Integrated Pest Management Solutions
Guide for Interior Insect Control
Shared responsibilities in environmental manipulation to control insects are the latest in scientific research on integrated pest management (IPM). Common exterior and interior pests are controlled by basic sanitation and good housekeeping strategies, with a reduction in the use of chemical controls. The following information is being offered on how to reduce pest insect problems in a timely, safe, effective manner.
Nonchemical Pest-Control Methods – These Guidelines Will Reduce Interior Pest Problems
1. Exterior plants and shrubs should be trimmed back.
2. Windows and doors should be closed, or screened when open.
3. Reducing storage in the interior limits areas where insects can nest.
4. All areas should be thoroughly vacuumed and dusted. This will help to determine whether the insect’s activity is current or old.
5. Chemical applications can be used after the above guidelines are followed.
There is another way. The least expensive and least hazardous option is to use gopher traps that were created for the job.
Prior to Gopher Treatment
The entire area to be treated must be thoroughly irrigated four to six inches deep. This ensures the most effective treatment methods are being utilized.
Gophers are known to come from adjacent properties. The objective of service is to provide control as needed. Service will be a combination of poison gas and pellets, as determined at the time of service.
Gopher Life Cycle and Breeding
Gophers live three to five years. They do not hibernate and they can be active anytime. The female is pregnant for 18 days, and weans her young in five to eight weeks. She can have three to five litters (of two to 10 young) per year. After weaning her young, the mother drives them off and dispersal begins, usually 300 to 400 feet from the old burrow. Gophers are nocturnal grazers.
The burrow system can be up to 300 square yards. It includes surface mounds and feeding burrows. Burrows are plugged during inactivity or nesting.
Gopher Mound and Tunnel Facts
Gophers use their keen sense of smell to locate foods such as bulbs, tubers, roots, grasses, seeds and occasionally tree bark. They sometimes consume entire plants by pulling them down into their burrows.
Rodent-proofing, also known as “exclusion,” involves the construction and maintenance of a building so rats and mice are unable to gain entrance to it or maintain harborage. Rodent-proofing by restricting rodent access to food and by eliminating living and breeding areas results in a lasting reduction in the number of rodents.
When rodent-proofing, two principles must be kept in mind: First, the exterior of the structures, including porches, should have all openings permanently closed with materials that are resistant to the gnawing of the rodent. All doors, grates, sub-area accesses and screens should be properly installed, including thresholds and weather stripping. Second, the interior of the building must provide no access to dead spaces, such as double walls, space between the ceiling and floor, staircases, piping into the wall or other places where there is safe harborage. These areas must be permanently sealed with impervious materials such as concrete or sheet metal.
The following lists the more important avenues of entry for rodents into buildings and residences:
8. Rodents can enter the building due to the lack of a permanent skirting. The building may be protected from rodent entry by placing a “curtain wall” (a barrier of metal, concrete or brick) next to a concrete footing.
9. The building’s doors need to be secured with proper weather stripping and remain closed.
10. Sub-area entrances that are not secured allow direct access to the building for rodents.
11. Doors for kitchen and dining areas need threshold and weather stripping. Pipes in kitchens and bathrooms need to be sealed at the wall and ceiling. Keep the door shut.
12. Any broken windows need to be replaced. Repair and seal holes in the building and keep doors shut.
13. Shrubs and trees should be trimmed away from the structure, especially as they grow up against the building or touch the roof.
14. Keep tight lids on all garbage cans and pick up any spills or debris.
In structures, the most permanent form of rodent control is to build them out, thereby decreasing the chance of rodent populations continuing to invade the building.
I hope the above information assists you in your rodent control program. If you require further information or have any questions, please call us directly so that you can receive the prompt attention you need.
We can also help with white flies, gnats, bats, ants and other pests. Please call or fill out the form at the top of this page for more information.