Let’s Talk About Fleas

Fleas are every man and fur-baby’s worst enemy. Ok, maybe not worst but they certainly aren’t welcome. These little guys require protecting your pets, house and yard in order to prevent an infestation.  Are you properly prepared for the battle against fleas?

Basic Flea Factsnope

Fun fact: fleas can live up to 100 days! Even scarier, the females can produce 400-500 offspring in that time. They transport themselves via rodents, mammals or humans (if need be) and usually remain on their host at all times. Lastly, they can jump 8″ aka 150x their height!

Pets

Consult your trusted veterinarian for the proper flea medication for your pet. Do research on their breed and prepare a list of any questions you may have for your vet. It’s good to ask for a favorite flea shampoo in case you feel your pet’s been exposed to fleas.

The House

The best form of flea protection is prevention. Contact your trusted pest control company about a plan that’s right for you. A simple, easy way to test for a flea infestation involves a simple pair of socks. Put on some white, mid-calf length socks and walk around your house. If you have an infestation, chances are you’ll have some hitchhikers. Call your pest control company immediately if this happens.

The Yard

Again, an easy way to check if you have fleas in your yard is the white sock test. Only this time wear them outdoors in the areas your pet hangs out the most. Should you have hitchhikers, call your trusted pest control company.

*Image via Flickr

How To Create A Pest Control Plan

Discovering pests is a jarring experience; some are nuisances, and others carry fatal diseases. Whether you’re dealing with irritation or danger, developing a plan for controlling these pests is necessary.

Preventative Measures

A smart way to avoid trouble with pests is to prevent them from emerging in the first place. Knowing your environment and articulating what issues with pests existed in the past can help you to craft an appropriate plan with the experts. Also, you should let them know if you have plants that are prone to any particular type of pests.

Cost Control

yay!Navigating the world of pest control requires that you pay attention to the cost. Finding cost effective plans often involves a willingness to pay in partial amounts. A payment plan, spread throughout the year, can prove less financially jarring than a lump sum. When you speak with the experts, let them know what your budget is.

Health Concerns

As you are exploring the options, you have to consider your own health too. Some pest control services may use methods that are dangerous indoors, especially when you have pets or small children. Opting for methods that are natural and that do not cause any harm is a smart idea, no matter where the pests are.

Location Determination

When you speak with the team, you’ll need to articulate where the problems lie, whether they are indoors or outdoors. The experts will work to find the exact source of the pests, but you have to point them in the right direction. Also, if you have any hint as to where the pests are coming from, let your team of pest control professionals know.

Developing a plan helps you to eliminate the pests from your house and property and to enjoy a safer, cleaner environment free from deleterious critters.

Are Your Kids Not The Only Ones Marching In The Kitchen?

The summer months are synonymous with insect infestation in many homes and businesses. From cockroaches and mosquitoes to ants, these critters love to congregate in humid and arid areas. They are especially attracted to open food, which they take back to feed their young and growing colonies. If not treated in a timely and professional manner, a bug infestation can truly de-valuate your property and even cause health issues. With years of extensive industry experience, Protect All Pest Control has the tools and expertise to eliminate ants and pests from your residential and commercial properties. In fact, one phone call or e-mail is all you need to secure timely, affordable, and effective pest elimination services across the board.

Why Do Ants Come Into Your House?

no!There are several species of ants, including red, black, army, and fire ants. While these critters usually build mounds in front and backyards, they can even form entire colonies in basements, crawlspaces, and especially attics. Ants love to hide in wall cracks and crevices as well, which gives them protection from other predators. The main reason why ants leave their outdoor mounds and come into your house is food. Like other creatures, ants need food to survive – and when there are no other bugs to feed on – they look for crumbs, open containers, and other food particles left in your sink or table.

The Protect All Difference

Protect All Pest Control has helped countless home and business owners tackle ant infestation. With cutting-edge equipment, we are able to find any colonies within or outside your home. Our dedicated pest experts are committed to excellence in all services. This includes spraying pesticides on mounds, along with placing sticky pads and blocking entrance routes for ants.

For more information, contact us today and experience the difference!

How Much Do You Know About Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs: we’ve all heard of them, but how many of us have truly inspected our mattresses to check for them? Or even know how and where to start?

Let’s start here: Where are they found?Bed bug

Bed bugs are one of the best hitchhikers out there and can hide in just about anything -boxes, shoes, small cracks and crevices. They will hide in just about anything to be near a food supply. They are found mostly in bed parts (hence, their name) such as mattress, box springs and folded areas, but they are not limited to any one type of area. Nowadays, they can even be found in five-star hotels, movie theaters and high-end clothing stores if conditions are right. And no, they aren’t region specific, but can be found anywhere in the U.S.

What do they eat?

What they eat determines where they’re found. Their meal of choice is human skin. They are attracted to their prey by the carbon dioxide emitted by their body. While humans are their favorite, they’ll feed on just about any warm-bodied host. If the infestation is bad enough, they will search out prey during the day time as well.

What are the signs you might have bed bugs?

Small red/reddish brown fecal spots on mattresses, upholstery or walls:

nope

 

 

 

 

White, sticky eggs, empty egg shells or molt skins:

not-uh

 

 

 

 

Red, itchy bite marks:

ouch

 

 

 

 

If the infestation is heavy, the will be a strangely sweet odor.

What should you do if you think you have bed bugs?

Contact your trusted professional, immediately. A female bed bug can lay 5 eggs a day; a sense of urgency is needed. If the problem is not bed bugs then they can help you identify what the pest is, what course of action is necessary and how to prevent them in the future.

 

 

Are Your Guests American or German?

Caution: this blog is not for the faint of heart.

Why? We’re talking about one of the least loved insects in America: the cockroach. There are over 70 species in North America alone (not kidding). Yet for Georgia, there are two that cause the most problems for residents: the American cockroach, also known as the “Palmetto bug,” and the German cockroach.

Basic Facts

Each of these has 3 stages in their life cycle: the egg, nymph and adult. What maybe one of the scariest facts about this blog post is the number of eggs they lay -a German cockroach has 30-48 eggs in an egg capsule and the American cockroach has 10-28. Newly hatched nymphs have no wings and must molt (shed their skin) several times before becoming winged adults.

Cockroaches are nocturnal, meaning they are most active at night. During the day they hide in dark, sheltered places. When the lights go out, the cockroaches come out.

Identifying

American roachThe American cockroach adults are between 1” – 2” long, making them the largest of the house-infesting cockroaches (aren’t we lucky?).  They have a reddish brown color with a yellowish margin on the thorax and wings they aren’t afraid to use. When disturbed, they quickly run away or adults may choose to fly. The nymphs in their later stage resemble adults, but they have no wings.

German roachGerman cockroaches are about ⅝” long and are most commonly found in houses (kitchens and bathrooms, to be specific) and restaurants. They have a lighter brown/tan color, oval body shape and long antennae. They eat food of any kind and are known to hitchhike on cardboard boxes (such as soft drink boxes, egg cartons, etc), sacks of potatoes or onions and even appliances and furniture. Because they have such a large egg count and reproduce so quickly, infestations of German cockroaches occur at an alarming rate.

If you’ve seen a hint of a cockroach at your residence or business, we strongly encourage you to start spraying for prevention and control. Contact your local, trusted pest control company to set up pest control plan. Summer nights are for bonfires and making s’mores, not killing roaches.

How To Spot A Termite Infestation

Termite infestations are both very common and very damaging to the home. The best way to protect the home, is to be able to recognize that there is an infestation, and take care of it immediately. There are three signs that you should look for to determine whether you have a termite problem or not.

Swarming

A swarm of termites is a cloud of flying termites that fly very close to one another. Because swarming happens so fast, unless you are home, you may not see it. In the spring, termites that are looking to reproduce will come out in numbers to find a place to form a new colony. If you see a swarm, contact your trusted pest control company immediately.

Wood Damagetermite inspections Marietta

Damage to the wood is a sign of termites. Unfortunately, it is not until they have already done serious damage that you will notice the damage, because termites eat wood from the inside out. If you knock on the wood and hear a hollow sound, you should call a trusted pest control company.

Mud Tubes

Termites will build tubes in the mud to search for food. If you see tubes in your foundation or in the basement walls, there is likely an active infestation and again, call your trusted pest control company.

Debris and Wings

When termites swarm, they can lose their wings and leave debris behind. If you notice debris and wings on your windowsills, you should contact an exterminator. The debris can look like sawdust. The sooner you have the home inspected, the less damage the termites can do to your windows.

The more you know about termite infestations, the better. Termite infestations can destroy a home if they are not caught in time. Being able to recognize that there may be an infestation is your first line of defense. If you think you may have an infestation, give us a call at 770-212-9990, and we’ll spring into action.

Five Types of Termites

Termites do not have a set “season.” They are present all year long, but are most visible (through swarms, discarded wings and droppings) between March and November. It makes you wonder if they’re fans of MLB, right? However, just because you do not see them December – February, it does not mean they are not present. As we said, termites do not have a “season.” Here’s a list of the five types of termites to better assess if you have any extra guests in your home.

Conehead Termites

Coneheads

Conehead Termites

Conehead termites are an invasive species from the Caribbean. They have cream bodies, a dark head and 6 legs. Unlike most termites, they do not rely on tunnels to travel. They build freestanding nest on the ground, on trees, or wooden structure, that can be up to 3 feet in diameter and have a hard surface of chewed wood. They use mud-like tubes for travel. They are very aggressive with a reputation for causing extreme property damage in a short period of time. If you think you have Conehead termites, contact your pest control company immediately. They are fast, so you need to be faster.

Dampwood Termites

dampwood termites

Dampwood Termites

Dampwood termites are the largest of termites. They are creamy white to light brown, with 6 legs and antennae. As their name suggest, they are found in areas with high moisture content. Dampwood termites live in colonies and travel via tunnels they create in the wood. Due to their extreme need for moisture, they are found near fence post, dead trees, logs, stumps and utility poles. Care must go into not attracting them, such as spraying for termites and not having firewood next to your home or business. Get with your pest control company to come up with the best prevention care plan.

Drywood Termites

Drywood Termites

Drywood Termites

Drywood termites are what first come to mind when someone thinks “termites.” Their coloring  can range from a creamy white to a light brown, they have 6 legs and antennae. Drywood termites infest areas with dry wood (hence, their name) such as attic framing. They typically swarm on warm, sunny days. Prevention is key with Drywood termites as they can easily chew through support beams, flooring and walls. If you’d like more information on prevention methods, view our blog post on Protecting Your Home from Unwanted Guest.  They shed their wings as they grow. Should you find any around your home or business, call your pest control company immediately.

Formosan Termites

Formosan termites

Formosan Termites

Formosan termites are incredibly aggressive and can an average of 350,000 workers in one colony. They are creamy white to light brown with six legs and antennae. Formosan termites live in areas with high moisture. They build their mud nest in the ground, making them harder to spot until damage has been done. When we say they are aggressive, we mean they can clear a 2×4 in roughly 25 days and can cause severe structural damage in 6 months. They are not limited to homes either, they can also be found in boats, railroad trusses, and trees. Prevention is absolutely key with them. If you have an inkling of Formosan termites, again call your pest control company immediately.

Subterranean Termites

subterranean termites

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites, like their Formosan and Dampwood brethren, thrive in areas with high moisture content. They are creamy white to dark brown/black. Subterranean termites, as their name suggest, do not like the open air, and use “mud tubes” as their preferred means of travel. They live underground, with as many as two MILLION in one colony. They continuously eat wood 24-7 and are by far the most destructive of all termites. Like Formosans, since they live underground, they are harder to detect since their base is underground, therefore making prevention absolutely necessary. Call your pest control company immediately if you suspect your home is now their breakfast, lunch and dinner.

 

Mosquito 411

Mosquitoes, if you live in the southeastern part of the United States, or any area with a high humidity rate, you know the mosquito. They buzz around you at any and all times, waiting to feast on you. Whether it be your wedding day or a fishing trip, it feels as though there is no break from them other than possibly a blizzard, and even then part of you is waiting for one to spring from the snow like monster from a horror movie.

With the recent outbreak of the zika virus we thought it would be a good time to talk about mosquitoes. There are items that can be done to lessen and prevent the mosquito population near you. But first, let’s cover some facts about mosquitoes that not everyone may know.

General AppearanceMosquito

Considering there are over 170 species of mosquitoes native to North America alone, we will give a general description to help you identify a possible mosquito. For the most part, they are grey with white, silver, green or iridescent blue scales. They have six legs, antennae, and are roughly 1/4″ to 3/8″ long.

Habitats

Mosquitoes live in areas of high humidity and/or high moisture content areas. They can breed in any form of stagnant water such as swamps, storm drains, pools, old tires and even if you’re dog’s water bowl isn’t change frequently, there. They have three stages before maturity: egg, larvae and pupae. Each stage requires a specific set of conditions required before it can mature; stagnant water essential in each one.

Diet

While mosquitoes have a reputation for giving Dracula a run for his money in the summer time, only the females suck human blood. They detect their prey by body heat and the carbon dioxide we breathe. The males enjoy a diet of plant nectar.

Control & Prevention

A proper prevention routine can best be determined by your trusted pest control company. Various control factors, included whether to use larvicides vs adulticides, are factored in to what will be the most effective way to rid, your house or business of mosquitoes. If you have questions, or would like more information on our mosquito control services, contact us today and we will be happy to be of assistance.

DIY Pest Control, Fact or Fiction?

Let’s be real, Pinterest has you thinking you can do just about anything. Making a McDonald’s fry cup into an iPhone holder? Check. Gluten free any and everything? Easy peasy. Turning that old chair into a towel rack and shelves? So cute and easy! DIY pest control? Oh, I got this. But do you? Here we talk about a few DIY home pest control remedy that are more Tom and Jerry than actual pest control.

Bait your mousetrap with cheese

FICTION. While Jerry may have preferred cheese, had Tom actually done some research on mice, he’d know they prefer peanut butter. Cheese gets moldy and brings more harm than good. Save your cheese for a fruit and cheese plate.

Vinegar can eliminate fruit flies

FACT. You’ve heard the expression “You catch more flies with honey than vinegar”?  Well it’s not just how your mother teaches you to fact.
say please, it’s true! However, it’s only half true with fruit flies. While they are traditionally attracted to the sweetness of rotting fruit, a cup of vinegar covered with plastic wrap (and small holes on top) is rather effective when battling a fruit fly infestation.

Put a penny in a bag of water to repel mosquitos and flies

FICTION. The exact opposite of what you should do, actually. Shiny objects tend to attract insects. Save yourself the trouble and just put those pennies in your piggy bank. However, mothballs in pantyhose do repel snakes.

Sprinkle grits on the counter to provide a barrier against antsNo!

FICTION. While we may be in the south, and grits are perfect even when fried, they are NOT an ant “barrier.” As with the cheese, this southern delight will attract more, repelling only your family members (raise your hand if you want to clean up grits).

Use bay leaves to keep pest away

FACT. Bay leaves make your soup tasty and keep pest away from your cooking ingredients and supplies. Simply place the leaves where the supplies or food are and while they won’t completely prevent insects, they will lessen the amount of visitors. Some people put the leaves directly in the ingredients such as rice or flour, others tape them on the exterior of the packaging, it’s a personal preference.

There are so many of these types of DIY “remedies” that we’re sure to come back to this topic to help you determine if you’re actually helping the problem, not adding to. While DIY projects like this make us feel resourceful, there’s no replacement for a good pest control company. These tactics are best applied when used in between pest control visits from your preferred pest control company.

Protecting Your Home From Unwanted Guest

In our previous post we talked about unwanted winter guest, so now that you’re aware that you might not be alone, it’s only fair to share some preventative measures. After all, rodents invade an estimated 21 million homes every winter in the U.S. with Americans spending more than $4 billion a year to get rid of them. At Protect All Pest Control, we believe in preventative measures.

What can you do to protect your home?

  • Easily enough, installing door sweeps on exterior doors and repairing damaged screens is a simple way to stop extras from coming Screen doorinside.
  • Screen vents and openings to chimneys. Between bugs, bats and even birds, it’s smart to keep your chimney clean, screen and not
    available for entrance.
  • Be sure to seal cracks and crevices on the outside of your home, including areas where utilities and pipes enter.
  • Store food and leftovers in airtight containers and take out your trash regularly. Do your best not to allow your garbage bin to over flow. Leaving the lid open is like an open invitation for pests of all kinds.
  • Replace loose mortar and weather stripping around the basement foundation and windows. This will also help lower your power bill. Win – win!
  • Eliminate all moisture sites, including leaking pipes and clogged drains. If your garbage is food, so is your clogged drain.
  • As stated in the previous blog post, store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house. Also keep in mind to keep your shrubbery well-trimmed, including trees. Branches can provide a perfect walkway in to leaky windows or unscreened chimney.

Many of these steps have multiple benefits in addition to helping prevent unwanted guests. Should you feel a bumper in the night that doesn’t sound like Casper the friendly ghost, give the professionals at Protect All Pest Control a call. Check out our list of services and affordable pricing for more information.