Pests can spread diseases, contaminate food and damage property. Choosing the right pest control company is important to ensure that your business is protected.
Pest control professionals use integrated pest management to prevent and control pests. They will work with you to understand the problem and educate you on your role in the solution.
Most people think of insects as pests, especially those that are annoying, damaging, or disease-carrying. However, many insects are beneficial from a human viewpoint. They pollinate plants, produce valuable substances such as honey and silk, control other pests, and act as scavengers. Some also provide food for other animals, including birds and mammals. Additionally, many insects are excellent subjects for scientific research, revealing much about genetics, nerve and sense organ function, and other important biological processes.
Some insects, such as cabbage worms, aphids, and flea beetles, are continuous pests that require regular monitoring and treatment. Others, such as imported cabbage worms, cicadas, and fruit trees, are sporadic or migratory pests that may only need to be controlled at the time of peak activity. Scouting is the key to good pest management. This involves regularly searching for, identifying, and assessing numbers of pests and their damage. Treatments are applied only when necessary, based on an economic injury level or aesthetic injury level. In other words, the amount of crop loss due to a particular insect pest must be greater than the cost of the control measure.
In addition to regular scouting, other pest control techniques include exclusion, quarantine, repulsion, physical removal and chemical controls such as trapping and spraying. Insect hormones, such as the pheromones that female insects use to attract males for mating, also can be used to reduce pest populations.
The final way to help pests is by providing habitat for natural predators. Birds, lizards and other reptiles feed on many of the same insect pests as humans. In addition, soil microorganisms can compete with pests for nutrients and suppress their growth.
Finally, people can improve the health of their landscapes by being more understanding of the roles of arthropods in nature. For example, most shade trees can tolerate low levels of insect damage with few ill effects. And by leaving leaf litter and twigs under shrubs, homeowners can create a habitat for beneficial arthropods that can control pests in many situations. By becoming more knowledgeable about arthropods, homeowners can reduce their dependence on harmful chemicals to protect their gardens and landscapes.
Rodents are a very large group of mammals and can be found on every continent except Antarctica. The most common rodents include mice, rats, squirrels and beavers. Rodents are important part of many habitats and are considered ecosystem engineers. They provide food for predators and scavengers, recycle nutrients and help with erosion control. Rodents also are important seed dispersers and pollinators. However, they can become pests when they invade people’s homes and cause damage.
Rodents can gnaw through almost anything, including wood and vinyl siding. They chew holes in the side of houses to make their nests. They leave urine and feces all over the place, contaminating surfaces they touch. They carry fleas, ticks and mites that can cause disease in people.
Some species of rodents are reservoirs for diseases such as plague, murine typhus, scrub typhus, leptospirosis, rat-bite fever and tularemia. Thousands of people are bitten by rodents each year, and many more are afflicted by the disease-carrying fleas and mites that feed on them.
The first step in a successful rodent management program is to prevent the problem from happening in the first place. If rodents are deprived of the things they need to survive, they will move to a better-suited habitat. This is especially important in urban areas, where rodents compete for food and shelter with people.
Keeping food scraps out of the yard and away from the house will help deter rodents. Putting bird seeds in rodent-proof feeders will also discourage them. Regularly trimming tree branches will reduce places for rodents to hide.
Your professional technician will perform an interior inspection of your home to find the source of the problem and then work on exclusion services to block off entry points that may be allowing the rodents to enter. He or she will recommend pruning low-hanging branches, repairing any holes in the foundation and filling weep holes with copper mesh.
If you live in an apartment, condo or townhome, report any conditions that attract rodents – such as leaky roofs, cracks and holes in the walls and floors, and clutter on or near the property – to your landlord or homeowner’s association. Also, call 311 to file a housing maintenance complaint if your neighbor’s property is in disrepair and might attract rodents.
Rodents are more than just an annoyance, they can also destroy your property and harm human health. They chew through insulation, drywall, and wires, leading to fire hazards, and they spread more than thirty-five diseases. Signs of rodent infestation include hearing scuffling and scratching sounds at night, finding droppings throughout the house, greasy marks on walls, and holes chewed through food packaging in your pantry or attic.
Rodent exclusion is an integral part of Pest Control Services in Odessa TX, because it prevents rodents from re-infesting a structure. It involves identifying and sealing all entry points rodents use to enter your home or business. These are cracks, crevices, broken seals, and deteriorated insulation, among other things. Effective rodent exclusion requires a thorough knowledge of how rodents operate, and the willingness to scour every nook and cranny of a structure.
While many homeowners and businesses can perform some aspects of rodent exclusion themselves, it’s a job best left to professionals. They have the experience, tools, and knowledge to quickly locate the most likely places where rodents could enter a structure, and they know how to effectively seal these entry points so that rodents are no longer able to access a property.
The type of materials used in rodent exclusion depends on the specifics of a property, but generally speaking, steel wool or spray foam can be applied to block openings in foundation walls, soffits, and ridge vents. Woven hardware cloth may be used on air vents, and screened or insect-proof screens can be placed on a home’s gable ends and window frames. Other items, such as removing debris and landscaping away from the foundation of a building, trimming shrubs and trees to minimize their contact with the home, and cleaning up compost areas can all help to make your property less attractive to rodents.
While some companies may offer rodent exclusion as a standalone service, it’s becoming increasingly common to find Pest Control Services in Odessa TX that incorporate this into their general offerings. This is a reflection of the fact that customers in today’s market are well-informed, and have high (sometimes unreasonable) expectations about how their pest problems will be handled. These new customer expectations have forced the industry to raise the bar and offer more comprehensive services.
Bed bugs have made a dramatic comeback. This is probably due to a combination of factors including the loss of the potent insecticide DDT, global travel and lack of vigilance on the part of occupants. While they were considered a thing of the past, these tiny, nocturnally active pests now infest homes, apartments and hotels. They are also found in schools, churches, hospitals, offices and other public buildings. Bed bugs are efficient hitchhikers and can be transported into dwellings on clothing, shoes, luggage or other belongings.
Bed bug bites are not only annoying but can be very dangerous for individuals with compromised immune systems. Bed bugs have highly developed mouth parts that can pierce the skin and extract blood. They usually feed on the shoulders and arms, although they will attack any area containing body heat. Some people are very sensitive to the bites, which can become itchy and swell into reddened weals. In some cases, the bites can lead to a life-threatening blood disease called hemorrhagic fever.
The most effective control methods for bed bugs involve nonchemical strategies. Vacuuming, washing bedding at a high temperature and steam treatment can help, as can sealing up hiding places. For severe infestations, fumigation may be needed. This is one of the most expensive pest control services, but it can be the best choice when dealing with a serious problem that requires immediate action.
During treatment, it is important that all occupants cooperate with the pest controller. Belongings strewn about the rooms of the infested house or apartment can offer many places for the pests to hide and hinder inspection and treatment. Affected occupants should be asked to bag and double-bag items, and to set them aside until they can be carefully treated or sealed in plastic. In multi-unit housing, cooperation is especially vital during treatment because contaminated bedding and furniture can easily be carried into other units by movers or visitors.
Routine building-wide inspections should be conducted to detect and control bed bug infestations in apartments, condos and other multi-family housing. These types of properties often have a greater challenge than single-family residences because residents are more likely to move in and out at different times.