Carpenter Bees

Carpenter Bees make holes around the size of the tip of your pinky finger. The female drills a round hole through the side, then drills a perpendicular hole along the grain of the wood. She will lay her eggs inside with an insect to serve as a food source, then she will close off the cell. She will lay multiple eggs per chamber and expand the chamber over the season. This site under a bay window is typical. It is protected and unfinished/unpainted wood. Paint (not stain) is good way to minimize the attractiveness of an area.

Pestcast – Lawn, Mice & Horror Stories

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Finally a chance to put our knowledge out in an audio only format.  For people that like to learn new things on the move, our Pestcast podcast may be the ticket to learning something about pest control and lawn care.

Springtails! Snow Fleas!

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A favorite spring insect, snow fleas or springtails, are making themselves known outside right now.  These ground pepper sized insects flick their tails and jump to amazing heights.  This jumping action is what gets them confused with fleas.  This insect, pictured here from under a microscope, loves the cool wet conditions of spring.  They are often seen most clearly jumping over a patch of snow in a sunny lawn.  Don’t worry, these tiny insects will not bite.

Ultrasonic pest control devices simply don’t work.

Ultrasonic pest control devices – Don’t work. This is probably not a news flash, but people continue to purchase and promote ultrasonic devices to control insects and rodents. Not only has there never been any university testing to prove efficacy, the FTC has successfully sued manufacturers to make them stop publishing claims that the devices work. Don’t rely on manufacturers data to make a decision, look for independent research before purchasing any pesticide, including an ultrasonic repellent.   Click on this link for an example of a press release detailing a successful FTC intervention regarding false claims. 

Your feedback and reviews are appreciated!

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Thank you Mindy for the great review.  We appreciate your taking the time to give us feedback.  Our only purpose is to have satisfied customers.  We want to hear from you if you are not happy and always stand behind our work with our money back guarantee on our service.  Review us on Google+ if you haven’t already!

3 myths on pest control.

Beetles in dog biscuits.

We make sure you have the truth, even if you don’t like it.  Three very common things people don’t want to hear from us.

First you can’t spray away all pest problems – the perfect example is pantry pests (pictured left) and clothes moths (pictured below).  For those pests you need to inspect, clean and repeat the process.  Many companies with call centers will sell you a service for those pests leading to disappointment when the results fail.  We want to start with our fact sheets and get you involved in the inspection and working on sanitation right away.

Second – and this will break the heart of everyone trained in pest control at the hardware store – there is no rodent bait that makes mice thirsty to go outside and die.  When a rodent eats bait, it dies where it is when it succumbs to the mode of action.  Mice do not leave a structure after they eat bait to search for water and die outside.

Third – there is no such thing as a one time service for mice.  Traps have to be removed and updated.  Baits need to be monitored.  Spending money on a one time service for mice is not a good value.  Save your money instead of doing a one time.  One times are limited to insects that form visible colonies or whose life cycle exposes them to treatment easily.  Think of bees and fleas.

Clothes moth damage to wool rug.

Diapause-and other winter insect survival strategies.

Diapause is an inactive state when animals do not develop any further.  Some insects use diapause to overwinter in cold climates.  Many insects also burrow done to shelter out of the way of wind, cold temperatures and other weather impacts.  Grubs and termites underground stay just below the frostline, yellowjacket and ant queens are under bark, logs and rocks.  Ladybugs and cluster flies are aggregated in groups in tight spaces like cracks in rocks or cracks in trees or in window frames or other components of your home.  In addition, many insects, such as ants, produce alcohols that act as antifreeze allowing them to survive temperatures below freezing.  As temperatures, humidity and sunlight all increase in the spring insects will start to venture out of their winter shelters to find food sources.

Ants are back!

Ants are back.  Starting about a week ago with little black ants showing up in kitchens and near fireplaces or furnaces, ants are starting to appear.  As insects wake up, they are hungry for food and start to forage close to their nesting sites.  Carpenter ants have already been reported and carpenter ants swarms will begin shortly as days continue to grow longer and we get intermittent warm days on top of increasing sunlight.  When they are sighted they are normally within several feet of the nest so your reports of ants this time of year through early spring will lead to great control of ants nesting in the structure.

Meal moth larva exposed!

January resolutions include cleaning up & getting rid of old useless items in your life. In your kitchen cabinets remove expired food product. Meal moths love flour, baking mixes, nuts, teas, even potpourri. Photo is a jar of nuts with meal moth larva eating them.   It has gotten a little out of control since the nuts are covered in silken webbing. Use tight fitting screw on lids to minimize infestations and turn over your inventory (don’t save things you will never use!) to keep your cereals fresh.

Groundhog Day again!

Groundhog Day! Again! In New England groundhogs, or woodchucks, have 2 entries to the burrow, one exposed & one hidden by deck, shed, vegetation.  Typically customers call in the middle of summer when a groundhog is caught laying about in the sun or eating the vegetable garden.  There are a variety of control methods, the most successful

are to make your property unfriendly to groundhogs.  From pulling up the welcome mat by fencing your garden well and letting your dog patrol the area control measures then move up to trapping and removal by a licensed wildlife control agent.  Call us for help for do it yourself or for a trapper to consider using.