What steps can a restaurant owner take on their own to prevent/control pest populations?

What steps can a restaurant owner take on their own to prevent/control pest populations?

  1. Seal up any cracks and holes on the outside of the facility including areas where utilities and pipes enter.
  2. Make sure vents are screened and gaps around windows and doors are sealed.
  3. Keep tree branches and shrubbery well trimmed.
  4. Inspect boxes, bags and other packaging thoroughly to curb hitchhiking pests.
  5. Don’t allow food to sit on counters or shelves in open containers.  All food and water sources should be kept sealed unless currently in use.
  6. Clean all food spills regularly.
  7. Store garbage in sealed containers and dispose of it regularly.
  8. Replace weather-stripping and repair loose mortar around the basement foundation and windows.
  9. Never store food on the floor.  Always lift it up on shelves so that rodents and insects do not have easy access.
  10. Comply will all regulations regarding pests in food service facilities.
  11. A licensed and qualified pest professional is your best resource to ensure these steps are completed properly.

Rodent Infestation Tips From Hulett Environmental Services

There are a number of pest-proofing measures that homeowners can take to protect their home and families from the threats posed by rodents. NPMA recommends the following:

  • Store boxes and containers off the floor and organize items often to prevent rodents from residing in undisturbed areas.
  • Seal cracks and holes, including areas where utilities and pipes enter the home.
  • Store food in thick metal or plastic containers with tight lids.
  • Clean up spilled food right away immediately and wash dishes and cooking utensils soon after use.
  • Keep outside cooking areas and grills clean.
  • Do not leave pet food or water bowls out overnight.
  • Keep bird feeders away from the house and use squirrel guards to limit access to the feeder by squirrels and other rodents.
  • Use a thick plastic or metal garbage can with a tight lid and keep sealed at all times.
  • Keep grains and animal feed in thick plastic or metal containers with tight lids. In the evening, return uneaten animal feed to containers with lids.
  • If you find rodent feces, hear sounds of scurrying in the walls or observe other signs of a rodent infestation, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the pest problem.

Termite Q & A With The Experts

What do you do when you’ve found your dream home, but discover that it’s crawling with termites?

The truth is, there are two kinds of homes: those that have had termites and those that will get them.  And, while they cause $5 billion in damage each year, there is no reason to run away from the purchase.  A pest control professional can correct the problem so that you can live comfortably in your dream home.

How difficult are termites to treat?

Termites are nearly impossible for homeowners to treat on their own.  On the other hand, pest control professionals have the training, expertise, equipment, and technology to eliminate termite infestations.

How much does a termite treatment cost?

They can range anywhere from $800 to $1,800 dollars, depending on where you live, the construction of your home, severity of the infestation, and the type of contract offered by your pest control professional.  Your pest control professional will give you a free estimate.

What are the different types of termite treatments?

There are two primary types of treatments available for use by the professional: liquids and baits.  Liquids are used around a home area to ensure long-term protection or used to treat wood directly. Baits systems involve placing monitoring stations in the ground.

Are these products dangerous to kids and pets?

All professional pest control products have been registered for use by the EPA.

When they are applied according to label instructions by technicians who have been trained and licensed to use them, they pose little risk. Also, the products are applied in areas not frequented by people (under soil surface, in walls, in stations under the soil).

What is the most effective type of termite treatment?

A trained and licensed pest control operator is the best person to make a recommendation for each particular property. Also, homeowners might have a preference as to which technology to use so it is important that they have a detailed conversation with their pest control company.

Why should someone hire a professional instead of attempting to control their pest problems by themselves?

Just as you wouldn’t prescribe medicine for yourself or drill your own cavities – you shouldn’t attempt to control termites – or other pests — on your own. The products and the expertise offered by professional pest control far surpasses what a homeowner could do on their own.  Leave it up to the experts for peace of mind. Why risk it?

South Florida Cockroach Control Information

There are about 3,500 cockroach species world-wide, about 70 of which are found in the United States. Roaches are also commonly referred to as palmetto bugs or waterbugs, but regardless of their name they can be real pests!

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Roaches vary in color from a brown to black in the house-invading species, but the tropical species can be green, orange, and other colors.  These nasty pests can grow up to 1.5 inches in length, and prefer warm, moist, and dark areas. They have an oval shaped and are flat-bodied, with a pronotum, or shield-like covering, which projects over their head. Both the male and female are fully winged. Although they are able to fly short distances, they seldom do, preferring to let their six long legs do the scurrying when making a run for cover, which anyone who has surprised one feeding knows.

Females produce their skittering spawn from purse-shaped egg capsules, which are formed at a rate of about one per week until 15-90 have been produced. Each capsule contains 14-16 eggs, which produce grayish-brown nymphs. These nymphs quickly begin feeding, and although their appearance and behavior is similar to the adults, they are smaller and don’t have wings. Newly molted nymphs are white, but darken to their normal color within a few hours.

Although cockroaches can be found in groups in their daytime hiding areas, known as harborages, or feeding in groups at night, cockroaches are generally not social insects as ants or wasps are. They tend to behave in an individual or non-social manner, but often form small clusters. Cockroaches aren’t picky eaters, though they tend to favor decaying matter, and have been known to snack on sweet, starchy and greasy foods. As scavengers, the cockroach is an opportunistic and omnivorous feeder. They have been known to eat just about anything: paper, boots, pet food, book bindings, cloth, leather, glue, and even other roaches.

How to Keep Bugs From Invading Your Kitchen

        How to Keep Bugs From Invading Your Kitchen
  • Add a bay leaf to canisters of dry goods. The herb’s pungent scent repels many pantry pests.
  • Only purchase food in sealed packages that show no sign of damage.
  • Once packages are opened, move ingredients into sealed glass or Tupperware-type containers with secure lids before storing them in the pantry or cabinet.
  • Check expiration dates on baking ingredients before use and visually inspect previously opened items before adding them to a recipe.
  • Dispose of garbage regularly in sealed receptacles.
  • Seal cracks or holes around the stovepipes and water pipes.
  • Eliminate all moisture sites, including leaking pipes and clogged drains.
  • Consult a licensed pest professional if an infestation has already taken root.

How to stay pest free during the Holiday Season

One of the most common ways that pests are introduced into homes during the holidays is via Christmas trees, wreaths and firewood. Ants, spiders, ticks and other pests can hide deep in the branches of trees and in crevices of wood. In some cases, insects may even lay eggs in trees or garland. When brought indoors, the eggs will hatch creating a major pest infestation in the home.

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To prevent bringing pests into you home on live trees and other greenery, take a few minutes to carefully inspect such items before bringing indoors. Look for insects, nests or eggs, and shake off greenery outdoors to rouse any hidden tenants.

Another way that pests can access our homes this time of year is through boxes of decorations, which are often stored in basements, attics, garages and crawlspaces – all favorite hiding spots for pests. Mice and other pests find their way into the boxes of during the off-season. When homeowners unpack their decorations, they may find live or dead pests and droppings inside. Unfortunately, in some cases, they may also find that holiday decorations have been chewed or destroyed by pests.

When it’s time to decorate, unpack holiday items outside and inspect all items carefully for signs of pests, droppings, gnaw marks or other damage before bringing them indoors. Pay special attention to strings of lights to ensure that wiring has not been frayed by pests.

Perhaps the most important step you can take to prevent pests during the holidays comes at the end of each season, when it’s time to take down the tree and pack up the decorations. Store holiday décor in hard, plastic bins with tightly sealed lids instead of cardboard boxes or bags that can easily be chewed through. Do not pile discarded live trees or cut firewood near your home, as this can attract mice, termites and other pests.

Spider Prevention Tips

Homeowners should be on the lookout for the following spider species:

Common House Spider: These spiders don’t pose a health risk, but they can be quite a nuisance throughout the house. They spin a tangled web in upper corners, angles of window frames and around furniture.

Brown Recluse Spider: The bite from a brown recluse can cause a very painful ulcer. These spiders can be found in many undisturbed areas around the home, such as inside boxes, under furniture and in seldom-used clothing or shoes.

Black Widow Spider: Probably the most infamous species of spider, the black widow’s venom can have serious side effects, especially in children and the elderly. Widows often build nests in cluttered areas within garages, attics and basements.

Hulett Environmental  reminds homeowners that there are several ways to prevent spider bites and keep them out of the house all together:

  • Install screens and weather stripping on windows and door sweeps on doors.
  • Fix any cracks in siding and walls, especially where pipes or wires enter the home.
  • Store clothing and shoes inside plastic containers, and shake out all clothing that has been in a hamper, on the floor or in storage before wearing.
  • Wear heavy gloves when moving items that have been stored for a long period of time.
  • Inspect shoes before wearing them, as spiders often hide inside.
  • Reduce clutter in basements, garages and attics.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house.
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