Saturday, April 29, 2006
If you do decide to do it yourself the best places to look for product would be your neighborhood Home Depot or Lowes or other hardware department store. Some neighborhood pest control companies have "over the counter" supplies that they will sell and the internet is full of do it yourself websites that sell do it yourself products. Here is a brief overview of products to look and ask for. For German roaches you want to use gel baits and bait stations, combat and maxforce are both good products. another product for roaches is called gentrol IGR (insect growth regulator) which inhibits the roaches ability to reproduce. For ants you want to use gel baits and bait stations, again, Maxforce is a great company. For bees you want to use dust (if you are going to try to tackle them by yourself) Please read the disclaimer. Mice and Rats of course you can use the old stand by of snap traps glue traps and baits. Any questions please post them in the comments section.
Hiring a good exterminator is just as important as choosing the right doctor. You have to feel comfortable with the person who will be coming into your home on a monthly basis and you have to have trust in the person that he or she is treating your home safely and properly. There are a zillion pest control companies out there. They are big and small, some with many technicians and some are one man operations. My suggestion is to look in the phone book and pick ten companies and then google each company. Look at their web site, check out the better business bureau and then ask around, because word of mouth is still the advertisement. Call and see how the receptionist sounds and how they treat you on the phone. Are they courteous right from the start? Does the technician call you right back or are you waiting all day for a call? If there is a salesperson that seeds to come out then how is that persons mannerism and professional appearance. Is that person pushy just trying to make a sale or is he or she truly concerned about your problem. Narrow it down to 3 companies then make a choice.
Monday, April 24, 2006
This is a new blog for me and will continue to update it daily as time permits. If I havn't covered a topic that you are interested in yet you can either post it on the comment section or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to help you as best I can. Thanks for reading and check out my other blog www.pinkprofits.blogspot.com and if you know anyone interested in my topics then please forward the link on to others. Your readership is appreciated. Bill the bug man.
Here's some fast facts: Mice can swim, are good climbers, eat about .1 ounce a day, will travel between 10-33 feet from it's nest, can have 8 litters a year and in each litter have 4-7 babies with the babies ready to mate in about 2 months. Yikesaramma! ! By the way...over 120 million dollars a year is spent on rodent control programs in the United States alone. Treating for mice has to be a mission. It can't be throw a couple of snap traps down and hope for the best. It's inspecting your home from top to bottom, looking for signs like dropping so you know the areas they are visiting. It is cleaning up any crumbs and throwing away the 500 plastic bags you are saving under the sink "just in case". It's getting rid of clutter and it's sealing up holes on the outside of your home, putting weather stripping on the bottom of garage and entry doors if needed. It's pulling out refrigerators and stoves to see if there are dropping under there, and sealing holes where the gas line and the water pipes come up form the basement. In other words, it's a battle! Your weapons are few, but effective. The snap trap, the old stand by that is used time and again, but often times not used correctly. First: Use many traps and don't put a glob of peanut butter or a piece of cheese that could feed the neighborhood, use just enough, make the little guy work for his grub. Remember that mice have very keen sense of smell. Why not try some chocolate syrup or bacon on the trigger. Try trying a small piece of cotton on the trigger (nesting). Here's an idea. Try all of these ideas at once!! Use lots of traps and lots of techniques. This will boost your kill. Next thing in the arsenal is gluetraps. Again, use a lot. Mice tend to follow the same path time and again. So if you're watching television and see the little bugger dart across the wall then put out 4 or 5 along that path and hopefully the next day or night you'll catch it. I like to use glue traps because you catch them and can see how many you caught and then you can throw them out. Next in the arsenal is bait. Use as a last resort and in safe areas. Don't place where children or animals can get to them. The one drawback is that if they die in the walls or behind something you will have to deal with an odor for a while and possibly flies. I've been asked about those sonic devices from time to time and I always say that if you are going to spend the money on them to get the kind where you can change the frequency so that the mice won't get used to the sound and return. Good luck. Any questions please post them on the comment section and I will respond. Use caution and read the important disclaimer.
This is a tricky issue to deal with especially if you live in certain areas of the country or world. In my neck of the woods we deal with subterranean Termites. They swarm around this time of year and resemble flying ants. People panic because they leave for work in the morning and come home to a lebensraum full of these dead or semi-living bugs all over the place. Termites can swarm anywhere and if you get a swarm anywhere inside your home it is pretty good indication that you have a problem. Unfortunately it is tough to say where that problem is because of the nature of the insect. They eat wood and can be in the joists or the studs behind wall or ceilings. They can cause a lot of damage and should be dealt with as soon as possible. Good thing is they don't eat your house overnight like you see in cartoons. Bad thing is you can't always see then so you don't know how extensive the damage is already. Good thing is they can be treated today with great chemical that are very effective. Bad thing is the treatment is often expensive. My advice would be to hire a professional. Get 3 or 4 estimates, don't let the salesperson push you into anything or try to scare you into buying, if they do then cross them off your list. Just use your instinct and go with who you think is giving you a good deal. To identify the swarmer you can google the word termite to get a picture of them and this will give you a better idea if you have the real deal or if you lucked out with it being just an ant swarmer. Good luck and feel free to post a question on the comment section and I will answer.
Sunday, April 23, 2006
These are the roaches that you can hop on their backs and go for a ride if you wanted to. The ones when you get up for that midnight snack and flip on the light they go scattering. Oriental roaches are black or dark brown in color and fairly big, American roaches are light brown or tan, very large and have wings and sometimes fly from higher up to glide down to the floor and scare the living daylights out of you. If you start seeing the American roaches all of a sudden check to see if you have any breaks in your soil pipe or any other drain problems because they often come up from the sewer or from outside, especially of they are doing work outside. The oriental or waterbugs are pretty common. Both can be treated with either a granule bait called Niban sprinkle carefully in selected areas in the basement, crawl spaces, or other areas you see fit in your home. Also you can treat with a decent residual spray around the inside perimeter. You can pick up a cheap plastic sprayer at a Home Depot or a garden center. It may take treating the outside cracks and holes in the ground with the niban granule bait to get a better control. Again be careful of how you apply these products and be careful of all living things (except the bugs)
Always use caution! Be sure you are not allergic to bees if you try to treat for them, be careful working on ladders and be careful placing any chemicals. Be sure not to put children, other animals or yourself at risk by anything you do relating to pest control. Handling chemicals can be dangerous. Treating for certain bugs or rodents can be dangerous in a direct and indirect way. IF there are heavy concentrations of mouse droppings, leave it to a professional, if there is a bad infestation of termites or other wood destroying insects leave it or have it checked by a professional, if it is an insect that is dangerous like bees or fire ants, or any dangerous bug or animal, then leave it to a professional. If you use chemicals or products with labels it is important to understand that the LABEL IS THE LAW and it is important to follow the directions and precautions listed on that label.
One way to identify this pest for sure is to look at the top of the roach and look for two dark line that come down from the head. Best solution for this pest is baiting with gel bait and roach bait stations. You may know you have them in your home, but it is important to do a thorough check of the areas you suspect they are nesting. Look under the sink, in cabinets, in drawers, in cracks and crevices of door frames and molding. They love tight spaces. When you have a good idea where the bulk of them are then place out the bait. Use enough of it and don't skimp. The gel bait needs to be used carefully as it becomes hard and sticky when it dries up. I have found that the gel bait works the best. Also use glue traps to knock down the population more quickly. Combat and MAxforce both make great gel bait and bait stations. They gel bait usually comes in what looks like a big syringe. Place this bait behind splash boards and in corners of cabinets and on the underside of counters. Places like that. Use caution if you have children or pets and always read the label and directions. If I can ever answer a question then leave a comment and I will respond. What I would absolutely not do is "bomb" or us "foggers" to get rid of roaches. Although killing a number of them it would mostly wind up scattering the remainder to other areas of the home where you might not want them and make it more difficult to treat. With roaches it is most important to keep it simple and try not to spread them. Fogging is also dangerous because it can spark an explosion if not properly done.
This bee is a bugger around spring time April and May. They are often mistaken for Bumble bees but are not. They appear to hover a few at a time around a particular area. Usually around wooden eves or window frames. It is the female that drills a perfect hole and uses this area to lay eggs and care for them as the male (who you see hovering) protects the hole. Thing is...the male has no stinger so can't hurt you, be careful though, the female can give you a wallop. The males are a nuisance because they often dive bomb you or fly right at you causing a panic! They really are more annoying then anything, if you are so inclined to treat them you must identify all the holes by either observing the bee going into it or by the frass (sawdust) dripping down the building and then come evening treat each hole with a good dust spray. As always use extreme caution if you are allergic, or if using a ladder. When dealing with this bee you may want to hire a professional.
Some weekend warriors out there would sooner do it themselves then hire a professional. They are the ones who change their own oil and mow their own lawns, these folks just like to help themselves. This site will help to give some information about the enemies you will face and some ways to treat for them. There will be occasions when you may need to hire a professional because of liability and for your own safety. Don't be a hero. If there is a swarm of bees then I say RUN and call a professional.