Happy Memorial Day from Northwest Exterminating

Northwest Exterminating would like to wish everyone a Happy Memorial Day.  We want to thank those that have given their lives for our country, as well as their families.  We are very grateful for what you’ve done for this country.

Today isn’t just an extra day for the weekend or a day to catch up on chores…it’s a day to remember those who have given the ultimate sacrifice.  Please take some time today to observe those who paid the price for our freedom.

  • place flags or flowers on the graves of fallen soldiers
  • visit memorials
  • fly the US flag at half-staff until noon
  • participate in a “National Moment of Remembrance” at 3 pm
  • assist the widows, widowers, and children of the fallen
  • assist disabled veterans
  • attend a local parade

Wishing everyone a safe and Happy Memorial Day from Northwest Exterminating!

Technician Tales: Bees and the Not-So-Sweet Honey

The following story is the reason I decided to start bringing a camera with me on the job.  I didn’t want to miss any unique experiences like this one.
I showed up at the customer’s house on a rainy afternoon.  They had told our office staff that they had seen bees on the side of their home and had heard some buzzing in the wall.  At first glance it seemed pretty typical, bees entering the structure of the home and building a hive.  The customer asked me to look at something outside, she then pointed out a large mass in a tree in her neighbor’s yard.  I grabbed my binoculars to get a better look and I couldn’t believe what I saw.  Attached to the tree was a mass twice the size of a football and filled bees.  (After researching this phenomenon I discovered this is how they transfer the queen to a new hive.  All the workers gather around the queen to protect her while a select few special workers prepare the hive.)
The bees were entering the customers house through a small gap between the brick basement and the hardy plank siding.  By using a stethoscope, I was able to locate the exact location of the hive, the ceiling above their living room which was also the floor of the master bedroom.  I drilled into the ceiling and found honey on my drill which confirmed the hive location.
We began carefully cutting into the sheet rock to reveal the hive.  What we saw was truly nature at work.
Thousands of bees working together for one common purpose, to make honey!  The noise was deafening, the buzz of the bees filled the room, yet surprisingly they didn’t attack.
When bees are inside a home we remove them with a shop-vac.  We began to remove individual pieces of honeycomb and place them in garbage bags, we filled up 2 contractor sized bags each weighing about 30-40 lbs!  Once the honeycomb was removed, every ounce of wax and honey must be completely cleaned off, so we scraped and scrubbed to ensure the bees and other pests wouldn’t come back.
We sealed up the entry on the outside of the home and placed plastic around the opening to keep any left over bees from entering the living space of the home.  Success!  Hive removed, customer and family safe!
Matt Bowley
Inspection Specialist
404.446.8885 | callnorthwest.com

iPest app

We’ve recently discovered a useful tool that has helped us both inside and outside of the office.  iPest is a mobile app that is beneficial not only for pest control technicians but homeowners, building managers, etc.  The iPest app is a guide that was developed by researchers at the University of Florida.  The app is a great tool to identify and educate yourself on common pests that are found in and around homes and businesses.  iPest contains 3 series, a search tool, and color photos that can help you quickly find a particular pest.

Series:

iPest1cockroaches, flies, occasional invaders, and urban pest and wildlife droppings. 

iPest2ants, beetles, termites and wood destroying insects.

iPest3 – biting, stinging, and bloodsucking arthropods

This app has been a great tool in and outside of the office and we think it would be great for our customers as well.

Go to you app store and purchase iPest for $1.99

Northwest Exterminating and Toys for Tots

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!!!  The Christmas season can bring such happiness to people.  Celebrating with loved ones, taking part in festivities and old traditions.  But Northwest Exterminating realizes that all are not so fortunate and this time of year can be very stressful to those families who are struggling.  This year, Northwest Exterminating is partnering with Toys for Tots to help families who can not provide gifts for their children this Christmas.

Some of our service centers will be used as a drop-site for Toys For Tots.  If you would like to make a donation, please visit your local Northwest Exterminating service center by December 23 to put your toys in the Toys for Tots boxes.  If you’re not sure where the closest service center is to you, visit us online.  You can also visit Toys for Tots’ website for more information. Together we can help children have a happy, memorable holiday.

September is Head Lice Prevention Month

I bet you didn’t know that September is head lice prevention month.  We talked a bit last week about how to spot lice and nits, but we’d like to talk today about treatment and prevention.

Treatment:

  • Use a lotion or shampoo that contains 1% permethrin.  These products can be found at any local drug store without a prescription.  If the product does not work, you may need to contact your doctor for a prescription treatment.
  • The most important part of treatment is removing the nits.  Nits can live for more than 2 weeks.
  • Some dishwashing detergents are helpful in removing nits.  They dissolve the glue-like stickiness that enables the nits to stick to the hair.
  • Rubbing olive oil in the hair makes nits easier to remove.
  • Use a nit comb.  Metal combs work better than plastic combs.
  • Rub a nit comb through beeswax to make nits easier to remove.
  • Treat promptly and thoroughly.
  • Wash all clothes and bed sheets in hot water and detergent.
  • Repeat treatment in 7-10 days.

Prevention:

  • If possible, do not come in close contact with someone who has lice or who is suspected of having lice.
  • Do not touch clothing or bedding of someone who has lice.
  • Do not share hats, combs, brushes or towels of someone who has lice.
  • Check children often if they are in school, daycare or any environment where they are around other children.

Keep in mind that lice can happen to anyone, regardless of hygiene practices, social status or race.  And although lice should be treated seriously, it does not lead to any serious medical issues.

School Has Started…So Has Lice

With school well on its way, the dreaded head lice are on the minds of many parents. Head lice are tiny insects that live on the scalp and are spread by close contact with others.  Lice is known to spread quickly from person to person.  Close contact and the quickness at which it spreads are reasons why when one student seems to get lice…they all seem to get lice.

Lice and their eggs, or nits, latch onto strands of hair, sometimes even eyebrows and eyelashes.  Nits are tiny but still visible and often look like flakes of dandruff.  Before you spot lice on your child’s head you may notice them itching their scalp or see small red bumps on their scalp, neck or shoulders.  When checking your child for lice, be sure to look under a bright light while wearing disposable gloves.  Part the hair down to the scalp in several small sections, searching throughout the entire head this way.

If you’ve found lice or nits in your child’s hair, treat immediately.  Be sure to notify their teacher or director if they are in school.  Explain to your child that lice is nothing to be ashamed or afraid of.  In most cases, when treated quickly and preventative measures are taken, the lice and nits go away.  Although the itching may be uncomfortable, lice does not lead to any serious medical problems.

Tips for Staying Cool

The warmer weather allows us to enjoy the great outdoors.  However, we also need to remember the dangers that excessive heat can bring.  Heat can be dangerous for everyone especially children and the elderly.  Whether you’re enjoying time at the pool or working outside in the yard, check out our tips for staying cool this summer.

  • Air conditioning – If air conditioning is available, use it. 
  • Fans – If air conditioning is not available use overhead or window fans to keep air flowing.
  • Windows – Keep windows and blinds shut during the day to block the sun and heat.  Opening windows at night when there is a cool breeze will help keep air flowing through your home.
  • Water misting fan – Use this hand held, battery operated device that sprays a mist of water while a fan blows to keep you cool.
  • Dress accordingly – Wear natural fabrics such as cotton, silk, linen or performance fabric rather than polyester, rayon, or other artificial fibers.  Also, be sure to wear light colors.
  • Turn off electrical items – Use your oven and stove as little as possible–eat out, eat cold food, or use the microwave.  Turn off your lamps, tv and computer when you’re not using them – these items produce a lot of heat when in use.
  • Cucumber – Slice a thin piece of cold cucumber and stick it in the middle of your forehead! This feels fantastic on a hot day or when stuck in a hot car, and works almost immediately!
  • Water – Water could be one of the most important keys to staying hydrated and cool in the heat.  Keep a spray bottle to spray when you get too warm, bathe in cold water, drink, soak feet in ice buckets, or soak a t-shirt.  Running cold water over each wrists for 10 seconds each will reduce your temperature for roughly an hour.
  • HYDRATE – The key to preventing dehydration is to drink before you are thirsty and avoid caffeine or alcohol.  Drink lots of water or sports drinks.  Sports drinks replace electrolytes and provide carbs to working muscles.

Signs of dehydration:

  • Dry lips and tongue.
  • Headache.
  • Weakness, dizziness, or extreme fatigue.
  • Concentrated urine that appears darker than normal.
  • Nausea.
  • Memorial Day

    Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day for Americans to honor our fallen soldiers.  Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on May 5, 1868 and first observed May 30, 1868.  It is always observed on the last Monday in May each year.

    Memorial Day was first used to honor the fallen Union soldiers of the American Civil War, however, after WWI it was extended to honor all wars fought by American military.  Celebrations began with women decorating the graves of soldiers who had died while at war.

    In December of 2000, the “National Moment of Remembrance” resolution was passed.  The resolution asks Americans “To voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to ‘Taps” at 3:00 pm.

    Today, the meaning of the holiday can be forgotten by the excitement of a 3 day weekend and the unofficial start of summer.  Although, celebrating by spending time with our loved ones, vacationing, and cook-outs are all good ways to celebrate…let’s always remember the reason for the holiday.  Visit the grave of a soldier, thank a solider or make sure to talk to your children about the brave men and women who serve our country every day.

    If you live in the Powder Springs area, please come out to the Powder Springs Library, 4181 Atlanta Street, for a Memorial Day Ceremony.  The keynote speaker will be a 27 year veteran who spent 20 of those years in the Army Special Forces.

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