DIY Animal Control Guide
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From the lawn and garden to the interior of your home, you want to be protected from invasive insects and other household pests. Protecting your home investment and family are extremely important.
Pest Control Tips
Many times, you can try to prevent pests from even becoming an issue. This isn't to say that it will protect you from the occasional spider or what not that wanders into your home, but it can help prevent a major infestation. You want to make sure you get rid of anything that can provide them the basic necessities of life: Food, water, and shelter. You want to make it more difficult for pests to be able to get to things that they need, forcing them to leave your home.
The kitchen is a main source of food for them, it’s a haven for food sources as well as water sources. Make sure that all food is cleaned up and not left out overnight, as this is a major attractant for pests. This also applies to pet food, which you may not think about right away and pests love. Investing in plastic containers and disposing of cardboard boxes and plastic bags is also helpful, as many pests will chew through the cardboard to get to the food. Pests also love crumbs, which may seem tiny and insignificant to you, but are the perfect sized meal for small insects looking for a quick bite. So, it’s important to make sure even the little crumbs get swept up. Taking the trash out each night is also vital if you’re trying to remove any and all food sources, the trash can is filled with all sorts of things little pests would love to get into.
While food is vital to life for us, many pests can go without food for a while as long as they have water. In fact: cockroaches can go about a month with no food; however, they can only go about a week without water. This doesn’t mean go turn off your water with the city, just be aware of some main water spots that pests can find. Dish water is one of the main attractants, not only is this basically a swimming pool for them, but there are typically little bits of food in it as well. Make sure that if your faucet has a constant drip, you get it repaired as this provides a steady source of water. If there are any puddles on tables or counters make sure to wipe them up, this can also include the condensation rings from drink cups. Many times, pests only need a tiny drop of water to keep surviving, so every little bit counts.
The most important thing, is to stop a problem before it can ever even enter your home. This means that you make sure your home is pest proof. Many pests can fit through the tiniest of openings so go around your house and identify and cracks, holes, or other openings that you may find, and then seal them up. This also goes for inside your house, make sure holes around pipes and behind appliances get sealed as well. While pests aren’t known for knocking on the door to come in, they will use any cracks in the door to enter, so make sure that you have sealed all around doors and windows as well so that there are no easy access points. The main way that people bring insects, such as cockroaches, into their home is through cardboard boxes. Rather you pulled them out of storage or scored some cool stuff from a garage sale, make sure you inspect the box thoroughly before bringing it into your home to make sure there are no roaches to be found. Maybe even unload the stuff outside the home so that you don’t even have to bring in the box.
While these steps may seem tedious and difficult to always adhere to, they do help in preventing a major pest issue. This isn’t to say that if you go one night where you pass out on the couch and forget the dishes, you’ll wake up living in roach city, but it will give them a great food source and keep them interested in your home for a least a little while. Just remember that the best defense is offense, so get ahead of the game and try to get the problem under control before it’s a major issue.
Do's & Dont's of Pest Control
If you’ve decided to take controlling your pests into your own hands, there are some steps that you want to make sure you take. Always make sure that before you start in with harsh chemicals you are trying to prevent the issue first, like we talked about earlier. This includes not only keeping your house almost pristine to deter the pests from wanting to stay there, but also sealing up your home and various other things. You also want to get to know what kind of pest you’re dealing with before you have an issue, that way you make sure you can tailor what you’re doing specifically to that type of pest. Especially if you are going to set traps or bait of any kind, it is important to research all the different types of traps on the market and choose one that fits your lifestyle while still effectively helping your pest problem.
Once the time comes to start using pesticides, it is important to always be very cautious with them. While it may seem redundant, make sure you go over all of the safety warnings and instructions on the label to ensure that the product is used correctly and safely. The label will also tell you if the chemicals are safe to use inside your home, some pesticides are made exclusively for outdoors and you don’t want those harsh chemicals in your house. Try to start with lower risk pesticides before you move into the more serious ones. It’s best not to use a fogging pesticide, and to try to keep the chemicals in one set area rather than spraying an entire room. If you do have an issue, such as a leaky faucet, where you have to bring in an outside professional, you cannot use pesticides before they fix the problem. This keeps them safe, while also seeing if that problem was the cause of all the trouble and you might not even need the pesticides after it’s fixed.
Reading the pesticide label is one of the most important things you can do, and yes, it can get boring; but for your own safety you want to make sure you understand exactly what chemicals you are dealing with and how to use them. The label will also tell you how to dispose of the pesticide. Since pesticides are chemicals they cannot just be thrown away, as this could cause serious harm to the environment. Most times, there is a hazardous waste dump site in your city, or a collections group that will come pick up the unused chemicals. The labels will also tell you how much of the pesticide to use at once. You never want to go over this amount as this could put you and your family in potential danger. While you may think more chemicals kills more bugs, this is not always the case. It is also very important to never switch pesticides to anything other than their original container, and on the flip-side do not store other things in pesticide containers. There are several cases of people, mostly children, getting harmed when they accidentally ingest pesticides that were stored incorrectly.
Pesticides may be a necessary step in eliminating your pest issue, just make sure that you follow all of the proper safety warnings when using them. If you are using a pest control technician rather than doing it yourself, it is also important to go over what pesticides they are using and do your research on it. This way you know what the safety precautions are and can help keep your family safe.