat a wide range of different foods and even non-food materials, meaning that even the most spotless of kitchens can still house a few of these creepy crawlies.

Cockroaches can also enter your home in a variety of different ways, including through furniture or luggage. And like ants, they can easily find their way into your home through gaps, pipes, ventilation holes, or any other smaller entry points.

Thankfully, knowing how to get rid of German cockroaches and some of the other more common types of cockroaches, can be simple enough. Simply clearing your living spaces and adding sealant to windows, doors, and addressing any other smaller entry points can help keep your pest population to a minimum. If the issue persists or you need commercial pest control for restaurants or other hospitality venues, simply contact your local pest control specialists.

7. Flies

keeping flies away

A stray fly or two in the house is a staple of Aussie summers at this point. The best reason to stay indoors on a sweltering summer day is just to avoid all the flies that are undoubtedly going to be buzzing around. But flies can be so much more than just pesky – they can be a genuine hazard to our health.

Because they’re attracted to strong scents (i.e. rotting meat, decomposing garbage, sugars, overripe fruit, etc.), flies are more likely to be carrying pathogens than many of the other common household pests on this list. This means that a fly on your kitchen counter isn’t as innocuous a sight as you may expect it to be.

Add to this that flies can lay around 500 eggs in the span of three or four days, and it starts to become very clear how these particular infestations can occur, and why they should be dealt with immediately.

Thankfully, just as flies are drawn to some scents, they are repelled by others. Knowing how to keep flies away is important knowledge to be able to adapt to the Australian climate. For example, you can use citronella scents, incense, or candles to keep flies away from your home during the summer months. And if you do have a heftier infestation on your hand, then secure professional fly removal services.

8. Mosquitos

mosquito control melbourne

Like flies, mosquitoes can carry a range of different diseases – even here in Australia. And if you don’t get an infection from a mosquito bite, or from compulsively itching a mosquito bite, you can easily have an allergic reaction to one instead.

Sadly, mosquitoes are very common garden pests here in Australia, thanks in part to our subtropical climate. Mosquitoes are most commonly found in humid or damp environments, as female mosquitoes lay their eggs on the surface of water. This can be the surface of a lake or pond or even something as small as a filled bucket of water in your backyard.

You can keep mozzies at bay by installing fly screens on your windows, routinely cleaning pools, ponds, and bird baths in your backyard spaces, and once again, using citronella scents around the home. If you live near a larger body of water like a lake or pond, however, you may be at risk of a mosquito infestation and can benefit from securing mosquito control services.

9. Possums

possum removal

Don’t let these cute faces and big puppy dog eyes fool you! Possums can wreak havoc on the roof and ceiling cavity of your home, and even cause extensive damage to your garden, basement, and other storage spaces.

Thankfully, possums are pretty easy to spot, especially if you have pets. Although they are nocturnal, possum activity tends to be a little loud and boisterous during the dead hours of the night. This prompts many family dogs to raise the alarm that an intruder is on the premises!

The downside is that possums can be quite territorial, and can thus, be pretty difficult to remove once they get settled in your home. And using poison-based treatments can put your children and pets at risk, or result in possum carcasses piling up in hard-to-reach areas around your property.

That’s why it’s also a good idea to enlist possum removal specialists rather than attempt to handle these mad marsupials on your own. However, for click here for simple tips to deter possums without calling expert control.

10. Birds/ Bird Mites

bird control Melbourne

Although it can be a little wondrous to have a wild bird build a nest and lay eggs on your property, it’s important to keep in mind that birds can also carry their fair share of other pests and diseases. Bird droppings naturally contain toxic bacteria which can cause fungal lung disease and other illnesses if faecal dust is inhaled by humans. Alongside this, birds may also carry salmonella, encephalitis, influenza, and several other common diseases.

On top of this, birds can bring ticks, fleas, and even bird mites into your home. These three pests can stir up a range of health problems for your family and loved ones before they’re even detected. Bird mites, in particular, are one of the smallest common household bugs in Australia. And like bed bugs, they can be notoriously difficult to spot.

So how do you eradicate a pest that you can’t even see? Alongside making sure that wild birds like mynahs aren’t provided with any place to feed or roost on your property, homeowners can enlist pest control specialists to eradicate any pests that accrue from wild bird populations, including ticks, fleas, and bird mites as well.

Related: How to get rid of fleas at home

11. Bees/ Wasps

bee closeup of eyes

Any environmentalist knows that bees and wasps are two wildly different pests, even if they do have similar stings and nest or hive setups. They also both feed on sweet plants and have yellow stripes. But whilst a bee can only sting once in its life before dying and usually only stings as a last resort, a wasp can sting as much as it wants – and its stings can be deadly.

For this reason, you must call professional wasp nest removal services immediately upon spotting a nest on your property. Any delay will only exacerbate your wasp infestation, so it’s best to nip it in the bud as promptly as possible.

As for beehives, the best way to remove bees from your property is not to kill them but simply to move them elsewhere. This involves bee removal experts who can safely locate and secure the queen bee before moving the hive to keep the colony together.

If your bee colony has grown too large for its hive, however, then bee control services will be required to safely apply insecticide dust or liquid chemicals to your property to sustainably eradicate bee swarms.

12. Silverfish

silverfish removal

One of the creepiest crawlies on this list of common household pests, silverfish are usually found in dark and quiet environments, making them difficult to spot. Silverfish are typically also responsible for devouring old books, photos, and other sentimental items in your household storage. They’ve also been known to chew on hair strands, dandruff, soap, and items with a high starch content, including magazines, cotton fabrics, and other paper or cardboard products.

Silverfish are silver or shiny, with long bodies and antennae. And once you’ve been able to see one, or even see damage caused by one, you should assume that there are more on the way or in hiding.

We recommend calling Silverfish control services as soon as you spot more than one of these pests in your home or your property.

If you’re interested in DIY pest control, here are some natural methods to get rid of silverfish!

13. Moths

month removal melbourne

Did you know that there are about 2500 different species of moth here in Australia? And whilst these ‘goth butterflies’ can be pretty interesting to look at while sitting on your verandah on a summer evening, they can be incredibly pesky if they follow you into your home.

And whilst adult moths don’t pose too much of a threat to our home or its contents, their larvae can cause damage and destruction in several different ways. For example, they may feed on fabrics in your wardrobe or your living spaces, ruining clothing, carpeting, and even bedding. Moths in kitchen and pantry spaces can also result in infested or infected foodstuffs. The last thing anybody wants is to find insect larvae in their cereal boxes.

If you do suspect that your home has a larger population of moths or have detected moth larvae in and around your home, then enlist the services of moth removal specialists promptly to address the infestation.

14. Foxes (regionally)

melbourne fox removal services

Many homeowners in the metropolitan Melbourne region have likely only seen a fox in the dead of night or deceased on the side of the road. What you may not know, however, is that the population density of foxes is higher in metropolitan areas than in regional Victoria.

Agriculture Victoria estimates that there are as many as 16 foxes per square kilometre in Melbourne as opposed to just 4-8 per square kilometre in regional areas. This is likely because there are greater food sources in metro regions than there are in regional areas.

This means that you could have a fox problem without even knowing you have a fox problem. But if you have found that your big bags have been torn into or smaller pets like chickens or guinea pigs have started to go missing, then you likely have a sly fox or two infiltrating your garden every evening.

Like any wild animal, it’s best not to interact with foxes directly, or even leave the responsibility of fox control to your dogs or other pets. Doing so can result in costly vet bills. It’s safer and perhaps even cheaper, in the long run, to simply secure professional fox trapping services.

15. Snakes (regionally)

snake removal

The last common garden pest we’ll be looking at today (and arguably one of the most horror-inducing on this list) is our slithery, scaly friend – the snake. Australia is renowned for having the largest number of native or endemic snake species in the world. There are over 200 different types of terrestrial and aquatic snakes slithering around our island continent. And with so many different species found in every different state, snake removal services tend to be region-specific.

As snake bites can also be deadly (be it due to venom or simply because of the severity of a snake attack), these pests should never be managed independently or by laymen. If you suspect that a snake is living in the long grass in your backyard, you should call a snake catcher as soon as possible.

You can also protect yourself and your family from the risk of snake bites or snake attacks by keeping your lawns cut short during snake season (from Spring to mid-Autumn), reporting snake sightings in your local neighbourhood, and learning how to identify the most common types of snakes in Victoria.

The Final Word

Now that you’ve acquainted yourself with the most common pests, you may be wondering how to effectively get rid of them. At Pestline, we’re committed to providing our clients with only the latest and most effective pest control solutions available today. We also ensure that our services are tailored to suit your infestation and property. Our pest management treatments are designed to provide a minimal environmental impact, ensuring that you and your family can stay safe well after your pest eradication has been completed.

Contact our team at Pestline to learn more about our tailored pest management treatments or to inquire about securing pest control services for your home or business today.

Avatar for Matthew Behman

Written by

As the founder of Pestline Pest Control, Matthew has over a decade of experience conquering pests in homes, gardens and in commercial settings. Matthew is dedicated to providing affordable and comprehensive pest control services to all.

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