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Pest Control Articles & Advice to Control or Prevent Pests  
by Jim Messner  

 

The Pest Control News provides a comprehensive collection of well researched articles, written about U.S. pest control problems; commonly experienced by American homeowners, tenants and property managers.

Each pest control article category, offers dependable advice about how to control the most common household pests, and pest control problems; in the United States. In some instances, the advice provided in articles is related to regional pest problems, and thus offers specific solutions and pest control strategies; for local residents, tenants and homeowners.



Cockroach Pest Control

Cockroaches are among the most common pests in Texas. Cockroaches enter homes, offices, and just about any structure in a variety of ways. Typically outdoor creatures, cockroaches inhabit wood piles, decaying trees, or even sewer systems.

Cockroaches can enter your Houston or College Station area home through loose-fitting doors and windows, where electrical lines and water pipes pass through walls, up through sewer lines or in seasoned firewood. Their ability to flatten their bodies allows these pests access to homes through even the smallest of cracks and crevices. Cockroaches even gain entry from infested boxes, grocery bags, beverage cartons, furniture, appliances, or bags of dried pet food.

A Cockroach infestation is a real hazard to your health. While relatively harmless themselves, they can contaminate food and kitchen utensils with excrement and salivary secretions. Roaches crawl through dirty areas and then walk through your home tracking around bacteria and germs. They contaminate food by shedding their skins and waste products that can trigger allergic reactions, asthma and other illnesses, particularly in children.

Cockroach Facts:

  • Cockroaches have been around since the time of dinosaurs!
  • A cockroach can live almost a month without food.
  • A cockroach can live about two weeks without water.
  • Some female cockroaches only mate once and stay pregnant for life!
  • Cockroaches can hold their breath for up to 40 minutes!
  • Cockroaches can run up to 3 miles an hour.
  • Roaches primarily come out for water, not food
  • A roach can live a week without a head. It dies after a week due to lack of water
  • A cockroach that has just shed it is skin is white and has black eyes. It takes 8 hours to reproduce the skin layer.
  • Laboratory female roaches are able to reproduce without aid of a male. They produce all female offspring
  • Cockroaches thrive in all conditions and live in the desert and the arctic
  • Most roaches have the ability to fly, but not all do.

Although many think that cockroaches are afraid of light, they are not. They prefer darkness but are not afraid of the light. To a cockroach, light means "man here," so they scurry to get away. Some people think roaches must have eyes in the back of their heads, but they don't. They do have tiny little hairs that gage the air movement around them, so they feel you; they don't see you from behind.

Roaches love onions and they do eat meat. Roaches are omnivores so they will eat just about anything including dead animals.

How to Prevent & Eliminate Roaches

The reason substances like boric acid work to kill roaches is that they routinely clean themselves and each other. Thus, boric acid on their bodies will be consumed and kill them, and some of their friends. Boric acid can be made into a paste with flour and sugar and used as bait.

Proper sanitation, both indoors and outdoors, effectively limits cockroach populations. This can be done by cleaning up all spills immediately, and frequently cleaning areas beneath and behind cabinets, furniture, sinks, stoves and refrigerators. Sealing cracks more than 1/8 of an inch from foundation and exterior walls, as well as immediately attending to leaky faucets. However once an infestation goes unchecked it may be necessary to hire professional pest removal services to combat the spread of the infestation.

Termites Pest Control

Termites are tiny pests can literally eat you out of house and home. Termites are drawn to moisture in the ground and condensation around and under your home. Because termites eat cellulose, they are most often found in the wood in and around your Houston area home, including landscaping materials. You are most likely going to discover you have a problem by the destructive evidence they leave behind, including:

  • Piles of small wings
  • Small piles of sawdust
  • Mud tubes
  • Damaged or hollow sounding wood
  • Pinholes in drywall
  • Termites themselves: tiny, soft critters the size of a grain of rice

Termites are relentless. They work twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Termites are social insects and live in colonies were populations can reach into the millions. Most termite infestations go unnoticed until it is too late, and the resulting damage can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Facts About Termites:

  • Termites cause an estimated $1 billion worth of property damage each year
  • They infest about 1 in 50 homes nationwide
  • Termites do more damage than all fires, hurricanes and tornadoes combined
  • The termite queen can live 15 to 30 years and lay 1 egg every 15 seconds
  • You can't insure against termite damage
  • Termites can enter your home through an opening as thin as a sheet of paper
  • Termites need water to live and are attracted to moist soil
  • Termites can destroy an entire house within 2-3 years

Rats and Mice Control

Rodents are troublemakers that can damage your property and cause a number of sometimes serious health problems. Rats and mice carry fleas and lice, and can transmit a variety of diseases. They multiply rapidly and, if an infestation goes unchecked, become an out-of-control problem in a very short time.

The best way to prevent a rodent infestation and contact with rodents is to remove the food sources, water, and items that provide them with shelter. Mice can squeeze through a hole the size of a nickel, and rats can squeeze through a hole the size of a half dollar! Prevent rodents from entering your home by checking inside and outside the house, and quickly seal up any gaps or holes you find.

Worldwide, rats and mice spread over 35 diseases. Rodent-borne diseases are spread directly to humans through a number of avenues, including:

  • Bite wounds
  • Consuming food or water that is contaminated with rodent feces
  • Coming in contact with surface water contaminated with rodent urine
  • Through breathing in germs that may be present in rodent urine or droppings that have been stirred into the air (a process known as "aerosolization").

Diseases from rodents are also spread indirectly to humans by way of ticks, mites, and fleas that transmit the infection to humans after feeding on infected rodents. In some cases, the rodents are the reservoirs (carriers) of the diseases, while in other cases the ticks, mites, or fleas act as the disease reservoirs.

Fire Ants Control

The Red Imported Fire Ant (RIFA), commonly called the Fire Ant for short, may look small and harmless, but as anyone living in the southern United States from Mobile, Alabama, where the fire ant first entered the US in 1930, to Southeast Texas to California knows, they do carry a major punch. Over 40 million people live in RIFA-infested areas in the United States. Between 30% and 60% of the people living in fire ant infested areas are stung each year. The FDA estimates that more than $5 billion is spent annually on medical treatment, damage, and control in RIFA-infested areas.

A bite the size of a pinhead can result in a painful, itching sore for days. Unlike many other ants, which bite and then spray acid on the wound, fire ants only bite to get a grip and then sting (from the abdomen) and inject a toxic alkaloid venom called Solenopsin. For humans, this is a painful sting, a sensation similar to what one feels when burned by fire, hence the name "fire" ant, and the after-effects of the sting can be deadly to sensitive individuals. The venom is both insecticidal and antibiotic. A typical fire ant colony produces large mounds in open areas and feeds mostly on young plants, seeds, and sometimes crickets. However, Fire Ants often attack and kill small animals.

Flaming Facts About Fire Ants:

  • Fire Ants can vary in size within one nest, from 1/16 to 1/5 inch long.
  • Mounds can be more than 15 inches high.
  • Fire ants are very aggressive and become agitated when disturbed.
  • Fire ants inflict a fiery sting; more than 10 million Americans are stung by fire ants every year.
  • The Queen fire ant is capable of producing as many as 1,500 eggs/day and lives for 2-7 years.
  • A mature fire ant colony contains up to 400,000 worker ants.

Mosquito Control

Mosquitoes are a major annoyance in Texas. Are you tired of having to keep your family and pets indoors or having to use a bug spray in order to go outside? John Moore's mosquito control services can help you control the spread of mosquitoes in and around your home.

Mosquitoes can be more than just a simple irritation. They carry the threat of a variety of diseases, including several types of encephalitis and heartworms in cats and dogs, that can affect your family and your pets.

Mosquitoes:

  • Can carry many diseases: Malaria, Yellow Fever, Dengue Fever, West-Nile Virus
  • Are responsible for the most human deaths world-wide
  • Require blood for the development of their eggs
  • Develop in 4 to 7 days; females live between 3 and 100 days, one female can lay 100-300 eggs at a time; males live 10 to 20 days
  • Travel within a 1 mile radius of their breeding site
  • Locate blood hosts by sight, scent and heat
  • Can detect a moving target 18 feet away
  • Prefer children to adults

 

 

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