Ants

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Pavement or little black ants follow lines and forage randomly for food. Once a source is found, other ants follow a pheromone trail left to the food source by a returning ant wiping or dragging the abodomen on the surface. That is why regular cleaning, or wiping down surfaces (integrated or green pest management), can disrupt the pheromone trail and make it more difficult for these ants to locate and establish paths to food sources. Take the time to wipe off your counters after cleaning up the dishes, even if they look clean. Regular maintenance, cleaning, will reduce the amount of pheromone trails if ants are trailing in your home. And clean to the edges and backsplash, ants love to follow edges.
-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
www.GreenHow.com. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.

Termites Swarming!

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It has been a busy few weeks around eastern Massachusetts, with two warmer days leading to some spotty termite swarming. Affected homes and homeowners usually discovered hundreds of wings on the floor and furniture, or hundreds of wings and what resemble ants, small, black, but with a thick waist (unlike the pinched waist of an ant). Continued cool temperatures will reduce termite swarming until it gets warm, over 75 or 80 degrees F. If you suspect a swarm has occured in your home, call a professional and have it inspected.
-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
www.GreenHow.com. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.

Trash control for rodents.

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Keep rodents out of your life by controlling trash. A key pest control strategy to implement an integrated pest management or green pest management program is to control trash resources. This is true with all pests, especially rodents. Remove trash, especially material with odors like food waste, to a covered, preferably metal or thick plastic, covered trash can. Rinse recyclables off and out before putting into the recycling bin. Store all trash and recycling in a tight, rodent proof area and put out for collection the morning of (not the night before). These practices will reduce mice and rats inside, and tipped cans from raccoons outside.

-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
www.GreenHow.com. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.

Pesky ants & simple steps to reduce them.

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As it warms up into spring, remember these simple tips about ants.
1) They are primarily nocturnal, but driven by food and other factors in the spring, so you will see them active throughout the day.
2) They leave a pheromone (scent is closest definition) to tell other ants that this path leads to food. This is left by the ant rubbing or dragging its’ abdomen on the surface. Cleaning and wiping down a surface will remove any pheromone trails, forcing the ants to forage for new feeding site and find the food resource again.
3) Ants love edges. They will follow line and edges, which can also be “soft spots” on the cleaning list, so spend some time during spring cleaning focusing on edges of counters, backsplashes, trim boards, etc.
4) Prune off brush and limbs. As ants follow lines, such as branches and limbs, don’t let a destination be the soffit or worse, the window box outside your kitchen window. Prune vegetation off the structure and up to 18″ from the structure.
This will help reduce the ants you see this spring.
-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
www.GreenHow.com. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.