Chewed Up

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Pictured to the right is a picture of a perfectly round hole chewed into a carefully filled opening outside a customers residence. This opening around the air conditioner line runs inside and up to the attic. When the customer noted a return of a noise in the attic, we went straight to the formerly offending hole and found a mouse had chewed back through the polyurethane. We added copper and refilled the hole, actual size around the size of a nickel.

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

Mouse Sighting! Get a pencil?


If you see mouse droppings, or a mouse, it is time to take action. The first step is exclusion (to exclude the mice, the start of effective rodent pest control). To do this, take a pencil, and use the eraser end as your mouse entry gauge. Start under your kitchen sink by looking for any cracks or openings, start around pipes and electrical lines. If the eraser end fits into the opening, you have the potential for a mouse to fit it. After you locate an opening fill it with an appropriate material. Smaller openings around pipes can be filled with copper wool (or stainless steel wool) or rope and caulk. Repeat this process under the dishwasher, then under your stove, behind your refrigerator or anywhere you have seen a mouse or its droppings. If you are uncertain where your mice may be, focus on warm areas, like under the refrigerator where the compressor keeps the area warm. After inspecting the areas around your food, move outward, to areas like your pantry, then your basement or crawl space, and finally the exterior and garage. Filling mouse holes is like filling pot holes, it should be done regularly because rodents will make new openings and the expansion and contraction of buildings in the northeast climate can create openings, particularly where wood and cement or concrete meet (the foundation) or around door seals, such as garage door bases and trim seals.
Clean up, carefully, by spraying the droppings with water, or a light soapy water (to keep dust down) and then pad the droppings up with a disposable paper towel or napkin. Please don’t vacuum rodent droppings since action may pull any harmful microorganisms into the air or onto other surfaces where they can cause an illness.
Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc. Effective Organic & Low Impact Solutions, Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton and Metro Boston.

New Year’s Resolutions-Clean and organize the cabinets to prevent stored product pests.


As we start January looking outside at an ice covered and frozen landscape, it can be difficult to imagine the myriad of commensal rodents and insects living in and around our homes and businesses. Right now, the key pest problems in residential homes are rodents, like the house mouse and deer mouse, and the indoor moths, such as the Indian meal moth, and webbing clothes moth. This time of year, the new year, might be a great time to go through your cabinets and make sure that no forgotten boxes of corn bread mix lie hidden behind other items in the pantry. Making sure that you use products and refresh your stored items a great way to spot infested materials early, before you have the telltale signs of worm like moth larvae climbing on the ceiling.

If you open or look into a package and notice holes, webs, larvae, then you may have found a source of a stored product pest. If you have seen moths inside your kitchen or pantry and suspect an infestation, start with the oldest products and work out. Trust me, I’ve had them in my pantry and hate to get out the step stool and start searching through all the products, so you won’t be alone in feeling disgust at this project.

If you suspect you’ve found the source, discard the product, or freeze the product for more than 3 days (or heat to 150 degrees Fahrenheit for 2 hours) if you want to continue to use it. Freezing (or heating) and continuing to use product is usually done with pet food. After removing the source, clean the cabinet, pantry or storage area the product was located in, and use your vacuum’s crack and crevice tip to vacuum the cabinet, and the top interior corners and edges of the cabinet. Finish by vacuuming or dusting the corners of the room and the edge where the ceiling and wall meet. If all else fails, call a professional to come inspect the situation.
-Lauren Greenhow, General Manager, GreenHow, Inc.
Effective organic & low impact solutions for environmentally conscious people.
Green Lawn Care, Pest Control & Termite Control in Newton, and Metro Boston, and Eastern Massachusetts.