Life at the 'Lik: Creepy crawlers of IAB

A cat sits in a cage after being caught June 9, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. The 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management office catches stray animals and tags them with a serial number to monitor population growth and decline on base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Cory W. Bush/Released)

A cat sits in a cage after being caught June 9, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. The 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management office catches stray animals and tags them with a serial number to monitor population growth and decline on base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Cory W. Bush/Released)

Battal Kocahan, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management employee, sets up a trap to catch stray animals June 9, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. Some of the pesky insects and critters that call IAB their home are mosquitoes, ants, ticks, wasps, spiders, snakes and stray animals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Cory W. Bush/Released)

Battal Kocahan, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management employee, sets up a trap to catch stray animals June 9, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. Some of the pesky insects and critters that call IAB their home are mosquitoes, ants, ticks, wasps, spiders, snakes and stray animals. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Cory W. Bush/Released)

A hedgehog feeds on grass in the Phantom housing units May 28, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. The 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management office has received multiple reports of hedgehogs feeding in individual’s yards, but wants to confirm that they do not pose a threat or concern. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Caleb Pierce/Released)

A hedgehog feeds on grass in the Phantom housing units May 28, 2015, at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. The 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management office has received multiple reports of hedgehogs feeding in individual’s yards, but wants to confirm that they do not pose a threat or concern. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Caleb Pierce/Released)

INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey -- Editor's note: This article is part of a series designed to provide in-depth information to both current and future members of Team Incirlik about topics specific to Incirlik and Turkey. The goal is to assist Airmen and families in making informed decisions about their move to the area and to provide guidance about local policies, procedures and quality of life matters.

As the warm weather months roll in and individuals are outside more, it's important to know what critters and insects are lurking in the bushes, trees and shadows of your closet, here.

Incirlik is home to many critters who can pose a threat to one's health. In order to be safe when participating in activities in and out of the house this summer, individuals should know what to look for in order to prevent these bugs from making the individuals homes theirs as well.

Some of the pesky insects and critters that call IAB their home are mosquitoes, ants, ticks, wasps, spiders, snakes and stray animals. There are also two common snakes known to be spotted slithering around. The Eastern Garter Snake, which is non venomous and has yellow stripes with a brown body, and the venomous Black Adder which is easy to spot because of its black hue.

"The most common pest we have at Incirlik are the ones you see around the inside and outside of the housing units," said Cevher Sayiljan, 39th Civil Engineer Squadron pest management coordinator. "The ants, roaches and spiders can all be taken care of with the proper household cleaning and prevention methods like spraying in and outside."

Insects seem to be everywhere, but inside the housing units and dorms should be an exception, according to Sayiljan. Even so, it's not always easy to keep them out. They will fly, crawl, or burrow into the smallest openings in search for food and shelter. These home invaders can be taken care of with the simplest of methods.

"The easiest way to take care of your insect problems is to clean regularly, a dirty house is going to attract all kinds of creatures from ants to roaches," said Sayiljan. "By cleaning, Airmen are going to greatly reduce the chances of a problem even occurring."

Sometimes, no matter what people do, the problem just doesn't seem to go away. That is the time to call the 39th CES pest management office and explain the problem. The pest management team will do all things necessary to trap or catch the problem that persists. Once the team has done their part, it is important to leave the area alone and let the spray or trap work itself. Spraying more chemicals or interfering with the trap may result in a malfunction.

"We will do everything possible to eliminate the problem an individual has," said Yohan Prekl, 39 CES pest management manger. "It's important to not obstruct with the type of method used after it's applied. We ask individuals not to spray more after the team sprays, because it could dilute the chemicals we use and reverse its effect."

Therefore, whether having a picnic with the family at Arkadas Park or cutting the grass in the front yard, Team Incirlik members should take the precautions necessary to not end up with a bump or bite that will send them to the doctor this summer or fall.

For any questions or bites, bumps or itching, individuals can contact the pest management office at 676-6460, or the public health office at 676-6123.