Pest Control Blog

David MooreOur staff entomologist (bug scientist) and Pest Detective, David Moore, writes about topics related to keeping your home pest free.

You can also visit with our Pest Detective on Facebook. Post your questions on our wall, with pictures if possible, and David Moore will answer the most common ones. When submitting photos, include as much information as possible, including size and color, and where any damage in your home is occurring.

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20
Jan
2015
Termite Renewal Inspections

Termites VTTermites
(Photo: VaTech)

After a subterranean termite treatment has been conducted on a home, many homeowners are faced with an annual renewal and inspection to maintain coverage of their home. These homeowners are often curious about what goes into the renewal and the value that these services hold. In this session, I hope to clarify what the service entails and some basics around what is covered.

The whole goal of a termite renewal is to provide additional value to a termite treatment. Typically there is a charge for this, but it is at a fraction of the cost of a new chemical treatment. It is easier and more cost effective to perform a termite treatment once on a home and then re-treat only when necessary. A termite treatment can cost thousands of dollars that is an unexpected cost to a family. The type of treatment and how involved it becomes is determined by numerous factors including where the termites are located, how large the home is, the construction of the home, how much drilling is necessary, how compact the soil is around the home, and other extenuating circumstances such as a location of a well. The termite renewal inspection is a service that helps to maintain the coverage of your home to help ensure that termites do not continue to damage the structure at a fraction of the cost for having a whole home treated again.

Read more... [Termite Renewal Inspections]
 
27
Dec
2014
Christmas Plants - Poinsettias & Mistletoe, Dispelling the Myths
Mistletoe-southern-living
Mistletoe
Poinsettia grande
Poinsettia

Since this is a concern of many people, it bears repeating Dr. Eric Smith’s post from last December. I was brought up with the belief that poinsettias and mistletoe were very poisonous and that ingestion could be toxic. There was special concern for cats and other animals in particular.

Read more... [Christmas Plants - Poinsettias & Mistletoe, Dispelling the Myths]
 
05
Dec
2014
Pantry Pests
Indianmeal moth U of Arkansas Flour beetles Canadian Grain Commision 2 warehousebtl YUNebraska 2
Indianmeal Moth
(Photo: U of Arkansas)
Flour beetles
(Photo: Canadian Green Commission)
Warehouse beetle
(Photo: U of Nebraska)

As the holidays approach, more and more people will be cooking for family gatherings and discover new friends in their pantry. Discovering bugs in your food may seem disgusting, but it isn't unusual. I want to take a moment and explore some of those pests, what they can do, and some methods that can be used to eliminate them. There are many types of pests that can infest our food, but we will only concentrate on a few of the most popular pests that are found in our stored food items. These pests can include small beetles, moths, and worm-like creatures that can cause a person to have an intense reaction to even see inside their food products. Several of these pests are pictured in the Dodson Pest ID Guide elsewhere on this web site that Dr. Eric Smith had created.

How do we get these pests?

These pests are usually brought into the home in food items purchased at the grocery or pet supply store. These pests can be successful just about any place that bulk foods and pet food and supplies can be found. This does not mean that these locations are dirty or unsanitary. Usually these stores will receive product that is already infested without their knowledge. Most of these stores have pest management services that will respond when alerted to the issue to eliminate the problem.

Read more... [Pantry Pests]
 
19
Oct
2014
Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs

Stink bug-rutgers
Stink Bug
(Photo: Rutgers Univ.)

The Brown Marmorated stink bug is an invasive agricultural pest from Asia and first discovered in Pennsylvania in 1998. Since then, stink bug populations have exploded and spread in over 17 known states since they have no natural predators in North America. Although North America has many native stink bugs, the brown marmorated stink bugs can be identified by the following distinguishing marks:

  • Alternating dark and light bands on the antennae
  • Alternating dark and light banding on the exposed side edges of the abdomen

They acquired their name because they have small glands located on their thorax that are capable of emitting an
offensive odor.

Read more... [Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs]
 
17
Sep
2014
Why Proofing a Structure is Important
headlice
Door Sweep
(Photo: diynetwork.com)
headlice hair
Wall Crack Repair
(photo: hgtvremodels.com)

If you have had a pest management professional at your home, you may have heard them speak about proofing a structure to prevent pests from harboring inside of it. This is important for commercial and residential locations and can have far reaching implications if basic maintenance is not sustained.

Read more... [Why Proofing a Structure is Important]
 
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