Squirrels in Your Attic?

Do you have trees near your home?  If so, then you have a threat of squirrels getting into your attic. They may look cute with their furry little bodies but don’t let them fool you, they can cause some major damage.  When they live in your home they damage insulation, electrical cables (potential fire hazard) and can be unsanitary by leaving urine and droppings throughout your attic.

One of the first clues that people experience is the sound of scratching, clawing, gnawing, or scurrying noises.  If you think that you may have squirrels in your attic, call a professionalSquirrel removal is not recommended for amateurs.

Things that you can do to prevent squirrels from getting into your attic:

  • Block off all potential entrances along your roofline.
  • Caulk any openings or crevices.
  • To keep squirrels from using utility wires as a way to your attic, slit a 2-foot section of 2-inch PVC pipe lengthwise and slip it over the wire. This makes squirrels unable to maintain their footing when the pipe rotates.
  • Look for signs of chewed wood near your roof.  This is a sign that something is in or has attempted to get into your attic.
  • Cut back tree limbs that are close to your structure.
  • Call a wildlife removal professional.  They will be able to remove the animal humanely.

Chewed electrical wire

 

All of these things can help but squirrels are excellent climbers and will sometimes find alternate ways to get into your home to feed and give birth.  The best solution is to call Northwest Exterminating to remove the squirrels in your attic.

Northwest Exterminating
830 Kennesaw Ave MariettaGA30060 USA 
 • 888-466-7849
 

Tips on How to Keep Ants Out of Your Home

There are over 700 species of ants in the US so it is no surprise that ants are the number 1 reported nuisance pest in the US.  But according to Pestworld.org there are 6 simple steps that can help you reduce the invasion of ants in your home.  Click on the links for more explanation from pestworld.org.

  1. Know the popular hangouts – mostly found in kitchens for food and water, ants can also be found in bathrooms, bedrooms, living rooms, basements, inside walls, and around heating and air structures.
  2. Eliminate water sources – rid your property of standing water and excessive moisture.  Use a dehumidifier in moist places like crawl spaces, attics, and basements.  Repair leaky pipes in and around tubs and sinks.
  3. Eliminate food sources – cleaning up spills and crumbs, sealing foods, and taking out the trash regularly will discourage ants from coming into your kitchen looking for food.
  4. Don’t discount your pets – pet food and water can attract ants if left out.  Clean up pet food and water and wash bowls when they are finished eating. Make sure that pet food is stored in a properly sealed container.
  5. Block off or eliminate access points – cut back foliage from property and seal any cracks or crevices that can be used as entrances.
  6. Don’t go it alone – without proper knowledge of ants your problem can grow.  Calling in the pest experts will help identify your problem and create a plan to solve it.

Read the full article HERE and contact a licensed pest professional to get rid of ants in your home.  Call Northwest Exterminating to get rid of ants and other pests that are invading your home or business.

Source http://www.pestworld.org/news-and-views/pest-articles/articles/six-steps-to-an-ant-free-home/

 

The History of Pest Control

Since the advent of agriculture, humans have needed a means to prevent pests from destroying their crops. Techniques such as crop rotation, intercropping and selective breeding of pest-resistant plants sought to make plants less desirable to weeds as well as herbivores. Nowadays, if your garden seems a delectable treat, Northwest offers modern methods through Lawn Care and Wildlife services to tackle these problems.

The traditional idea most people have of pest control involves the use of pesticides. Chemical pesticides, substances intended for the prevention of pests, aim to protect plants by producing an effect that deters, incapacitates, or kills pests. Historians credit Sumerians as the first known civilization to employ pesticides by using sulfur compounds to rid their crops in 2500 B.C. The Egyptians, as well as Chinese, used natural products such as herbs and oils to prevent infestation.  With NorPest Green and other Green services, Northwest takes after these ancient societies by using natural methods that eliminate pests with minimal harm to the ecological balance of the environment. We don’t just do pest management – we create healthier living and working environments.

The modern history of pest control began in the 18th and 19th century with the advent of widespread industrialization and mechanization. With the introduction of chemical compounds pyrethrum and derris, pest control became more widespread. The early 20th century saw another change in the pest control industry, with the use of DDT and herbicides. After the 1962 publishing of Rachel Carson’s book “Silent Spring,” the use of known harmful chemicals such as DDT came to a halt. Since then, the shift in pest management has been towards more traditional and natural pest management.

As stated earlier, Northwest maintains a commitment to creating healthier living and work environments by providing green pest control. We know the importance of protecting the health of our clients, their residences and workplaces by offering products that prevent pests without incurring ecological damage. As the Southeast’s leader in Green pest control, Northwest has proven that our products can control pests the way nature intended. We know that this is the future in pest management and hope you become a part of it too by joining the Northwest family.

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pest_control

http://extension.psu.edu/ipm/schools/educators/curriculum/contents/shorthistory

 

Work in the Fall Brings a Healthy Lawn in the Spring

We’re getting our first taste of fall! Cooler temperatures, football, and the changing of the leaves are all things that we have to look forward to in the coming months. Without the scorching heat it is a great time of year to get out in your yard and prepare your lawn for the cold months ahead. Cooler weather allows your grass to focus on root growth and build up density. The more preparation you do in the fall, the healthier and greener your lawn will be in the spring.

Things to do in the fall for a healthy lawn in the spring:

  • Fall is the best time to target weeds. This is the time to apply herbicides to broadleaf weeds.
  • If your soil is in need of a reduction in acidity, apply lime. If you’re not sure, have a lawn care company perform a soil test.
  • Make sure to rake up any leaves that have fallen onto your lawn.
  • Water during warm spells only. Watering isn’t as necessary in the cooler months as it is in warmer months. Be sure to water when temperatures are unusually high.
  • Fertilize your lawn if you have cool season grass such as fescue.
  • Raise the height on your lawn mower. Do not over cut the lawn.
  • Grass clippings can be beneficial this time of year. Leave clippings where they fall unless a large amount has been cut.
  • Overseeding should be done to fix bare patches in lawn or to keep lawn looking green throughout the winter.
  • Call a lawn care company such as Northwest that can come assess your lawn and let you know what steps should be made in the fall to be sure that you have a healthy, green lawn in the spring and summer.

Visit us at www.callnorthwest.com/lawn-care/ for more information on our Northwest Lawn Care services.

 

Norway Rat

Norway RatDid you know that the Norway rat is the largest commensal (def’n: living with, on, or in another, without injury to either) rodent in the US?

Norway rats enter homes in the fall when food sources outside of a structure are scarce.

Identification

  • Usually gray in color
  • Smaller eyes and ears
  • Tail is short relative to the head and body
  • Droppings are 3/4 inch and blunt on the ends

Environment

  • Can exist in large numbers in and around residences, basements, stores, warehouses, docks, sewers, or dumpsters
  • Outside of a structure they can be found in fields, farm land, and wood piles
  • Burrow to make nests under buildings, beneath concrete slabs, around ponds, in and around garbage and other locations suitable for food, water, and shelter
  • Nests may be lined with shredded paper, cloth or other fibrous materials
  • Usually become active at dusk to begin seeking water and food
  • Eats nearly any type of food but prefers a nutritionally balanced diet, consisting of cereal grain, meats, fish, nuts, and some fruits

Threats

  • Likes to burrow and can form extensive galleries
  • Have litters of 6 to 12 young that can eat solid food within 2 to 3 weeks
  • Young become completely independent at about 4 weeks and reach reproductive maturity as early as 3 months
  • Can enter a structure through an opening the size of a quarter
  • Can chew through wiring, causing fire
  • Spread numerous diseases

Treatment

  • Traps placed indoors near entrance points and known runways
  • Burrows outdoors may be baited
  • Exterior bait stations may be placed on the perimeter of the structure

For rat control or other animal removal services, call Northwest Exterminating.  Our Wildlife Control and Animal Removal Services team will inspect your home and property for signs of wildlife and points of entry.  We specialize in the exclusion, removal, and control of wildlife nuisances.

 

 

Pest Proof Your Home

Around this time of year, cooler temperatures drive people to stay indoors. As some homeowners may know, a number of household pests such as rodents, spiders, ants, and roaches seek coziness from the weather too.  Pests are more than just unwelcome houseguests – they bring the possibility of disease, food contamination and allergies too.

Below are some tips from the National Pest Management Association on pest-proofing your house for the fall. However, these tips don’t always work on some of those hard-to-get-rid -of pests, always remember you can call Northwest Exterminating for your pest management needs because creating healthier living and work environments is our business.

  • Install door sweeps on the exterior of doors and repair door and window screens. Also seal cracks and holes around the perimeter of your home.
  • Place screens over vents and chimney openings
  • Store food in tightly sealed containers and dispose of trash regularly.
  • Keep your attic, basement and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry (ask your Northwest representative about TAP attic insulation and Complete Crawlspace). Sites of moisture are breeding grounds for pests.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house and keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed and cut back from the house (ask your representative about Northwest’s Lawn Care services).
  • If you suspect that your home has been infested, contact a licensed pest professional to inspect and treat the problem – for the best, Call Northwest!

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

 

Dr. Goo’s Corner: Wildlife and Rabies

Wildlife ControlWith cooler weather moving in it is the time of year where wildlife such as squirrels, rodents, raccoons, etc, begin to take refuge in your home.  Animal control is important for the health of your home.  Rodents make for unsanitary conditions by urinating, leaving droppings, chewing on wires, insulation, and other items in the attic, and can often carry disease.  Some rodents can be dangerous and will attack if they feel that they or their young are in danger.

A common concern for wildlife is the threat of rabies.  Rabies is a serious illness so we went to our health expert, Dr. Goo.  Below, Dr. Goo talks about the risk rabies:

Rabies is a viral illness that can cause death and serious illness if untreated. If treated quickly and appropriately almost everyone can be cured of rabies.

The most important way to avoid rabies is to not be bitten or exposed to animals that potentially may have the rabies virus.

The most common animal exposures to rabies are from wild animals. Bats, raccoons, skunks, foxes and coyotes are the primary animals that carry rabies in the United States.

Pets can be protected from rabies by getting their rabies shots annually.  Domestic animals rarely transmit rabies.

If you think you may have been exposed or bitten by an animal that has rabies you should call the Georgia Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222.  You should also notify your doctor.

Remember, prevention and avoidance are the best defense against rabies.

Northwest Exterminating offers Wildlife Control for you and your family. The Wildlife Services Team specializes in the exclusion, removal, and control of wildlife nuisances like bats, raccoons, skunks, foxes and coyotes – the most common causes of rabies exposure.

For more detailed information about rabies exposure, treatment, prevention, and protection, please visit the Center for Disease Control and the Georgia Poison Center.

Dr. Goo
 

WebMD’s Bad Bugs Slideshow

We know that bugs are gross and unsanitary but did you also know that they can be bad for our health.  WebMD discusses some of the worst bugs and the potential harm they can do to our health:

  • Ticks –Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and allergic reactions.
  • Black Widow Spiders – Poisonous.
  • Brown Recluse Spiders – Poisonous, can cause serious wounds, infection, and in some cases can be deadly.
  • Head Lice – Itchiness can lead to infection, loss of hair.
  • Fleas – Itchiness can lead to infection.
  • Bee, Wasp, Hornet, Yellow Jacket – Painful sting, and can cause allergic reaction.
  • Fire Ants – Painful sting, venomous, red bumps that burn and itch, and can cause allergic reaction.
  • Chiggers – Itchy red welts.
  • Scabies – Itchiness, sores.
  • Bedbugs – Itchy, red bumps,  can develop infection from scratching, and can cause allergic reaction.
  • Puss Caterpillar – Poisonous, painful sting, rash, fever, vomiting, and muscle cramps.
  • Scorpions – Poisonous, painful, and can be deadly.
  • Deerflies – Infection, and Tularemia.
  • Mosquitoes – West Nile virus, dengue fever, other diseases, and scratching can cause skin infection.
  • Houseflies – Carries more than 1 million bacteria, intestinal infections by contaminating food.
  • Cockroaches – Salmonella and other diseases, dead carcasses can trigger allergic reactions and asthma.

Tips to prevent feeling the sting of these health issues:

  • Make sure your home is treated by a professional exterminator.  A professional can diagnose current problems, and prevent new issues from coming into your home efficiently and effectively.
  • Wear long clothing when outdoors.
  • Wear DEET repellant when outdoors.
  • Keep a clean, sanitary home and yard.  This will prevent insects from seeing your home as a place for them to call home.

For more information on these insects and their health hazards, visit WebMD: Bad Bugs Slideshow: Identifying Bugs and Their Bites.

 If you think you may have been bitten or stung by any of the insects above, please take note of  your body’s reaction and seek medical assistance immediately.

 

 

 

Insect Fashion

Insects and other pests may inspire a myriad of thoughts but fashion likely does not come to mind. Still, the array of colors and shapes found in the insect world may already have invaded your closet! Take a look at these bug inspired fashions below that are crawling down the hottest runways.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If these outfits don’t pique your interest, perhaps these jewelry options below may intrigue you. Bug jewelry comes not only in artful bug designs but also feature actual insects!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bugs are “in” this season but you don’t want them “in” your home.  Call Northwest Exterminating or visit www.callnorthwest.com to learn how we can help you. If you want to see more artsy insect creations, please visit us on our Pinterest page.

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

 

Cicada Killer Wasps

You are probably seeing cicada killer wasps working overtime these last few weeks of summer.  They are preparing to overwinter by digging their underground burrows and stuffing them with paralyzed cicadas that they will use as food for their larvae.

Cicada tunnels can range from 30-70 inches long and run 12-15 inches below the surface.  Each tunnel has an average of 15 side chambers.  Each tunnel contains 1-3 paralyzed cicadas and a cicada egg that is due to hatch in 2-3 days.  The larvae will feed for about 10 days before leaving the tunnel.  Cicadas only produce one generation each year.

Where are cicadas found?

Cicadas do not have a pack mentality; they are typically a solitary species.  They prefer dry, light textured soils in full sunlight that are near trees that harbor other cicadas.  Common places to find cicada killers are along sidewalks, patios, in flowers beds, gardens, sand boxes and in lawns.

Do cicadas sting?

Female cicadas have stingers that are used to inject venom into other cicadas that causes them to be paralyzed.  Female cicada stings are very painful.  Luckily, females are not territorial like honey bees or hornets.  Male cicadas do not have stingers but are very territorial.

Can cicada killers cause damage?

Female cicada killers burrow and dig tunnels which cause the soil to be misplaced and smother grass.  Cicadas dig loose soil in garden and flower beds that can ruin garden plants and/or vegetables.  A burrow at the base of a plant can disrupt the root system.

How to get rid of cicadas?

Cicadas do not like wet soil so keeping soil watered will deter them from making their borrows  and cause current cicadas to abandon the site.  Watering the soil can also help to settle the soil back into the ground if it has been disrupted by a burrowing cicada.  Another tip is to regularly stir soil or sand to discourage wasps from creating tunnels.

When treating for cicadas, the application should be made directly into the burrow or at entrance.  If you have cicadas messing up your lawn, call Northwest!