Cathy Roache
County Agricultural Commissioner / Sealer
Agriculture / Weights & Measures

On-Duty Biologist Program

Photo of 4 white-colored termites on a piece of wood.
Structural Pest
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Photo of the beneficial insect Leatherwing Beetle perched on a red leaf.
Leatherwing Beetle
Beneficial Insect
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Photo of an Olive Fruit Fly with a brown-colored body and clear wings.
Olive Fruit Fly
Garden Pest
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Photo of a small black-colored moth.
Indian Meal Moth
Pantry Pest
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Photo of Spotted Lantern Fly.
Photo: Lawrence Barringer
Pennsylvania Dept.of Agriculture
Spotted Lantern Fly
Garden Pest
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Is something bugging you? We may be able to help.

You can either call us or bring a sample to our office for assistance. Samples can be dropped off at our Hayward office every weekday from 8:30 am to 12:00 pm or our Livermore office every weekday from 8:30 am - 9:30 am and 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm, or by appointment. One of our staff will assist you with your sample.

If you would like to bring in a sample, please follow these guidelines:


Place in a clean glass or plastic container with tight fitting lid. If the insect is dead, place a small amount of Isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol in the container to preserve it. **Please do not collect insects on scotch tape. We generally cannot identify samples collected that way.


For general identification, bring in a sample of flowers, fruit or seeds (if present) and a stem portion with leaves attached, approximately 12 inches long. For disease identification, bring in a part of the plant showing both healthy and diseased symptoms along the same stem portion.

Plant & Pest Gallery
Visit our insect, weed, vertebrate, plant disease, and exotic pest galleries for pictures and information about pests and insects commonly found in the Bay Area.


For general gardening questions, insect identification, plant diseases:
University of California Agricultural Extension Service, Master Gardeners
(510) 567-6812

For composting questions, composting classes and compost or worm bin purchases:
Alameda County Waste Management Authority "Rotline"
(510) 444-SOIL

For questions about rat control, wasps and yellow jackets:
Alameda County Vector Control
(510) 567-6800

For questions about insect pests affecting human health:
Alameda County Department of Environmental Health
(510) 567-6700

For questions about mosquito control, West Nile Virus, how to get Mosquito Fish:
Mosquito Abatement (510) 783-7744