Tag Archives: Florida Exterminator

Tips to avoid a pest infestation when decorating the home for the Holidays

Tips to avoid a pest infestation when decorating the home for the Holidays

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As families across the country get into the Holiday spirit by digging out their decorations and unpacking strands of twinkling lights, Hulett Environmental a pest management company servicing South Florida urges caution against pests that can make their way into the home via boxes of ornaments, fresh-cut Christmas trees, wreathes and even firewood.

Ants and spiders can easily hide in the branches of trees and crevices of firewood, while mice can chew through cardboard boxes of decorations that have been stored away since last season.  Unfortunately, these pests can pose serious health threats, from food contamination to the spread of disease, once they find a way inside.”

Hulett advises homeowners to carefully inspect these all items for pests before bringing them inside the home. Hulett recommends the following tips to specifically prevent a pest infestation when decorating for the Holidays:

  • Inspect live, fresh cut evergreen trees, wreathes and garlands for spiders, insect nests or eggs before purchasing. Shake greenery outdoors to remove any pests before bringing them inside.
  • Unpack decorations outdoors so pests aren’t released into the home. Repack decorations in durable, sealed containers that pests can’t chew through.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet from the home on a raised structure, such as concrete blocks or poles.
  • If you suspect a pest infestation in your home, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect, identify and treat the problem.

A Closer Look at Ant Species

Argentine Ants: Colonies of Argentine ants are found throughout the southeastern parts of the U.S. and California usually in wet environments near a food source. Argentine ants do not pose a health threat, but they can contaminate food and give off a musty odor when crushed.

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Carpenter Ants: This aggressive species of ant is found nationwide, especially in the northern region. Carpenter ants attack wood and can cause severe property damage, which is usually not covered by homeowners’ insurance.

Crazy Ants: First found in Texas in 2002, crazy ants have spread to other southern states, nesting in both dry and moist habitats. This species does not pose a health threat, but they can become a nuisance.

Odorous House Ants: This species is found in every region of the U.S. and commonly nests in basements, crawl spaces and adjacent structures. Odorous house ants do not pose a health risk, but they give off a strong, rotten coconut-like smell when crushed.

Pavement Ants: These black ants are found throughout the eastern portion of the U.S., and in California and Washington. They get their name from making nests in or under cracks in pavement. Pavement ants can contaminate food and should be avoided.

Red Imported Fire Ants: These red ants are found in the southeastern U.S., from Virginia to Texas, as well as California and New Mexico. They are commonly introduced to new areas through potted plants, shrubbery and trees. Fire ants will sting humans who disturb a nest, often causing painful welts.

If you suspect an ant infestation, contact a licensed pest professional to identify the species and recommend a course of treatment. For more information on ants, please visit http://site1.das-group.com/bugs_database/ants.asp

Miami Pest Control Services

Did you know? The brown recluse #spider bite is painless but may cause a spreading, tissue-killing wound. Infrequently, reactions include fever, chills, joint pain and convulsions. Just Call HULETT!

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Follow Hulett Environmental on LinkedIn with your QR Reader

Checking for Bed Bugs

Checking for Bed Bugs

  • Thoroughly inspect the entire room before unpacking, including behind the headboard, under lights, and inside dressers, drawers, sofas and chairs.
  • Pull back the sheets and inspect the mattress seams and box springs, particularly at the corners, for pepper-like stains, spots or shed bed bug skins.
  • Place suitcase in a plastic trash bag during the duration of your trip to ensure that bed bugs cannot take up residence there prior to departure.
  • Do not place luggage on upholstered surfaces. The safest place is in the bathroom in the middle of a tile floor or on a luggage rack after it has been thoroughly inspected. Do not use a luggage rack if it has hollow legs, where bed bugs may hide unseen.

If You Suspect Bed Bugs Are In Your Hotel Room:

  • Notify management and request to change rooms immediately.
  • Do not move to a room adjacent and/or directly above/below the suspected infestation. Bed bugs can easily hitchhike via housekeeping carts, luggage and even through wall sockets. If an infestation is spreading, it typically does so in the rooms closest to the origin.

When You Arrive Home:

  • Inspect your suitcases outdoors before bringing them into the house.
  • Vacuum your suitcase thoroughly before storing it. Consider using a garment hand steamer to steam your luggage, which can kill any bed bugs or eggs that may have traveled home with you.
  • Wash and dry all of your clothes – even those that have not been worn – on hot cycles.
  • Keep clothes that go to the dry cleaner in a sealed plastic bag until they can be transported.

Protect yourself from stinging insects over the next few months

Here are a few facts to help homeowners protect themselves from stinging insects over the next few months:

  • Stinging insects send more than 500,000 people to the emergency room every year. They can swarm and sting en masse, which can be life threatening especially for anyone who has an allergic reaction.
  • Unlike some stinging insect species, wasps are known for their unprovoked aggression. A single colony of wasps can contain more than 15,000 members, so an infestation should not be taken lightly.
  • Common nesting sites include under eaves, on ceiling beams in attics, garages and sheds and under porches. Some stinging insects can build their nests in the ground, including yellowjackets and velvet ants (which are actually a species of wasps). Over-seeding the yard provides more coverage and discourages these pests from nesting around the property.
  • Painting or staining untreated wood in fences, decks, swing sets and soffits will help keep stinging insects such as carpenter bees out. Carpenter bees create nests by drilling tunnels into soft wood, which can severely compromise the stability of a structure over time.
  • Only female carpenter bees have stingers. Female carpenter bees will only sting if threatened, but reactions to these stings can range from mild irritation to life-threatening respiratory distress.

This one’s got legs: are insect chocolates about to take off in France?

This one’s got legs: are insect chocolates about to take off in France?

Chocolate-maker Sylvain Musquar has so far sold 60 boxes of his worm and cricket-topped confections for €22 each

French chocolate-maker Sylvain Musquar

Sylvain Musquar shows off some his chocolates topped with insects. Photograph: Jean-Christophe Verhaegen/AFP/Getty Image
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From the country that brought the world the culinary delights of snails in garlic, frogs’ legs and pâté de foie gras comes another gastronomic first: cricket and worm chocolates.

Not to everyone’s taste, admits the French chocolate-maker Sylvain Musquar, who suggests customers should avoid looking closely at the original handmade confectionary in pride of place in his patisserie shop in Nancy.

“You mustn’t fix your eyes too much on them, or pay too much attention otherwise you won’t eat them,” Musquar said.

Even coated in edible gold dust, and even at a glance, there is no chance of mistaking the once-living decorations perched atop the chocolates.

Musquar, who uses a pair of tweezers to delicately place each insect or worm on the squares of chocolate “that shouldn’t be too soft or too hard”, says he came up with the idea while visiting Asia.

“There, eating insects is popular and part of the culture. I’m a chocolate maker, I thought why not mix the two,” Musquar told France 3 television.

He admits the crickets and mealworms he uses need a little “make-up … to make them a bit sexy” in the form of gold dust before being presented to the paying, consuming public.

“It makes them a bit more appetising and it covers the natural brown colour of the insects that might put people off,” he added.

For unsqueamish patriots heeding the siren call of the Made-in-France campaign, there is good news: the chocolates are 100% national produce.

The insects and worms are supplied by MicroNutris, a Toulouse-based specialist company that formed in 2011. “We began producing insects after an United Nations report on food and agriculture suggested they might be the solution to hunger in the world,” Cédric Auriol, the company’s founder, told Le Monde.

The crickets are raised for eight weeks and the mealworms for 12 weeks, during which Auriol says they are fed a “diet rich in vitamins, minerals and saturated fatty acids”.

Was this what the United Nations food and agriculture organisation had in mind when it suggested eating insects – or to give its proper name, entomophagy – might be a solution to global hunger?

Musquar believes mixing them with chocolate might just make the idea more palatable, and plenty of customers agree: he has already sold around 60 boxes of nine chocolates for €22 (£18.68) each.

South Florida Pest Control | Hulett Environmental Services


South Florida Pest Control | Hulett Environmental Services

Keep your guests happy and your backyard pest-free during barbecues!

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To keep your guests happy and your backyard pest-free during barbecues, consider the following tips: 

  1. Mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn, so if you are planning a barbeque before sunset, plan on having plenty of insect repellant containing an EPA-registered active ingredient like DEET or Picaridin available for you and your guests. Adorn your deck or patio with citronella candles that can help minimize the presence of mosquitoes in the area, and wear long sleeves or pants to avoid bites.
  2. Yellowjackets and other stinging insects are attracted to fragrances from shampoo, perfume and candles — not to mention food and drink. Avoid using scented items beforehand and provide clear plastic cups for your guests as aluminum cans and plastic bottles are good hiding spots for stinging insects.
  3. Prior to the party, check screen doors and repair any holes. And with guests coming in and out of your house, make sure the doors close behind them.
  4. Keep all food and beverages in sealed coolers and containers.
  5. Keep garbage containers sealed and away from guests.
  6. Clean trash, spills and crumbs immediately from tables and other surfaces.
  7. Rinse all beverage bottles and cans, and dispose of them in tightly closed garbage containers.
  8. Bring utensils and dishware indoors shortly after the meal.
  9. Plan to serve food and beverages indoors, and reserve outdoor space for eating and entertaining.
  10. Remove or drain sources of standing water in your yard that could be a breeding ground for mosquitoes, including birdbaths, and wading pools.