Raccoon Removal

Raccoons may look cute and cuddly but make no mistake about it…raccoons are one houseguest that you do not want.  Raccoons are a common nuisance in the southeast.  They can make a home in the attic of a structure and cause several thousands of dollars in damage.  Many times raccoons will make a home in an attic to have their babies, called kits.  They typically have 3-8 young in the late fall.  They can be a nuisance by getting into trashcans found outside of homes or business looking for food.

Along with the damage they can do to your home, they can also be a health concern:

  • Carry rabies in their saliva which can be transported by their bites.
  • Carry parasites on their fur that can impact both humans and animals.
  • Can transfer roundworms and fleas that they carry on their fur.

Wildlife ControlCommon traits of raccoons:

  • Female raccoons do not tend to be pack animals, however, males often form social groups to maintain their position against other males or predators.
  • Raccoons become aggressive when protecting their young.
  • Nocturnal.
  • Adaptable creatures.  Raccoons can easily adapt to their environments.

The feeding of raccoons by people has helped grow their population in urban areas.  Some wildlife experts and public authorities warn against feeding wild animals such as raccoons to discourage them from becoming dependent on humans as a food source.

If you think you have a raccoon in your house call a professional animal control or professional animal removal company immediately to reduce health risks and damage to property.

Tip: Loud noises, flashing lights, and foul odors are said to drive away raccoons before they would typically leave the nest on their own.

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

Avoiding Bed Bugs While Traveling

The holiday season is a busy time for travel.  People visiting family or taking holiday trips…it is a fun and exciting time.  But there are precautions to take when traveling.  Bed bugs have made a comeback in recent years and are a real concern for travelers.  Not only are they a concern for while on a trip but bringing them home can cause thousands of dollars and loss of sleep.

But this shouldn’t discourage people from traveling.  With knowledge and diligence, you can protect yourself and your home from bed bugs.

Tips for Avoiding Bed Bugs While Traveling:

  • Research the hotel.  If staying in a hotel do your research by reading reviews on the website and visiting The Bed Bug Registry.  The Bed Bug Registry is a free, public database where people report bed bug infestations across the US and Canada.
  • Keep luggage off of bed and floor. Place your luggage on a luggage rack, bathroom floor, or balcony when you enter the room.  Placing it on the bed or carpet could give present bed bugs easy access to your luggage.
  • Inspect your bed.  Check the headboard, foot board, mattress, sheets, pillows, and comforter for little bugs or dark red or brown spots that mark a trail.  Check seams and corners closely and the box springs.  If you see scurrying, dead bugs, or dark colored trails, notify the hotel management immediately.
  • Inspect your room. Check sofas and chairs, or other places that bed bugs could be found.
  • If you find bed bugs after you’ve slept in the room, notify hotel management right away.  They should launder all of your clothing and give you a new room immediately.

Preventing bed bugs from making their way home with you:

  • Unpack your bag in the garage or on a hard, light colored surface.  Do not unpack on the bed or carpet.  This will allow you to see any bed bugs if they scurry out of your bag.
  • Wash and dry all clothes as soon as possible on hot.
  • Vacuum your suitcase.
  • Although it’s unusual for bed bugs to travel on a person, shower before you sleep in your own bed.

If you suspect that bed bugs have made their way into your home, there is a solution.  Northwest Exterminating has a dedicated team of experts that specialize in the treatment of bed bugs.  Call the Mouse to get rid of bed bugs in your house.

 

 

Bon Appetit?: A Different Type of Insect Bites

Normally, an invitation from a friend to go out to lunch will be met with enthusiastic acceptance. However, if your friend tells you that bugs are on the menu, you’ll probably take a rain check. Here in the U.S. most people go great lengths to avoid creepy crawlers in the kitchen, but other countries around the world have a different view.

In some countries, dishes featuring insects are delicacies, so these meals are a rare and unusual treat, much like escargot and caviar. Grasshoppers are the favorite insect to eat, being included in the diets of some people from Latin America, Japan, Africa and the Middle East. Other insect treats include wasp larvae, silk moth pupae, and termites. Some brave students over at Princeton University decided to give it a try, though they described their silkworm treat as “surprisingly bland.”

One researcher states “insects have been a delicacy… not only because of their delicious flavor, but also because they provide a more complete protein… and are concentrated sources of calcium, magnesium, potassium and many other nutrients.” So not only do some people think they taste good, but some insects are also good for you – better than soy, meat, and fish! In addition, insect farming is ecologically less damaging than raising animals for human consumption. At Northwest Exterminating, we have a different type of recipe when it comes to insects. Our goal is also to reduce our impact on the environment while protecting your home from unwanted pests.

Sources:

http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/2795548-insects-are-worldwide-delicacies

http://blogs.princeton.edu/paw/2010/11/bugging_out_stu.html

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

 

Winter Lawn Care Tips

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean no yard work.  In fact, fall and winter lawn maintenance is vital to a healthy green lawn in the warmer months.  Here are some things to consider when caring for your lawn in the winter:

  • Keep it clean.  It’s important to keep your lawn clean of debris that could smother grass and promote the growth of weeds.  Rake leaves, remove debris, and keep pine straw in the beds.  This is also important in keeping unwanted bugs and other pests from finding a home in your lawn or even worse, your home.
  • Mow, if necessary. – If your grass is long it can smother itself, cause damage from freezing conditions, or develop diseases.  Beware not to cut the grass too short, you could scalp it and cause further damage.
  • Fertilize. Choose a fertilizer that is high in phosphate and focuses on root development rather than lush lead development.

Your lawn is supposed to be enjoyed.  So whether it’s having cook outs in the summer, raking leaves in the fall, or building snowmen in the winter…take care of your lawn.  And for those of you who like to spend your time and effort elsewhere, call a professional lawn care service to take on the task for you.  If you’re looking for lawn care in Atlanta call Northwest Lawn Care.

 

Live Christmas Trees and Insects

For many families, a live Christmas tree is part of the Christmas tradition in their household.  Whether you are chopping down a Christmas tree yourself at a Christmas tree farm or buying one that has already been cut, Christmas trees can bring much more than holiday spirit and that infamous Christmas smell to your home.

Christmas trees can often serve as homes to insects and birds. Although this can be unnerving to think about, with careful inspection you shouldn’t have anything to worry about.  The insects that make themselves at home in trees often can not survive in the warmth of your home.  In this case, it is best to wait for the insects to die and vacuum them up.

Other insects that are overwintering in your tree may confuse the warmth of your home for spring time and begin to hatch or come out of hibernation. This is why it is so important to thoroughly inspect your tree when picking it out.  Take a look at each branch for signs of insects.  If you see insects, simply remove them.  If you see a large amount of insects, it is probably best to choose another tree.  Make sure to vigorously shake your tree before bringing it into your home.  This will dislodge any insects that may be in your tree.

Most importantly, do not spray your tree with an insect repellant.  These products are highly flammable and could be dangerous with the lights and decoration you put on your tree.

If you are concerned about insects brought into your home by your Christmas tree, call the experts at Northwest Exterminating.

 

“The Pest Detectives” Free eBook

Pests may not be something that intrigues most adults but most kids enjoy watching and learning about insects and other bugs.  If you have a pest explorer in your home, we have just the read for you.

PestWorld.org has a FREE eBook where your little explorer can join “Millie, an 8 year old insect lover, as she solves real-life pest mysteries with her father, a pest professional.”  Your kids can follow Millie and her dad as they help Mrs. Romero identify the pest in her home, where they came from, and a treatment plan to get rid of the pests.

Download this FREE eBook today…you and your kids will both enjoy this pest mystery!

 

 

Hibernation

Wildlife ControlChanging temperatures means changes in the types of pest you may see around your area. One of the reasons you may soon see certain pests less is because of hibernation. Hibernation is a period of inactivity in animals during which they experience lower body temperatures, slower breathing and lower metabolic rates. Most people think that hibernation is just an animal sleeping but it’s more about the animal conserving energy during winter when food supplies are limited.

To prep for hibernation, animals spend the autumn foraging for food, which means they might be around or even inside your home searching for a treat! Animals that spend the autumn prepping for hibernation include bats, chipmunks, squirrels, raccoons, skunks, and bears. In addition, cold-blooded critters hibernate too because the cold weather causes their body temperatures to drop. These animals include bees, earthworms, frogs, toads, lizards, turtles, snails and snakes. You won’t have to worry worry about these animals foraging for food as they tend to hide away around the time autumn hits.

Make sure not to tempt these animals on to your property by maintaining a clean home and making sure the trash is not easily accessible. Northwest Exterminating can help guard your home by providing services such as Complete CrawlSpace and TAP Attic Insulation. If you are interested in this service or more, please visit us at www.callnorthwest.com!

Sources:

 

Happy Thanksgiving from Northwest Exterminating

Thanksgiving is a special time of year! It’s more than just a day where we sit around and stuff ourselves with food and watch football.  It’s a time to slow down and take some time to be thankful for all of the things that we have in our lives.  Whatever difficult times we may be having, we always have blessings to count.

This Thanksgiving, like all of them, we are thankful for so many things at Northwest.  We are so thankful for our customers who trust us each and every day to be their pest control or termite provider.  We’re thankful that you trust us to help keep your home and business and those that you care about healthy and pest free.

We have THE BEST team of any pest control management company out there.  Our Northwest team comes to work every day with a “Customers for Life” attitude.  Taking care of our customers is what is most important to us and we have a team that really lives this in their day to day lives.  Thank you!

This Thanksgiving, take a few minutes to think about all the things that you’re thankful for.  Even better, leave a comment and tell us what you’re thankful for this year!

Happy Thanksgiving from the team at Northwest Exterminating!

 

Invasive Pests

Most homeowners feel accustomed to seeing roaches, mice and squirrels around their home but other creatures may seem otherworldly. Many pests do not originate in the United States.  Still, what may seem like just an annoyance to you can have huge implications for our ecosystem. As reported by Pest Control Technology magazine, these invasive species cost the U.S. about $120 billion a year.

Though you may know to call our technicians when you see an unfamiliar pest, you may not know how the pest got here.

kudzu bug stink bugOne culprit is the live plant trade.  The importation of non-native plants has brought about 70% of the most damaging insects and diseases with it. One imported plant that plagues the Southeast is kudzu and with it, kudzu bugs. These tiny brown bugs feed of the kudzu and multiply just as far and fast as the plant does. Though kudzu may not be going anywhere, our technicians can take care of these little plant feeders.

When you hear of pests traveling to the United States, you may not realize they travel the same way we do! Pests travel into ports on international boats, get into luggage on flights around the world and hitch a ride on the interstate, cutting a trip that used to take them thousands of years down to less than twelve hours.

mosquitoOther troublesome invasive pests are mosquitoes that carry the West Nile Virus. As the name suggests, these bugs have come all the way from Africa! These particular mosquitoes breed with native mosquitoes and continue to spread the disease because conditions and climates, especially in the South are favorable to them.

Your Northwest Exterminating service representative can take care of these pest as well as many others, leaving you free from worry about potential risk factors. Keep in mind that the very nature of many of these pests, both native and non-native, leaves them somewhat resilient to permanent elimination. That said, your service representative will likely have to return the next season. Luckily, we at Northwest emphasize “Customers for Life” and hope to establish a relationship that will make return visits a rewarding experience.

Melissa Brown
mbrown@callnorthwest.com

 

Why Does My Lawn Have Mushrooms?

Calls have been coming into our office with homeowner’s wanting to know why they have mushrooms in their lawn.  Mushrooms come from a mixture of moisture (we’ve had a good amount of rain lately), cloudy weather, and organic material such as old mulch, animal waste, or rotting tree stumps.

Mushrooms are the reproductive part of fungi that lives in the soil.  Not only are mushrooms an eyesore to your healthy lawn but you don’t want children or pets to have access to them.

You can get rid of the mushrooms by manually removing them from your yard but that still does not take care of the problem.  Chances are the mushrooms will return.  Mushrooms will often go away when the sun comes out and the soil dries up.

There are preventative measures that you can take to prevent mushrooms from showing up in your lawn:

  • Decrease shade – Mushrooms like shade so trim back any branches in problem areas.  The more sunshine, the less likely you will see mushrooms.
  • Decrease moisture – Moisture in lawns enable mushrooms to thrive.  If you have standing water your soil may be compacted and you may need to aerate your lawn.
  • Dethatch your lawn – Excess thatch in the lawn absorbs moisture and enables mushrooms to grow.
  • Tree Stumps – A place where a tree used to be, even if the stump is removed, can be a breeding place for mushrooms.  The dead roots underground can be a cause for mushroom growth.  Keep the area aerated and clear (raking helps).
  • Pet waste – Remove any pet waste on the lawn on a regular basis.

If you have mushrooms in your yard it is best to call a professional lawn care company to diagnose the problem.  Mushrooms can sometimes be a sign of a more serious problem with your lawn.

Northwest Lawn Care professionals will do a Free Lawn Care Analysis and develop a customized plan to help get your lawn back on track to the healthy lawn that we all desire.