Category Archives: Bed Bugs Arizona

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  Tuesday 21st of March 2023 15:42 PM

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5 Bugs That Look and Jump Like Fleas –

If youve got a pet, you have heard about or dealt with fleas.

A nuisance to furry animals around the world, they cause pain, discomfort, and irritation for any creature unfortunate enough to end up carrying them.

Worse yet, fleas are not the only small critters that can invade your home and your pets personal space, and theyre difficult to distinguish from fleas.

Although the insects discussed here differ from fleas, that does not inherently mean they are more or less harmful.

Even the least dangerous of these insects should still be treated as a sort of threat or simply as an invading force, and proper precautions should be taken before youve identified the insect youre dealing with.

With this in mind, this piece will discuss what fleas are, how you can tell them apart from other insects, and what insects most closely resemble the features of a flea.

Additionally, this article will provide some information on each of these lookalikes so that you can determine whether or not your home/pets are at risk.

Plain and simple, a flea is a tiny, light brown insect that averages around 5 millimeters in size.

Its body is flat, and they have no wings to speak of, but thats for a good reason.

Their defining feature is their incredible ability to jump at comparatively superhuman heights, reaching 30 centimeters in height.

Thirty centimeters sounds measly to humans; thats just 30% of a meter, hardly impressive.

Another way to think about it is this: 30 cm is over 80 times larger than their average height.

This would be similar to a 5-6-foot-tall (approx. 1.5-2 meters) human easily jumping 480 feet (~145 meters) into the air.

Why use wings when they can easily bound over anything in your way?

Being able to jump this far with one leap means that they are able to spread incredibly quickly with relatively little effort.

Fleas are also well known for their tendency to bite their host, which is especially dangerous since fleas often carry diseases the Black Plague wasnt spread by rats but by the fleas that tagged along with the rats.

While a similar plague (barring COVID, of course) may not be a primary concern, researchers have continued to find that fleas still carry a plethora of dangerous bacteria and pathogens harmful to animals & humans alike.

So, knowing these primary assets, identifying a tiny brown, flat-bodied, wingless flea that can jump incredibly high should be a cinch, right?

If only it were so easy.

Identifying a flea is already a challenge in itself due to its nearly microscopic size, its jumping capabilities, and its rather muted colors.

Though their characteristics may appear defining at first, it has been found that there are several other insects that are identical in looks, size, jumping capabilities, and even their capacity to bite.

Here are some of the most commonly confused bugs that have people thinking theyre dealing with an infestation of fleas.

These bugs are perhaps the most similar to fleas out of this entire list in terms of their looks.

Theyre flat, brown, and essentially the same size (5 mm on average) as fleas.

Bed bugs like to make their homes, where else, within the fibers of your bed.

While they call beds home, they are still bloodthirsty for both humans and animals, whichever is easier to get and can become a big problem if left unchecked.


Bed bugs are similar for all of the reasons already stated: they look nearly identical, being flat, brown, and tiny, and they love to bite humans/animals to get their sustenance.

Their main meal of choice is blood almost exclusively, just like fleas, and they also lack wings.

This makes it quite difficult to tell bed bugs apart without further research.


There are 3 ways to discern a flea from a bed bug: the leap, the bite marks, and the eggs.

First, bed bugs cannot jump, which is the most significant indicator here.

If it cant jump, then it isnt a flea.

Second, flea bite marks are clustered and resemble mosquito bites. Bed bugs are slightly larger and have flat welts.

Finally, if you find bed bug eggs, they will appear black fleas, opposingly, lay bright white eggs.

These little insects love moisture and feed on mold and fungus.

Springtails are generally grayish or brown in color and can easily be identified as flea due to their ability to jump high, which is a key part of their namesake.

Additionally, these bugs are quite minor and barely reach a few millimeters in size as a fully grown adult.


Theyre small, can leap great distances, and lack wings, all similar traits to a flea.

Their size is a great asset to them, enabling them to feed as they please with little risk of detection.

Being able to jump is the largest cause for being misidentified as a flea alongside their brownish color.


First, springtails do not bite living hosts like fleas (or bed bugs) do.

Instead, as previously mentioned, they are far more interested in feeding on organic matter or fungi that are decaying to sustain themselves.

Because of this, they never bother humans or animals since they do not need them.

Second, their body is differently shaped compared to flea.

This is hard to tell without getting an extremely close look, but springtails have a rounded body that is soft fleas are flat and have a durable structure.

Flea beetles are the plant-loving cousins to fleas (used loosely since they are not nearly that closely related).

Instead of spending time munching on humans for sustenance, they focus on various plants.

Although they have different food preferences, these little guys are often mistaken for fleas for other reasons.


Like fleas, flea beetles are great jumpers with a similar color scheme.

These bugs jump from plant to plant among great fields rather than from human to human, but they are still regarded as a pest because of their ability to spread quickly.

Additionally, their brownish coloring makes them the perfect candidate to frame fleas for their presence.


Flea beetles do not bite animals or humans and exist in an entirely different habitat than fleas.

Dont be fooled; they can still bite; they just prefer to chew through thousands of leaves over time rather than through the skin.

Accordingly, it is rare to find them inside any houses unless they have an abundance of plants.

Froghoppers are sap-sucking insects that are brown and color and measure out to about 6 mm on average.

They are well known for their tendency to leave plants coated in foamy spit once they are done feeding, but they also beat the flea at their own game in jumping.

This makes them incredibly easy to be mistaken for a flea.


So, the color and jumping capability of froghoppers certainly both match that of a flea.

Being brown and capable of jumping nearly 70 cm, its no wonder that froghoppers are constantly being misidentified as fleas.


The froghoppers jumping ability lends quite well to one of its primary differences.

Jumping up to 70 cm in one bound is over double what a flea can jump, though it would still be difficult to tell these two apart with just this information alone.

Froghoppers also occupy an entirely different habitat than fleas and have no interest in using animals/humans for a meal.

Grasshoppers and crickets are both smaller insects that have great leaping capabilities.

They are often found outside during the summer months and prefer to stay as from humans as they can.

Crickets are generally omnivorous and will opt to eat whatever is most easily available, whereas grasshoppers are herbivorous.

Crickets tend to be yellowish-brown in color, and grasshoppers are usually varying shades of green/brown.


In terms of colors, these two insects are quite close, though they both tend to lean towards green (grasshoppers) and yellow (crickets).

They are also capable of making jumps similar to that of the flea in comparison to their size.


Regarding the rest of this list, these two are harder to mistake for a flea than the others.

Right away, both crickets and grasshoppers are much larger than fleas.

They also inhabit entirely different ecosystems grasshoppers, being herbivores, want nothing more than to stay in the fields, and crickets prefer to hunt/mate at night away from human activity as part of their native environment.

The Conclusion

Though vastly different upon closer inspection, all of these insects can easily be mistaken for fleas.

Fleas can be difficult to identify in any case, but hopefully, this article has given some tools to make the distinction easily in the future.

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Welcome to I am Tina Jones. I have been lately working as a pest removal professional in Winslow, Arizona. At present, I love to spend my time with my family as a retiree.

Here I share all my knowledge and experiences to help people understand better how they can stop pests at their homes without actually killing them. Hopefully, the information you will find here useful can help in safeguarding your home! You can check more about me here.

Or in case you need to hire professional pest control services near your area, you can Click Here to get a free instant quote now. We have already partnered with exterminators and companies to bring you exclusive discounts. Get in touch with them and we assure you get the priority service for all your pest control and wildlife removal needs.

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5 Little Black Bugs In Arizona That Annoy Arizona Residents

Are you a resident of Arizona or moving to Arizona?

If yes, then you shouldnt miss this post ever.

In this post, youll find out the five little black bugs in Arizona that are both invasive and nuisance in Arizona homes.

Youll learn actionable tips to protect your home from these tiny little black bugs.

Thats not all.

Theres also a list of five common house bugs in Arizona that are a threat to your home and property.

And a lot more!

Lets dive in.

The five most common tiny black bugs in Arizona homes are the carpet beetles, the false chinch bugs, gnats, drain flies, and the most often ignored, the black plant bug, which is a nuisance in Arizona.

Each of these five bugs has its way of invading homes, causing damages, and become a nuisance.

Lets find out what are these tiny black bugs in Arizona.

So, what are carpet beetles?

Carpet beetles are tiny black beetles that enter homes to lay eggs.

And what makes them a damage-causing pest?

Carpet beetles lay eggs in products made of animal matter. It includes leather, woolen carpet, silk fabric and clothes, and stuff made out of feathers.

But the interesting part is that the adult carpet beetles dont cause these damages.

Its the larvae of these beetles that cause the damages.

How? Let us explain.

Carpet beetles enter homes through open windows and doors.

Carpet beetles are common in lush yards and gardens.

They feed on the pollen and flower petals outdoors.

They enter homes during the late spring and early summer months, which are their mating seasons.

And the reason they enter the home is to lay eggs on the products made of animal matter inside your home.

Other reasons that bring adult carpet beetles to your home are dirt, food stains in fabric, unwashed clothing, open pet food, and perspiration stains.

Carpet beetles will lay eggs on expensive carpets, fabrics, and they can even sneak into your closet and wardrobe to lay eggs.

The larvae from the eggs feed on these expensive products. Theyll create holes in the products made of animal matter.

These holes can be numerous, and the larvae severely damage the fabrics. They dont even spare leather shoes that you dont wear often.

The carpet beetles larvae are inch long, brown, and look like a worm covered with bristles of hair.

Carpet beetles can come in different colors, and black is one of them.

There are brown carpet beetles and varied carpet beetles too.

The varied carpet beetles have white spots on their back.

Like bed bugs, the carpet beetle larvae can also hitchhike by latching onto products that they infest. Carpet beetles and their larvae can also infest your car.

In Arizona, where the weather is sunny and the winters are temperate, the risk of carpet beetle infestation is quite reasonable all year round.

Here are the four steps to stop carpet beetles from entering your home.

Step#1 Get Rid Of Adult Carpet Beetles In Your Yard Or Garden

If youve got a garden with many flowers, then chances are there are many carpet beetles.

You first need to treat your yard or garden to eliminate the adult carpet beetles.

You can do it by sprinkling food-grade diatomaceous earth in your garden.

Alternatively, spraying a mixture of water and eucalyptus essential oil also repels carpet beetles from your garden or yard.

Both the methods are effective and non-toxic to get rid of adult carpet beetles, plus many other bugs from your garden.

You can use a pesticide spray too, but make sure that theyre safe for your plants.

We dont recommend you handle pesticides yourself if you dont have experience with it.

Instead, hire a professional pest controller to do the job.

Now its time to put on the safeguards on your home to prevent their entry into your home.

Step#2 Install Window Shields To Stop Carpet Beetles From Flying Into Your Home

The best way to stop them from entering your home is to put window shields on your windows.

Ensure that you use window shields with smaller mesh, which will also prevent many other tiny bugs from flying in.

Plus, itd be best if you seal the gaps or cracks in the walls.

Many bugs, including carpet beetles, exploit these gaps to invade your home.

Step#3 Remove Dirt And Garbage From Your Home

Clean up those trash bins, dont let dirty clothes pile up for days, and remove food stains from carpet and fabric.

The key to keep carpet beetles and many other bugs away from your home is to keep your home clean.

Most importantly, dont allow discarded food, organic waste, and pet food to lie around for days inside your home.

If you do, it will attract carpet beetles and other destructive pests like roaches and ants.

Step#4 Install Bug-repelling Lights Outdoors

Carpet beetles are attracted to electric lights.

And thats why the adult ones often enter homes during evening hours when the lights are on.

So, itd be best to install light bulbs that dont attract bugs in the outdoor areas like the patio and garden.

What if youve spotted carpet beetles larvae in your home?

Or, what if adult carpet beetles are flying or crawling inside your home?

The following section tells you how to get rid of adult carpet beetles and the carpet beetle larvae.

Do you observe perforation or holes in fabrics, especially on clothes made of animal products?

If yes, then its a sign of the presence of carpet beetle larvae.

There are three essential steps to get rid of carpet beetles larvae from your home

Step#1 Remove The Damaged Clothing Or Fabric And Give Them For Cleaning

If you observe holes in your clothing made of animal products, remove them from where they are.

Clean them, or dry clean them before you put them back in your wardrobe or closet.

Itd be best if you could get rid of the fabric that is irreparably damaged.

Step#2 Vacuum Clean Your Home, Especially The Soft Furnishings

The next step is to vacuum your home, including the places where you keep your clothes and fabric.

Also, vacuum your bed, mattress, sofa, accent chairs, and any other upholstery in your home.

Most importantly, vacuum your carpets or rugs.

Itd be best if you wash them or give them for dry cleaning before you introduce them back to your home.

Steam cleaning is better than vacuum cleaning because the steam cleaners heat kills the carpet beetle larvae.

Wash any dirty clothing lying around for days. And if there are fabrics with food stains, wash them too.

Dirt, food waste, and organic waste attract carpet beetles not only to your home but also to your car.

Step#3 Use Insecticide Spray On The Adult Carpet Beetles

Many safe insecticide sprays can kill adult carpet beetles.

But youd need to spray those insecticide sprays right on the adult carpet beetles.

If you get rid of carpet beetles first in your yard or garden, then the chances of adult carpet beetles sneaking inside your home are pretty low.

Neither the adult carpet beetle nor the larvae bite humans or spread any diseases.

In this and in the following section youll find out tiny flies in Arizona homes that are a complete nuisance. And no were not talking about house flies and mosquitoes.

One of the nuisance flying bug in Arizona is the false chinch bug.

False chinch bugs are pretty common in Phoenix, Tucson, southern Arizona, and homes near Mojave dessert.

False chinch bugs feed on mustard weeds. They swarm in large numbers starting from April.

inch long, brownish-gray, with red patches on their body, false chinch bugs will gather around the window screens in large numbers.

The swarms look menacing, but false chinch bugs dont bite humans, nor do they bring any infestation risks.

But false chinch bugs feed on seedlings, and they can harm your garden.

We dont recommend using any pesticide or anything else to get rid of false chinch bugs.

Its because they die on their own when the temperatures start to increase.

These bugs are a temporary nuisance for a few weeks.

To stop them from entering your home, use weather stripping on your door and put up window shields.

If theyre inside your home, then vacuuming is enough to get rid of them.

Do not squish them because the guts out of false chinch bugs stink, which may attract ants and roaches.

As a precautionary step, get rid of weeds in your garden or yard in January and February.

Itll make your home less attractive to false chinch bugs.

If the swarms of false chinch bugs banging themselves on your window scares you, then wipe your windows with water and dishwashing detergent.

Itll repel the false chinch bugs from your windows.

Over the years, theres a rise of tiny black bugs in Arizona, especially in Lake Havasu City.

These bugs are known as black plant bugs or Slaterocoris Atritibialis.

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5 Little Black Bugs In Arizona That Annoy Arizona Residents

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Free Bed Bug Lease Addendum Template – PDF eForms

Updated August 01, 2022

A bedbug lease addendum is a form that informs a tenant that there is not a bed bug infestation on the premises of a dwelling. Due to the difficulty in exterminating this type of bug, the states of Arizona, California, and Maine have made it a requirement that the landlord has to provide a history of any bed bug infestation. The only full-proof way the tenant can ensure that bed bugs do not exist on the property is to have an exterminator visit the property and conduct any necessary tests.

Required Arizona, California, Maine, and New York City.

1 Obtain A Copy Of The Arizona Bed Bug Lease Addendum

You may view and save a copy of this information packet by clicking this link then saving it to your machine: Arizona Bed Bug Lease Addendum.

2 Provide A Copy To Each Signature Party

Once you have saved this file to your machine, open it. You will need to print it then attach it to the lease. Make sure to print enough copies so that each signed Lease Agreement being dispensed has its own pamphlet. Allow ample time for each Signature Party (Owner/Landlord/Agent and Tenant) to review the information on this attachment thoroughly before signing the attached Lease Agreement.

1 Gain A Copy Of This Template To Provide A Bedbug Addendum

The paperwork on this page can be downloaded through the link here: California Bed Bug Lease Addendum. You may download any file version you wish at your discretion, then open it to fill in the information relevant to the

2 The Parties And The Concerned Rental Unit SHould Be Identified

The paragraph opening this document will seek to positively identify the Owner, Landlord, or Agent and the Tenant. It will also seek to attach each of these entities to the Rental Property. Start by recording the Execution Date of the Lease Agreement this paperwork will be attached to on the blank space after the words Part Of The Rental Agreement Dated. The next blank line in this paragraph requires the Full Name of the Owner, Landlord, or Agent supplied to the second blank line. Supply the Tenant or Residents Full Name to the third blank space. The next few spaces following the terms For The Premises Located At, Unit Number, and City Of to present the Full Street Address where the Rental Property being leased can be physically found.

3 The Resident Must Verify This Document By Initialing It

The next two bullet statements will need to be initialed by each Tenant or Resident that has signed the lease. These statements will verify that no bedbugs have been found during the Tenants inspection of the Premises and Tenant Possessions. Each Tenant/Resident must initial one of the blank lines labeled Resident Initials. Three such areas have been presented however if there are more than three Tenants make sure they initial this section as well.

4 The Parties Involved With This Addendum Must Sign This Document

The end of this document will contain the statement beginning with the words By Signing Below Here, each Resident and the Owner, Landlord, or Agent must furnish a Dated Signature after reading this document. Two blank lines labeled Resident have been presented so the Tenant or Resident may supply this required signature. After signing his or her Name, each Tenant or Resident will also need to enter the Date when he or she signs it. If there are more than two Tenants on this lease you may use a compatible program to add more Signature Lines or attach a clearly labeled document with the rest of the Tenant Signature. Once all the Tenants have signed this document, it should be surrendered to the Landlord, Owner, or Agent. He or she must sign the blank space labeled Owner/Agent then fill in the Date this signature was produced.

1 Download And Fill Out This Template To Supply A Bedbug Disclosure In Maine

The Disclosure Template can be opened then saved to your computer by clicking this link: Maine Bedbug Infestation Disclosure. If you have an editing program compatible with this file version, you may use it to enter information directly onscreen Otherwise you may fill out this form manually so long as it is legible and in blue or black ink.

2 Several Facts Relevant To This Disclosure Must Be Set

The first few blank lines of this template will require some specific information that should be easily located on the lease. Make sure to transcribe this information so that it is identical to that reported on the lease this document will accompany. Fill in the Landlords Full Name in the first blank space. The second blank line, labeled Tenants Name, must have the Name of the Tenant displayed on it. Finally, present the Street Address of the leased property on the two blank lines after the words Address Of Rental Unit. This should be where the leased unit can be physically accessed.

3 Some Tenant Information Must Be Presented

This disclosure will serve to document the lack of any bedbug infestations in the leased unit and adjacent units. In addition, it will serve as proof that the Tenant has not had or dealt with an infestation in his or her last residence in the last 12 months. Use the blank lines after the phrase All Places Where Tenant Has Resided to record the Physical Address of each place the Tenant has lived in the past 12 months.

4 A Signature Verification From The Property Manager And Tenant Is Required

The Property Manager (or Landlord) must supply the Date he or she is signing this document on the blank line labeled Date. Then, he or she must sign the blank line labeled Property Manager/Landlord to show that the contents of this document are true. Each Tenant signing the lease agreement must also read and sign this form. First, he or she must locate the Tenant Signature area below the Landlords Signature then report the Date he or she will sign this paperwork. Once this Date has been supplied, the Tenant must sign his or her Name on the line labeled Tenant. Enough space for two tenants has been supplied here however if there are more than two Signature Tenants on the list each one will have to sign this document. This can either be done on a labeled attachment or by simply adding an extra line on this form for the additional Tenant(s) to Date and Sign.

1 The New York Bedbug Disclosure Is Accessible Here

The required disclosure notice should be saved to your machine by clicking here: New York City Bed Bug Lease Addendum. When you are ready to fill it out, open it on your machine and simply enter the information requested on screen or, if you do not have a compatible editing program, you may print this file then fill it out on paper.

2 Identify Several Facts Regarding The Lease Agreement

Locate the line labeled Name Of Tenant(s) then present the Full Name of each Tenant who has signed the Lease. The Street Address of the leased property should be furnished to the line Subject Premises. If this property has a Unit or Apartment Number, supply this to the blank line Apt. #. The Lease Date should be produced on the blank space labeled Date Of Vacancy Lease.

3 The Landlord Must Disclose The Bedbug Status Of The Premises

Next, at least one of the checkbox statements in the Bedbug Infestation History. Read through each statement on this list and mark the checkbox to the left of any sentence that is accurate. If it requires more information, you must supply it. If There Is No History Of Any Bedbug Infestation in any part of the building where the rental property is located then mark the first checkbox. Mark the second checkbox if there has been a Bedbug Infestation in the building and report what floor or floors this infestation was found on the blank line provided. This statement should only be marked if this is the case and Eradication Measures have been taken. The third check box statement should be marked if a Bedbug Infestation has been found in the building and no effort to eradicate the infestation has been taken. If this statement has been selected then report the Floor where this infestation was found on the blank line preceding the word Floor(s) If the rental has had a Bedbug Infestation in the past year and measures to exterminate the infestation have been taken, this must be disclosed to the Tenant by marking the fourth check box. In the event, the Rental Unit has had a Bedbug Infestation in the past year and no attempt of extermination has been taken then mark the fifth check box. If information regarding a Bedbug Infestation must be provided to the Tenant and has not been described in the previous statements, then mark the Other check box then, present a report with this information on the blank line provided.

4 The Tenant And Landlord Must Each Present A Signature To Authenticate This Document

This disclosure must be signed by the Tenant and Owner/Agent so that it may be verified as delivered and its contents accurate. Each Tenant should sign the Signature Of Tenant(s) then fill in the Date of his or her Signing on the Dated line. The Owner or Agent must also sign this disclosure once it has been completed. He or she should sign the line Signature Of Owner/Agent then present the Date of Signature on the Dated line.

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Ilze Hattingh used early-career hardships to become an ASU standout – The State Press

The women's tennis senior overcame hepatitis, burnout and loneliness while playing professionally in South Africa to become one of collegiate tennis' best players

ASU senior Ilze Hattingh prepares to receive a serve against Kansas State at the Whiteman Tennis Center in Tempe on Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021. ASU defeated Kansas State 41.

At 13 years old, ASU women's tennis senior Ilze Hattingh said goodbye to her parents and everything she knew to move from Durban, South Africa, to Pretoria, South Africa, to train at one of the best tennis academies in the country.

The experience she gained there, along with the hardships she overcame, pushed her to become one of ASU's and collegiate tennis' best players.

After playing a multitude of sports growing up, including javelin throwing, shot put and field hockey, Hattingh decided to pursue tennis full time in seventh grade and moved to live with a teacher in Pretoria, something she thought was "very scary" and "lonely."

"I was so used to having friends and things to do, but that all stopped when I moved to Pretoria," Hattingh said. "I had to start homeschooling because I wasn't staying in one place for more than three weeks at a time."

Hattingh trained under former professional South African tennis player John-Laffnie de Jager at JL's Tennis Academy, traveling across the globe representing South Africa. She saw success while playing professionally, including winning a tournament in 2014 and reaching the finals of another in 2015.

However, about a year into Hattingh's time in Pretoria, she began feeling "itching" underneath her rib cage and feet upon returning to South Africa from a tournament in Botswana. Hattingh said her parents thought the itching was caused by bedbugs from a bed-and-breakfast she stayed at, so she continued to play.

Hattingh played through a tournament only to have her father discover a troubling sign shortly after she finished: Her eyes were yellow.

"We didn't even get to go home, my father rushed me straight to the hospital, and the doctor was panicking and didn't know what was wrong with me," Hattingh said.

After drawing blood, Hattingh was diagnosed with hepatitis and was immediately admitted to the hospital. She was released from the hospital after spending a few days connected to an IV drip.

After recovering from hepatitis, Hattingh continued to travel the world playing tennis for the next three years. However, Hattingh grew "truly unhappy" with tennis and was ready to quit the sport. Hattingh said coaches told her to take two months off, but she kept playing.

"I didn't know anything else," she said.

Hattingh broke down after a first-round loss in a tournament in Egypt, something that wasn't familiar for her. She said there were "such high expectations" for her being one of the top seeds in the tournament.

"I went behind a little bush, called my dad and cried because I was so lonely and so unhappy with my life," Hattingh said.

ASU associate head coach Matt Langley began recruiting Hattingh in 2014, before he came to ASU, but she was hesitant at first to leave to play college tennis. However, Hattingh's initial resistance didn't stop Langley from recruiting her.

"Over time, I kept following Ilze's results even after she denied me," Langley said.

After months of not being happy playing in South Africa, Hattingh reached out to Langley on Facebook in 2016 and asked if the roster spot was still available for her.

Langley immediately began preparing paperwork to bring Hattingh to the U.S. However, one thing was missing: an SAT score, which was required by the NCAA for her to come onto the roster, Langley said.

"I had barely ever heard of all of the paperwork, let alone the SAT," Hattingh said.

She eventually took the SAT but didn't hear from Langley for weeks, coming to the conclusion the NCAA rejected her paperwork due to her past professional experience. She began planning to play in more professional tournaments thinking her dreams of coming to Arizona to play collegiate tennis were shattered.

A month later, Langley called. "You got in, do you still want to come?" he asked.

In January 2017, Hattingh arrived at ASU and has not looked back since.

"It's been such an amazing journey, and I'm so grateful that I have been able to get my extra years of eligibility," Hattingh said. "I wouldn't change it, even with the lowest lows in my life. It brought me to where I am right now."

Hattingh won the Pac-12 Doubles Team of the Year honors in her junior year with her partner at the time, senior Lauryn John-Baptiste. She ended the following season ranked No. 40 in singles and No. 46 in doubles with senior Tereza Kolarova.

"She has won some and lost some over her career," head coach Sheila McInerney said. "Ilze works really hard every day and deserves everything she has earned."

In her last season of eligibility, she hopes the team can qualify for the NCAA Championships and make it past the second round, which according to Hattingh, would be a first for ASU women's tennis.

"My career has been an absolute rollercoaster, but I hope that my teammates and people who watch me see me as a hard-working person who never gave up," Hattingh said.

Reach the reporter at and follow @laurenrachell_ on Twitter.

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter.

Continue supporting student journalism and donate to The State Press today.

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Puscifer: Can The World’s Most Mysterious Band Really Save Us All? – Kerrang!

Youve more than likely watched the infamous grainy live footage from a Tool show in 1997, of Maynard James Keenan hip tossing an overzealous fan that dared invade his stage, before sitting on him like a lion seizing its dazed prey. Youve probably caught Maynard James Keenan playing the devil in the DIY comedy series Bikini Bandits, a leather thong confirming how thoroughly the red body paint covered him. You may have caught Maynard James Keenan swapping vocals for vino in the 2010 documentary Blood Into Wine, a Stetson atop his head, planting grapes in the unforgiving desert earth. Youve seen these many unusual sights, and more, but have you ever witnessed Maynard James Keenan taking some ducks for a walk?

Thats the sight greeting K! on arrival at Maynards base of operations in the Arizonan town of Jerome, which accommodates the 56-year-olds roles as husband, father of two, vintner, restaurateur and businessman not to mention shepherd of fowl and could be described as a compound given its size and elaborate set up. To do so, however, does it an injustice, inviting connotations of cults and military instillations at odds with the beauty of its rolling hills and orchards lush with fig and apricottrees.

Its the kind of place that makes the prospect of lockdown a less gloomy one, which Maynard can attest to for the most part. There have definitely been ups and downs. Some of our businesses have been struggling but were making it work, he says of his ride on the corona-coaster, before pointing down at his feathered friends. It helps to have your own wine andeggs.

Its not just food and drink that come from this land, either. Maynard cultivated his parts for Existential Reckoning here, too: the fourth full-length album from Puscifer, arguably his most mysterious musical project given that its yielded more music than his other bands Tool and A Perfect Circle over the past 13 years, while somehow remaining just as enigmatic.

The album fits in with that sense of wonder, with work starting in earnest before Tools fifth album, last years Fear Inoculum, was even mixed. In fact, 90 per cent of the graft on the album was completed by the beginning of this most terrible year, although its themes the interactions between our emotion and digital lives in the face of trying circumstances make it easy to view as a record in tune with the here and now.

Its artwork alone is dense with meaning, featuring an illustration of a bewigged and moustached Maynard flanked by two aliens, his ceremonial robes open to reveal a burning tower with a baby hovering above, pulled up by the tractor beam of a flying saucer. It brings to mind another iconic image of late, a meme that encapsulates 2020, in which a nervous looking group of extraterrestrials ready themselves to make this year even weirder. Were up next, one of them is saying. Fuck, Im nervous.

Maynard hoots at the idea. It appeals to his subversive sense of humour, and the sensibility of someone raised on TV shows like Star Trek and Lost In Space, and films like The Day The Earth Stood, that made him question whether mankind was engineered by another force in the universe, or accidental beings just making shit up as wego.

Which side is Maynard erring on given our current climate and that hes less than 300 miles from Area51?

Even if were by intelligent design with a purpose, theres always going to be some unexpected turn, like trying to pull off the perfect crime, like with every film theres ever been a heist in, something always goeswrong.

You can safely add king of understatement to Maynards list of roles. His first line on opening track Bread And Circus confirms that status. Here we are in the middle of our existential reckoning he purrs over electronic beeps reminiscent of an 80s video game. Its the sonic signature on an album yearning for the time before technology deepened divisions and expedited our doom.

It came from watching things progress over the years, he says of the lyric and the grander idea it birthed. Its us losing touch with things that I would consider as mattering. All this stuff happened before coronavirus. Western culture has lost the plot. I think theres a way out, but weve got to remember how to talk to each other, and how to survive without destroying toomuch.

Maynard breaks off suddenly, as if realisingsomething.

Uh oh, he warns. Im starting to sound like a hippy.

The last time this K! writer spoke to Maynard, at a swanky central London hotel in February 2018, he lamented having missed the latest series of The League Of Gentleman, the macabre cult comedy thats among his favourite British TV exports, alongside The Office, Blackadder and Monty Python. Its testament to how busy hes been that more than two years later he still hasnt managed to watch it.

Youd think with all this time on [my] hands Id have managed to do that, he sighs. In lieu of catching up with the occupants of Royston Vasey, however, Maynard has managed to conjure his own colourful cast on Existential Reckoning. Chief among them is Billy D, whose mysterious disappearance provides the jumping off point for the albums rather out therestoryline.

Billy D, rumoured to have been carrying nothing but a bottle of wine and a mysterious briefcase, [has] disappeared without a trace somewhere in the high deserts of the Southwestern United States, were told in a supporting memo-cum-press release full of secretiveredactions.

I guess hes the Ohio/Arizona version of The Dude, says Maynard of the missing mans similarities with Jeff Bridges character in The Big Lebowski. He thinks he knows a lot but he doesnt know much of anything, though hes repeating a lot that hes heard. Hes that accidentally insightfulidiot.

Hes representative of the people in the middle who remember that were not each others enemies. Of the divisive nature of the interweb, as it were, where every conversation starts with an argument. Anybody who wears that hat is Billy D. We exist; we co-exist, and are trying to figure out a way to navigate this whole thing. We know there are monsters in the world, but what does that have to do with this conversation Im having with you right now? Thats the attitude.

Maynard has some equally interesting characters as collaborators, too. In the aforementioned K! interview from 2018, Maynard was asked which musician he enjoyed the closest mental connection with. He chose two. We all provide pieces that perhaps the others dont have, he explained of his choices, Puscifer co-vocalist and guitarist Carina Round and lead guitar player Mat Mitchell, having considered the tough question for some time. We all feed off of those[differences].

Such is Maynards respect for his bandmates, in fact, that the tongue-in-cheek press release for Existential Reckoning lists Mat and Carina as Special Agents in Charge while he occupies the role of Special Agent in Training. And while Maynard is quick to clarify that, metaphorically, this refers to his role as the smuttily named alter ego Dick Merkin a lost soul who grew up on TMZ he concedes theres real-world reasoning for his lowerrank.

As far as musicianship and vision for the music is concerned, [Mat and Carina are] far more knowledgeable than I am, especially in the studio. Im second guessing and trying to fix things, while they have a lot more confidence, so I look to them forguidance.

Mat is incredible at taking [technical] gear, programming and musicianship to create compositions, continues Maynard, elaborating on the differing skill sets he alluded to in the past. The piece hes missing is where the story is going to go and how the melodies will lay in. Carina and I both provide him with the map that helps him go back and know where [Mats] going to take it because he can tweak for days. Carina, then, comes in after Ive laid down a basic melody to help guide it. Shes a fixer.

Play Audio

You have to laugh atyourself

Listen to Maynard discuss the role of humour in his work

If I had to pick it apart and give you actual traits, I dont think I could, suggests Carina when we catch up later. Its like a good guacamole you eyeball it and it turns out well, but on a bad day itdoesnt.

Im the opposite kind of artist to Maynard, she continues, setting aside her avocado-based dip analogy. Im the kind of artist he wants to slap, who has to wait to be inspired, while hell say: Now its time to write lyrics and go sit in his truck to doit.

Its fair to say Carina has a different attitude to unpacking the work than her bandmate, too, relishing the opportunity for some reflection. That may well be because its accompanied by a cup of coffee, a bar of chocolate and the chance to sit quietly, which, having spent lockdown with a small tornado her boisterous three-year-old son comes as something of ablessing.

Thankfully we were making the record, otherwise I think I would have completely lost my marbles, she admits, sat in a room in the Keenan family home. Despite doing the majority of her work on with Mat in his Los Angeles studio, this is the place where, in 2009, she successfully became a member ofPuscifer.

The singer-songwriter whose last solo album was 2012s Tigermending is curiosity, sweetness and self-deprecation personified. Her speech is measured and peppered with playful laughter, with an accent that veers between her native Wolverhampton and adoptive LA. Despite the friendly demeanour, however, Carina admits to adopting a bull in a china shop attitude to pursuing her dream of being a musician, and being a little sniffy at having to try-out for a band given that shed never auditioned for anything before or even had a job interview for thatmatter.

The Britishness in me told me I was never going to get it, she recalls now. Plus, two weeks prior [to the audition] Id done a show with my friend in Las Vegas. We were in this shitty hotel and Id been devoured by bedbugs all over my body my face, my hands,everywhere.

So serious was the bout of feasting, in fact, that when Mat met Carina in Arizona there were still new bites appearing, which necessitated a trip to a shop en route to Maynards place to pick up any clothing high-necked and long-limbed enough to conceal the many nibbles. Id have worn a mask too if I couldhave.

The elephant woman, as Carina describes herself at that point, neednt have worried about being covered up, because when it came time to see what she could do on the track Mat and Maynard were working on in a bedroom-turned-studio, the latters sphinx cat wrapped itself around her shoulders as she sang. The felines similarly hairless owner, meanwhile, was a little less warm that day, distracted by a problem at the winery that made his feedback somewhat difficult todecipher.

I thought fuck it and did whatever because I didnt know what the fuck he was talking about, she says of Maynards instructions. He came back in later and said, Thats not what I said, of what Id done, before poking his head around the door again and adding, But its reallybeautiful.

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We wanted to get this out as fastpossible

Hear Maynard on Existential Reckoning becoming even more relevant since it was recorded

The track Carina worked on that day is indeed beautiful. The Humbling River from 2009s C Is For (Please Insert Sophomoric Genitalia Reference Here) EP stands as one of the most staggering songs Maynard has put his name to, which, given the exquisiteness of his many works, is sayingsomething.

The rest is history, laughs Carina, seemingly bringing things up todate.

Except, of course, it isnt. Theres the small matter of what light Carina, as Puscifers fixer, can shed on the bands latest, given that Maynard doesnt readily prcis his work for the sake of a nattysoundbite.

Theres the extraterrestrial whatever, she starts before pausing, concerned about misrepresenting any meanings. But thats a metaphor for what [Maynards] trying to say. The message is about synthesising the digital with the intuitive to create somethingmagical.

These intriguing details point towards a continuation of ideas explored on the bands last album, 2015s Money Shot. Despite its suggestive title and denim clad cowboy cover art, it explored humanitys approach to a precipice, while advocating a greater appreciation for the world around us. Its subtext suggested that acknowledging our insignificance in the grand scheme of things is no badthing.

Were not getting out of this, says Maynard of where weve arrived since. You have to choose to make this an inclusive better place for everyone. Is everyone with any power trying to drive wedges between us? Fuck yeah, every day! We have to make the choice, as individuals, to be better people to do no harm, treat your neighbour as you would yourself all those things that down through the ages have been chiselled into stone as a way we have to be. Right now, more than ever, this is our existential reckoning!

While Maynard has his role as Dick Merkin, he may well be Billy D, too. The clues are there. Having described the character as an Ohio/Arizona version of The Dude Maynard was born in the Ohio city of Ravenna and as we know now resides in Arizona; Billy D having disappeared carrying a bottle of wine given the rows of vines nearby, that one probably needs no further explanation; and Maynard calling himself an optimistic pessimist while Billy D is trying to come from a place of compassion, but when youve had the rug pulled from underneath you, youre a little more realistic about it, which sounds mighty similar.

The answer to this question isnt forthcoming, though, because offering direct explanations isnt Maynards style largely because, as hes told K! before, when it comes to his music theres never just one to behad.

Similarly, as the focus shifts to Puscifers place in relation to his other bands, the singers flow begins to dry. This hesitation seems less about reluctance and more about his inability to articulate how the many tendrils of his life interlink because hes too busy operating at the heart of itall.

Ask, for example, whether he considers the band hes previously described as his creative subconscious to be his most personal band and theres a lengthy pause and anapology.

I dont know how to answer that. Everything Ive been involved with is very personal. Even if its being an observer from a distance, its stillpersonal.

I dont think any one of these projects acts as home base, he adds when pushed. We all have our own home base. For me its my family. In terms of music, theres time for all of those places to feel like home away fromhome.

Inquire whether Puscifer having made four albums, plus various remix, live and EP releases since 2007 a time frame resulting in just one album a piece from A Perfect Circle (2018s Eat The Elephant) and Tool is indicative of a less complicated working dynamic, and he alters the parameters of the question to something moremanageable.

How soon those pieces come to me, that might be what youre asking some of those pieces come more quickly than others in order for me to do my job. Its all just conversations. Some conversations come more a little easier than others, but I dont think in terms of any being an easierpath.

One things for sure: none of us are on an easy path right now. While things are holding for Maynards businesses currently, it could be a very different story if the worlds difficulties continue for another couple of years. And what of the threat coronavirus poses to music? As a man whos future-proofed himself with his non-band endeavours, and having weathered the storm of the industrys many changes before, is Maynard hopeful of a way out?

Whatever gravy train you think were on, its stopped several times in the past 15 years. Nothing is forever. The only constant is change.

Maynard is certainly no stranger to being nudged by the fickle finger of fate, having entered the profession thats made him famous by accident after moving to LA in the 1980s, assuming it would fall away at some point. More than 30 years on, then, with music such an established component in Maynards life, how would he feel if it were to stop as suddenly as it began?

It would suck, he asserts. But I would find a way as Im a resilient person. Its not the end of life; its the end of that path. If that path is blocked, you fucking find a way around it!

And with that Maynard distils his ethos and a key takeaway from Existential Reckoning, killing two birds thankfully not ducks with one stone.

Existential Reckoning is out October 30 via Alchemy Recordings/PusciferEntertainment/BMG.

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Puscifer: Can The World's Most Mysterious Band Really Save Us All? - Kerrang!

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