MACHINES, GIZMOS, SMOKE & MIRRORS
• ULTRASONIC DEVICES DETER / ERADICATE PESTS FROM MY HOME
There is no scientific evidence or data to prove these “repellants” are effective controlling, discouraging or deterring insects or rodents.
• I DON’T NEED MOSQUITO SERVICE, I OWN A CARBON DIOXIDE BAITED MOSQUITO TRAP
Scientific studies at the University of Wisconsin and University of Florida, as well as experts around the country, report these traps will catch mosquitoes but will not result in a measurable reduction of mosquitoes that bite humans.
Questions remain on whether a C02 trap will actually attract additional mosquitoes to your home, yard or garden.
• ELECTRONIC BUG ZAPPERS IN MY BACK YARD KILL ALL BITING INSECTS
Beyond the snap, crackle and pop of exploding insects, these units provide no control in an outdoor environment. The University of Florida Institute of Food & Agricultural Science reports these units actually make things worse by attracting more mosquitoes into your yard and end up killing thousands of beneficial insects that don’t bother people. An independent study at the University of Notre Dame showed that mosquitoes comprised only 4-6% of a bug zapper’s daily catch.
• CITRONELLA CANDLES KEEP THE BUGS FROM BITING
In the spirit of full disclosure, there is a certain amount of truth to this claim. Frequent applications of citronella oil will repel insects. To derive any benefit from a citronella candle, one would need to stand in a 360° plume of citronella smoke.
OTHER MYTHS DEBUNKED
• IF YOU DON’T SEE PESTS, YOU DON’T HAVE A PROBLEM
What’s the old saying, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. No truer words spoken when it comes to pest control. Significant infestations of ants, mice, stinging and crawling insect or termites can go unnoticed for quite some time. Natural indicators like swarming reproductives, fallen wings, stained ceilings, rodent droppings, wood debris and dead insects can be a beneficial warning of existing pest issues.
• ALL PEST ACTIVITY SHOULD DISAPPEAR IMMEDIATELY AFTER TREATMENT
Elimination time will vary with target pest and treatment method employed. Many prescribed applications include the use of concentrated baits which could take several days or weeks for total eradication / colony destruction.
• TICKS FALL FROM TREES AND ON TO YOUR HEAD OR BODY
Ticks do not fly or jump, their natural habitat is the ground where they crawl up on vegetation in search of a host. Once a tick secures a host they may climb to the neck or head area from the lower/mid portion of the body.
• YOU CAN ALWAYS FEEL A TICK BITE
Tick bites are virtually painless; in fact most hosts do not realize they have been bitten until symptoms appear.
• YOU WILL ONLY GET FLEAS IN YOUR HOUSE IF YOU HAVE PETS
While the household cat or dog is certainly the flea transport mode of choice, fleas can be introduced into your home by mice, rats or other small vermin (dead or alive, in or under your home) as well as other humans.
• STINGING INSECTS WILL ONLY STING IF PROVOKED
There is a certain amount of truth to this claim. By and large, stinging insects will not attack unless provoked, disturbed or handled. However; some species, under certain circumstances or during certain times of the year can be very aggressive. Yellow Jackets, for example, can be aggressive when they feel their nest is threatened or in the fall when nest sizes are large and food supplies run short.
• ONCE YOU’RE STUNG, THE INSECT DIES
The Honey Bee is the only stinging insect to make the ultimate sacrifice, leaving behind a barbed stinger and parts of its abdomen after attacking its prey. Most other stinging insects native to our area have the ability to sting repeatedly.
• PEST CONTROL PRODUCTS I BUY AT THE HARDWARE STORE ARE AS EFFECTIVE AS WHAT PROFESSIONALS USE
Formulations, potency, efficacy and residual properties are typically limited in over the counter products.
• I SAW A RAT THE SIZE OF A CAT
Norway Rats average 12-16 ounces in weight, 7-8 inches in length with a 6-8 inch tail. The shock of seeing a rat in a human environment, with its quick movement and long tail, may create the illusion of a much larger animal. If you’ve seen an eighteen foot tall person, you may have seen a cat sized rat.