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Preventing Pests In Your House

By Chris Williams on March 24, 2014.

Preventing carpenter antsKatlyn Graham:  Hello, I’m Katlyn Graham, here with Tim Chace, a pest control technician with Colonial Pest and an entomologist. Tim, welcome.

Tim Chace:  Good morning.

Katlyn:  Thanks for coming in today.

Now, you are the master of pest control, Tim. What as a homeowner can I do to protect my house?

Tim:  As well as just routine maintenance, making sure that you don’t have water damage, cutting bushes back off the house, general home repairs, keeping everything shipshape is number one.

But number two, at Colonial Pest Control, we offer what we call the semi‑annual program. It’s a twice a year treatment using safe and effective pesticides, targeting areas like the foundation, windows, doors, using roof line as a preventative.

The typical lower treatment is designed more for ants and crawling insects. Then, we try to treat upper areas for wasps and spiders that could gain access.

Through the structural aspects of the house from up above. Under this program, it covers everything but termites, birds, bats, flies, bedbugs, and wildlife.

It gives you quite a bit of coverage. Most of the routine pests that you would encounter within the house like carpenter ants, spiders, pantry pests, cockroaches, fleas, and mice are covered under that program.

Typically, we come out and do the exterior twice a year. Should a problem develop inside, you’re covered, all you’ve got to do is give the office a call.

It’s a great treatment. It’s designed again as a preventative maintenance program that can be done around just about any structure.

Katlyn:  Wow, and it covers a wide variety of pests. You’re really taking control of everything there. Do all the pests just die right away or how does it work?

Tim:  Most of the chemicals that we use are fairly slow acting materials designed to be picked up by the insects. In most cases, unless you spray the bug directly, he’s got some time to live.

But as the insects pass across these chemicals, they’re picked up on their hairy bodies, and then in most cases, ingested through the cleaning process.

Once the insect ingests a couple of these particles, it usually takes within an hour or two for the insect to die. Because there’s so little chemical on the house, you don’t have a build‑up of chemical.

You’re not going to see dead insects all around the house right away. Over time, we do notice that the houses that we treat on a regular basis.

If you don’t clean the front porch, there’ll be quite an accumulation of little guys there after a year or so, that have made the bad mistake of coming onto your house.

Katlyn:  What about pets, dogs, cats, or small children, is it safe for everyone?

Tim:  Absolutely. Our treatments are designed number one with the safety of your family and pets in mind. Typically, the areas that we treat are just the structure itself and the soil right adjacent to the structure.

In each case, we take special precautions to move toys, pet toys, children’s items around the house. We also work with you as far as reentry time. We make specific recommendations to each case.

If you’ve got little kids that are having a pool party, we’ll say maybe keep them out of that area for an hour or two until the chemical dries, but in most cases after the application, within an hour or so, we say business as usual.

Katlyn:  What happens if, after you’ve done this treatment, I find an ant or something?

Tim:  As a rule, we usually say one insect isn’t a big trouble, but people have carrying thresholds for insects, if you think that you’re still having an issue with anything.

The best thing to do would be to call our office right away. They’ll take the appropriate actions. Sometimes they can walk you through.

In the springtime, one of the things that we do face is the onslaught of queen carpenter ants. These have been born out a million nests on a warm summer day. It’s typically the biggest ant you’ve ever seen.

Along about the end of May, the first few weeks of June, and maybe into July, we get a lot of calls where, “There’s one big ant in my bathtub!” or, “We found two of the biggest ants we ever saw in the front hall!”

That’s typically not a problem, but go ahead and give us a call if you notice something between treatments. Your satisfaction is what we depend on.

Katlyn:  That’s a good guarantee, definitely. Thank you so much for joining me today, Tim. Very informative, taking the bugs out of the house. Thank you.

Tim:  Thanks for letting me talk about our semiannual program.

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