Not Your Favorite Carpenter

When most people thinking about insects damaging the wood in their home, they only think about termites, but who’s looking out for black carpenter ants?

Black Carpenter Antspest control Acworth GA

All species of carpenter ants attack wood has been or is we and damaged by mold. Black carpenter ants first invade wet, decayed wood then often begin building paths through dry, undamaged wood. They usually enter buildings through cracks around windows and doors or through wire holes. Don’t put it past them to get creative either. They’ll also crawl along overhead wires, shrubs or even tree limbs that touch the building above the ground.

Their Habitat

While your home’s wood might be their meal choice, they prefer to build their nest outdoors in various wood sources, including tree stumps, firewood or landscaping. They need a constant water source to survive. They enter the home through wet damaged wood. If they gain entry to a structure with suitable and tasty wood, they will expand their nest and become a property threat.

If you notice black carpenter ants in your home, contact the professional immediately to discuss a proper course of control.

Facts About Your Pet’s Pests

Dogs are man’s best friend for a reason. They are fun, loyal and hey if you take them hunting with you, useful. Their little tag-alongs however, are not man’s favorite. Here are some useful facts about two of their most common “friends.”

Fleas

  • They’ve got some impressive jumping abilities. Fleas can jump up to 8 feet -over 150x their height!
  • They’re in it for the long haul. Typically fleas remain on their host at all times, but are easily transferable to other animals, people and furniture.
  • There are over 2,000 known species and subspecies of fleas, but it’s the cat flea that’s responsible for the majority of infestations in the U.S.
  • It might not always be your dog. Fleas infest many animals, such as racoons and rodents. If you think you may have a rodent infestation, expect a fleas to follow.

TicksAcworth pest control

  • Yes, some tick species actually can have preferred host.  The American dog tick prefers to dine on domestic dogs, hence the reason it’s the most common tick species brought into homes.
  • Ticks are easiest to spot after a meal. They can grow up to four times their size when engorged with blood. Talk about a “food baby.”
  • To find a host, the tick grabs onto a shrub or grass with their back legs and reach their front legs out to grab onto passing fur or even clothing.
  • Regardless of what type of hosts they attach to, the ticks will crawl towards the head of their host. Why? Because the skin around the ears and neck is thinner and are the hardest areas for the animals to groom.

If you suspect your best friend has some hitch hikers, talk to your trusted veterinarian about the proper treatment for your dog. If you’re worried you might have an infestation, contact us today.

No Stinkin’ Way

Besides the temperatures dropping and the leaves changing colors, what’s one way you can tell fall is on its way? The arrival of stink bugs.

Known for their “smelly” reputation, stink bugs enter homes during cooler months to find a warm place to rest during winter. It’s true they pose no property or health risk, but they present an odoriferous problem if stepped on. So how do you stop and prevent a stink bug infestation?  Check out the steps below:

  1. Seal off entry points – Walk around your house and search for any openings, large or small. Seal any holes and cracks that you find using a quality silicone or silicone-latex caulk. pest control services Acworth
  2. Repair and replace – Got a 1/2 inch hole in your screen door?  Replace it. Stink bugs and other insects can enter through the tiniest openings. Also be sure there are no openings in your weather-stripping or loose mortar.
  3. Reduce Moisture areas – We can’t stress how important this step is. Between mosquitoes and stink bugs there are a number of bugs attracted to standing water.
  4. Turn off the lights – Like moths, stink bugs are attracted to lights. Try to keep your outdoor lighting to a minimum. Bonus: you’ll save on your power bill as well.
  5. Properly landscape – Do your best to keep branches and shrubbery well trimmed. It prevents easy areas of transportation, hiding, and possible mating grounds.
  6. Think before you squish –  When left alone, a stink bug will not release their less-than-favorable odor. When disturbed or squished, they tend to release their foul odor from pores on the sides of their bodies (hence, the name stink bugs). Gently pick them up and place them outside to avoid their odor.

 

 

 

Keep Your Pantry for Food Only

School is back in session and for parents this means your pantry just shifted from summer snacks and lunches to sandwiches, chips and a fruit or vegetable. While you’re packing you’re #1’s lunch, you may also be inviting other guest to their meal. Anytime your pantry comes close to bare, it’s highly recommended that you clean out expired goods and wipe down the shelves so that you discourage “pantry pest.”

What is a pantry pest?pest control Acworth

Pantry pests are any insect known for infesting goods often found in pantries such as: cereal, flour, spices, nuts, candies and other dry goods. They can also be found in your seasonal holiday decor in items such as dried flowers or potpourri. Common pantry pest are beetles, ants and the Indian meal moth.

Whether you’re baking goodies for the class or for a holiday meal, many times certain ingredients haven’t been used since the previous year. If you left your pantry products (accidentally) not properly sealed, they can become “sitting ducks;” attracting pest with their flavorful odor. Be sure to inspect each ingredient before use, especially items in paper containers.

To ensure your ingredients are safe from unwanted snackers, try the following steps:

  • Store all ingredients in sealed glass or plastic containers
  • Be sure to keep items such as pet food, in sealed containers. These are frequented by pest.
  • Sift through flours and sugars before using them as they could be hiding a 6 or 8-legged “friend”
  • Be sure to keep your cooking area clean -be sure to immediately wipe up crumbs and spills as they could attract pests.
  • Should you get the slightest inkling of an infestation, contact a license pest control professional to inspect, identify and control the problem.

 

Have A Pest Free Get Together

School just started back and the kids are already counting down to fall break. While the kids are counting down the days to their next break, dad is counting down the days until football season begins. Whether you’re an NFL or SEC fan, August means one more month until it’s time for BBQs, tailgating and watching the game with friends.

If you’re planning on having some game day tailgating or BBQs, here are 5 tips on how to keep them pest-free.

  1. Apply Insect Repellant– So this one might be a given but it’s still important. Most mosquitoes are most active at unfortunately, dusk and dawn (aka game time), so if you’re planning a barbecue before sunset, be sure to have plenty of effective repellant already applied and readily available for second coats and other guests.
  2.  Frequently Drain Standing Water– Remember, mosquitoes breed in standing water. Walk pest control Acwortharound your yard  and drain any source that could be a breeding ground for mosquitoes, including birdbaths, dog bowls, wading pools or garden ponds.
  3. Deter Stinging Insects– Whether you have an allergy or just hate being stung, stinging insects aren’t the party guest most people want to have. Yellow jackets and other stinging insects are attracted to many fragrances, so avoid using scented items such as candles and cleaners.
  4. Patch Up Those Screens– At least a few days before your get together, go around each window and door and repair any holes that could invite mosquitoes and other insects entry into the home. Try leaving a polite note for guest to make sure the door, closes behind them.
  5. Stay Clean– It’s no secret that many insects are attracted to food, so take the extra steps to keep food safe by using tightly sealed containers and coolers. Additionally, do your best to clean trash, crumbs and spills from picnic tables immediately.

Think you might need additional pest protection? Give us a call and let’s make pest control plan for you!

Consumer Reports Recommended Zika Repellant

We’ve talked a couple of times now about Zika. Some of you may already know the World Health Organization has declared the rapid spread of the Zika virus an international public health emergency. In response to this, Consumer Reports has released – free to the public – its test results of mosquito repellents, including those that protect you against Aedes mosquitoes (the ones that carry Zika).

Zika can make individuals sick for up to a week with fever, rash, red eyes, joint pain, and other symptoms. It is widely known that the largest threat is to pregnant
women as it increases the risk that the unborn baby will develop microcephaly, an abnormally small head and incomplete brain development.

As of July, there is still no vaccine to prevent Zika. The most a person can do is avoid mosquito bites. To do this, CDC recommends using multiple strategies such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants outdoors, spraying for mosquitos at their residence, as well as mosquito repellent. Below is a list of the most effective insect repellents:

The Best:

best bug repellantsSawyer Picaridin and Natrapel 8 Hour -each contains 20% picaridin and Off! Deepwoods VIII -which contains 25% deet. -Studies proved these products kept the mosquitoes from biting for ~8 hours. Sawyer’s was the top insect repellant, being that it also kept Culex mosquitoes (carriers of West Nile), and deer ticks (carriers of Lyme disease) away for at least 8 hours.

Runner Up:

Ben’s 30 & DEET Tick & Insect Wilderness Formula- This kept Aedes mosquitoes away for ~7.5 hours  

Repel Lemon Eucalyptus This has 30% lemon eucalyptus and kept Aedes mosquitoes away for ~7 hours.

Products that are not recommended

Products including the chemicals IR3535 and 2-undecanone, those containing 7% DEET or less than 20% picaridin.

Products not included in the study

Many natural plant oil based brands such as California Baby Natural Bug Blend and EcoSmart Organic since they either failed immediately or did not last 1 hour.  

Additional information

The CDC recommends using EPA-registered insect repellants only, since their ingredients are tested and regulated by the EPA. To find out if a product is registered by the EPA, look for its registration number on the back of the label.

Spraying your yard for mosquitoes was also recommended, but it was advised to do your research on service providers. Contact your trusted pest control company today to get a protection plan for your family in place.

 

Cockroach Control 101

Spiders, beetles and small insects are bad, but lets face it…roaches are the absolute worst; especially when they’ve set up camp in your own home. They’re fast, there’s plenty of them and they follow you.

best pest control Acworth

Don’t let these little buggers get into your home!

How’d they get here?

Roaches check out your place by crawling through tiny spaces around doors, pipes and other open spaces. They invade homes seeking out warmth, moisture and darkness. Contrary to popular belief, they aren’t attracted to mess, however leaving a sandwich on the table for 72 hours won’t necessarily help.

What kinds of roaches do I have?

While we categorize them generally as all cockroaches, there are variations of them.

  • German Cockroach: These multiply quickly and nest in kitchens and bathrooms.
  • Brownbanded Cockroach: These thrive in hotter/dryer regions and nest at eye level and higher locations.
  • Oriental Cockroach: These are drawn to humid areas, often called water bugs.
  • American Cockroach: These are also drawn to humid and hot areas, sometimes referred to as “palmetto bug.”

How do I get rid of them?

  • It’s tempting just to spray pesticide wherever and call it a day, but putting a little more strategy into it will help. Take away the things they need; warm shelter, food and water. Think about where you see them most, and find the source.
  • Set up roach traps with sticky glue.
  • In the meantime, organize piled newspapers, cardboard boxes, paper bags and general areas where they can hide.
  • Make sure food is in containers.
  • Do a deep clean, including vacuuming, sweeping, wiping, etc.
  • Take out the trash often.
  • There are a million home remedies out there, and many of them work! Here’s 10 you can try.

Want a professional? We’ve got you covered. Protect All Pest Control specializes in roach removal! Give us a call at 770-212-9990. 

DIY Flea Repellents!

This time of year we love to let our pets roam outside. They roll in the grass, play with other animals and seem to have a blast. It’s all fun and games, until you see that first flea.  It seems like such a hassle going to the vet for flea removal, and most medicine can get all gooey and gross. These few repellents are easy to throw together, and they’re natural!

flea repellants

Keep your pets safe and keep fleas out!

DIY Flea and Tick Spray

Ingredients:
-8 oz. apple cider
-4 oz. warm water
-1/2 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp baking soda
-Spray bottle
-Funnel

Directions:
1. Pour all ingredients into a spray bottle.
2. Apply to pet and brush daily to every other day.
3. Comb through fur.
4. Do a daily check or fleas/ticks whether or not you spray it that day or not!

Homemade Flea Powder

Ingredients:
-1 cup food grade diatomaceous earth
-1/2 cup neem powder
-1/2 cup yarrow powder
-20 drops eucalyptus essential oil (leave this out if it’s for cats)!

Directions:
1. Mix all ingredients together and put in a shaker top container.
2. Apply from head to tail along your pets spine in dry condition. Brush your pets fur going the opposite direction so the powder comes in contact with the skin. Avoid the eyes and nose. Rub the powder onto the belly and legs as well. Try to get the flea powder on as much skin as possible.

Tip: Fleas seem to like the tails, area right above the tail and the belly/groin area. Concentrate a lot on those areas!

Here are a few other DIY repellents we found helpful:

Still need help with fleas? Protect All Pest Control does a complete home inspection prior to treatment! We’ll use only the safest products in your home, and educate you on all things fleas. Give us a call at 770-212-9990. 

 

Control And Banish Bed Bugs!

They’re not attracted to dirt, they’re small, and they can’t fly…but they can bite! Bed bugs are commonly found in hotels and inns. They tend to crawl from the infested bedding and furniture into your luggage, ready to infest your home (and your body) when you return home. Once introduced in your home, they can spread easily from one room to another, and once spread, can take weeks to months to control. Luckily, you can prevent bugs when you travel and while in your home.

how to get rid of bed bugs

Here’s a few things you can do to get rid of bed bugs!

1. Inspect. Bed bugs most often hide near where you sleep because you are their food source. Also, remember that they tend to prefer wood or fabric over plastic and metal. When inspecting for bed bugs, check for live and dead bugs, rusty stains, small spots of red/black fecal matter, tiny cream-colored eggs, and pale yellow skins that nymphs shed as they grow. Look in cushions, carpet edges, loose wallpaper, dark cracks, headboards, etc.

2. Declutter. Cluttered areas are bad because it allows the bugs a place to hide. Cleaning regularly will make inspection easier and prevent bugs from gathering. Get rid of items that you no longer use, or that cannot be washed, heated or steam cleaned. If your mattress has holes or multiple tears, think about replacing it!

3. Vaccuum. Suck up those bugs, and their eggs! You may have to take the attachment off the vaccuum to really get in those deep crevices. The floor is only the start; consider vacuuming your mattress, bed seams, box spring, bed frame, joints and bed curtains.

4. Do Laundry. Wash and dry your infested clothes and bedding with warm water and high heat. Around 120 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal. To be completely safe, consider washing and drying twice. For items that can only be dry cleaned, use a hot dryer for at least 30 minutes.

5. Steam. Steam cleaners emit steam at a minimum temperature of 100 degrees Celsius and bed bugs generally die at 50 degrees Celsius, or about 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Steam clean mattresses, upholstery and items that can’t be washed. You can choose a dry steam or a low vapor steamer that leaves behind less moisture.

Protect All Pest Control specializes in bed bug infestations! You’ll be on your way to a stress free and pest free house with our quick and effective services. Contact us at 770-212-9990!

How To: Have A Pest-Free Backyard BBQ

It doesn’t matter who you are; everybody loves a good old fashioned backyard BBQ in the summer. From the mouth watering ribs to the refreshing ice cold beers, everything seems perfect. Until you spot it…a fly just landed on your plate. A mosquito bites your leg, or a bee just stung your child. It’s no secret pests like to hover around food…but don’t worry! These tips will ensure a pest-free BBQ in no time.

mosquito control Acworth

No one wants bugs on this delicious food!

How Do I Keep Pests Away?

  • Bring insect repellent! Most mosquito are active at dusk and dawn. If you are planning an evening BBQ, we recommend buying a repellent that includes EPA-registered active ingredients like Picaridin or DEET. Here are Amazon’ top rated insect repellents.
  • Keep scented candles and flower away from the area. Stinging insects are highly attracted to fragrances!
  • Provide clear plastic cups for your guests. Aluminum cans and plastic bottles are good hiding places for pests.
  • Patch up holes! Before your BBQ, make sure you repair any holes in screen doors or windows where bugs could enter the home. Also, remind your guests to keep doors shut!
  • Avoid mess. Insects are attracted to the sweet syrupy smells of sodas and sugary drinks. Avoid spills and keep food in containers or coolers.
  • Remove or drain standing water. These are often a breeding source for mosquitoes. Keep in mind this could be anything from bird baths to garden pools.

If you’re still concerned about pests being a nuisance at your event, consider bringing in a professional! Protect All Pest Control is more than happy to get pests out. Check out our website for a list of services or give us a call at 770-212-9990 and you’ll be on your way to a pest free BBQ!