5 Simple Steps To Prevent Pests

It’s true! Homeowners can prevent pest infestations by maintaining cleanliness in the home. Pests love dirty environments since they provide them with an abundant supply of food, water, and a nice hiding place. If you just leave food scraps on the floor and table and never bother emptying your trash can, then it is more likely that you will see pests roaming around your house.

Here are five simple steps homeowners can take to prevent pest infestations:

#1. Clean the YardWood_Pile

Before pests invade your home, they will colonize your yard first. Therefore, if you want to ensure that your house is safe from pests, the first thing that you need to do is to clean your yard.

You need to free your yard from fallen fruits, dead plants, fallen branches, and weeds, for insects love these things. You must also trim your plants, since excess foliages serve as a nice place for insects and pests. Furthermore, wood and fruits serve as a valuable source of food for ants and termites.

You must also empty any containers in your yard that hold standing water. Standing water is a nice breeding place for insects, such as flies and mosquitoes. By keeping your yard clean, you will be able to prevent pests from reaching your home.

# 2. Clean Your Storage Spaces and Rarely Visited Places

Removing_Spider_Webs

You need to clean your closet, boxes, containers and drawers from time to time, for this serve as an ideal place for pests to build their nests. You must also clean the areas in your house that you seldom visit at least once a week. In this way, you will be able to prevent pests from colonizing your house.

#3. Free the House from Scraps of Food

Roach_Eating_Pear

If you want to make your house uninviting for pests, you must free your house from scraps of food. Remember, food is the main reason why pests want to stay in your home. Therefore, if you want to drive away pests, you must deprive them of food. If pests cannot find food in your home, then there is no reason for them to infest your home.

To ensure that your house will be free from scraps of food, it is advisable that you vacuum your home regularly. You must also wipe your table and sweep the floor every time you finish eating your meal. You must also clean the bowls of your pets.

#4. Seal the Cracks and Holes

Caulking window

Aside from cleaning, it is also advisable that you check your house for cracks and holes. Mice will always try to break into your house through these holes. Insects can also gain entry through cracks. Sealing cracks and holes in your home is one way of preventing pests from gaining access to your house.

#5. Professional Pest Control From Bulwark Exterminating

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Pest infestations are a nightmare for homeowners because they can cause damage to their properties and belongings. One way of preventing pests from colonizing your home is by maintaining cleanliness in your home, for they hate clean environments.

After taking the above mentioned cleanliness steps, and you are still seeing scorpions, ants, roaches, spiders, and other creepy crawlies; it’s time for professional pest control. It’s time for Bulwark Exterminating!

The Impact Of Fire Ants

Fire_Ant_SignSince their arrival in the late to the United States in 1930’s, homeowners have been battling the Red Imported Fire ant. In terms of human health, property damage, and environmental damage; very few insects can hold a candle to the Fire Ant. Quite frankly, the Red Imported Fire ant just might be the worst pest in the country… And any homeowner who has had the misfortune of dealing with them know it!

Fire Ants

Because of their aggressiveness, it’s not hard to mistake a Fire Ant. These ants are a reddish-brown, and can reach up to ¼ of an inch in length. Their mounds are huge, and identifiable.  One of these mounds can house multiple queens, and some 250,000 workers. Officials have reported as many as 200 of these mounds in a single acre. The thought of the sheer number of these malevolent ants is frightening.

Another frightening thought is that Red Imported Fire ant stings have caused some 100+ deaths. While dying from a Fire Ant sting is unlikely, it can happen if a victim suffers from insect allergies; sending the injured party into anaphylactic shock. The most common side effects of a Red Imported Fire ant sting are: pain, swelling, itching, redness, dizziness, disorientation, and vomiting.

Bulwark Pest Control technicians in Austin, TX report that Fire Ants are one of the most frequently called about pests. Their impact is significant.

The Impact Of Fire Ants

Fire_Ant_AttackOn top of their painful stings, Red imported Fire ants also cause relentless damage to property. Extending out several feet in diameter, and reaching depths of almost eight feet, Fire Ant mounds damage plants and crops. These mounds are also an eyesore. When a mound is disturbed, fire ant workers pour out of their mound and aggressively attack the offender.

Red Imported Fire ants are also fascinated with electrical equipment and electrical wiring. In fact, the leading cause of traffic light malfunctions in many Southern states happens to be shortages caused by Fire Ants. In addition, these ants are also drawn to air conditioners, water meter boxes, and gas boxes.

Officials in the state of Texas alone, report that Red Imported Fire ants cause more than $140 million in damage annually.

In the U.S., the FDA estimates more than $5 billion is spent each year on medical treatment, damage, and control of Fire Ant infested areas.

How To Best Eliminate Fire Ants

Ant_Mounds_In_Grass_FieldOne of the most challenging property pests to completely exterminate is the Fire Ant. If a homeowner opts for a single ant treatment; many of the ants will die off, but the problem will not be solved. The same can be said with using aerosol pesticides you can buy at a local hardware store. The reason these attempts are not effective is because the Fire Ants will divide themselves after a treatment. They simply wait out the pesticide, the return to their mounds when its potency dissipates.

Instead, homeowners who are experiencing Fire Ants need continual treatments and ant control strategies to control these malevolent pests. A two-step strategy of applying baits, and following up with direct mound pesticide treatments, has proven to be effective if the treatments are consistent.

Texas Ants

Kissing_AntsTexas is home to a variety of many different ant species. The main reason why there are so many ants in Texas is the weather. The weather in Texas never really drops down past a freezing temperature for a long period of time. This will allow the ants to live out of their colony or nest year round, and infest yards and homes.

What ants live in Texas? 

Some of the ants that live in Texas include: Carpenter ants, Crazy ants, Fire ants, Ghost ants, Little Black ants, Pharaoh ants, and Thief ants. All of theses ants have different habitats, but can pose a huge problem on you and your family if they infest your home.

Where do these ants live? 

Most ants will live on the outside of your home, but some will be found inside your home as well. On the outside of your home, ants will be found around concrete slabs, under rocks, walking stones, and piles of wood. On the inside of your home, ants can be found in almost every room. The way ants can do this is by living inside the walls of the home. The walls will provide protection for the ants year round. If the ants are in the walls of your home it will only get worse if they are not exterminated.

camponotus japonicusWho does Ant Control in Texas? 

There are many companies that will take care of ants in Texas, but Bulwark Exterminating technicians are specialized in ant control. They have been taking care of ants in homes for 20 years. Bulwark Exterminating will come check your whole property for ants. They will then place baits down and treat around the whole home. On the inside they will also bait, and place a product in to the walls that will ensure an ant free home.

Cricket Exterminator

Field Cricket, GryllusEver wonder what that annoying noise is outside or inside your home that you can never seem to find? They are small insects called crickets. Crickets are some of the most irritating pests we have. Crickets will make your home their home. 

Crickets 

Crickets are small pests that can range in size from 1 inch to about 2 inches. Crickets are different colors also. They can be black like the Field cricket, light tan like the House cricket, or brown like the Jerusalem cricket. Most of the crickets will have wings, but won’t fly very far. Crickets can also be distinguished by their commonly annoying chirping noise.

Where Do Crickets Live & What Do They Eat? 

Crickets will live where they can have a constant food supply. Outside, crickets will be found by plants. Plants have a root ball that crickets will eat, and it will also have dripper that gives the plants water which will also give crickets a water supply. Inside, crickets can be found just about anywhere. Inside crickets will eat cereal, clothes, wallpaper, cardboard, and even other insects.

Are Crickets A Serious Problem & How Can I Fix The Problem? 

Dead CricketAlthough they may be small, crickets are a huge problem. Crickets will destroy your valuables.  The best way to get rid of crickets is to exterminate them.  What a cricket exterminator will do is check your home and see what areas are infested. On the outside a cricket exterminator will treat the plants with granules, spray around the foundation of the home, and also treat around windows and doors.

On the inside a cricket exterminator will treat around the walls of the home, and under the sinks. A good cricket exterminator will know that most of the cricket infestations will be inside the walls of the home.

Bulwark Exterminating will take your face plates off your outlets and place a product inside the walls to kill all the crickets.

American Cockroach Control

American roachAmerican cockroaches are the biggest cockroaches, and some of the fastest bugs to infest a home.

What does the American roach look like? 

The American cockroach will have a reddish brown colored body, and will have yellow markings around the head. Off the head the American roach will have two long antennas. The American roach can grow to about two inches.

Where will you see American cockroaches?  

Outside of the home, American cockroaches will be found by your plants, gardens, and any really damp warm areas. Inside the home American roaches can be found hiding in cabinets, under sinks, in the bath room, and in the walls of the home. American cockroaches will infest your home very quick. The egg capsules of an American cockroach will hold about 15 eggs, and each roach and lay up to 10 egg capsules. Each egg capsule will then hatch about 45 days after being laid.

Why are there American cockroaches in my home? 

American_Cockroach_SideMost of the American cockroaches in your home will be there looking for shelter and food. American roaches will eat just about anything. Their meal plan will consist of cosmetics, beer, potted plants, soap, hair, toenails, and postage stamps.

What should I do if I see American cockroaches in my home?

If you are seeing them in your home the best thing to do is call some one that can control the American roaches. American cockroaches are very hard to control if not treated correctly. Bulwark Pest Control will come treat your home with a power sprayer, temp dust, baits and granules. This treatment is strong enough to eliminate the problem, and will ensure that the American cockroaches will be controlled. Bulwark Pest Control is licensed and insured. Yes, every one of Bulwark Technicians are state licensed, and in-house trained.

Fire Ant Exterminator

fire ants

Fire ants have been taking over ever since they arrived in America. Fire ants have been able to boom in the states, because queen Fire ants can generate millions of Fire ant workers during her life span.

What Does The Fire Ant Look Like & What Does It Eat? 

Fire Ant

The Fire ant is a red color, and will have hairs coming off its body. They will vary in sizes; for 1.6mm to 5mm. The Fire ant will eat anything that gets in its way. It will eat other insects, small mammals, earthworms, frogs, and even lizards. When the Fire ant bites, it will also sting the prey and place some venom inside the prey. The venom will paralyze the pray.

What Does The Fire Ant Do? 

The Fire ant will create huge mounds, growing to be 3 feet tall and 2 feet wide.

fire ant mound

In the ground, the mound of the Fire ant will have hundreds of tunnels leading through the colony, sometimes reaching 8 feet in depth. The colony of a Fire ant can house 250,000 workers. The queen Fire ant can average about 1,600 eggs per day. These colonies can be found in wall voids, rain gutters, bath traps, and under carpets, as well as in electrical equipment.

Fire Ant attack

How Can I Take Care Of Fire Ants? 

Danger Ants

The best way to get these Fire ants out of your life, and your home, is to call an exterminator.  Fire ant exterminators will come to your home and examine the problem. The Fire ant exterminator will place baits out, and then the fire ant workers will take the baits back to their colony; killing the members. Bulwark Exterminating are Fire ant specialist, and will come to your home and rid you of the Fire ants. Bulwark Exterminators are all state certified and in-house trained. They will take care of your Fire ant problem.

Did A Spider Bite Kill Slayer Guitarist Jeff Hanneman?

Jeff Hanneman of Slayer at Tuska-Festival

Did A Spider Bite Kill Slayer Guitarist Jeff Hanneman?

The world of heavy metal is mourning the loss of Jeff Hanneman, guitarist and founding member of thrasher band Slayer. While the official cause of death has been listed as liver failure, there is much speculation that it may have been due to complications caused by a spider bite in 2011.

Hanneman almost lost his arm due to a flesh-eating disease, necrotizing fasciitis, which he contracted after failing to seek immediate medical treatment after being bitten by a spider two years ago. Slayer spokeswoman Heidi Robinson-Fitzgerald blamed Hanneman’s death on the spider bite.

Flesh-eating bacteria doesn’t cause liver failure by itself; however, strep bacteria can cause streptococcal toxic shock syndrome, which can ultimately lead to liver failure. Hanneman, 49, was slowly recovering from complications from the spider bite when he suffered from liver failure.

Can Spider Bites Kill You?

While a spider bite can be extremely painful, it is very rare that people die from one. An average of 6.6 people in the U.S. die each year from venomous spider bites. More people die from bee and wasp stings.

English: Symptoms most common in all types of ...

Brown Recluse Spiders

Rumor has it that the brown recluse spider is one of the most deadly spiders on the planet. However, the fact of the matter is, death from brown recluse spiders have only been reported in children under the age of seven. While the brown recluse spider’s venom is more poisonous than a rattle snake, it only injects a small amount when biting a victim. However, the venom that is released causes destruction to cell membranes, causing damage to the skin. The venom also causes an immune response, which causes secondary effects. It is the secondary effects that actually cause serious side effects to the victim, not the venom itself.

Black widow spider 9854 lores

Black Widow Spiders

Most people are raised with a deadly fear of black widow spiders ingrained in them. While a black widow bite can cause you to be ill, it rarely causes death. Like the brown recluse spider, the black widow’s venom has the worse effects on children and the elderly.

The black widows’ venom affects the victims nervous system. Some people are only slightly affected by the venom, while others have serious reactions. Abdominal pain, weakness, tremor, and respiratory difficulties are typical symptoms following a black widow bite.

If you suspect that you’ve been bitten by a spider, it is vital that you seek immediate medical treatment. While most spider bites aren’t life threatening, secondary effects can cause serious health problems. Jeff Hanneman is proof that a spider bite is not a matter to be taken lightly. No matter how brutal you may think you are, a spider bite can be even more brutal – so do yourself a favor and get yourself to a doctor the moment you suspect you’ve been bitten.

About the author: Chris is a blogger for a New Jersey pest control company.

 

What Is Integrated Pest Management?

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1382ps_02333.jpg (Photo credit: IRRI Images)

If you are reading this, you are either currently experiencing a pest problem, have dealt with one in the past, for some reason enjoy learning about random niche industries, or are banging on your keyboard yelling at the Google for misdirecting you. The term “pest” is the official term used to describe organisms detrimental to human activities and the unofficial term you once used to describe your little brother during the two hours after nap time. No one enjoys pests having free reign in their home anymore than you enjoyed having to sprint full speed after Justin through the middle of the grocery store during rush hour. But alas, pest control is an issue many homeowner must face at some point or another.

So what do you know about pest control? Other than the infinite catch-phrase puns and insect caricature logos, what actually goes into a pest control service? In many cases, pest control boils down to a couple dudes buying some really toxic materials and spraying them all over your house and property. Yippie! That sounds like fun! Good thing you don’t have any kids or pets… oh you do? There are laws in place to protect you on some capacity from irresponsible pesticide application, but ultimately, it is up to the consumer to do his or her due diligence when hiring a pest control company.

Despite the negative examples, there are, of course, some good guys in this industry. Shortly after World War II, scientists began developing what is known as Integrated Pest Management (IPM). This system takes a broad look at pest control and seeks to “integrate” a wide range of tactics, techniques, and research into controlling each species of pest, striving to achieve a “happy” balance of economic efficiency and environmental responsibility. To put that in terms that I can understand, IPM is all about killing bugs as efficiently as possible while taking into account peripheral effects on the surrounding environment. IPM is centered around six basic ideas.

1) Acceptable Pest Levels

Because IPM is a comprehensive strategy rather than an event-specific attack, it works to establish an “acceptable pest level” in any given context. Complete extermination is often impossible, so instead of living in denial and burning our home down with a flamethrower, we want to know how much of a given pest we can afford to allow in any given situation. Once this threshold is crossed, we then employ the most efficient techniques for returning the population to acceptable levels.

2) Preventative Cultural Practices

This one is pretty simple. It means we take an intelligent look at our surroundings and act accordingly. So if my home/farm/bat cave is located in the middle of a high-functioning, watermelon-destroying weed resort, I’m going to go ahead and refrain from planting an acre’s worth of watermelons. Or if I’ve already planted my watermelons, I’m going to have my farm designed in such a way that I can quickly isolate and quarantine an outbreak after some idiot flies overhead, dropping a new strain of watermelon-eating bacteria into my perfectly rounded delights. The keyword here is “preventative.”

Fort Custer Integrated Pest Management
Fort Custer Integrated Pest Management (Photo credit: U.S. Army Environmental Command)

3) Monitoring

I doubt I need to explain the term “monitoring” to you. However, you should know that this isn’t kindergarten-teacher-watching-you-pretend-to-sleep monitoring. This is science-nerd-in-high-school-chemistry-class monitoring. Records are kept. Eyes are strained. Complaints to management are made. Diligent monitoring is the cornerstone of IPM.

4) Mechanical Controls

When pests multiply beyond their acceptable limit, IPM uses giant robots to murder them with lasers. Well… that actually might be a slight exaggeration. What does happen is that simple techniques including hand-removal, barriers, vacuuming, or tilling are employed to break up the pests’ nonstop baby-making and put the population levels on decline.

5) Biological Controls

What’s the only thing cooler than laser-wielding, bug-killing robots? The answer, of course, is biologically engineered super-carnivores! What!? There aren’t any of those either!? Boring! Actually, this step is simply introducing natural predators of the targeted pest into the environment. This is a very calculated process, requiring significant research to ensure that more islands aren’t completely taken over by brown tree snakes. I’m looking at you Guam.

6) Responsible Pesticide Use

Remember at the beginning when we said IPM is all about killing bugs as efficiently as possible? This is the grand finale to that goal. If the only answer for addressing a bug problem is dirty, toxic, high-powered pesticide, than by golly, bring out the poison guns. To be fair, it’s a lot less gung-ho than the previous statement might lead you to believe, but I desperately needed to use the phrase “poison guns” in a professional article.

There you have it. I totally answered the question asked in the title, which is probably the first article you’ve read today where that is the case… so no complaining. If you got disillusioned at the end, check out Green Pest Management. It’s basically the same thing as IPM, but they use boring organic pesticides at the end instead of poison guns. Lame!

 

Author Bio
Tiffany Olson is an enthusiastic blogger who writes for small companies so that they may increase their online presence. This article was written on behalf of the good people over at Killroy.com and their work with pest control in Union City.