exterminators 1.234 – gtg

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10 Tips for Locking Up Pests for Good

Ants, roaches, termites, raccoons, squirrels and other insects or animals all have one thing in common; they can quickly become unwanted pests. Of course, most insects are unwanted anyway, but an abundance of wildlife can also be a problem. Raccoons, with their quick little paws, dig into trash and make a mess. Birds can eat the seeds and plants from your garden or destroy flowers. Squirrels may look cute and cuddly, but they love to break into houses and build their nests or cache nuts inside. The list goes on.

So, how do you get rid of them and make sure they don’t come back? Here are ten tips to get you started:

Tip #1 – Squirrels, Raccoons and Other Attic Nesters

Squirrels and other attic nesters make their way into the house through a gnawed hole. Getting rid of this pest infestation calls for three steps:

1. Finding how they got in

2. Trapping those that are already there

3. Sealing the entry areas

When you catch the pests and then seal the areas, it’s best to use steel. Those sharp teeth can chew through a lot of material, but steel isn’t one of them. Exclusion will keep them out of your hard won areas!

Tip #2 -Raccoons and Trash Diggers

Raccoons are another type of attic nester, and it takes just about the same steps to get rid of the cute, cuddly, pesky pests as it does for squirrels. However, sealing your attic and any holes around your house will keep them outside, but it won’t keep them out of the trash. It also won’t keep them from ripping holes in your screen or any number of irritants. This is why there is a need for prevention as well as exclusion.

For prevention, it’s mostly common sense. For example, if they’re getting into pet food, put the food elsewhere. For trash, get a metal trashcan and then use bungee cords to keep the lid on. Although raccoons have quick, clever paws, they won’t have enough strength to raise the lid.

Tip #3 – Rats and Mice

If you can hear scratching in your walls and your electricity starts acting funny, you may just have mice or rats. Jaws so powerful they can chew concrete, these nasty rodents seem to show up everywhere in your house without warning. Again, follow the three steps from Tip #1.

It’s important to have a professional kill and remove poisoned rodents. Poison can create a lot of problems much worse than the original pest infestation. If you’d rather not hire a professional, use snap traps. The last step for permanent rodent pest removal is to vacuum up the rat waste. During all steps, use protective covering and masks!

Tip #4 – Bird Pests

Pests are for the birds, but what if the birds are the pests? The most important thing to remember when it comes to birds is that poison – or anything that kills them indiscriminately – isn’t a good thing to use. Most birds are protected by state and federal laws, and poison can kill more than just pigeons and house sparrows.

For some birds, not feeding them and scaring them away whenever they land will force them to find other nesting grounds. However, it doesn’t work with most species. One thing that does work is a bird repellent – a strip with sharp metal wires. Attach the strip where your pest birds are most likely to roost and then leave them there. It’s humane and a fairly quick way to rid yourself of them.

Tip #5 – Roaches

Roaches are the bane of man’s existence – the roommates you never quite seem to get rid of, no matter how hard you try. You can get rid of them for good, though. It just takes a little know-how.

The first thing to remember is that cockroaches are there to eat, and they’ll eat anything. They also love moisture. Make sure you always clean up food from your counter tops and other areas, get rid of any clutter such as bags, papers, envelopes, etc. Insulate your pipes, clean up water spills, caulk pip moldings and make sure you have a good moisture control program.

While a professional pest control company will have several options for removing the roaches, you can use half baking soda and half powdered sugar in a plate and leave it out for them to eat. It will kill them off and is non-toxic, but it may not get rid of your entire problem. If you aren’t worried about toxicity, sprinkle boric acid wherever you’ve seen them.

Tip # 6 – Termites

Termites nibble at your house until it falls down around your ears. If you do have a termite infestation, your best bet would be to hire a professional pest controller. However, if you want to take care of some of the problem yourself, fix any outside faucets so they don’t leave moisture and weaken the wood. Keep guttering cleaned out and, if you have any, remove any woodpiles from around the house.

Tip #7 – Ants

Ants are fairly easy pests to get rid of. They love easy food, so if you see them in your house it means you have some edible crumbs and leftovers they can reach. Follow their route, find out where they’re coming in and seal the area. Clean up the area and make sure there’s no food left out. Spray it with vinegar, black pepper, cinnamon or bay leaves; ants hate the hot and spicy stuff!

Tip #8 – Bedbugs

Unlike ants, bedbugs are hard to get rid of. They’re the stowaways on your luggage, clothes and blankets from staying in infected places. If you know you have bedbugs, bag your bedding and anything else that can be laundered and put it in the dryer. Wrap everything else in plastic and put them in a hot area for a few days. Even larger items can be vacuumed, and then the vacuum bag thrown out. You can also steam clean the room, but in the end, it’s time to hire the professionals.

Tip #9 – Cleaning Up After

The biggest part of getting rid of pests for good is the cleanup. Cockroaches, for example, will come back if you don’t clean up the area and keep it clean. The same can be said for ants, bedbugs, rats and mice. If you leave out what drew them in the first place, it will just draw them again.

Tip # 10 – Pests, Pests and More Pests

A few types of pests definitely require a professional, such a termites, bedbugs and rats. However, although there are some things you can take care of yourself, professional pest controllers are prepared to deal with any number of pests, recognize signs of other pests you may not be aware of and remove the pests from the scene. If you aren’t confident that you can do it yourself, hire a professional!

No matter what type of pest you have, there is a method for getting rid of them for good. Talk with a professional pest controller to see what you can do for your specific situation!

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Fleas and bed bugs are two of the most common types of bug bites you will encounter in your home. Telling the two types of bites apart can be difficult, however not impossible. Being able to determine which pest you have by your bites can be critical in helping you get the right treatment to take care of the problem. You will want to get rid of these pests quickly, as they are more than just an annoyance, they can carry many diseases.

Differences Between Bed Bugs and Fleas

While both insects enjoy feasting on blood from warm-blooded hosts there are several differences between the two, such as:

Fleas tend to enjoy feasting more on your furry pets, such as cats and dogs, while bed bugs prefer feeding on humans. For these reasons, animals and pets usually bring in fleas while bed bugs are usually brought into the home from other humans.
Adult fleas usually cannot survive more than 2 weeks without a host to feed on, while bed bugs can live up to a year without food as adults
One flea will lay up to 300 eggs each every week that it’s alive, while bed bugs will only lay about 200 in their life time.
Fleas are known for being great jumpers, jumping almost 200 times their own body length of about 13 inches. Bed bugs do not jump or fly at all.
Bed bugs do not tend to spread human diseases like fleas can. Fleas can spread several diseases from one host to the next, such as typhus and cat-scratch fever.

How to Tell Bed Bugs and Fleas Apart?

Bed bugs have a flat seed-like shape and are a red-brown color. They can range in size from 1.5 mm to 5 mm. They are nocturnal insects and are typically found along the lining of your mattress and box spring. They can also be found around baseboards and any other hidden crevices.

Fleas are also a red-brown color, however they are more oval shaped. Their bodies are longer and thinner, rather than flat. They also tend to be less than 3.3 mm in size. They are also nocturnal, however you are more likely to find them attached to your pets or in your carpet and furniture, waiting to find someone to hop onto.

Bed Bug Bites vs Flea Bites: What are the Differences?

Flea Bites

Flea bites can appear just about anywhere on the body, but they are most frequently found on the lower extremities, such as waist, feet and legs. The spots will usually appear in clusters of blotchy, red and swollen spots and be horribly itchy. The bites tend to have a “halo” shape around the actual bite that you can see when you press on the bite. It’s possible for flea bites to form a blister, but rare.

Bed Bug Bites

Bed bug bites tend to resemble mosquito bites with a hard, swollen bump that appears most often on upper extremities, such as neck and arms. The one main similarity to flea bites is that they will itch, however they don’t tend to cause a rash like flea bites do. Bed bug bites tend to form a linear pattern instead of a cluster and do not have the halo look. Instead, they tend to be inflamed and blister.

Frequency of Flea Bites vs Bed Bug Bites

You won’t see bed bug bites as consistently as flea bites. They usually only eat every few days. Fleas, though, will eat constantly; creating an ongoing issue that will not go away until the pests are treated.

Eliminating Fleas and Bed Bugs

One of the most difficult obstacles in dealing with either bed bug or flea bites, is eliminating the source of the problem.. It can be difficult to track all of the fleas or bed bugs down, since they don’t have a central nest like many other pests. Fleas especially, can get around and breed so quickly, it can be hard to eliminate them, before their numbers have been replenished.

It is always best to contact a pest control specialist to help you eliminate your flea or bed bug problem. These pests can carry diseases and be harmful to your family and pets, so it’s best not to take matters into your own hands. A pest control professional can create a plan that will eliminate your current problem and work to prevent any future infestations. For more information, call us.

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Both bed bug and mosquito bites can appear as small, itchy red bumps, so it can be difficult to tell which insect you may be dealing with. It is critical to be able to determine which type of bite you are dealing with, so pest control professionals know how to take care of the problem.

How to Tell the Difference

Knowing the physical traits of a particular bug bite is not necessarily enough to determine which type of bug is biting you. There are several other things to consider. You need to look for other evidence. For instance, if you are dealing with bed bugs, you will likely find bed bug eggs and feces when you inspect the crevices of your mattress, however if you live in an area where it is warmer and your window screens have holes in them or are missing, then the culprit could be mosquitoes getting into your home.

Characteristics of Bed Bug Bites vs Mosquito Bites

Bed bug bites typically appear in a linear fashion, where your body meets the mattress. Mosquito bites are often found in random, isolated places on the body. While both insects will feed on exposed skin, mosquitoes won’t bite through clothes.

Mosquito bites also tend to produce instantly visible, white bumps with an irregular red border around it and they will itch immediately. Usually over a couple of days, the bite will change to a tiny red bump and mosquito bites resolve themselves quickly. With bed bug bites, they can appear quickly or even days later and some may not have any reaction at all to the bites. The flat, red bumps that appear do not tend to itch right away, but can start to over time. These bites are never white, like mosquito bites are in the beginning.

Dangers of Bed Bug Bites vs Mosquito Bites

Mosquito bites are definitely more dangerous based on what we know. Mosquitoes carry many serious diseases such as Zika, West Nile and Malaria. To most, though, mosquito bites cause nothing more than an annoyance for a couple of days. Some people may have an allergic reaction, leading to larger welts that take longer to go away. Bed bugs have not been found in studies to spread diseases. Some people can develop allergic reactions to bed bug bites, resulting in various degrees of symptoms from an intense itch and inflamed rash to hives, fever and breathing difficulties.

Preventing Bed Bug and Mosquito Bites

To reduce the risks of being bitten by bed bugs or bringing them home, take these necessary precautions:

Always check your hotel mattresses, furniture and linens when you check in, while traveling
Also while traveling, keep your luggage up off the floor and off the bed or other furniture.
Avoid purchasing used mattresses and furniture.
If you have any suspicion at all, you should call a pest control professional immediately to help you get the problem under control and prevent future outbreaks.

If you frequently deal with mosquito bites and would like to try and reduce the number of mosquito bites you deal with each year, here are some tips:

Insure there is no stagnant water anywhere near or around your home.
Plant citronella, eucalyptus or lavender around your home. The smells of these plans deters mosquitoes.
When outdoors, dress in light colors and use a bug-spray or lotion that repels mosquito, preferably without DEET in it.

When camping, use a mosquito net. You can place an electric bug repellent near areas of your home that attract the most mosquitoes.
If the problem is out of control and you aren’t able to get relief in these ways, contact a mosquito control professional.

Eliminating the Problem

Being able to tell the difference between the characteristics of bed bug bites and mosquito bites is only the first step. Sometimes mosquitoes can be taken care of on your own, but if the problem is out of hand, a pest professional can still help, although it is nearly impossible to eliminate the problem altogether. However, they can reduce the number by up to 70 or 80%. Bed bugs, on the other hand, can multiply quickly and eliminating them should not be taken into your own hands. If you think you have bed bugs, contact our pest control professionals right away. We can put together a treatment plan that will take care of your current problem and help prevent future infestations. Call us today!

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