Monday, December 24, 2007

Squirrel control and catching squirrels

Squirrels are a problem for man people across the county. Many times people hear mysterious thumping or scratching up in their attic or maybe they find one messing up their garage. Squirrels are very troublesome for people and they are constantly on the look out for way to get rid of squirrels. Catching them are really your best bet if they are in your house. Using a live trap is the path most people go with where they bait the trap with nuts or peanut butter. Depending on the laws in your state it is possible to kill the squirrel with a rat snap trap. There is another product called the squirrel evictor that is an electronic device that emits a strobe light that deters and makes squirrels uncomfortable to eliminate them from the area (like an attic) that they are frequenting.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Bed Bug Policy

Developing a solid policy to deal with bed bugs is something that the government should start to think about implementing to help stop the spread of these bugs. Bed bugs are in fact an epidemic at this point and it should be treated as such. It is too easy for someone who contracts a bed bug problem in an apartment setting to leave that unit and move into another apartment building. These folks think they are escaping the problem, which is a blatant ignorance of the problem, when in fact they are spreading the problem to a new building. The government needs to go full force into an add campaign to educate the public and start to face this problem head on.

Seal holes to keep mice out

Seal holes, seal cracks, seal around pipes, mouse proof your house! It's that simple. If you want to cut down on the possibility of mice entering your home during these cold days of winter, you have to seal them out. It takes an hour of your time and some leg power to walk around the outside of your home and search out and destroy any holes that are visible. Your weapons of choice can be steel wool, expanding foam in a can, copper stuff it, caulk, or plain old cement. Be especially aware of wires, pipes or cables entering the home. Be sure to seal around them. Also look for large gaps under the garage door and replace weather stripping where necessary.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Is it a Rat or Mouse?

Rats and mice are tow completely different beings aside from coming from the realm of rodents. Mice are friendly and come out in the open and rats are neophobic and rarely come out to play. You can tell you are experiencing a rat problem usually be the droppings you find. The dropping of a rat looks like a tick tac and is much lager than a mouse dropping.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Seal mice and rodents out of your home and garage

MOUSE PROOFING
Excluding mice and rats from even entering your property is the best defense against a rodent infestation. Gaps around your garage door or missing weather stripping under your doors can be an invitation for trouble. Pipes and wires that enter the building or home with openings around them can also be a conduit for entry. Sealing these holes in your garage or other areas that offer entry for mice can be the best thing for you to do. Products like stuf-fit, a copper product that allows you to stuff holes and gaps is a great product for this. Steel wool also works just a good but can rust. Great Stuff, an expandable foam, is a good product to seal around pipes and wires. The old stand by caulk is also excellent. Replace any worn or missing weather stripping around doors. Doing this will help you have a mouse proof season.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Mouse Traps

Where can you find a better mouse trap? Well until someone becomes the next great American inventor, you'll be hard pressed to find this trap. So you will have to keep with the old standards which happen to work very well if they are used correctly and baited with the proper attractants. The trick to trapping mice is to use lots of traps in the areas you see them. Don't skimp! Snap traps, glue traps, mechanical traps, they all work great. The best place to buy them is online at a do it yourself pest control supply house so you can get good price for bulk. Happy Hunting!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Mice can get into anything

My wife had a mouse at work that has been eating all of the flour and baking goods in the pantry at an after school program she works at. She kept telling me that all the baking goods are in a tupper ware type bin with a lid that sort of snaps on. It is one of those bins you buy at Target or Wal-Mart for storage, problem is, they are not mouse proof! If you are storing things like sugar, flour, chocolate chips, anything like this, you should really keep it in a jar with a screw-on lid. Mice are really resourceful and tricky and my wife and the staff at the after school program are learning this quickly. So the lesson to learn here is to not underestimate the power of the mouse and keep your dry goods locked up.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Stink Bugs in Philadelphia and New Jersey


Something stinky this way comes. I live in Pennsylvania and the big stink here is, well, stink bugs. These bugs are a present from Asia and one that we could have done with out. People who are lucky enough to have them as a house guest can discourage their entrance by caulking and sealing around the outside of their house as best they can. Keep screens tight. Once inside the best defense is to vacuum them down. If you decide to squash them with a rolled up newspaper then beware, things can get stinky!

Get rid of bedbugs

The question of the day for many homeowners is how to get rid of and kill bed bugs. So just how does one kill bedbugs? Well there are many products to add to your arsenal and if you follow some simple direction then you can at least get some decent control of the situation. First thing to do is locate the majority of the infestation. Inspect under the furniture and under mattresses and box springs. Look closely at the buttons of your mattress and between the tufts. Have your hand held vacuum ready and suck up the bedbugs you find. Do a thorough vacuuming of these areas and then choose a product to treat any bedbugs you may have missed. Some products to choose from include:

  • Suspend
  • Phantom
  • Kicker
  • Eaton's Bedbug
  • Sterifab
  • Bedlam

These products will most likely have to be purchased over the Internet via do it yourself pest control product websites. The most important thing to remember is to read and follow the label of these chemicals. If you don't understand the label then call the website or ask the store you bought it from.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

STINK BUGS

What did these poor bugs do to deserve such a name? These bugs are notorious around this time a year and alot of people complain about them for one reason, when you crush them they stink! SO how do you avoid these smelly buggers? It's almost impossible. If you are being bothered by them inside your home then I would recommend using your vacuum and sucking them down rather than smashing them with a rolled up newspaper. On the outside, other than doing a perimeter spray, there is not a whole lot more you can do but live with them.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Get rid of mice

Treating for mice like a professional is not as hard as you might think, and it could save you money if done correctly. To do this you will need to know the basics. First thing to do is determine where the problem is at it's worse. Are you experiencing the mice in the kitchen or have they been running in the living room under the sofa? Next thing to do is decide if you want to use bait or traps? If you have animals or children in the house then you may want to consider using traps and not bait for safety reasons. If you decide to go with baiting then stop at your friendly neighborhood hardware store and pick up some mouse bait. Here is the inside tip, there is no secret to mouse baits, pick up a decent amount of it and be generous with the mice putting out several placements. You also want to pick up snap traps and glue traps. Again be generous, put out several traps. The most important thing to do is put this product out in the areas you are seeing the mice. If the mouse has been running across the same wall for the past three nights then put your traps on the same wall. If you are finding droppings under the kitchen sink then put the product there. The trick is being generous because you never know how many mice there are. There are several topics about mice control under the Mouse/Mice label of this blog. Happy Hunting!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Mouse bait

I often get asked what would be an alternative for peanut butter on a snap trap when baiting for mice. Fortunately mice like alot of things and some of my best bets for baiting mice would be the following: Bacon, chocolate syrup, cotton, bread dipped in bacon grease, and the old stand by cheese. Anything that you can secure to the trigger of a snap trap that has a strong odor or that a mouse would use for nesting is a great choice. With today's peanut allergy eruption it is important to look for alternative baiting methods and the above list should help you along the way.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Don't bug me.

I find it amazing how at work where we recently had a mouse problem it was so hard to get a pest control professional to come out to take care of it! First of all it was a treat to actually get an answer, most of the calls we made went right to an answering machine, then when we did get an answer it was an answering service who didn't want to hear the secretary's story of woe, but just the facts. In today's competitive market I think it smart to either have a person answering the phone who has an interest in your company and pest control or for the call to forward to the owners cell phone if it is a one man operation. Answer professionally and with a sympathetic voice as the caller is most likely scared to death of the rodent or insect they want exterminated.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Why mice are dirty

We were in a pet store yesterday and my wife proclaimed how cute the mice they had in the glass cage looked and how could I "exterminate" such creatures. Lions look cute at the zoo as well I thought, behind the bars that is. Mice are very dirty and spread disease because of the way they leave droplets of urine almost everywhere they scamper. If you were to place a supermarket under an intense black light which would highlight these urine droplets I think you would become farmers and grow your own food! Not only do they have weak bladders, they also leave dropping all over the place. These droppings carry all kinds of diseases and can be deadly in some instances. Also mice love to eat garbage and after scampering through the dumpster behind the building they find their way into the business or home and walk all over your counter tops. Mice are cute indeed, but they are also dirty little creatures, so be sure to wash that can of soup the next time you decide to have an afternoon snack.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

The mice are coming! The mice are coming!

Mice are funny creatures. They love seeds and straw and garbage and all things that have to do with the outside, except in the winter. When the cold whether comes around mice become tenants. They don't pay rent, but they do set up shop. You home, your business, your restaurant, your warehouse, any place that has a a little food and some warmth. The best thing you can do is not to get in a situation where you have to actually evict them. Mouse proof your home with products like Stuf-fit, steel wool, and foam. Fix the gaps in your garage door and all doors. Seal holes around wires and pipes. You can even set up a baiting program around the outside perimeter of your home or set glue traps in PVC pipe to trap them.

Bedbugs bite

The title of this post is so true on so many levels. Bedbugs are becoming public enemy number one faster than Al Capone in height of his popularity. So how do you avoid becoming prey to these bugs that infest beds, these bed bugs? Your first defense is knowledge. Learn as much as you can about the bug and the way to control them. Then become proactive. If you are traveling be sure to inspect the room before you bring your bags in and accept the room as ok. Inspect the bedding thoroughly. If you have a child in school then check out the schoolbag every day. Do not buy used bedding of any kind, in fact, do not buy any kind of used bedroom furniture. I would even go so far as to say do not buy any used furniture at all. This is a very common way to invite bedbugs into your home! If you get a delivery of bedding, ask to check out the mattress or box spring before they bring it in. If you think you see anything that might resemble a bedbug then refuse the delivery. It's easier to fix a delivery problem then it is to fix a bedbug infestation. Being diligent and knowledgeable will cut the chances of become a victim in half, so start your research!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Abell Pest Control Ontario Canada

This post is reminiscent of my other blog called Critique My Blog where I critiqued other peoples blogs who submit them to me for review. As I was reviewing my stats section I noticed a referral from Abell's website and curiously clicked over to see how it was placed in content. I was pleased to find my link placed under an excerpt from my pest control blog in Abell's site. As I explored their site further I was impressed to see what an integrated and well planned site Abell had. All this brings me to the points I am trying to make with this post. My first point is to thank Abell for the link into Pest Control Information and Facts and my second point is to bring awareness to the importance of a well thought out web site for a pest control business. The pest control industry as a whole has been fighting to put a professional face on the industry and has done an awesome job in my opinion and websites like Abell's is a perfect example of how a great interactive website can help with this endeavor. Nice job.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Wasps and Bees

Fall brings with it some good outdoor fun. This season brings to mind memories of the apple fests and pumpkin patch fairs, spiced apple cider and pies! This season also brings with it the bees and wasps! They love the sweet apple juices and all the great food associated with fall festivities. There are some options to keeping these wasps and yellow jackets at bay. Traps are always a good bet. There is also a product called the waspinator that mimics a wasp or hornets nest and this scares other bees and yellow jackets away. After all, it's a competing nest and they rather not disturb another nests turf to avoid war, so they stay away. It takes diligence and a good plan to keep wasps and bees at bay, but with a little bit of work and careful placement of traps and products like the waspinator it can be a sting free fall!

Halloween Bugs

Halloween is right around the corner and with it comes the possibility of Halloween bugs or boxelder bugs as they are technically called. Boxelder bugs become a problem on warm days during the fall and winter when they start to appear inside the home. These bugs are a nuisance, but not really a danger. People hate them because they gather on the sunny side of the house or building with great numbers and then find their way into the home via holes in the house. When they do appear on the inside the best thing to do it just vacuum them down. If you smash them the will leave a mark and this stain can be permanent.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Mealy bugs and moths

Indian Meal moths, mealy bugs, grain worms, rice worms, however you call them they are definitely one thing. Nasty. Indian meal moths are often found in the kitchen cabinets as moths and sometimes people will see them in the form of worms that are on the ceiling. There is one sure fire way of getting rid of these pests. Inspect all your dry product foods. Cat and dog food, bird seed, flour, baking soda, baking powder, cereal of all kinds, oatmeal, pastas of all kind, rice, spices, dry milk, any kind of dry product can harbor these pests. Once you find the infested product, and you will, you must throw it away. After this task is complete you will have eliminated the source of the infestation and the moths and worms will die down over the days that follow.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Lice and School

School days have begun for most children and that brings with it the threat of lice. Lice is easily spread from child to child by close contact and sharing stuffed animals and hats. Lice is typically not a pest control issue and when this problem presents itself in a classroom there would be immediate notification to the parents so that the process of treatment can begin. The process of treatment for the home should include the washing of bedding and hats and coats. The vacuuming of the sofa areas and placing stuffed animals in a ties up trash bag for a week to kill off the lice. They need the host to survive and when not on the host dies off pretty quickly. There are several lice treatments for the body on the market today and after these procedures are followed then the issue goes away.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Pest control blogs

Over the past few years there has been an increase in pest control blogs and forums. It's a fantastic platform to get and give information. The blog has opened up a means of expression for the victims of the current bed bug epidemic with blogs referencing bed bug control right on up to bed bug diaries. People can voice there frustrations on the web via a blog and let the world know about their plight. Blogs like this one, where professionals can share their expertise, are great tools for the public to get an inside look at topics that otherwise may have been not available in the past. Do it yourself blogs have become all the rage, DIY pest control sites are a perfect example of this. People these days like to give things a try themselves and a blog of this nature is just the tool for the adventurous home owner who wants to try to control termites themselves or start their own mouse control program. Bed bug blogs are all the rage and if you Google this topic you will find a ton of them. I know that I myself love to blog about pest control and love to offer my knowledge to people and often give advice privately to people I meet through this blog.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Mice and ultrasonic and electronic control

I have mixed feelings on these plug in electronic ultrasonic devices that are supposed to control and repel mice. I know that Victor has a decent line of them and apparently people buy them or they wouldn't be on the market. I guess in ultra sensitive accounts where baiting and trapping are not allowed then the last resort would be for mouse proofing the area and using devices like the Victor Mini Pest Chaser or some other kind of electronic mouse control device. I still believe the best kind of devices like this is one that you can change the frequency on so the rodent will not build up a tolerance to the sound that is supposed to be chasing them away. I guess these electronic mouse control devices have their place and if they are not too expensive then they are worth a shot.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Squirrel Baits


Squirrels can be a friend or a foe depending on how you look at things. Some people love the furry little creature and others would sooner have them all disappear off the face of the earth. Many ask me the best way to trap them and I say to use a havaheart trap or a live trap and bait it with a good attractant. A good squirrel attractant can be nuts, peanut butter, or a premix bait like Baron's brand squirrel bait. Premixes work well because they are tailor made for the target animal you are looking to capture. With any trapping program you have to have patience and a plan. Be sure you know where you are going to let the animal go because if you let it go too close to your house they will be back to settle in.

Monday, September 10, 2007

mouse proof your home


You read alot about how you have to mouse proof your home to keep mice out so they don't become a problem. This fact is true. The question becomes; what can resist the sharp fangs of a rat and mouse? The incisors of a mouse are able to chew through cinder block, bricks, soft metal. It is obvious these rodents are resourceful when it come to the art of chewing. So what makes all these experts think that stuffing a hole with cement or "stuf-fit" or foam will keep out these mice with razor sharp fangs? Simple. Mice can be just as lazy as you and me. They would just as soon take the path of least resistance then chew through foam. If there is a hole that is open they will go through it, if it is stuffed they will move onto an easier entrance. So look for these holes a fill them in. You will give yourself a ninety percent head start in keeping mice out. Mouse proof to your hearts content. Build those suckers out, and you will thank yourself later.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Treating Mattress for Bed Bugs


Treating a mattress for bed bugs is an integrated procedure of completely dismantling the bed and starting from scratch. To begin I would strip the bed of all linens and wash in hot water. Then life the mattress and stand upright and do the same to the box spring. Now treat with your product of choice that is labeled for treating bedding along the cracks and crevices of the bed frame. If there are inset screws be sure to pay extra attention. Wheels need to be treated as well. The the box spring will need to be treated. Take the backing off of the bottom and throw it away. Then treat the inside of the box spring. Now the mattress will need to be treated along the tufts and buttons. This is a sensitive topic and if you know you are chemical sensitive then I would be careful with what you treat with. After all has been treated then cover the box spring and the mattress in a good quality mattress encasement or mattress cover that zips up. This will keep any new bed bugs from re infesting your mattress or box spring. Good Luck and always use extreme caution and read the labels when using any kind of chemical.

Colony Collapse Disorder In Bees

We finally have a culprit in the demise of the nation's and the world's bee population due to colony collapse disorder. Researchers from Penn State and Columbia has named Israeli Acute Paralysis Virus (IAPV) as the reason behind CCD. There findings were made public in the journal SCIENCE. Now that we know what's causing it, maybe we can solve the problem. Great job!

Rat trapping

Rats are neophobic which mean they are afraid of new things and that includes traps. This is a quick tip for baiting rats with snap traps. Place the snap traps out without setting the trigger. Leave it there for a few days. Now put some food on the trigger, but don't set it. When you start to notice the rat is taking the bait then re bait it and set the trap. This should help with the success in trapping a rat, it may take longer than most people want to wait, but it is a proven method.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Ants and Roaches and Bees...Oh My

I was walking home from work today up the street and noticed a trail of ants crossing the pavement. It got me thinking about how many species of ants there actually are. Leave it to a pest control guy to think of something crazy like that. It turns out there is over twelve thousand species of ants, over four thousand five hundred species of roaches and twenty thousand species of bees! Yikes. That's alot of insect species and only 3 different kinds. If we were to count up how many total species of insects there were in the world it would be over one million! That's what keeps pest control people like me in business.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Sleep-Safe

A good night sleep is right around the corner for the seasoned traveler. There is a new tool for the traveler who worries about bringing bed bugs home from a trip. It's a disposable mattress cover by a company called Muse International. They sell a product called Sleep-Safe Disposable Travel Bed Sheets and Pillow Cases. Business men and families love them. When you buy them you get two pillow cases and two sheets sent in a shrink wrapped twelve by seven inch package that is perfect for travel. I think this is a fantastic idea for the traveler and for fourteen bucks you can't beat it.

Colony Collapse Disorder

It's been the mystery of the century. Colony Collapse Disorder. Bees disappearing off the face of the earth at alarming numbers. This mystery ranks up there with the Bermuda Triangle and Roswell and until now there has only been speculation and concern. That has been the case until now. Thursday the sixth of September, a prestigious scientific journal will publish a research paper from the scientists from Penn State and Columbia University about the topic of Colony Collapse Disorder. Hopefully this will shed some light on a very serious subject that has had entomologists and bee keepers scratching their heads for a long time.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Yellow Jackets, Wasps, and Bees

It's the end of summer and it's time for all the yellow jackets and bees to go crazy. Whether it be at your end of summer picnics or at the pumpkin patch around the apple cider area, yellow jackets and bees seem to be crazy and in your face. It happens every year and there is no way around it. All you can do is try to keep the things that bees like covered and maybe try to place traps around the area. You can get yellow jacket traps or bee traps at your local hardware store or online at your favorite DIY pest control supply website, and once you have them in hand then fill them up with some apple cider or sweet treat and place them around the perimeter of the area you will be hanging out. Place them up in trees or along the roof line or along the yard perimeter. Areas like this will keep the bees far enough away from the party and hopefully away from you.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Baiting for ants

A good baiting program starts with identification of the ant and choosing a good ant bait. Maxforce ant gels are a good choice for a variety of ants including carpenter ants. If you are noticing ants in a particular area it is important to place the baits out in the area they are frequenting. There are a variety of bait dispensers that work well for ant control to place the baits right out in the area the ants are. The Ant Cafe comes to mind for this reason. You don't want to just place gel bait right out on your counter, so you can place it in this dispenser and it keeps the bait available for the ants. If you are lucky enough to find the trail then place the baits right in the trail itself. Bait stations are another good product. Advance Dual Choice is the best ant bait station in my opinion because I've always had good success with that particular product. FMC used to have a good ant bait station but I think it is no longer available. It is important again to place the ant bait station right out in the area you are seeing the ants to make the bait available to them. I have to stress with any baiting program to use caution if there are any children or pets present in the home or around the area you are baiting. If children are present there are tamper proof bait stations that you can find to keep the baits out of reach of children and animals. One thing I should stress is if you are baiting, don't be stingy! Use plenty of bait and be generous so the ants will eat and if possible place out a variety of baits because ants are very finicky and like variety.

Bedbug bites or flea bites.



Bed bug bites Flea bites


How do I know if I am getting bitten by fleas or bed bugs? Bedbug bites are described as a breakfast, lunch, and dinner organization with the bites usually in a row anywhere on the body. They cluster in areas on the body and can be in great numbers depending on the severity of the infestation. Flea bites are usually found more on the ankles and legs and not usually on the upper parts of the body.



Saturday, September 01, 2007

The Big Boys of Pest Control

There are some household names out there with regards to pest control. These are usually large companies with branches and employees all over the country and in some cases the world. Here is a list of some of these big companies of the pest control industry.


  1. Orkin pest Control-the parent company of Orkin is Rollins. Orkin recently bought out Western Pest Control a over a year ago adding to it's 1.7 million customers. This company boasts 7500 employees and made over 858 million dollars last year. Not too shabby.

  2. Terminix-Parent company is Servicemaster and has been a household name forever!

  3. JC Ehrlich-bought out over a year ago by Rentokil making it a worldwide company overnight.

  4. Truly Nolan-all I can say is mouse ears!

  5. Cooper Pest Control-A gem in South Jersey with two brilliant brothers.

  6. Hoffman's exterminating-another South Jersey gem lead by Bill Hoffman.

Picture of a Boxelder Bug



If you are wondering what a boxelder bug looked like you can refer to this picture.

red and black bugs

Halloween bugs, red and black bugs, orange and black bugs, bugs that cluster on the outside walls, these are some of the ways people describe boxelder bugs. These bugs can become a big problem for some people and business because these bugs can become great in numbers and they congregate on the sunny side of the home or building. Once they are there they usually find their way into the home or building through cracks and once this happens they can be visible all year long through the winter. If you get these pests inside the best thing to do is use a vacuum and suck them down. Don't crush them because they will stain and it is inadvisable to spray with chemical. Outside you can spray the clusters with soapy water. This is a safe way to kill them off. To minimize the bugs from congregating around you house you should rake away any leaves that are around your home's perimeter and mulch is another area they like to hide in, so you may want to consider that when putting mulch in. You may also want to caulk and seal areas outside you home that would allow them to enter you home. Boxelder bugs are not harmful and often times people learn to live with them, if you can't do that then you can try some of the methods mentioned in this article. If you feel you must hire a pest control company be sure they have a license to spray trees because this is how to treat the source. That would be the only reason to hire a professional, other than that I would say they are taking your money because you can't treat inside for them and the outside walls could be sprayed but in a few days that pesticide would be rendered useless from the elements.

Roaches in restaurants

Being in the pest control business for the past 15 years I have seen alot of things that would make you think twice about eating out. This is not meant to be a shock article, but it is true. I've been in a restaurant who had a cat running around in the back kitchen and it slept under the grill. It also used this area to go to the bathroom. There was a few inches worth of cat droppings under the grill. Needless to say this one was reported to the health department. I've also come across roaches that were so bad that the prep cooks were picking them out of the bread crumbs and then tossed the chicken into the same crumbs. Another report. It didn't matter where it was, whether it be a hospital kitchen or a upper class restaurant, roaches and mice could be and most likely are present. It all depends on the owners, the workers, and the pest control company and how well they communicate and cooperate. Don't get me wrong though, for every one bad place there was twenty good ones. Pest control can be very effective but it needs the cooperation of the workers and managers of the kitchen to keep things clean and the conditions unfavorable for mice and roaches to thrive.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Mouse proofing your home

What's the best way to mouse proof your home? Think like a mouse. Whenever I started an initial service for mice I used to ask the customer to go around the house with me so I could point out areas that needed repair or sealing to try to build out the mouse. Many times we would come across homes around cables that entered the home like central air lines or cable wires. You could almost fit your finger into these spaces and it is an obvious area where a mouse could scurry in. Gaps in your garage door are another sure fire way a mouse could get in. If the garage door does not close flush to the ground then replace the weather strip. This is also true for any entry door to the home. Any gaps under the door would be a space that would invite a mouse into your home. Check for holes in the wall, especially ground level, and fill them in with cement. Be sure basement windows are in good shape and any broken panes would be repaired. Keep the vegetation around the perimeter of your home cut back because this is a great place for mice to hide. They also love seed, so any bird feeders will invite the mice to the party. Keep them away from the home and be sure to seal any potential entry points and you should have some good success at mouse free house.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Help for Bed Bugs?

Is there any place people can go for bed bug help? It seems like a select few pest control companies have decided to tackle the problem, but I wouldn't call your neighborhood bug man to come out and treat for bed bugs. Don't get me wrong, there are some one man operations who may be very knowledgeable on the topic and can help you with your bed bug problem, but chances are they will not have the time to dedicate to a proper treatment. I have heard how some pest controllers are sub contracting out the work to larger companies simply because they don't want to deal with the headaches. The problem is new and fast spreading and it is because of this that people from New York City to the farms of Nebraska are searching for help in their battle with bed bugs. The do it yourself products are even a hit or miss deal. So what's a person to do? First thing I recommend is educate yourself. Then make bedbugs your hobby. Learn everything there is to learn about them and follow other people's blogs. See how they are getting help with the problem, if any at all. Get the Google news stories about bed bugs, they will even send the stories right to your inbox if you want them to. Eventually the scientists will come up with a solution for bed bugs. The bedbug help everyone is so desperately seeking will appear and the problem will become as simple as a flea infestation with am easy fix. We'll look back on this dilemma and hopefully learn one important lesson that we should have already learned. History repeats itself, it's only a matter of when!

Roach gel review

Roach problems pop up every once in a while and when they do the best thing to use is roach gel. So what kind of roach gels are out there and are they available for the do it yourself project tackler? The answer is yes you can buy them and here they are.
The old stand by and the grand daddy of roach gel bait is Bayer's product Maxforce Roach Gel. It comes in original, FC or fast control, and select. The Maxforce Select roach gel formulation is for roaches that are resistant to the other baits. Another good bait is Advance Roach Gel from Whitmire. Advione Roach Bait is a new kid on the block that has been getting some good reaction and Syngenta has also come out with a roach bait. FMC's product is called Transport Roach Gel and Whitmire has another one called Avert.
The fact of the matter is that roach baits are very palatable to roaches and they work fantastically in their control. The best I've ever used was Maxforce, but as I said Dupont's Advion has been nipping on Maxforce's heels.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

DIY Pest Control products

As I strolled through the aisles at Home Depot I came across the section where they sold their pest control supplies and began to look at some of the do it yourself products they were offering for the control of insects. I was especially interested in controlling ground bees because it seems to be this time of year alot of people are seeing these bees. I found that alot of the products that professional pest control technicians use can also be found in this aisle under a different name. Products like Maxforce roach gel is offered as Combat roach gel, and I almost thought I saw a maxforce product. As I have stated before, most products that pest controllers use can be bought online at DIY websites that sell pest control products and used by the public. Dusts and residual products that are used to treat ground bees can also be purchased at the websites and at places like your big box home improvement stores. These products are not so bad and often times have the same active ingredient, but packaged under a different name. I remember buying something in a pinch when I was on the road doing pest control and had no other choice. Thank God they had what I was looking for.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Best Yet. A solution for Bed Bugs.

Is there finally a product that will be effective in the control of bed bugs? According to Cedarcide industries, the makers of a product called best Yet, they have found the diamond in the rough when it comes to bed bug control. Up until now treating for bedbugs have been hit or miss at best, with many bed bugs showing resistance to the products on the market today. This product is made out of the cedar oil of the Texas Red Cedar and a carrier created from liquid quartz. best Yet sounds like it can be a useful tool in the control of bed bugs, among other insects. As more information comes across my desk I will be sure to report on it. best Yet bed bug control could be the panacea we are all looking for. It's worth a try.

Tick removal

Finding a tick on yourself can be scary. None likes ticks especially when one is on your body. SO what do you do? I'll tell you two things you should not do. Do not try to kill the tick by burning it. Do not try to kill the tick with petroleum jelly. The best thing to do it to simply take a pair of tweezers and grip the tick by the head or mouth and pull firmly until it lets go. Place the tick in a bottle or jar with some alcohol. Swab the area with some alcohol and then call your doctor. Keep a close eye out for rashes that might develop and fevers. Joint pain and muscle aches are also not good. If you start to develop a severe headache or chest pain then call 911.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Starting a pest control business

Are you an entrepreneur and looking to start your own pest control business? It's a wonderful business to go into and very helpful to alot of people. You can become a hero to alot of people when you save that little old lady from the mouse that ran under her sink! You begin with researching the laws in your state as the pest control business is regulated by your state's department of agriculture. Then I would highly recommend consulting a lawyer and an accountant, but if you are starting on a shoe string you can get away with a good computer accounting program. You state's website will point you in the right direction as far as setting up your business. If you are already a pest control technician with your own license then your next step is to register your business with a BU number or whatever your state's equivalent is. Then it is time to get insurance. Wiseburger and Brown are two pest control insurance providers to look into, but there are others. If you are completely new then you would have to go to the state and take your core and category tests to get your license, then the BU number and insurance. I wouldn't recommend going into the pest control business cold turkey as there is a lot to learn to be a successful technician. The next step is advertising. You will also want to get some service slips and other stationary like business cards as well. There is alot to think about when going into your own pest control business, but with hard work and some luck it can be very rewarding.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

DIY Pest Control

Anyone can be a weekend warrior when it comes to exterminating water bugs, roaches, crickets and ants, and the best part is you don't need one of those shiny metal cans to do it! Here's what I would suggest. Do to your local over the counter pest control company or a good Internet website that sells do it yourself pest control products and get a pint of suspend. This has a good overall label and covers most insects. Now sit down and read the label. This is the most important part of pest control. Following the directions is essential for safety and control of the target insect. Now go to your local Home Depot and get a plastic sprayer for a few bucks. Mix the Suspend SC according to the label and do a thorough perimeter spray around your base boards and along the outside perimeter as well. This will put down a good residual and help to keep your spiders, ants, and roaches under control.

Mice in restaurants

There was a recent news story about a local fast food restaurant about how there were mice running around the dining room area during business hours! Coming from a pest control background I was able to asses this from a few different angles. For one thing it is not too uncommon for mice to be in a restaurant. That is the reason for pest control. If the proper control measures are in place then the problem of having them running wild in the dining room should be lessened, but the fact that a restaurant is full of food, heat from the ovens, and moisture from the sinks makes a restaurant a mouse heaven! Not only that, but there are a million ways they can enter a restaurant. Constant deliveries, customers coming in and out, and lots of wires, pipes and cables coming into the building make it easy for mice to enter. The goal is to trap and kill them before they are able to reproduce or become a problem. Pest control technicians need to be diligent in maintaining traps and monitoring devices and they need the cooperation and support of the restaurant. It is a team effort. The pest control technician is there for maybe a half an hour a week, the restaurant staff is there all the time. If staff sees something they have to convey that to the pest control tech, the staff will also need to comply with any repairs or alterations to make the environment less inviting to mice. When stories of mice in a restaurant hit the news everyone is up in arms and attention is drawn to the establishment and then it all dies down and things get back to normal. The fact is there are bugs and mice all over the world and probably in your favorite restaurant, good pest control is all you can hope for, and remember the most important word in pest control is "control".

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Crickets

As I sit here writing this post the sound of crickets are chirping through my window and it got me thinking that these critters will become a large problem soon. One cricket that comes to mind is the camel cricket. Any cricket can be annoying, but it's the numbers and where they are located in proximity to your house that is scary. I've heard horror stories how camel crickets over run people's basements and cellars and quickly get out of hand. The best way I have found to control camel crickets as well as other crickets was to use bait. A good granule bait like Niban FG and coarse as well as Intice granules worked well in baiting these annoying insects. The old stand by Baygon Bait used to work wonders, but this is not for sale anymore. The best way to get these baits is online via a DIY website or from your local over the counter pest control center. Using caution, sprinkle these baits in your basement around hot water heaters, behind washers and dryers, on window sills, in crawl spaces, and be liberal with it. Sprinkle outside under bushes, in cracks and crevices around the home, in garage corners, places like that. Another great tool in cricket control is glue boards. They catch a ton of crickets and knock down the population quickly. Don't be cheap with these. As always, if you have children or pets, use caution and read the label of the granules!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Treating for Bed Bugs

Treating for Bed Bugs can be as exhausting as the problem itself. You need to be thorough and precise, because if you are not you will fail. Preparation is the key, finding the right product is a close runner up. There are numerous DIY products out there for bedbugs, and the professional pest control market is adding products on a regular basis, but which ones work? Depending on how bad the problem is and if there is any resistance involved, it could be a hit and miss proposition. Whitmire has a boat load of can prays that could be useful in a crack and crevice situation and the professional residual products like the suspend and kicker combo or Phantom will be a good start as well. Other products like Bedlam and Eaton's Bedbug are good contact killers. Another good product is Sterifab for contact kill. It's an absolute must to get the cooperation of the person getting treated or for you to do the prep work if you are treating yourself. The best place to get the professional products is online websites that offer do it yourself pest control products for bedbugs. You can also get some DIY products at certain pest control companies who offer over the counter products. It's a good idea to have a team to treat. One person should strip all the beds and take the bedding to a laundry mat to wash in hot water and dry in a hot dryer in one bag. Throw that bag out and repack the clean bedding in a clean bag. You may also have to do this for your clothing depending on how bad the infestation is. With a team of two you should empty all contents from all drawers and take the beds apart. Treat the underside of the bed box spring, the mattress tufts and buttons with a product that is labeled, and the frame of the bed. Treat crack and crevice in all drawers and the inside and outside crack and crevices of the outside of the chest of drawers. Treat all cracks and crevices from the wall-floor seams to the door jambs and moldings. Treat behind any peeling wall paper and pull back carpeting. Treat all furniture and whatever else may have activity. BE sure closets are cleaned out as well and you treat them just as good. Detail is the key. It should take you a full day if done correctly, and unfortunately, it might require a follow up treatment or two.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Big bees in ground




Just what are those giant bees that dig out piles of dirt in the ground and scare the living daylights out of you? Some people call them ground bees. Their real name is the Cicada killer. These ground bees do good by keeping those loud cicadas under control, but they are scary and big and ugly. So how do you kill these big bees? Bug spray, or should I say, wasp spray, or should I say bee spray. Usually I wouldn't advocate spray for bees, but in this instance because they a solitary type bee, I would say it is ok to sharp shoot them out of the air and then dust the holes they lived in with a good insect dust. Sometimes you are unlucky enough to have a bunch of these bees burrowing in your landscape, in this case you may have to hire a professional who can spray large areas, and remember, this may be a yearly thing for a while. Now go out and buy a good wasp freeze spray and happy hunting!

Thoughts on Bed Bugs

The word bedbug has become a buzz word in recent years with people going nuts over these vampires. People are using all kinds of home remedies and mixtures to kill them off, others are going sue happy slapping lawsuits on apartment building management and hotel chains. It's an epidemic that is spreading like wildfire. Dorm rooms, hotel rooms, cruise ships, apartments, train sleeper cars, airplanes, row homes, single homes, mansions, shacks, hospitals and churches. It doesn't matter who you are, how rich or poor you are, or where you live, because these bugs don't care how rich or poor your blood tastes, so long as it is blood. So do we just throw our hands up in the air and surrender, maybe learn to live with these buggers, learn to manage them instead of try to eliminate them? Maybe we fight them with words and education, teaching people how to avoid them or what to look for so as not to bring them home. The problem with this idea is how do you inspect your movie theater seat? How do you know that the guy before you, whose apartment is so infested with bedbugs that he is carrying tens of thousands of them in his shoes, didn't just see the movie that afternoon as you sit down in the same seat for the twilight show? It's a scary world. The pest control industry is working hard for a solution, and I believe they will come up with one, but until then we will just have to keep checking under our covers at night and not let the bed bugs bite!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Bed bug domino effect

How does the spread of bed bugs become so rampant? Let's look at this scenario. Let's say that you have an infested mattress and you decide to get rid of it and have your house treated and then buy a new one. You go to the store and pick out your mattress and they deliver your new one and take the old one. Now the truck that picked up your old mattress is infested with bedbugs, and the new bed that they are delivering to the folks later that afternoon will get infested. So they then sue the mattress store who in turn replaces that infested mattress and in the mean time they throw away the old one. Along comes a guy who sees a new bed and mattress in the trash and throws it in the back of his truck and takes it home. Now that poor guy has been infested. All the time the children of these three families are going to school with bedbugs in their schoolbags and transferring them to the locker area where other children's schoolbags are infested. It's a vicious cycle that needs to be broken.

Big Black Ants

Have you had the unpleasant surprise of looking down at your counter top or bathroom floor to find big black ants crawling around? I'm not talking about your regular run of the mill sugar ant, I'm talking about the kind of ant that you could ride to and from work. These ants are most likely carpenter ants and seeing them may or may not be that big of a deal. You'll have to ask yourself some questions to see if they are in fact infesting a part of your property because if this is the case they can do some damage as they are considered a wood destroying insect. First of all have you had a leak in your bathroom, kitchen, or any part of your home recently or within the past year? If the answer is yes then these ants may have found the damp wood and started to excavate a home somewhere in the wood surrounding the moisture. If the answer is no then you have to ask if you have noticed anything that looks like saw dust piles anywhere inside the home? Around window frames or door jambs would be good places to look, but they could appear anywhere. If the answer is yes then you may have an infestation in the home. If not then you have to ask if you have any tree limbs hanging on your home or roof, or if you have had any tree work down around your home lately? The ants you see could just be occasional invaders coming in for a snack. If there has been trees disturbed or cut down then a nest could have been stirred up and the ants have scurried finding their way into your home. A simple perimeter treatment inside and out should start to alleviate the problem. Also cut back any branches hanging on your home. IF the infestation is in fact in your home then you may need to hire a professional to pinpoint the nest and treat it directly, as this will be the only way to eliminate it from the home. Also consider the time of day you see the ants. Usually these ants are most active at night. If you are seeing them walking in a trail in your home when it is dark outside then they might be infesting your home. A good way to get an idea as to where they are infesting is to give a piece of sugar or food to the ant, when it picks it up it will bring in right back to the nest. If he disappears under a certain part of the molding or floor board then that could be a good place to start looking.

Drain fly control

What's the best way to control drain flies in a restaurant? Elbow grease! The best way to help with the control of drain flies is to clean out the covers, catch bins, and walls of the drains. It have to clean all the gunk and slime where these flies breed and until this is done they will continue to be a problem. Another area is the holes in floor mats and the cracked grout in the floor tiles. Any place there is alot of moisture and slime, you can find drain flies. There are a few products that you can pour into the drains to help in the cleaning. Products like drain gel, vector-bio, and DF-5000 are drain gels that eat the slime via enzymes. Some of these products are also labeled to spray in trash cans, on walls, or in the cracks where the slime may build up.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Bedbugs and travel

Are you the kind of vacationer who bursts into their hotel room, cranks up the air conditioning, and plops their bags on the bed before running down tot he pool before dinner? If you are you are only asking for trouble. I advise you to leave your bags outside your room and do an inspection of your beds and surrounding pieces of furniture. Bedbugs can infest your belongs way before they start biting you at night so it would be smart to investigate before you take them home with you! Start by taking the covers down and look on the sheets. If there is what looks to be blood spots then you may have a problem. now pull back the sheets and the mattress cover to reveal the mattress itself. Pull back the tufts and look in the buttons of the mattress. Are their any black spots or moving bugs. They are bedbugs. Run out of the room! Others places to look would be around the head board, the bed tables and in the drawers of the furniture. Look around the floor of the bed where the wall meets the carpet. It only takes a few minutes to prevent this problem at home via your vacation. BE aware that even the closest examination might miss these critters. If you awake with welts of blood spots on your bed then they may be bedbug bites. This is not a post to scare you, but it is important to be aware. You can get bedbugs from a 5 star hotel, a cruise ship, or a flea bag motel. Keep a sharp eye. Bedbugs are back!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are rearing their ugly heads in full force this summer and we have the rain to thank for that! Fellow Americans...and people of the world...be diligent and empty any free standing water you might come across near your property and you might find relief from these pesky critters. Mosquitoes can go through a life cycle faster than lighting and it is because of this very reason that this insect is so successful. They breed in free standing water. Puddles of water that you might find in bird baths, ash trays, toys, flower pots, rain gutters, tires, anything that can collect water is a breeding ground and must be eliminated. In large areas like ponds and large puddles there are products called Mosquito Dunks that work well or Larvacide. Municipalities often times will fog large areas and treat ponds and streams and the like themselves but it doesn't hurt for the fine folks of the world to chip in and do the same.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Baits for bees


It looks like the votes are in. The best bait for the wasp/bee traps on the market is apple juice concentrate and water at a 50/50 part.

Bee watch

With the start of August upon us we have to address the issue of bees, wasps, and hornets becoming aggressive and steps to take to try to avoid getting stung. August and September are frantic months for bees and they often times get very aggressive and make there presence known at picnics and barbecues. So what can we do? First of all try to identify areas where wasps might be hanging out. By now they would have set up shop under your deck areas or in the corners of your eves or overhangs. Paper wasps are the biggest culprits. You will notice cones or umbrella homes and often several of them in an area. If you are brave, and these nests are easy to get to, you can spray them down yourself at night when activity is low and by using extreme caution. If you are nervous or not sure then I suggest hiring an exterminator to come out and take care of the problem. By eliminating the nests you will ease the stress of being outside and having to be bothered by bees. You can also buy traps at your local hardware store and place them on the outskirts of the area you will be hanging out. Next thing is to be careful what you have outside with regards to foods. They will no doubt crash your barbecue if you have fruit and sodas out in the open. Anything sweet will attract them so try your best to keep these foods covered or at a minimum. If you have cans of soda out on the table be sure to keep them covered as a bees may get into the can and your next sip can give you a stinging sensation!

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Bedbug Preparation for treatment

The most important thing to remember with regards to bedbug work is preparation! You can treat until the cows come home for bed bugs, but if you have a poorly prepared home then it is futile to even try. So how do you get an A+ in preparation 101? It's not easy, but anyone can do it. Here's how.
Start with a thorough vacuuming of any live bedbugs. If you have them so bad that they are crawling up the wall of you know that they are concentrated in a certain corner of your bed, whatever the case might be, then vacuum them up. Vacuum along the seams of the mattress and box spring, tear the back of the box spring off and vacuum in there. Vacuum inside drawers and closets, furniture, everywhere. Now sprinkle some baking or talc powder and suck it up in your vacuum and now throw out the bag. Next you will want to gather all bedding and get it laundered in hot water and dried in a hot dryer. If you are planning on taking them to a laundry mat then be sure to have another means to carry your cloths back home. Do not use the same bag to transport them back to your house. All clothing in closets and drawers need to be treated the same way and anything that needs to be dry cleaned will have to be sent to the cleaners. Now keep the drawers and closets empty. All things out from under the bed and all things out of the closets and drawers. Ideally you will want to take out all dresser drawers for the treatment company and take apart all beds exposing the frame work. Be aware that the treatment company may be tearing back carpeting from the walls so ask them this in advance and also they may be treating behind picture frames so anything valuable needs to be marked as so. Be sure to throw away old magazines and newspapers. Take down curtains or drapes and launder or dry clean these as well and keep them down for the treatment company. Unscrew and take off any light switch plates or outlet plates in all rooms. Now start from the top and go to the next room. All rooms will need to be treated. It's a process, no doubt, but well worth it in the long run.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

exterminator

Today's pest control professional has been through the ringer when it comes to terms of endearment. The bug man, the spray jockey, the smelly bucket, the verminator, the "Orkin Man" (even if he or she didn't work for Orkin). One thing I find is that residential customers are very loyal to their exterminator, whether it be to take care of bed bugs or water bugs, they love their monthly visit from the verminator. If you stumble by this blog or visit often, what is your opinion of the Pest control person and do you have a favorite company and technician and why?

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Flea treatment

Fleas are public enemy number one when it comes to pet owners! Cats and dogs suffer and so do their owners. The most important order of business is often fast and lasting control. If you have an outside animal like a cat or dog and you own a large back yard then you are going to want to treat the yard as best you can. Sometimes this can be done by a pest control firm who offer power sprays which would also help with ticks. Next order of business is to contact the vet and treat the animal with a flea dip or powder and then use a product like frontline. The last thing to do it treat the home. You can do it yourself when it comes to flea control with products that are offered online or at your local hardware store. If you are dealing with cats then you will want to use foggers, if you are dealing with dogs you can get away with just the can spray. If you are using foggers be sure to turn off any open flames and follow the directions and label carefully, also, whichever product you choose be sure it contains an insect growth regulator like methoprene to control the flea eggs and to prevent any future infestation.
Treatment should begin with a very thorough vacuuming of the whole house with emphasis on areas the pet frequents. BE sure to vacuum furniture, under beds and under furniture, in closets, on top of area cats lay around on...etc. After you vacuum be sure to throw away the bag outside the home! Now if you are using foggers you simple use the proper amount per room, place a newspaper under the can and set off the foggers, starting from the top of the home, working to the basement next, and then the first floor so you can exit without exposure. If you are using the can spray then be sure to treat every room. Treat the stair areas and areas your pets jump from like the sofa because these areas are where eggs fall off in greater numbers. Treat the areas thoroughly and follow the label.
Be sure you have a place where you and the pets can stay for the day while the treatment is working. All pets will need to be out of the home as well as you. Upon return it would not be too unusual to experience some light activity up until a week or even two as the eggs hatch and get a dose of the chemical. After two weeks the problem should be gone. If all else fails then call a professional pest control firm.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Green Beetles

What's the deal wit all these green beetles flying around and how do I get rid of them? They are June bugs or June Beetles...not to be confused with Japanese Beetles. You usually find June beetles flying around during the months of late June and July. They are no harm, they just bother the heck out of you. The fly into you, your care windshield, you house. They are annoying to say the least. There really is no way to treat them locally and the best way to deal with them if you have a large patch of land is to wait until the months of August and November because it duding those months the grubs are active in the grass and it is at this point you will reduce next years population. My professional recommendation is this. Get a tennis racket!

Friday, July 06, 2007

Moles and Talpirid

Moles can reek havoc on a person's lawn and there is nothing more frustrating than spending a lot of time and money on your lawn, only to have it ripped up by moles! Who are these creatures of destruction? They feed mostly on insects and love, love, love earthworms. Their appetite is incredible and their metabolism is super high. They are active all year which means they do not hibernate. They breed in late winter or early spring which means you can look for a boost in activity about 10 weeks later. They build tunnels like the English with a primary run, and exploratory run, and deep tunnels. Last but not least. They damage lawns.
So how do get rid of them? Well there are all kinds of traps and devises you can uses, but lately there is a product being used by the professional pest controllers called Talpirid from Bell Laboratories. It is a poison bait that mimics an earth worm. One "worm" contains a lethal dose and they are easy to apply. This product is not available at your local hardware store, but pest control operators can get it and it is working like hot cakes! Happy hunting!

Friday, June 29, 2007

Bed bugs and Mattress Covers

The debate is raging over the use of mattress covers in bed bug control. I think there is no doubt about it with regards to the fact that mattress covers can eliminate about ninety percent of the hiding places where bed bugs would infest. The whole concept is to keep the bedbugs from infesting the tufts, buttons, and creases in your mattress and also from infesting the box spring which has about a million spots to hide. If you worry about bringing bedbugs home because you travel often or are in a business where there may be infestations then I would recommend both your mattress and box spring to be covered. Bed bugs will stay as close to the food as possible, and you are the food. With a mattress cover you eliminate that area and make the treatment go a lot more smoothly. It also helps in active infestations because you can treat the mattress and box spring and cover them and the ones already embedded in the mattress and box spring will be trapped and will not be able to come out to feed on you. Do yourself a favor. Wrap up the mattress and box spring.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Seminar for Bed Bugs

August 7th will bring two of the industry leading experts in the pest control field together at New York's Park Central to discuss the nations Bed Bug problem. Rick Cooper and Doctor Mike Potter will hold an all day seminar about the topic that is on every one's mind these days, and that topic is bed bug elimination. Interested pest control professionals can follow the link to Pest Control Technology to find out more.

Bedbug sniffing dog!

There has been alot of buzz lately about bed bug sniffing dogs making there debut around the pest control community. Locally there is a company, Cooper Pest Control, who has added one of man's best friend to the staff and I think it is a fantastic idea. Not only is it a wonderful public relations move, it also can improve your chances of inspecting for and not missing bedbug infestations. Dogs have successfully been used in bomb sniffing, termite detection, mold detection, and now bed bug detection. People seem to love them and I think they trust a dog more than a human sometimes, so why not add one to the payroll? I'll give you over a thousand reasons why you might not be adding one any time soon. The cost of a specially trained dog is several thousands of dollars and depending on the demand on your company to do bedbug inspections it might not pay off right away, but given the proper marketing you may see an increase in those requests by adding a dashing dog to your crew. Happy Hunting!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Waterbug Roach

What's going on with those big black waterbug roaches that are so big you can saddle them up? Well they are called oriental roaches and can creep out the most seasoned of pest control technicians. The best way to treat for them is to use a product that is not distributed anymore called Baygon Bait. This stuff was fantastic when it came to waterbugs. If you can get your hands on this stuff then buy it up fast. The other product out there is niban bait. These baits work well on the larger of roaches. Another good treatment is just your regular perimeter spray with a product like Phantom. Glue boards are also a good tool in trapping these roaches and knocking down the population. Good luck.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Bed Bug jobs the new termite job.

The involvement and thoroughness of a bedbug job will be fetching big money as the amount of bed bug infestations grow. A bed bug job should take you a good day and maybe two people and it would not be wrong to charge upwards of five or six hundred dollars. It will involve follow ups and customer cooperation and you are not going to want to under charge for this if you are a pest control professional. Charge high and if you have to walk away from a job then so be it because it is not worth the headaches you will encounter unless you charge high. It might be worth getting together with your attorney if you anticipate doing alot of bed bug work and type up a specific contract for bed bug treatments that includes apartments and hotels, as well as single family dwellings. Spend the dough and CYA.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Do It Yourself Pest Control

I am asked often for recommendation for places to buy some of the products I talk about in this blog. As you know, many of these products should be applied by a professional, but if you are so inclined to do it yourself then you will be interested in the following article.
There are several very informative and useful "do it yourself" pest control websites out there that offer products for all your exterminating needs. The first one I will talk about is at doyourownpestcontrol . This website has a fantastic FAQ section and tip section and a wide variety of products to choose from. The site offers free shipping for orders over twenty dollars and it has a return policy as well as a brick and mortar store located in GA.
The next DIY pest control website would be epestsupply . This website offers kits and a large inventory to choose from. The site is organized very well and easy to use. The next one is diypesticides, where you can order your products and see how to apply via a great section that shows photos of how to apply the products. The above websites are just some of the many websites out there that are gaining popularity with homeowners looking to control bedbugs and other pests that are troubling them. All of them offer great advice and great products.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Is bigger any better when choosing an exterminator?

Are the major league players like Terminix or Orkin any better than your neighborhood pest control company? Not really in many cases. A one man operation often times will provide a better service because he values your business more than the bigger company. You can build a better relationship with a one man operation because you will see the same technician each time which might not be the case with a large corporate company. Large corporations might have a better response time but they might also be more expensive and require a more rigid contract basis. Many small companies won't require you to sign a contract and are a little less expensive. Bigger isn't always better in many cases and I think the pest control industry is a perfect example of this. You are paying extra for the big guy's fleet of trucks, their gas, their overhead, their advertising, their chemical cost. The small guy usually gets business by word of mouth, has one truck on the road and services a smaller and tighter territory. As always you should check with your local Better Business Bureau and ask your neighbors who they use when choosing a pest control company, but I'd take a close look at your neighborhood guy the next time you are in the market.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Bed Bug Spray Reviews

It seems like with the up rise of bedbugs as of late a lot of people are scrambling to find something to kill these pest with. I thought I would go through some of the bed bug sprays that are on the market right now.
  • JT Eaton's Bedbug Spray is a pyrethrin based spray that is a contact killer and is oil based. It is for sale for professionals and home owners alike. Be careful where it is used because it is oil based.
  • Bedlam is another bedbug spray that is water based and boasts a residual lasting up to seven weeks. Another great benefit of this product is the effect on bedbug eggs. The manufacture claims 90% kill of the eggs in treated areas. The spray can be used as a surface spray as well as a crack and crevice spray. This is a professional product.
  • Thwart bed bug treatment is an over the counter spray being sold via the Internet and I don't really have too much data to write about this product in any capacity.
  • Steri-Fab is a mostly alcohol based chemical that is a contact killer and is shown to kill bedbugs on contact. It's label is very broad and kills a wide variety of other things as well as bed bugs.
  • Aside form these ready made products there are a host of concentrated insecticides like Suspend SC and Cy-Kick among others that are great residual insecticides for a longer lasting control.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Flies and their control

Fly control is a battle to be sure. Flies can reproduce quickly and in great numbers, often times giving the appearance of thousands of flies. If you are having a problem in or around a bush or a dumpster then there are traps and surface treatments you can use. One product new to the market is Maxforce fly spot bait by Bayer. You mix this up in a sprayer and treat the surfaces the flies rest on. They die almost instantly. Another product is Victor flying insect trap or a "Flying Saucer" These traps come with a fly attractant that you place in the water, or you can just throw piece of meat in there. Inside the home the old stand by fly ribbon or a product called a gold stick is what you can use to catch the flies. If all else fails then the oldest trick in the book will work just as well. The fly swatter!

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Kill Ants

So what are the products working out there for ant control these days? What's new on the market? Ant control has always been about colony elimination and some of the best products to use are the non-repellent chemistry out there like Phantom or Termidor. These chemicals allow the ants to continue on their path and pick up a lethal dose of the chemical, bringing back to the nest and getting control. New this year in the bait market is Dupont's Ant Bait Arena. Some of the old standbys are Maxforce Ant bait. The maxforce products come in granule form, bait station form, and gel bait. The gel bait works very well and Maxforce also carries a carpenter ant gel which works very well. Whitmire also carries a great line of ant control products. Dual Choice Ant Bait is one of them. Dual Choice offers two baits in one station and I personally have had great success with this product in the past. There is also a granule ant bait and Whitmire also has a granule carpenter ant bait as well. Some other ant baits include Intice and Uncle Alberts Gourmet Ant Bait. Terro Ant Bait is also very good for sugar feeding ants as well as the Drax products. Drax comes in both sugar feeding and protein cartridges and one cartridge that has both. Ants are fickle feeders and will only feed on sugars or proteins depending on their needs which is why they can be hard to control. One very important thing to remember when baiting or using a non-repellent chemistry spray is to not use any other kind of chemical. If you are baiting then do not use any kind of Raid or Dursban or any chemical that will kill the ants too fast or repel them because you will be cancelling the whole bait effect. If you are spraying with Termidor or Phantom use a dedicated sprayer....not the same sprayer you use for other products as it could lessen or cancel the non repellent effect. Good luck. Go kill some ants!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Bedbugs+Suspend+Kicker=success

Pest control professionals are scrambling for any ounce of control when dealing with the ever growing bedbug epidemic. One combination that has been easing on down the road has been a product called suspend and kicker. Mix them together and what have you got? Decent reviews...at least so far. The time it takes to get the population to start dying off is lessened when you combine the two. Bayer is the manufacturer of both of these products and both products are labeled for bedbugs and for treating the areas of the mattress where bedbugs hide like the tufts and buttons. I have said many times that bedbug jobs should be left to the professionals and I still hold true to this conviction, but at least you can be more informed as to what is working out there.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Ground Bees


There are several kinds of bees that dig and nest in the ground. Some like Cicada Killers dig out a single hole, leaving what looks to be a mound of dirt or sand, and kills a cicada and buries the cicada and the bees egg in the hole. Cicada killers are very large looking bees, but they generally won't bother humans unless provoked. Some ways to control them would be to keep your lawn thick and well maintained to prevent the Cicada killers from finding adequate areas to nest or in some cases a chemical treatment will be necessary. Professionals often times will dust the holes or do a power spray. This treatment will need to be followed up on the follow year.
Another ground bee is known as the digger wasp. These wasps can appear to be hovering over the lawn and can appear in great numbers at times. They are not an aggressive wasp generally and the control is similar to the cicada killer, and that is to dust the holes or apply a broad range pesticide.
The ground nesting bees to watch out for are bumble bees and yellow jackets that will nest in abandoned rodent borrows or other holes in the ground. These bees are very aggressive and will attack and cause harm. Before mowing your lawn be sure to survey the lawn to make sure there is no bee activity coming or going from the ground. This is often the way humans are attacked. The above picture shows what a yellow jacket nest under ground can look like. These nests should be handled by professionals. They will most times dust the entrance hole using a dust stick to keep a distance and treat the holes this way. Do not use gasoline to try to kill them yourself. This is dangerous and will contaminate the ground.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Bedbugs-Gianaris Bill Passes!

The bill that state Assemblyman Gianaris proposed to help battle bedbugs with knowledge and communication has passed unopposed on May 8, 2007! It required the Schools in Queens to notify parents of any outbreaks of bedbugs in schools which would allow other parents to keep their eyes open for any potential bugs that may be brought back home inadvertently. It would also offer parents prevention techniques and treatment options to help in the battle. This is a fantastic idea that the nation should adopt. Without education and communication, the bedbug problem that is already out of control will continue to flourish.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Mice and furniture

I had an interesting question asking if mice could live in a mattress. The short answer is yes. To be more specific, mice can nest in sofas, mattresses, chairs, anything that is soft and provides a protected nest. I remember one specific time when I was on the road I had a customer who was having a bad mouse problem. I was catching them in the traps and I was able to pinpoint the area they were coming from to a wall where the sofa was. I found no holes so I decided to inspect the sofa and sure enough when I lifted up the cushions they had collected lots of nesting material and were nestles in the corner of the sofa under the cushions. It doesn't matter if there is a lot of activity like getting up and down from a sofa because the mice get used to this movement and it stops scaring them. So to answer the question, yes it is possible for a mouse or mice to live in your furniture and it should be on the list of areas to inspect when preforming a rodent control program.

Gypsy Moth

There has been alot of buzz lately about the extremely hated gypsy moth as of late. These buggers were actually brought to the United States back in the late Eighteen Hundreds in an attempt to boost the silkworm industry but unfortunately they escaped into the wild and we have been suffering the results ever since. The best was to control these pests would be to use an integrated approach targeting the several stages of development to gain the best control. Gypsy moth traps and lots of them work well. Really the best and fastest route is to spray the tree with a labelled insecticide. These situations call for a professional with a power spray rig and the appropriate licenses.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Mosquito Repellent

What kind of devises work as mosquito repellents and what is good mosquito control? Some things that don't work at all would be things like "bug zappers" that electrocute bugs. Most times these machines wind up killing more beneficial insects other than mosquitoes and they will attract more mosquitoes to your yard. Citronella candles don't really work that well especially out in the open like on a deck or in the yard. You need several to have even a slight affect. They work better in semi enclosed areas like a sun room or screened in porch. Now for some effective control. There are machines out there now that emit carbon dioxide which attracts mosquitoes and then sucks them in with a vacuum. Some of the brand names are Mega Catch or Mosquito Magnet. These are pricey but effective. Another method is the old fashioned fogging that professionals do. They also sell mosquito dunks to applied to areas of large free standing water like big puddles where mosquitoes will breed. These products prevent reproduction. These are some of the methods to consider this summer as you prepare for that outdoor barbecue or picnic.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mosquitoes

My two boys just came in from the deck and were eaten alive by mosquitoes! Welts all over them. It got me thinking about the nasty insect and I thought I'd write a post about how to try to keep them from multiplying. You've probably heard this a hundred times before, but it is important. You must go around your house and look for free standing water. It can be a puddle in a bird bath or as small as water in a toy that is laying on the ground. They don't need much. With all the rain that has been falling around the country it is important to try to keep the population down by emptying this water whenever you see it. Flower pots, smoking "butt" cans, tires, and other kinds of outside furniture can gather water. Rain spouts that are clogged up are also a big culprit. You have to have an eagle eye when searching out these posts but when you do you will be glad you did.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Pest Control Products and Pests They Control

So what's a good arsenal to have in your corner?
Termites: Advance TBS, Termidor, Premise, and Firstline.
Ants: Maxforce Ant Bait, Advance Ant Granules, Advance Dual Choice.
Roaches: Dupont Roach Bait, MAxforce FC Select, Victor Roach Pheromones.
Waterbugs: Niban
Bees: Delta Dust, Drione Dust, Apicide.
Mice: Contrac Meal, Contrac Blox

Just a few products to ponder.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Honey Bees Die

Will this become an epidemic? Some think so with speculation that the American food supply is at risk. Will we be reduced to the diet of prisoners, just having bread and water available? Hopefully it won't come to this point, but some are saying that the worst case scenario can result is such a drastic diet. Honey bees pollinate 90 percent of the flowering crops in the United States. Crops like Apples, Nuts, Asparagus, peaches, and blueberries, just to name a few are among the bees favorites. The bees also pollinate plants like alfalfa...and who eats this yummy meal you ask...why cattle of course. If the cattle can't eat then the bees are also affecting the beef supply. It can become a vicious domino effect if the honey bee problem is not resolved soon. This phenomenon is being called the Colony Collapse Disorder and it's not just contained in the United States. Other countries including Brazil and parts of Europe are also reporting this dilemma. Hopefully in time we will find out what is causing these bees to die and correct the problem before we start paying more for an apple than we are paying for a gallon of gas!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Fleas

Fleas are the most annoying insects to have in the home but one of the easiest to get rid of if you are willing to do the work. First off you must clean everything up off the floor and all the stuff from under the bed and off the floor of closets. You get the point. Next thing to do is vacuum like there is no tomorrow. Every inch of your home will need to be vacuumed. Be sure to throw away the vacuum bag as soon as you are done vacuuming. Next thing to do is get a product that has an insect growth regulator in it as well as an adulticide to kill all stages of the flea. Fleas develop in stages and it is important to break this life cycle. If you have a cat you may want to consider getting foggers with an Insect growth regulator in it to get the area up high that cats often frequent like high cabinets. If you have a dog you can get away with just a carpet spray. Be sure to have the cat or dog treated or dipped and try to use a product like front line for a few months. If you treat thoroughly and follow the labels on the products you should do a good job of eliminating the fleas. Some products pest control operators use are Ultracide, Precor, Precor Plus foggers, and Nylar. Do it yourself pest control places have products to use and you local Home Depot or Petsmart will have products to consider also.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Start your DYI pest control project now!

It's that time of year again when the ants and bees are gathering their armies for a full force invasion into your home! So how do you prepare yourself? First off is the outside inspection. Any holes or gaps that would allow any kind of bug enter the home will need to be sealed. Cable TV wires are often not sealed tightly with gaps around where the wire enters the house. Air conditioner cables are another area to look at. Any kind of pipe or wire that enters the home can be a possible highway for bugs and need to be sealed tight. Also stand in your garage and if you see light shining in under the garage door then the door is not shutting flush to the ground. Needs to be resealed. Next thing to do is cut back any tree limbs that are hanging over the roof and hanging onto the roof. This will help stop carpenter ants from entering your home. Trim back bushes and shrubs from the home and clean up and leafs that have gathers up against the house as this is a fantastic place from bugs to breed in and then enter the home. There are several do it yourself websites out there that offer pest control product s for sale. Gluetraps are great monitoring tools to see what is going on in the home and they are non toxic. You can also get any baits and other products to help control all kinds of insects. A good outside granule treatment will often times help keep alot of your outside pests at bay. Products like Talstar EZ or Demand G are excellent. Granule baits are also very effective. Maxforce has a great granule bait. Another good bait is Niban or Advance.