PEST CONTROL TIPS
Click here for detailed information on preventing and eliminating bed bugs.
CARPENTER ANTS There are three different types of carpenter ants, all have the same characteristics. They need water and wood to survive. they do not eat raw wood like a termite, so don't worry about your home collapsing around you.
Carpenter ants make nests in damp or rotted wood. Especially around fascia boards that have water damage. After making a nest they may begin to swarm inside your home through air conditioning vents, ceiling fans, windows, electrical outlets, etc. Or, you may just see a few stragglers around glass sliding doors.
Carpenter ant eggs can be brought in with bags of mulch (cypress mulch or bark). They also nest in wooden decks, fences, trellis work and trees (especially dead ones).
Dusting your attic is the best way to treat carpenter ants once they have swarmed inside your home. If you are only seeing a few, especially around sliding glass doors, garage doors or openings of any kind. chances are you need to get your lawn sprayed, especially the planter areas. Since bark or mulch breeds ants of all kinds, spraying they areas three or four times a year is a good idea.
You can use granular bait, but lawn spraying these areas on a regular basis has been found effective and inexpensive.
Spraying wooden decks and fences should be done two or three times a year, as well.
Fogging an attic can be done also If carpenter ant Infestation IS caught early enough.
Don't leave piles of leaves, shrubs or wood of any kind lying around for periods of time. Keep trees trimmed so they don't touch the house.
FLEAS & TICKS Florida's tropical climate and conditions contribute to our year round flea and tick problem. During the dry months between December and May. we find our flea and tick problem at its worse. Possums. rats, stray cats and even raccoons are a major factor in infestations. Anything, such as a crawl space under a house or decks of any kind, can harbor the above stated animals.
Once the lawns are infested, or outside surrounding areas such as plants and shrubs, you and your pets will transport fleas and ticks into your home or apartment. Yes, we do have flea infestations 18 floors up in condos and apartments,
Fleas are controlled outside by spraying the yard. The lawn should be sprayed the first time and repeated 10 days later (important. repeat in 10 days). After initial spray every other month will be fine. Adult fleas are large and certain times of the year you may need to increase your lawn spraying to once a month,
Control inside your home can be accomplished safely by the use of insecticide spray on carpets and furniture, Growth regulators are used to prevent eggs from hatching and are good for 90 days. Insect growth regulators are safe and are mixed with the insecticide for complete control. Once carpets or furniture are sprayed and dry. nothing can be rubbed off by sitting or lying on them.
Fleas have three cycles to their egg development. When we service your home the pesticide explained above only ellminates the first two cycles. The third cycle will hatch no matter what. and whether it is of any significance or not, your guess is as good as ours. So if an additional spray is needed in seven days. there will be no extra charge. We do not automatically return in seven days, because not always does the third cycle cause a problem.
ANIMAL CONTROL Taking your animal to the vet for dipping or doing It yourself IS still necessary. Pills or drops given by the vet for flea and tick control are sometimes necessary. but one thing you must remember: all of those products are designed to kill fleas and ticks after it bites them. or to prevent eggs from hatching. None of these prevent you or your pet from being bitten. Pest control is designed to eliminate the problem before the pills or drops are needed.
Information and education are the tools needed In bath flea and tick control.
ROACHES We label a lot of insects as roaches, but in fact each is different, not just in name. but in their characteristics.
In Florida we have American Roaches, Wood Roaches, Cuban Roaches (green),
Australian Roaches, etc. Again, we label most all roaches found outside as Palmetto Bugs, but as I just explained, they're not.
Most of all roaches are found outside among landscaping. Palm trees of all kinds, are
great contributors, as well as the cypress mulch we put down all around our plants, shrubs, etc.
Allowing our yards to be overgrown and unattended also contribute to their breeding habits. Don 't leave piles of cuttings and wood lying about for long periods of time. Keep yards well manicured .
Spraying lawns and ornamentals is sometimes necessary, especially around and up next to your home or building, Spraying cypress mulch and under plants is an excellent idea three or four times a year.
GERMAN ROACHES German roaches are more of a problem to restaurants, apartments and duplexes than the average home. German roaches have five cycles to an eggs development, some of which are as small as an ant, and some of which don't even look like roaches. By the time they're adults hundreds or even millions could be breeding. These roaches carry diseases and cause severe allergies. In apartments, German roaches are a problem to control due mainly to tenants coming and going. Tenants coming into an apartment which has German roaches may decide to leave for a cleaner residence, but by then it's too late and they will transport the pests to another apartment or home. German roaches can go from one apartment to the one next door if kitchens are backed up to each other.
Duplexes -like apartments when they experience great turnover -go through the same problems.
German roaches are usually brought home from the store. Most of the time a live roach is not the problem. German roach egg capsules can be brought home in paper products of all kinds; food wrapped in paper then immediately put on a shelf or stored in a kitchen cabinet. Hatching occurs in these areas and even if you had an exterminator come on a regular basis, he couldn't help you until inspection and identification took place. Exterminators don't normally service your pantry, therefore infestation occurs.
The only way to eliminate German roaches is by doing a cleanout. A cleanout will require the customer to take everything out of their kitchen cabinets. The kitchen has got to look as if no one has ever lived there. Don't stack anything on countertops, put everything on a kitchen table, dining room table or on the floor. The only thing to be left on countertops are appliances such as toaster, blender, coffee machine, can opener, etc. -pretty much anything that has a motor. All cabinets must be cleaned before servicing. Any other areas, such as in furniture, end tables, coffee tables, night stands, dressers, wall units and bathrooms must be emptied as well.
In most cases it takes 90 days to eliminate German roaches, depending on the severity of the infestation.
Landlords or management groups like to clean-up, paint and re-rent their apartments or duplexes after tenants move out, but an apartment or duplex that has experienced a German roach infestation will have a problem renting out their units because it takes 90 days for elimination.
RODENTS There are only two kinds of rats in the United States: a brown rat and a gray rat. Rats are more active In South Florida when fruit trees are bearing fruit, Rodents only need food and water to survive. Those of us living on canals or lakes may experience rodents year round. Cold weather is a contributing factor in home infestations. Those of us who feed birds, ducks or squirrels can develop infestation from uneaten food or animal feces; also from dog or cat food left outside uneaten or unattended.
- Keep shrubbery cleaned up and away from house. Don't leave piles laying around for periods of time.
- Trees must be kept trimmed and away from touching house. Palm trees, such as areca palms, must be kept trimmed around bottom. so nesting doesn't occur. Outside, keep fallen fruit picked up.
- All homes have air vents for plumbing on the roof which should be screened over to prevent rodent infestation through the toilet.
- Outside air conditioning units, as well, have air conditioning pipes going into attic. The metal covering used to conceal these pipes can be sealed with steel wool.
- Screens under fascia boards around house must be kept Intact to prevent infestation.
- Weather-stripping around garage doors, or doors of any k1nd should be sealed properly.
- Homes along canals can experience rodent infestation through underground tunnels, or by crawling across electrical hnes. Seawalls are good hiding places for both rodents and possums.
- Garages that haven't been cleaned for one reason or another. such as piles of boxes, clothes, pictures, toys, etc. could provide rodent breeding areas.