Do Roach Bombs and Foggers Work?

Do Roach Bombs and Foggers Work?

2019-07-25

Roach bombs and roach foggers are marketed as fast solutions to cockroach problems in homes. However, these products aren’t the best solutions for most situations. When they’re not scavenging, cockroaches are skilled at hiding. This often puts them in places where foggers can’t reach. A roach bomb might kill the few that are caught vulnerable but it will leave the rest unharmed. That means these products create a mess of chemicals around your house without treating the problem where it’s most important—the source.

Cockroaches’ favorite hiding spots are in areas where it’s dark and humid. Usually, these locations are not easily accessible. Basements, attics, crawl spaces, bathrooms and wall voids all make attractive habitats for cockroaches. Roach bombs might be able to quickly cover an entire room in insecticides but they won’t reach the cracks, crevices and other tiny spaces where adult and baby cockroaches live.

It’s possible that a fogger could be effective against a few roaches if you’re lucky enough to deploy it while they’re out searching for food. But once an infestation has grown, it’s highly unlikely that these products will be effective in stopping it.

Using Roach Bombs and Foggers

When you activate a roach bomb, you, your family and your pets need to leave the house for a number of hours before it’s safe to return. Instructions vary by product, but you should expect to leave for two to four hours, at least.

In addition to being toxic in the air, these foggers can cause a mess, coating floors, counters and furniture with chemicals (which is their purpose, after all). Before you activate one, you’ll have to carefully cover any food or food-related items, children’s toys, delicate clothing and furniture.

Once it’s safe to return to your home, you’ll be faced with a lot of cleaning: wiping counters and cooking surfaces, cleaning toys and furniture and, if you have pets or young children, thoroughly cleaning anything else they could touch with their hands or mouth.

Roach foggers might work quickly, but they’re certainly not easy or convenient solutions to a cockroach problem. Against more than a few active cockroaches, they likely won’t be successful at all.

How to Prevent Cockroaches

If you’ve seen a cockroach but aren’t sure if it’s part of an infestation, you can make some small adjustments to your habits to reduce the risk of attracting more.

  1. Establish good cleaning habits to limit the crumbs, spills and other food leftovers that strongly attract cockroaches to kitchen floors and counters.
  2. Seal foods in airtight metal or glass containers.
  3. Remove standing water and fix dripping faucets in kitchens and bathrooms.
  4. Repair cracks and holes in interior and exterior walls that could provide entry points for cockroaches.

Taking simple steps toward eliminating food and water sources can help keep cockroaches away from your home.

How to Get Rid of Cockroaches

Don’t inconvenience yourself with a messy roach fogger that might not work. If you’ve seen cockroaches in or around your home, call the professionals at Aptive Environmental. Our experts will customize a pest control solution for the size and shape of your home, treating the infestation at the source. We use eco-friendly solutions to conveniently control infestations of any size. Our Four Seasons Protection Plan will ensure that your home is protected from cockroaches and other pests all year.

If you’re ready to feel comfortable in your home again, contact Aptive today for a free quote and to schedule your first appointment.

 

Fact or Fiction: Do Dryer Sheets Keep Bugs Away

Fact or Fiction: Do Dryer Sheets Keep Bugs Away

2019-09-30

For years, the claim that dryer sheets keep bugs away has been floating around home-related websites. How much of it is true, and how much is a myth? Because of our commitment to eco-friendly and pet-friendly pest control solutions, we’re always on the hunt to find bug-repelling tricks to share with homeowners. If you’re wondering if dryer sheets actually keep bugs away, here’s what you need to know.

Do Dryer Sheets Repel Mosquitoes?

One of the most frequently cited uses for dryer sheets as a bug repellant is their ability to deter mosquitoes. Some have reported that keeping dryer sheets in your pockets while outdoors can help keep mosquitoes at bay, though there is little scientific research to support this claim.

While a study has yet to be conducted to determine if dryer sheets repel mosquitoes, one can look toward similar studies to make an educated guess about the mosquito-repelling abilities of dryer sheets.

Do Dryer Sheets Keep Other Bugs Away?

One study, conducted by a team of researchers at Kansas State University, used Bounce dryer sheets to determine their effectiveness in fighting off fungus gnats. The study was comprised of a test chamber that included two separate compartments, one that contained a Bounce dryer sheet and one that did not. When the researchers released the gnats into the chamber, they found that only 18% of the gnats moved into the compartment with the dryer sheet, while 45% moved toward the empty compartment.

The reason for this? Most dryer sheets contain the ingredient linalool, which can be found in plants like lavender, basil, and coriander, all of which naturally repel common garden pests. Similar studies found that this ingredient is also useful for repelling bugs like mites, weevils, beetles, and German cockroaches. While its ability to repel mosquitoes has not been confirmed, linalool can also be found in certain mosquito repellants and pesticides, which may mean dryer sheets are more productive at repelling mosquitoes and other annoying bugs than some may think.

Fact or Fiction? Answer: Both

Although dryer sheets haven’t been officially proven to repel mosquitoes, their effectiveness hasn’t been disproven, either. It’s possible these common household items are a successful mosquito-repellant. However, until it is proven that the linalool and other bug-repelling ingredients found in dryer sheets deter mosquitoes, we recommend using an EPA-approved bug spray that contains the ingredient DEET to prevent mosquito bites during outdoor activities. Just because dryer sheets are not guaranteed to repel mosquitoes, however, they still offer a myriad of other uses around the home.

Other Pest-Related Uses for Dryer Sheets

While their ability to act as a bug repellant hasn’t been officially proven, dryer sheets provide other bug-related uses. Dryer sheets can help remove dried insects from the windshield and body of your car. Just dip the dryer sheet in water, or spray the affected area with water, and rub off with the dryer sheet. The chemicals in dryer sheets can dissolve a car’s finish, however, so make sure you reapply wax to keep a glossy finish on your vehicle.

Dryer sheets can also be used to protect houseplants from annoying pests. Since they have been proven to repel fungus gnats, placing several dryer sheets near your houseplants could protect them from these root-eating pests. This is especially useful for plants placed in moist-environments, like the bathroom or backyard, where fungus is most likely to grow within the soil.

Although this claim has yet to be proven, some say placing dryer sheets in dark corners or cluttered areas of your home can also prevent spiders and other bugs from nesting since it is believed these bugs are repelled by the smell.

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How to Keep Pumpkins from Rotting

How to Keep Pumpkins from Rotting

2019-10-09

Nothing says fall like newly-picked pumpkins and jack-o-lanterns. These festive vegetables provide the perfect front door decor and after-school activity for kids. Unfortunately for homeowners, though, carved pumpkins will often last between just one to two weeks before starting to rot. A rotting pumpkin can attract unwanted pests, like fruit flies, if left out too long. There are a few tricks, however, to keep pumpkins from rotting. Find out why pumpkins rot and how you can decelerate the rotting process.

What Causes Rotting Pumpkins?

Like all fresh foods, pumpkins will eventually rot and decompose. Pumpkins rot when exposed to air, through the process of oxidation, and when they lose moisture, so these vegetables slowly begin to decay once cut from the stem. Warm weather and extremely low temperatures can also make a rotting pumpkin worse. This process is expedited if the pumpkin has been cut open and carved, which is why so many jack-o-lanterns sag and start to decay just a week or two after Halloween. Fortunately, there are a few tricks you can use to keep your festive pumpkins looking fresh for longer.

How to Keep Pumpkins from Rotting

  1. Don’t cut the top offWhile removing the stem is basic pumpkin carving 101, cutting off a pumpkin’s stem causes the rest of the vegetable to lose essential nutrients that keep it healthy. You can avoid this by cutting a hole in the back of the pumpkin and continuing the carving process from there.
  2. Clean the inside after carvingWhen carving the pumpkin, make sure you remove all pumpkin seeds and guts from the vegetable, and thoroughly rinse and dry it before placing it outside. The insides of pumpkins are very moist, which causes fungi to grow if not properly dried off. Pumpkins can also attract unwanted pests that will feed on the insides, causing it to decay even faster.
  3. Give it a bleach bathOne bleach bath before carving and one bleach bath after carving is an effective way to keep pumpkins from rotting. This destroys internal bacteria that increases the likelihood the pumpkin will start to mold. For the bleach bath, a good rule of thumb is to mix one tablespoon of bleach with every quart of water used in the bath.
  4. Add a silica packetThere’s finally a reason to put those old silica packets to use. Because silica gels naturally remove excess moisture from their environment, keeping an opened packet of silica gels inside a carved pumpkin will prolong its lifetime. This trick is especially useful for homeowners living in humid climates.
  5. Invest in pumpkin sprayIf you plan to be doing a lot of pumpkin carving this fall, consider buying a natural pumpkin spray. This is the quickest (and easiest!) way to slow the pumpkin rotting process. Pumpkin sprays are a form of fungicidal and can be ordered online or bought at a local pumpkin patch.
  6. WD-40One of the more unexpected tricks on this list, spraying a pumpkin with WD-40 is surprisingly effective at preserving pumpkins. The ingredients in WD-40 keep pumpkins hydrated, repel outside moisture, resist freezing temperatures, and give pumpkins a shiny exterior. Make sure you wait at least 24 hours before slipping a lit candle inside the pumpkin though, or else you may set your pumpkin on fire.
  7. Use petroleum jelly or vegetable oilIf you’re hesitant to use harsh chemicals on your pumpkins, petroleum jelly or vegetable oil are good alternatives for keeping pumpkins hydrated. Spread a layer of the jelly or oil along the carved edges of your pumpkins to prevent them from drying out quickly. However, vegetable oil is highly flammable. If this is the ingredient you choose to use, stick an electric candle inside your pumpkin instead.
  8. Refrigerate itNeed to keep a pumpkin fresh while you go out of town? Place your pumpkin in a plastic bag or cover it in plastic wrap and stick it in the refrigerator overnight. Because pumpkins are more likely to rot in warmer temperatures, this method can help extend the life of a pumpkin.
  9. Avoid real candlesWhile it may feel wrong not to light your jack-o-lanterns with real candles, even a small flame will expedite a rotting pumpkin. The heat cooks the pumpkin from the inside and causes it to wilt faster than it would if lit by an electric candle.
  10. Don’t carve itOf course, some homeowners prefer to keep pumpkins whole. Not carving your pumpkins will make them last significantly longer than the alternative. If you and your kids miss the Halloween festivities, however, pumpkin painting is a good option that will keep pumpkins fresh and looking festive.

    There’s nothing better than decorating your front porch with freshly carved pumpkins. However, if you’re not careful, rotting pumpkins will bring unwanted bugs and mold into your pumpkin and near your home. This Halloween, try out these tricks to keep your pumpkins from rotting. If you do experience an influx of bugs in or near your home, give our pest experts a call for an eco-friendly, pet-friendly bug control solution

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Are Centipedes Venomous?

Are Centipedes Venomous?

2020-01-27

If you thought spiders have a lot of legs, you’ll be blown away by centipedes! These crawlers can have anywhere from fifteen to nearly 200 legs (depending on the species and size). Their size can range anywhere from 4mm to 6 inches long. Some can get even longer – many centipedes in Hawaii grow to be eight inches long and almost half an inch wide. They can easily climb on floors, walls, and most other surfaces.

People tend to be terrified of them because of their large number of legs and quick speed. Are centipedes dangerous though? Keep reading to learn if they can harm you and how to get rid of them in your home.

Are Centipedes Dangerous?

Although they can bite humans, centipede venom isn’t strong enough to cause harm. They also rarely bite unless they are threatened. It can be pretty painful when they do bite (the larger the centipede, the more painful the bite will be). The only circumstance where a centipede bite could be dangerous is when someone is allergic to the venom.

Are house centipedes venomous?

Centipedes found in the house are venomous as well, but still harmless unless you’re allergic. However, a house centipede can actually be a good thing if you have issues with other insects. They hunt roaches, moths, silverfish, termites, and many other bugs. You definitely don’t want a centipede infestation, but just one centipede can get rid of other bug issues you may have.

Centipedes vs. Millipedes

Many people have difficulties telling the difference between centipedes and millipedes since they are fairly similar looking (even their names sound the same). However, there are a few differences between the two. For one, their diet is very different – centipedes are carnivorous, while millipedes feed on decaying organic matter or roots and leaves of seedling plants. Because of this, centipedes have venom that kills their prey.

In addition, their legs are spread out differently. Since centipedes need to chase prey, their legs are longer and help them run faster. Millipedes have shorter legs and they are much slower. Centipedes have one pair of legs on each body segment, while millipedes have two pairs of legs per body segment. Millipedes are typically smaller than centipedes. When performing millipede extermination, slightly different measures may be taken since they bite.

Keeping Centipedes Out of Your Home

Although typically harmless, most don’t want these creepy crawlers in their house and squish them. However, killing them can be bad because centipedes usually come inside homes only when there are other insects to eat. You might be scared of centipedes, but their presence could be a sign you have an entirely different insect infestation on your hands. The most effective way to get rid of centipedes in the home is to get rid of their food source (other bugs).

One way to help with this is to seal off any cracks or other holes that insects can use to get inside your home. Additionally, use a dehumidifier or install a bathroom fan to eliminate extra moisture in the walls that attracts insects. You might need to take further measures if you have an actual infestation.

Professional Pest Control

If you have bug problems that you can’t eliminate on your own, professional pest control will likely be needed. Aptive Environmental offers centipede extermination as well as other bug extermination (cockroach exterminationsilverfish extermination, and many more) that will eliminate the bugs centipedes are attracted to. Our services are safe and environmentally friendly. We are so confident in our expertise, we will come back for free if the bugs come back!

 

What to Do After a Wasp Sting?

What to Do After a Wasp Sting?

2020-01-29

Wasps are a common stinging insect that can be found during warm months. These yellow and black flying, stinging bugs create nests both above the ground as well as on the ground. They often use tree branches, porch ceilings, deck floors, rafters, eaves, and railings to build their nest. Wasps use nectar as a food source as well as other insects such as caterpillars, larvae, and flies.

Their stinger contains venom that paralyzes their prey. Unlike bees, wasps can sting multiple times. They aren’t naturally aggressive toward humans, but will sting if their nest is disturbed or if they are swatted at. Keep reading to learn how to treat a wasp sting, when they can be dangerous, and how to get rid of infestations or nests near the house.

Are Wasp Stings Dangerous?

Although wasp stings are painful, most people recover easily and quickly. They are only dangerous if you’re severely allergic. The most severe wasp sting reaction can result in anaphylaxis, which is when your body goes into shock because of the wasp venom. People with severe reactions may also experience swelling in the face or throat, hives on the body, dizziness, drop in blood pressure, stomach cramps, diarrhea, and more. These severe reactions are rare. If you have a history of anaphylaxis, make sure to carry an emergency kit in case a sting occurs.

What happens when a wasp stings you if you’re not allergic? You will simply experience a raised welt around the sting area with a white dot in the middle where their stinger came into contact with your skin. The pain and swelling will typically go away within a few hours of the sting.

How to Treat a Wasp Sting

If you’re not allergic and have a normal reaction to the sting, you can easily treat them at home. First wash the area with soap and water to remove venom, then applying a cold pack to the wound to reduce swelling and pain. After this, keep the wound clean and dry to prevent an infection (you can use a bandage if you’d like).

In addition, there are a few home remedies that can help reduce pain and swelling more quickly. Some say crushing a clove of garlic and spreading it on the wound helps reduce pain for both bee and wasp stings.

What Attracts Wasp Infestations?

Wasps are often attracted to areas near the home that they’re able to hang their nest from. These include porch ceilings, eaves, and deck railings. Many wasps use the fiber from wood to build their nests, so this will attract them even further. They will be even more attracted to your home if you have a yard with plenty of insects and nectar to eat (such as fruit trees and plants) as well as indoor shelter for the cold months (barns, sheds, and others).

Nests around your home can be dangerous if located near areas with a lot of human traffic, especially children that may have a wasp sting reaction. They tend to sting when people come too close to their nest. Luckily, there are a few ways to control wasps.

Although it’s safer to hire professionals when performing stinger and biter extermination, there are general measures you can take to try and eliminate them. First, you should seal any cracks that can provide an entry into your home. Additionally, make sure to clean up any fruit trees or plants around your home because they love to eat fallen fruit. Finally, make sure to keep outside garbage in a tightly sealed garbage can.

If these simple fixes don’t help, professional wasp extermination is the way to go. It can be dangerous to try and eliminate wasps without proper training. Aptive Environmental has offices all over the United States and is dedicated to providing safe, eco-friendly pest services. We are so confident in our services, we will come back for free if the bugs come back!

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Identifying Common Pantry Pests

Identifying Common Pantry Pests

2020-02-10

Finding bugs in your kitchen cabinets? Pantry pests occur in thousands of homes every year when infested products are purchased and brought inside. Although it can be hard to prevent bringing them in your home, there are steps that can be taken to help ensure an infestation doesn’t become out of hand. Keep reading to learn more about the types of pantry bugs, how to prevent them, and how to get rid of them.

Where Do Pantry Pests Come From?

It can be confusing when you’re suddenly swarmed with bugs in the pantry. As gross as it sounds, bugs that infest kitchen cabinets are typically brought in by infested food products purchased outside of the home. They can infest even the cleanest of kitchens as long as they’re able to access their favorite grains and foods. Although they are harmless (aside from damages to food), it’s not pleasant to find bugs crawling around your foods.

What Foods Attract Pantry Insects?

These bugs are attracted to a variety of products. Their favorites include grains (such as flour and cereals) in addition to beans, nuts, spices, and dried fruits. However, their palette isn’t limited to this – pantry pests will eat nearly any dried food that’s stored at room temperature. Opened packaged are the easiest for them to enter, but they can make their way into sealed packages as well.

What Types of Pantry Pests Are There?

Moths, weevils, and small grain beetles are the most common pests that can live in the pantry. Although annoying, they are harmless because they won’t sting or bite. They also won’t damage your home aside from food losses. Learn more about each species below!

Indian Meal Moths

These small moths attack a variety of dried food products around the kitchen, especially containers that haven’t been opened for a long time. You might find silky webbing, tiny specks of droppings, or egg casings left along the food. They can be found all over the United States, but thrive in more tropical climates like Florida. They can be difficult to get rid of, which is why professional Indian Meal moth extermination is often required to effectively eliminate them.

Sawtoothed Grain Beetles

These tiny pantry insects often go unnoticed until discovered in dry food or crawling around counters. They also reproduce rapidly. Infestations often become large and spread to many different foods before they are noticed. In this case, professional grain beetle extermination is your best bet.

Weevils

There are two common types of weevils – granary weevils and rice weevils. One sign of infestation includes small holes in any whole grains you have stored as well as live, adult weevils in dry foods. Like grain beetles, weevils can be hard to detect until the infestation is out of hand and weevil-extermination is needed.

Preventing Pantry Pests

It can be difficult to fully prevent these bugs since infestations only begin when you bring them home. However, there are a few precautions you can take to avoid these bugs from taking over your pantry if they hitch a ride home in your groceries.

Food Storage

Make sure to store dry pantry foods in tight, sealed containers. Larvae can easily chew through paper and cardboard to access other foods. They can also easily enter containers that aren’t tightly sealed. If you’ve had a recent infestation of kitchen cabinet bugs that you think is gone, you might want to store dry food in the fridge (as long as your 100% positive they are not infested). Any leftover bugs won’t enter the fridge, and most dry foods won’t be harmed by the cold storage.

Clean Regularly

Although pantry insects can infest clean kitchens, it can still be helpful to clean your shelves regularly and dispose of anything you don’t need. This helps eliminate potential food sources. In addition, make sure to clean the walls and shelves with soapy water regularly. Finally, make sure to clean old containers before filling them with new products in case there were any previous contaminations.

Buy in Bulk

Although bulk products can definitely harbor kitchen cabinet bugs too, it’s more likely you will notice them in the container when you’re purchasing from the store (especially if you use clear bags or jars). Most products on the shelf don’t allow you to check inside the bag.

Wash Your Grains

This is more of a cleanliness tip rather than a prevention tip. Make sure to thoroughly rinse your grains before cooking to remove any bug remains (as well as any other dry foods that can be washed before using them). Even if you don’t have an infestation, it’s very possible the product could have come into contact with pantry bugs at some point in the production journey.

How Do You Get Rid of Pantry Insects?

Most pantry pests can reproduce quickly and turn into an infestation nightmare. If your dry food collection isn’t large, you might consider throwing everything out and treating the area. Most bulk spices and other dry foods are cheap to repurchase. When new products are purchased, you can store them in the fridge to avoid leftover insects from infesting them, or make sure to store them in very tightly sealed containers that they can’t get inside. After a few weeks, the infestation should be gone.

Another effective method is to simply call professional pantry pest extermination. Aptive Environmental offers expert, personalized plans with pest solutions that are safe as well as environmentally friendly. Worried about the bugs coming back once we’re done? Our lifetime guarantee ensures you will stay pest-free. If the bugs we exterminate return, we will too (for free)!

 

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Nocturnal Insects: Which Bugs Are Most Active at Night?

Do you ever notice an increase in bugs when you’re out and about at night? It’s no surprise that there are plenty of nocturnal insects – with plenty of larger predators roaming about during the day, it’s much safer for them to wait until most of their predators are sleeping. There are many species of nocturnal bugs located throughout the United States. Keep reading to learn more about the common types you may encounter and how to prevent them in your home.

Common Nocturnal Insects

Mosquitos

You probably don’t need an introduction to mosquitos. Surprisingly, this common insect is also rated #1 on the list of the most dangerous insects in the world due to diseases they spread. They typically live in warmer climates and come out to feed on human blood once it starts to get dark.

Crickets

Wonder why you only hear crickets at night? These jumping insects are nocturnal, so they’re most active during the night. They spend the day inside cracks or under bark and leaf litter, as well as many other hiding spaces. At night, they emerge to search for food and mates (their chirp is actually a mating call). Some types of crickets have wings, but most aren’t able to fly. Although they often get stuck inside homes or businesses, they’re generally harmless because they can rarely puncture human skin. Some can jump up to 3 feet high!

Crickets can be found almost everywhere, but are most common in the Eastern part of the U.S. Since they reproduce quickly, cricket extermination is often necessary for infestations.

Bed Bugs

These small nocturnal insects can live in your bed for months without you noticing! They live under the mattress, box spring, or other hidden areas in or around your bed. Many people will mistake bed bug bites for mosquito bites because they are hard to tell apart. However, there are noticeable differences between the two – for one, bed bug bites typically occur in clusters, while mosquito bites are sporadic. Bed bugs are difficult and time-consuming to get rid of.

Kissing Bugs

Kissing bugs are another type of nocturnal insects that spread deadly diseases. They sleep during the day and typically bite humans in their sleep (they’re calling kissing bugs because they often bite around the mouth or other areas of the face). They can transmit Chagas, which kills thousands of people every year. They can also transmit a parasite called Trypanosoma Cruzi. Kissing bugs are found in warm Southern areas of the United States as well as Mexico, Central America, and South America.

Moths

There are thousands of moth species, most of which are nocturnal. They’re often known as butterflies of the night! They emerge after dark to pollinate flowers (and fly into porch light bulbs). Scientists guess that moths and other night insects are attracted to light because they used the moon to navigate before electricity was invented.

Centipedes

The most common centipedes are house centipedes – most other larger species live in tropical areas. Although their name implies they have 100 legs, house centipedes can have anywhere from 15 to 177 legs. Many people are scared of these speedy, creepy insects. However, a house centipede is actually a sign you may have another problem on your hands. They only enter homes to search for prey (they prey on other insects like cockroaches, termites, and others.

Look into hiring professional centipede extermination to get rid of centipede problems (and other bug issues) you may have.

Preventing Nocturnal Insects in Your Home

One significant way to avoid insects coming inside is to seal up any cracks, holes, and other potential entry points. Make sure to check everywhere in your home, including basements and attics. In addition, get rid of any damp areas in the home (try using a dehumidifier). Keeping the house clean is also a great way to avoid bug infestations.

Even if you don’t have a current infestation, you may want to get a professional home inspection to help you find any areas that are at risk. This could save hundreds of future pest control costs.

 

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Spring Yard Cleaning Checklist

 

Spring Yard Cleaning Checklist

2020-03-11

Spring cleaning is common for inside the house, but what about your yard? After winter is over, many of us are not very pleased with how our yards look. With the weather getting warmer, it’s a great opportunity to get outside and clean up. Our ultimate spring yard cleanup checklist shares everything you need to win the best yard award and make your neighbors jealous!

Spring Yard Cleanup Checklist

Rake Up Leaves & Debris

If you have any nearby trees, you likely have plenty of leaves and other debris to clean up in your yard. Since spring lawn care steps can seem overwhelming, starting by raking up debris is an easy place to get started. Get rid of any fallen branches, stray leaves, and pet droppings. Make sure to rake when the yard is completely dry – raking when wet can tear grass from the roots.

Prune Branches & Shrubs

Tree branches often get damaged by cold weather as well as snow and wind. You should prune back to live stems (make sure to use a handsaw for anything bigger than ½ inch in diameter). In addition, remove any overgrown branches and shrubs.

Reseed Bald Lawn Spots

Your lawn may likely have taken a beating after winter. Grass starts growing in April in colder climates, so you should check the soil’s pH in early spring. Then, remove any damaged turf with a metal rake and reseed a few weeks later. It’s best to begin seeding once forsythia starts blooming in your area.

Prepare Flower Beds

Make sure to remove weeds and dead growth, plus add some compost into your perennial beds to fertilize them. You should also remove mulch in your perennial beds that may have been covering the plants during winter so they can come through without issue. In addition, you can also create new flower beds if desired.

Clean Walkways & Patios

Early spring is the best time to clean up your patios and walkways. Brush back any gravel that was misplaced, pressure wash surfaces, clean up patio furniture, remove mildew, and get rid of any other grime.

Fix Up Fences

Wooden fences often become dull and grey after winter months. First, power wash your fence and let dry for a few days. Once it’s dry, you can paint with a tone that’s slightly darker than you want (the sun will lighten it). However, don’t paint it too dark as it will absorb more heat from the sun and warp quicker. Finish with a stain or sealer to help the paint last longer.

Make Any Additional Repairs

On a final note, this season is a great chance to make any additional yard repairs that you haven’t gotten around to yet.

Pest Prevention Measures

As the weather warms up, you will definitely see more insects and other pests hanging around your yard. There are plenty of measures you can take to prevent them from making their way in your home and creating an infestation, or eating your precious plants. For one, make sure to seal any potential entry points to your home like cracks, holes, and space under doors. Remove damp areas with a dehumidifier (dampness can attract insects like silverfish, which get out of hand quickly and typically require silverfish extermination).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’re IN*VITED…
LAUN*CHES TOD*AY!

Hi Howard,

You’re in*vited to the …
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I made over $49,000 last month!

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What are Arthropods?

What are Arthropods?

2021-04-30

An arthropod may seem like something that is out of this world. And if you’ve never heard of this species, you’re not alone. However, it may be beneficial to learn more about arthropods since you’re most likely around them more than you even know. In fact, the number of living arthropod species is in the tens of millions, making up over three-fourths of all known living and fossil organisms. This shows how successful this species is.

Although they aren’t necessarily a problem, they can be a nuisance if they get out of control in your home. So let’s dive deep into what these creatures are, what accounts for their success, which ones may enter your home, and how to eliminate them safely.

Physical Characteristics of Arthropods

Arthropods belong to the phylum Arthropoda, which means “jointed feet,” and includes four living subphylas:

  • Chelicerata
    • Spiders, mites, and scorpions
  • Myriapoda
    • Centipedes and millipedes
  • Hexapoda
    • Insects and a small group of wingless arthropods
  • Crustacea
    • Lobsters, crabs, barnacles, crayfish, and shrimp

Arthropods are considered the largest phylum of invertebrates. Arthropods can range in length from about 1 millimeter to 13 feet. They have segmented support bodies with a tough exoskeleton (think of an ant’s body). This shell prevents water loss and offers support and protection. Since the exoskeleton doesn’t grow as the insect grows, it must be shed and replaced with a new, larger shell that allows an insect to grow. This process is known as molting.

Arthropods also have jointed limbs. The body segments include the head, thorax, and abdomen. In certain arthropods, the head and thorax are combined together as a cephalothorax.

Common Arthropods You’ll Find in Your Home

Here’s a look at the common arthropods you may find in your home.

Spiders

Spiders are one of the most common arthropods on Earth. They’ll enter your home in hopes of finding shelter, water, and food (insects). Although spiders tend to scare people thanks to their creepy appearance, they can serve a beneficial purpose to you and your home because they help eliminate other pests. Taking away spiders will disrupt our entire ecosystem. You’ll see several ripples throughout the food chain. Think about how many extra flies and mosquitos we’d have in the world without them.

Although these arthropods are crucial to our ecosystem, it’s understandable if you don’t want them in your home. To eliminate a spider infestation in your home, you’ll need to hire a professional pest control service. But if you notice a single spider or web, you can either catch and release or vacuum them up.

Cockroaches

Cockroaches are also one of the most common arthropods living on our planet. They’re flat and speedy pests that have long antennae. Roaches are nocturnal arthropods that stay hidden during the day in dark, isolated areas. During the nighttime, they search for food and will eat nearly anything. Not only will they eat all types of human or pet food, but they will eat other items like glue, hair, and soap.

Cockroaches can enter your home from anywhere, but they mostly crawl through cracks, windows, and many other entry points. While cockroaches won’t bite or sting you, they do pose a problem for humans and pets’ health. For example, roaches can transfer diseases and cause respiratory issues in certain people. So keep this in mind if you or a loved one has asthma or a different respiratory illness.

The best way to prevent cockroaches from entering your home is sealing cracks and small openings, keeping a clean home (particularly in the kitchen), and removing clutter. We also recommend fixing any water damage to deter the cockroaches from staying in your home.

Silverfish

Silverfish are nocturnal arthropods that are known for their speed and ability to avoid threats. As one of the oldest insects in the world, they’re dominant at scurrying away from predators and finding hiding spots, which makes them difficult to control. Like other arthropods, silverfish like warm, moist environments. Although they don’t pose a threat to humans, they are known to damage your belongings, including books, boxes, photographs, and clothing. Fortunately, silverfish don’t transmit diseases, but they may irritate you if you have allergies.

If you notice these silvery, fish-like pests in your home, you may want to consider calling a professional pest control company and following a few preventative measures. Make sure to keep food and pet food in airtight containers, clean your home thoroughly, seal all cracks along windows, doors, flooring, and trims, remove excess moisture in damp rooms, and maintain gutters.

Ants

Ants are the most common home invaders. They’re found virtually everywhere, and if you see one, you’re likely to find hundreds or thousands more close by. Because of this, ants are difficult to get rid of with professional ant extermination. As social insects, ants use pheromones and touch to communicate with each other. They walk in a line by following the scent trail left by another ant. A professional ant exterminator will follow this trail to the nest and target the source of the problem.

Ants can enter your home from anywhere. Once they’re in, they can quickly take over your kitchen and destroy your food supply. Certain species of ants can even leave painful yet harmless bites.

If you notice ants taking over your home, you may want to set up ant traps to eliminate them. However, like we previously mentioned, stronger and more effective pest treatments is your best option.

You’re IN*VITED…
LAUN*CHES TOD*AY!

Hi Howard,

You’re in*vited to the …
LAU*NCH OF THE CENTURY!
$1,000,000 inco*mes will be the NORM!

I made over $49,000 last month!

The “Next Giant” Global Company!
Less than 2,000 mem*bers in the Company!
The Highest Pay-Out in History!
Up to 100% Daily and Monthly Pay-Outs!
One-Of-A-Kind Products!
Cancer, Heart Disease, Weight-Loss, Pain
Energy, Diabetes, Sleeplessness and More!
One-Time $70 makes you
$12,550
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Common Spiders Found in St. Louis

Common Spiders Found in St. Louis

2021-05-10

Do you ever wonder which types of spiders are living around your home and yard? Most spiders can be a good thing to have nearby, even if you aren’t a fan of them. But there are some you need to worry about if they decide your home is a good place for them to live too. There are lots of different spiders in St. Louis, and luckily, most of them aren’t dangerous to humans. Let’s take a look at some of the most common spiders in St. Louis so you can know which ones are okay to leave alone, and which ones are risky to have as roommates.

6 Common Spiders in St. Louis

Common House Spiders

The spiders in St. Louis you’ll probably see the most are common house spiders. Even though these spiders are named for their presence in houses, they aren’t the only ones to find their way inside your home. So even though there’s a good chance the spider in your home is a common house spider, don’t assume that it is.

House spiders have a large round abdomen and angular legs. They are fairly small spiders and have light coloring, so often you might not notice them even when they are in your home. You’ll typically find their webs in the ceiling corners of your home. These spiders can build and maintain multiple webs at a time, so they travel around your home a bit to look for food. House spiders should help keep the population of other pests down in your home.

Yellow Garden Spiders

Yellow garden spiders are more commonly seen outside because they typically like to eat flying insects like flies and bees. However, they will come inside if they can find enough food to support them. Gardeners can appreciate this spider because it helps control the pests that are destructive to plants.

These spiders are usually a mix of black and yellow with stripes across the top of the abdomen. They also have large round abdomens. Their legs have unique positioning, with the four front legs angling forward and the four back legs angling backward. They can blend in with certain plants, but the yellow does make them easy to identify.

Cellar Spiders

Another common spider in St. Louis is the cellar spider. You’ve probably seen these in your basement or maybe in a shed. These spiders like the dark and they like moist environments, so they are usually hidden away in these areas. They are small-bodied spiders with very long, skinny, angular legs, and they are not dangerous, though they can bite if needed.

Cellar spiders are also sometimes called “daddy longlegs” spiders, but there’s also a type of harvester that shares that name. However, though the harvester looks a lot like a spider, it technically isn’t one because it has only one body section and can’t spin webs, whereas the cellar spider can spin webs and has two body sections, making it an actual spider.

Wolf Spiders

Wolf spiders are big hairy spiders, but the hair isn’t the only reason these spiders are named after wolves. They are also great predators. Instead of building webs and waiting for prey to appear, wolf spiders go out of their way to hunt down their food.

The wolf spider’s abdomen and front body (the cephalothorax) are similar in size and have thick dark and light stripes running the length of the body. They also have long thick legs. Though the legs are somewhat angled, they tend to lay more flat when the spider is sitting still.

A wolf spider isn’t venomous to humans, but it does still bite. Unlike other spiders that have such small mouths that their bites can’t do much to humans, wolf spiders are larger and can easily bite a human. The bite will hurt, but it shouldn’t cause much damage. You won’t need to go to the doctor, but these tips could help you deal with the bite.

Brown Recluse Spiders

Brown recluse spiders are one of two medically significant spiders in the United States – that is, if it bites you, you need medical attention. Brown recluse venom causes necrosis to the nearby cells, causing the flesh around the bite to die and form an ulcer. This sore can cause serious infections if not treated and the venom can cause a person a lot of pain, so go to a doctor right away if you or someone near you is bitten by a brown recluse.

Though these are relatively common spiders, you likely won’t see them terribly often. Brown recluse spiders prefer to avoid people and other creatures as much as possible. They will hide until they look for food or a mate, and will only attack a person if the person threatens them.

Black Widow Spiders

Possibly the most infamous spider on this list is the black widow, and yes, it is a common spider in St. Louis. In fact, it’s common in most of the United States. It’s an important spider to recognize because its venom is highly dangerous to humans. Quick medical treatment is necessary after a black widow bite. With medical help, you should be fine.

Female black widows are known for their unique appearance as well. Typically they are pitch black with bright red or orange markings on their abdomens. The males, however, are usually a lighter brown with yellow or white markings on the abdomen, so don’t rely on color alone to determine if a spider is a black widow.

What To Do When Spiders Are in Your Home

A lot of people really don’t like spiders, which is understandable. They aren’t exactly pretty creatures. However, spiders do so much to help control other pest populations that we really do need spiders around us. If you don’t want them in your home, try catching and releasing them outside so they can still help us with other pests.

On the other hand, you deserve to feel safe and comfortable in your own home, and a spider infestation makes it hard to feel safe. If you end up with an infestation of spiders in your home, it is okay to call pest control services to help you get control of the problem.

 

You’re IN*VITED…
LAUN*CHES TOD*AY!

Hi Howard,

You’re in*vited to the …
LAU*NCH OF THE CENTURY!
$1,000,000 inco*mes will be the NORM!

I made over $49,000 last month!

The “Next Giant” Global Company!
Less than 2,000 mem*bers in the Company!
The Highest Pay-Out in History!
Up to 100% Daily and Monthly Pay-Outs!
One-Of-A-Kind Products!
Cancer, Heart Disease, Weight-Loss, Pain
Energy, Diabetes, Sleeplessness and More!
One-Time $70 makes you
$12,550
over and over again… PA*ID DAILY!

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Coach Howard Martell