Monday, October 23, 2006

Baiting vs. Trapping for mice

What is better: Mouse bait or trapping?

In most cases I have to side with trapping because of this reason. If you bait for mice and you have a few mice running around your house then you will run into a problem as they start to ingest the poison. As they die they will begin to decay and stink. If you only have one mouse then the smell will go away in a few days. If you have several mice then the smell will take longer and with several mice the smell will be that much stronger.

Another problem with baiting is you have the potential of trading in a mouse problem for a fly problem. Decaying mice will breed flies, especially in the warmer months.

With trapping these problems are avoided in that you see what is caught and you physically throw it away. There is no chance of the mice dying in the walls or ceilings, they are only caught where you set the traps. So the chance for odor and fly problems are eliminated.

If the problem in very severe then baiting may have to be incorporated into your plan, just be aware of the possible problems you may experience.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Mice and snap traps.

Every time I go to check the snap traps I've set to catch the mice I notice that they ate the peanut butter off the trigger but didn't get caught. Why is this?

Mice are really resourceful creatures and smarter than a lot of people think. I've seen videos in rodent control seminars where a mouse actually built a bridge over a glue trap out of paper and other debris over time. Some tips in trapping with snap traps would be to only use a smear of peanut butter if that is your bait of choice. Make the mouse work at getting a taste. In almost every account I would go into where the customer tried to catch the mouse first, I would find a snap trap with a glob of peanut butter. Undoubtedly the mouse will feed off of this glob until it is gone. Just a dab will do ya. Next thing is to try to switch up on your baits. Chocolate that can be formed around the trigger so the mouse has to tug is a good way. Meat and cheese that can be attached to the trigger is good also. Cotton or dental floss tied to the trigger so the mouse has to pull is great because they also hunt for nesting material during their travels. Remember, laying the cheese of the chocolate on top of the trigger does nothing because the mouse will be able to eat around it. Try experimenting with how sensitive the trap setting is also. Try to make it as sensitive as you can. Some people set it all the way so their fingers don't get snapped. The more sensitive the better. Happy hunting!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Fogging for Roaches

Is Fogging for Roaches OK?

The short answer is no. Using foggers has it's place in a situation where you need quick knock down, for instance, if you went into an apartment that was so infested the walls were crawling and you needed a quick kill so you could clean it out for the carpet guys! If you want complete elimination of roaches then fogging is not your answer. Foggers will kill exposed roaches. It will not kill roaches in egg casings and it will not kill roaches that are stuffed behind cabinets and in walls. Often times you make the problem worse with fogging because you have the potential of pushing the roaches further into the walls. To do a complete job properly you will need to incorporate baits, insect growth regulators and traps. Most exterminators will use this integrated approach, if you are looking to do it yourself then I'd suggest buying a good gel bait and some roach bait stations. Treating all areas very thoroughly.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Bed bug Question.

Do I need to treat my entire house if I find bedbugs in my bedroom?

The short answer to that question is yes. Bedbugs will not only live on your mattress and boxspring, but will also migrate to other areas of the home. That is why treatments call for treating every nook and cranny. They will also travel from room to room via wires, pipes, or just by the fact that they are so small they can fit under baseboards and go right to the next room the same way. The proper treatment of a house would be the bedroom and all rooms on all sides of that bedroom and above and below.

This is also true for apartment units. The entire unit as well as the units on all sides and the units above and below need to be treated. Not doing so will lead to failure in the treatment and a resurgence of these bugs down the road. Bedbugs treatments are expensive and involved, no doubt, but done correctly control can be accomplished with a few thorough visits.

If you are looking for the best information about bedding, simply sign online. From information on duvet covers to the store locations that sell satin sheets, all of your information is available online! Finding the right bedding can be expensive and a hassle. By doing your research online it doesn't have to be!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Mouse Proofing Tips

The cold weather has arrived and with it comes the rodents looking for a warm place to wait out the winter. One way to avoid becoming pray to these furry squatters is to mouse proof your home. First thing to do is inspect from the inside out. Simply stand in your dark garage and if you see light coming in from under the door or a crack in the corner then a mouse can enter. Stand in your dark basement and any light coming in from under doors or windows is a sure sign a mouse can also enter. Now walk around the outside and look for wires and pipes that are entering. All spaces around these entry points need to be sealed. If you have a home over a crawl space then the pipes for the utilities that might come up from the crawl space should be sealed where the floor meets. Using a product called Stuf-fit or Stuff It will help to seal these areas. Stuf-fit is a cooper mesh that is able to be stuffed into holes or around entry points to keep rodents out. For your garage door or entry doorways you may need to replace or install a good piece of weather stripping or a door sweep. These can be gotten at your local hardware store or a do-it-yourself pest control store. The Stuf-fit product can also be bought at one of these retail establishments. Some other tools to arm yourself with would be caulk for the space around the wires that seen sealing and some expandable foam for any area that needs a large section filled. Mice are opportunistic and even though it is filled with foam that they can easily gnaw though, chances are they will look for an easier entry route.

Friday, October 06, 2006


There is a squirrel in my attic!

I received a question about how to get rid of a squirrel in the attic. This is a common and unwanted problem that homeowners have to deal with unfortunately. Let me set the stage for you. You're lying in bed and hear the scampering of little feet above your ceiling and scratching sounds and you can't fall asleep. What do you do?

You have a few options open to you. You can go to your local pest control shop or your local Home Depot store and buy a live trap or a humane trap. This will only work if you have an open attic without a floor where you will be able to put this trap out in the area of activity. Bait the trap with peanut butter or nuts and carefully, let me say that again, carefully place the trap in the area you hear activity or the closest to it. Be careful not to fall through the ceiling and be careful not to get attacked by the squirrel!

Your other option would be to look and see where the squirrel is coming into your house from. Is there a piece of flashing that has come away fro the house or is there is hole that he is getting into? Then you can go up there and put a sticky repellent that most pest control stores will sell you called "for the squirrels" or even "for the birds" around the hole entrance. This sticky repellent will agitate the squirrel as he goes in and out for food and he will not return. You may have to re-apply this a few times. You also must take care not to stain your siding. It can be messy. After the noise has stopped at night you must seal the hole to prevent him from returning.

I wouldn't recommend just sealing the hole without first knowing for sure that he is out because he may panic and find his way to an area of the house you don't want him. Also there is the chance he will die up there and you will eb dealing with an odor and a possible fly problem. Trapping and/or exclusion is your best bet.

Some other tips to avoid this problem would be to prune back any tree branches that fall on your roof and utility companies have squirrel guards that they put around wires that go into houses or near the roof to prevent squirrels from climbing the wire. Also don't feed the cute squirrels. They will never go away!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Can Rats Come Up Through My Toilet?


Rats are swimmers and good swimmers at that! Rats live in the sewer. Rats can most definitely make their way up your soil pipe and into your toilet if they so choose. There has been many a frantic call that would come into my office where the client was horrified to find a rat in their toilet bowl! This can be prevented by installing a toilet flap excluder.