guide

Pest Prevention Guide 2018

Once again, we can all say "so long" to old man winter, hang up our heavy coats, and place the knit hats and gloves on the top shelf. It's now time to say "HELLO" to sitting outside, cooking on the grill, and watching brilliant sunsets. But, we cannot forget about the mosquitos, ticks, fleas, midges, flies, hornets, wasps, yellow jackets, and... the list goes on. 

Fall and winter is prime time for mice and rats, while spring and summer are synonymous with insects that bite and sting.

Fall and winter is prime time for mice and rats, while spring and summer are synonymous with insects that bite and sting.

Throughout the months of spring and summer insects become highly active. While we can also enjoy being outdoors with them understand there are times when humans and bugs cross paths. Without a doubt, insects have their time and purpose in our world and serve important roles but, when we cross paths with them there may be risks. Bees, hornets, yellow jackets, and wasps may sting in defense. Ants may ruin a picnic. Ticks, like mosquitos, may possibly transmit a disease to you or a pet.

Spring & Summer Insects to Look Out For

Wasps, Hornets, Yellow Jackets, Ticks, Mosquitos, Ants, Spiders, and Flies


Kitchen Cabinets, and Pantry

Spring is the best time to hit the kitchen cabinets and pantry for prevention. Pull out everything from inside your cabinets and drawers then, wipe down the surfaces of shelves including the inner sides of your drawers. Get rid of an type of shelf liners. Throw out any expired herbs, spices, or ingredients such as flour and grains that may introduce stored product pests into your home. While empty, inspect the backs of cabinets or pantries for entry points that pests might use. These areas include tiny cracks, holes and crevices. During the warmer months, insects like ants and cockroaches are adapted to finding food sources through them. And finally, pull out appliances, wipe surfaces and vacuum behind them. Looking for signs of pests or possible entry points for them, cleaning surfaces and getting food debris out is the best prevention in preparing for the upcoming warmer months.


Faucets & Water Sources

All insects, no matter what time of year, seek out a source of moisture. Water, even the tiniest amount is enough for any insect therefore, moisture is a major attraction for all pests such as roaches, spiders, and ants. Check all of your bathroom and kitchen faucets to ensure no leaks are present. Repair leaky faucets, loose floor tiles, and areas where caulking is stained, damaged or mildewed. Two main areas of concern with caulk are around toilets and tubs. Be sure to look underneath your sink cabinets for any signs of moisture damage. If any of these places have damaged or mildewed caulk or wood caused by moisture, you may need to call a plumber. If mold or mildew is found you should get a mold inspection to prevent further issues to you and your family's health.


Closets, Attics, Garages

Professionals in the industry live and work by one simple rule and that is - The more clutter you have, the more opportunity for pests. Simple right? During spring and summer months your odds significantly increase for spiders, ants, wasps, earwigs, termites, silverfish, fleas, various mites, ticks and mosquitos to inhabit areas inside and out of your home. Cleaning out your closets, attics, garages, or wherever you have stored items or boxes is yet another major step in preventing spring and summer pests from invading your home. Eliminating mass clutter will ultimately reduce considerable opportunities for common pests to infest your home. Follow this same professional rule in the garden. As you will soon read, piles of rock, wood and other landscape material create habitats for all insects. More threatening at times, snakes, skunks, squirrels, and other wildlife may migrate into your property seeking out homes in these materials, and with potentially harmful risks. 


Doors and Windows

Damaged screens in windows and doors may be unnoticed during the winter. It's now warming up outside so it's time to check up and clean your screens. Inspect  all your windows and doors thoroughly for damaged screens, replacing any screens that have holes before it's too late. Check the spline of frames and the seals around your doors too. While going around checking your windows and doors it's a good idea to check for any damage to your foundation. Damage to your foundation can happen during the winter months and go unnoticed as well. A  hole the size of a dime is large enough for a mouse to come through next fall, and cockroaches along with most insects can fit through the tiniest of cracks so seal any cracks you might find. 


Standing Water

Especially mosquitos, standing water is a breeding ground for insects! During the winter, water may collect in low spots around your home or garden. Bowls, buckets, toys, and play equipment like sandboxes may have standing water. Downspouts may also be an area for water to pool. Remove or repair any areas of standing water as these will become a harborage for any and all insects. Fill in low level areas and holes. Reset or reposition outdoor play equipment to eliminate this problem permanently. With mosquitos being a
major risk to our health, standing water is probably the most important of all steps to take in pest prevention during spring and summer months. 


Deteriorating Wood

Rotted or damaged roofing materials and fascia may act as a point of entry for certain insects. Check around your doors and windows, your deck and patio, the skirting of your home, and other areas where wood might need replacing. Carpenter bees, wasps, ants, spiders, silverfish, centipedes and many other insects love these areas with wood being prime habitats. Birds, while most of us may enjoy watching them, they may create an unhealthy scenario around your home.

 

Once you have completed these 6 steps to Spring & Summer Pest Prevention you’re ready to begin enjoying your summer! We never said it would be easy. We certainly didn't say it would be quick or easy for that matter. But, if you begin following this guide as the forsythia blooms yellow then in no time at all you can have peace of mind. Not only will this guide give you the knowledge to keep your home pest-free, it will also help you maintain your property value. If you may have discovered evidence of a major pest issue contact Gladhill Services, as we can help you take care of any pest issue.

Bed Bug Travel Guide

As you head out on vacation this year be careful not to bring bed bugs home with you. Learn how to protect yourself wherever you go this summer with our free guide. 

Bed bug travel guide

Most of us head out of town during the summer and travel off to a stress-free destination for some long over due time off. Whether you’re headed off to the beach or a mountain lake, to another country or remain in the U.S., remain aware of bed bugs.

Bed bugs are masters at hitchhiking and may infest five-star hotels, planes and vacation homes, along with everything in between. Rest assured that while bed bugs don’t spread disease, they can inflict itchy swollen welts. And who wants to spend their vacation time digging at their flesh or making an unexpected trip to Urgent care?

I am often asked: can you actually see bed bugs? The answer is yes, you can! The adult bed bugs are about a 1/4-inch long by roughly an 1/8-inch wide. Bed bugs are a reddish brown in color, but may appear more red after feeding. Bed bug nymphs,(or young) are visible as well, but hard to see as they are smaller - about 1/32 inch.
 
The last thing you want to do is bring bed bugs home back from vacation with you! I have been told over and again about how horrible people have felt after taking bed bugs from a hotel to a friend or relative’s house. While it's not really your fault, we definitely encourage everyone to take these steps to vacation bed bug-free.  
 
IN HOTELS

  • Place your luggage on smooth-surfaced furniture away from the bed, like a desk. If using a luggage rack, inspect it for bed bugs before placing your luggage on it - it only takes a few seconds. Look underneath, check the frame and so forth.
  • Pull back the four corners of bedding and check the mattress and box spring for bed bugs - follow the seems as this is where bed bugs typically hide. If you notice black dots on the mattress, that could be an indication of a problem.
  • Inspect all night stands, desks and headboards for signs of bed bugs.
  • If you believe your hotel room has bed bugs, call the front desk and ask for a different room. Each time I stay at a hotel I ask if there has been any bed bug issues I need to be aware of at the time of check in.

 
AFTER TRAVEL

  • Before unpacking, inspect your luggage for bed bugs. Do this outside.
  • Place clothing from luggage in the dryer for at least 15 minutes on high heat. This will kill any bed bugs that may have come back with you. 


By following these simple steps you can easily enjoy your vacation this year without worry of bed bugs keeping you up in your hotel room at night. You need to relax and have as much fun as possible so what are you waiting for? Have a great vacation!

Campers Guide To Pest Control

Camping is all about getting lost and intimate with nature so, don't let a few bugs ruin your trip. Here you will learn the 6 most common outdoor pests campers encounter and 7 tips to help ensure a great outdoor experience. 

You get lost in the wild for a reason. But some outdoor insects can make your camping trip more irritating than peaceful. If swatting bugs wasn't irritating enough, think about how some insects could bite leaving you with harmful and life-long effects. Have fun and enjoy your time outdoors without insects taking over your campsite eliminating that  peace of your natural bliss. Before you pack all that gear and head outdoors this summer, be prepared to prevent and reduce your worry.

You get lost in the wild for a reason. But some outdoor insects can make your camping trip more irritating than peaceful. If swatting bugs wasn't irritating enough, think about how some insects could bite leaving you with harmful and life-long effects. Have fun and enjoy your time outdoors without insects taking over your campsite eliminating that  peace of your natural bliss. Before you pack all that gear and head outdoors this summer, be prepared to prevent and reduce your worry.


6 Insects Every Camper Needs To Know

Planning to get into the wild this summer? When packing your camping gear, s'mores, and other campsite delights, batteries and sleeping bags be prepared to face several insects that want exactly what you have. Face it, when you begin sleeping under the stars you’re sure to invite a few more friends you typically don't sleep with at home. Some of these insects will steal a little bit of food while others may want to feed on you. Here are 5 common insects that campers usually face when getting back to what's real, as well as 7 tips for helping you during your getaway.


7 Tips to Help You Enjoy Camping This Summer

 

1. Clothing - It's No Option

You should wear long sleeves, pants and light-colored clothing when camping as this will help cover skin insects would bite. Light colored clothing makes it easier to spot ticks also. When hiking through dense woods or tall grass remain in the middle of trails stopping periodically to check for ticks.

2. Insect Repellent

When using bug repellents follow the manufacturer's directions. If applied properly insect repellent won't kill insects - it sends them off in another direction.
If your pets come along, be sure to consult with a veterinarian about tick and heartworm prevention. 

3. Avoid Insect Habitats

Avoid camping near pooled water, marshes and ponds with stagnant water. This is a mosquito habitat with plenty of gnats, no se ups, midges and ticks. Look for an area close but not too close for your safety and enjoyment. 

4. Pay Attention

Nature is home to thousands of bugs and other creatures all trying to make their way in life. When we share their natural environment don't get too upset with them as they are trying to live too. Just keep an eye out for ant mounds, beehives, spider webs and such. Keep an ear to the wind for buzzing sounds. If heard, locate the nest and set up camp further away from it. 

5. Secure Tents & Gear

For the most part, your tent is zipped up and secure but, bugs find their way in at times. If you keep food in your tent then expect more bugs. During the night try keeping food in your vehicle if possible. Secure all openings before turning down for the night. And, more importantly you can spray the exterior base of your tent with an approved insect spray to help prevent unwanted visitors from getting in. 

6. Take A First Aid Kit

Tweezers come in handy for removing ticks, splinters and thorns. The Center for Disease Control says stocking a health kit when traveling with, anti-itch ointment for bites and stings is a good thing to do. If anyone on your camping trip has a history of severe allergic reactions or anaphylaxis, the CDC also recommends carrying epinephrine auto-injectors.

7. Store & Secure Food

Keep all food sealed tightly in containers and keep up off of the ground - especially during the night. Use coolers inside tents, hang trash from a tree, and discard all trash in a proper receptacle. Do this for your safety and enjoyment along with protecting others and the environment.