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The Time of Mosquitos is Here!

It’s that time of year again! We’re looking forward to long days and warms nights full of swimming and barbeques. Most of us will be spending more time outdoors with out families and friends. However, we know that with spring’s warmer weather comes mosquitos, and it doesn’t take many to ruin your outdoor fun. Here are a few facts to help you survive this mosquito season:

  • All mosquitos require a water source in order to breed. Several common items around your home can become breeding sites when they collect water including bird baths, pet water bowls, children’s toys, and even clogged gutters. Mosquito larva can hatch in a little as 4 days. So, we recommend keeping possible water collectors turned over in combination with a mosquito reduction service.
  • Mosquitos have terrible eye sight. So, the darker your clothes are, the easier you are for them to see-making you an easy target! If you plan to spend some time outside, wear light colored clothes to remain out of sight.
  • What mosquitos lack in eye sight, they make up in their ability to detect carbon dioxide. They’re able to detect it from up to 75 feet away! The hotter you get and the more you exhale, the more vulnerable you are for attack. Therefore, we recommend trying to stay cool while you’re outside. Make sure you drink lots of water and a fan wouldn’t hurt either!
  • Mosquitos transmit diseases in many ways and can even pass certain viruses down to their larva. They are responsible for over 1,000,000 deaths a year due to spreading diseases like West Nile and Malaria. In addition to West Nile, Mosquitos can also pass heartworms to your pets. The best way to protect your furry friends and family is with mosquito repellant and a mosquito reduction service.

If you have any questions about mosquitos or our mosquito services please don’t hesitate to call or email our office. We’re excited about the improvements we’ve made to our service in order to provide an affordable, strong, longer lasting service.

 

 

Ladybug, Ladybug, Let Me Be!

lady bug blog drawing.

 

Ladybugs aren’t typically seen as pests. In fact, as predators to aphids and other insects that feed on plants, they are extremely beneficial to our gardens. However, when the weather begins to change  as we enter into fall and winter, ladybugs begin to search for a place to hibernate.  Unfortunately for us, it seems our homes are sometimes the perfect, cozy place for them to rest and they begin to make their way indoors.

While ladybugs do not damage your home (they won’t eat furniture, curtains, or your expensive fur coat), in overwhelming numbers they become a pest and can even get a little messy. When a ladybug becomes scared or agitated, they release a yellow, smelly substance that can leave stains on a surface. We absolutely do not suggest swatting, smashing, sweeping or anything else of that nature. If you have ladybugs inside your home, it’s time to get out the vacuum! Place a knee-high stocking inside of the end of the vacuum wand, this way the ladybugs will get caught inside the stocking and you can release them outside again. If left inside the vacuum bag or canister they will simply crawl back out again.

The best way to deal with ladybugs is to have a little patience. Ladybugs are a seasonal insect and they will make their way back outside as soon as the warmer months arrive. In the mean time, here are a few different things you can do to keep your home [almost] ladybug free.

1. Pest Control! Although we cannot guarantee to completely prevent or remove all ladybugs from your home, our barrier will help prevent them from making it inside of your home.

2. Caulk! Make sure to caulk around all entry ways like doors and window sills. Ladybugs can fit through even the tiniest of spaces.

3. Check your weather stripping! Take a look at all of the weather stripping on your exterior doors and windows. Replace any that looks ripped or dried out. If you find any exterior door without weather stripping make sure to add it to help keep pests out.

In addition to these preventative measures, some retail stores offer lady bug light traps to attract and capture large numbers of ladybugs for re-release outdoors or ladybug houses (similar to a bird house) to divert them from coming inside you home.

Kelsy Blog

 

Blog by Customer Service Representative, Kelsy Judy

 

matt-headshot

Picture by Customer Service Representative, Matt Jeffcoat

Unwanted Winter House Guests

UnwantedGuestsWhen the weather gets cold, you’re not the only one who will want to snuggle up in your home. All types of wildlife will be on the look out for warm places to make their new home through the winter. Although some of these creatures may look cute and cuddly, it is important to have them removed as soon as you find them or their evidence. Not only can they cause physical damage to the structure of your home, they can chew wires which can lead to a house fire. Different types of wildlife can also expose your family to dangerous diseases or introduce fleas into your home. It is very important to let a professional handle all wildlife trappings and removals. Wildlife technicians are prepared for finding, trapping and removing any animals that may have made their way into your home. They are able to lift heavy ladders and use them safely while placing or removing traps. Also, they can manuver within tight spaces such as attics or crawlspaces to capture the animal without being attacked. Our wildlife specialist will communicate his findings and clearly explain the best course of action to make sure the animal is removed a quickly as possible.Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

So, if you’ve got an unwanted house guest this winter (and we’re not talking about your in-laws) give us a call today to set up an evaluation!

Pesticides vs Natural Fungus in the War on Bedbugs

Penn State entomologist are claiming that naturally occurring microorganisms called biopesticides might be the solution to our bedbug problems. The quick increase in the bedbug population throughout North America and Europe has brought up new concerns over the amount of pesticides being used in frequented public places. Biopesticides might be a “green” alternative visit their website. Nina Jenkins, senior research associate in entomology says that a natural fungus which causes diseases in insects , Beauveria bassiana has shown encouraging results in recent bedbug control tests. Jenkins explains, “They are natural diseases that exist in the environment. They are relatively easy to produce in a lab and stable, so you can use them much like chemical pesticides.”

The researchers completed the study by using an airbrush sprayer to apply spore formulations to paper and cotton jersey. Cotton jersey was chosen because it is a standard bedsheet material. The researchers then sprayed the same control surfaces with blank oil only. After drying at room temperature overnight, 3 out of the 10 groups of bedbugs were exposed to one of the two surfaces for exactly one hour. Once removed, they were placed on clean filter paper in a petri dish to be monitored. The results show that all of the bedbugs exposed to the biopesticide became infected and died within five days of exposure. She and her colleagues have published their results in the most recent issue of the Journal of Invertebrate Pathology.

Once of the most encouraging findings was that the bedbugs carried the biopestidcide back to their hiding places, infecting all of the bedbugs that did not go out and search for food. This is important because bedbugs are often in hard to reach and hard to find locations. Jenkins says, “The fungal spores were transferred from the exposed bug to their unexposed companions, and we observed almost a hundred percent infection. So they don’t even need to be directly exposed, and that’s something chemicals cannot do.” So far, B. bassiana is proving to be an effective, and fast, alternative to regular pesticides. Moving forward, researchers will test effectiveness in more “lifelike” settings where harborage areas are present and then start field work.

Source: http://live.psu.edu/story/62832

Christmas giveaway!

In honor of Rivalry Week, we are launching a new Christmas giveaway! The prize is our smallest but biggest prize yet—a new iPad Mini!

How to enter to win:

1. Find our Gamecock themed Clark’s truck driving around and take a picture of it!
2. Post it on our Facebook wall or tweet us @Clarkspest
3. Like our page!

CockTruck

The truck will be driving through the midlands from now until November 25th, it will then head into the Upstate November 26th until December 2nd, next it will be traveling into the Sumter area from December 3rd through the 9th, then it heads down to the Charleston area from December 10th to the 16th and finally returns back to Columbia until December 18th. We will announce the winner on December 19th and one lucky person will have a brand new iPad mini just in time for Christmas! We will be giving hints as to where the truck might be throughout the month so you have a better chance to snap a picture.

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter @Clarkspest and check out our Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/clarkspest!

Bald-faced Hornet

Our Wildlife Specialist, Mike Gibson, found this bald-faced hornet nest in a tree near a customer’s house.