Pest Free Landscaping – A yard that helps keep pests out of the house.

Pest Free Landscaping – What’s that?

It’s Spring at last! North-easterners are emerging from their homes to enjoy the outdoors. The first place we all notice is our yard and garden. Which plants made it through the Winter? We begin to clean up the Winter damage and design our garden.

Guess who else is emerging this Spring? Carpenter ants and termites. The way you clean-up and re-plant your landscape this Spring will make a great difference whether or not these pests find a way into your home.

What is pest-free landscaping? We’re not talking about a landscape that is free of insects. In this article, we use the term “pest-free landscaping” to refer to landscaping that doesn’t encourage pests to enter into your home.

Pest Free Landscaping – Soil and Mulch

One common Spring gardening activity is the re-application of a fresh layer of mulch and bark dust. Mulch and bark dust help keep the soil from drying out during the hot Summer and therefore promote healthy plant growth. But this moisture quality in mulch becomes a great environment for termites and carpenter ants. When the mulch layers pile up over the years until they are in contact with the wooden siding on your home, this becomes a major highway for carpenter ants and termites to enter into your home.

It’s best to keep mulch at least 4″ below the place where your home’s concrete foundation ends and the wooden structure begins. In addition, don’t let the mulch layer thicken beyond 3″. Excessive mulch can harm plants while becoming a super hotel for carpenter ants and termites.

Pest Free Landscaping – Raised Gardens

Do you have a raised garden against the side of your home? If so, you’ll be watering it throughout the Summer, keeping the soil moist so the plants can grow. However, this moist soil right against your house can harbor carpenter ants and termites. They also love the wet wooden sides of the planter. It’s pretty easy for them to tunnel right through the planter and into your home! Make sure there is an insect-proof lining between the planter and your home. Concrete or metal is a good choice.

Pest Free Landscaping – Trees and Large Plants

One great highway pests use to enter your home is trees and large plants that are in direct contact with the house. Eliminating this natural insect highway will go a long way toward preventing a carpenter ant or termite infestation. Inspect the area around your house for any tree branches that are in direct contact with the structure or overhanging the roof. Trim them back. Do you have vines growing up the siding? As attractive as they look, you might want to eliminate them.

Pest Free Landscaping – Thick Ground-cover

That dense ivy growing right up to the walls of your home keeps the soil moist, which in turn encourages carpenter ants and termites. Cut it back a few feet from your home so the soil immediately around your home can dry out, providing a natural barrier against these pests.

Pest Free Landscaping – How well did you do?

If you see any of the following signs, you might revisit your pest-free landscaping strategy.

pest free landscapingCarpenter Ant warning signs:
  • Swarmers (Winged ants)-This is a sign that the colony is looking to expand and look for a new nesting site
  • Sawdust (fine wood shavings that the Carpenter Ants push aside to create nesting sites, known as “frass”)
  • Crunching noises behind the wall
  • Seeing more than 10 ants a day throughout your house, or seeing any ants inside your house in the winter months
pest free landscapingTermite warning signs:
  • Mud tunnels or mud tubes. These are typically found on the sides of foundations
  • Swarmers (Winged Termites)-This is a sign that the nest is near
  • Damaged wood-The wood will appear to be crushed, or you will see tunnels. Galleries will be filled with soil and chewed wood, while ant tunnels are very clean
Pest Free Landscaping – The Ultimate Test
If you can pass the ApolloX pest-free landscaping test, you know you’ve done everything possible to create a pest-free landscape around your home. Have us not only check the outside of your home, but also conduct a thorough inspection of the inside of your home to ensure it is pest-free. After all, did you know all these tips last year? If not, carpenter ants and termites could already be inside your home!

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Drywood Termites – How to discover and exterminate.

Drywood Termites – Serious Problem

drywood termites Drywood termites are pale to dark brown in color and about 1/4 to 1/2 inches long. Unlike subterranean termites, drywood termites do not need moisture. They don’t need to have their base colony underground nor do they need to create mud tubes from the ground into your home. 

This creates two issues:

  • Harder to discover: First, without the tale-tale mud tubes characteristic of subterranean termites, or a highly visible winged invasion, drywood termites may not be as easily discovered in your home.
  • Greater mobility: Second, drywood termites are more mobile. Here’s a possible scenario: You purchase a beautiful new wooden cabinet, or an antique wooden table. Unknown to you, the wooden furniture is infested with a colony of drywood termites. They were already hidden in the furniture before you brought it into your home. Once inside your home, the drywood termites easily move from the furniture into the framework of your house.

Like subterranean termites, drywood termites destroy wood and can cause irreparable damage to your home.

Drywood Termites – Prevention

One of the best ways to prevent drywood termites from entering into your home is to thoroughly inspect all wood that you bring into your home. This includes all wooden furniture and wood used in remodeling jobs (i.e. wooden flooring to replace an existing floor, new wooden siding, the wood used in a new addition to your home…etc.). You can ask for a certificate of termite inspection when purchasing wood that will enter your home.

Termites hate citrus. It drives them away. When cleaning any exposed wood inside your home, use citrus-based cleaners. 

Drywood Termites – Discovery

As we said, drywood termites may be harder to discover than subterranean termites–but not impossible. Look for the dark fecal pellets they push outside their living area. These will eventually form small piles.

Do not assume that the drywood termites have only remained in the new wooden furniture. By the time you discover them, they could have already moved out of the furniture and into the wooded structure of your home. If you suspect drywood termites, call a licensed termite exterminator to confirm the presence of the termites.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Drywood Termites – How to rid your home of an infestation.

There are basically 2 ways to exterminate drywood termites: Chemicals and Heat

  • Chemicals: These will usually be in the form of poisonous gas used to fumigate all or part of your home. Chemical injections can also be used, especially if your are absolutely certain the infestation is well localized in a smaller area. It is highly recommended that you call on the services of a licensed termite exterminator to ensure chemicals are safely employed.
  • Heat: As with bed bugs, heat also kills drywood termites. The infested area will need to be tented, then brought up to the required temperature for the recommended period of time. The advantage of using heat is that there is no toxic gas or liquid substance in your home. The disadvantage is that if improperly applied the heat may be ineffective. You want to ensure that all the termites are killed, for any stragglers could continue to spread and do further damage to your home.

Drywood Termites – Better safe than sorry.

Considering the damage drywood termites can cause to your home (they’re like a smoldering fire), it’s a good idea to schedule a periodic termite inspection by a licensed termite exterminator every few years.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Article Inspiration From: http://killtermitesyourself.com/how-to-kill-drywood-termites/

Locate Termite Colony – Track termite activity back to their home.

Locate Termite Colony – Evidence a colony is near.

locate termite colonyFlying termites (the reproductive form of termites) in or around your home is one of the signs a termite colony is near. Flying termites originate in a nearby existing colony and are looking to breed and start a new termite colony. For example, there’s a termite colony in an old dead tree stump on or near your property. The flying termites originate there, and then enter your home looking to establish a new colony in your home. 

Locate Termite Colony – Make sure it’s termites and not carpenter ants.

First, make sure it’s not a flying ant (similar looking). Flying ants have 3 segments to their bodies while flying termites have only two segments.

Locate Termite Colony – Where the flying termites might appear in your home.

The first visible sign people often see is termite wings on a window sill or along a baseboard. What’s happening here? Flying termites drop their wings after mating.

Locate Termite Colony – Where flying termites go to lay their eggs.

Termites Pest ControlWhere do flying termites go after mating? They’re looking for a place to lay their eggs and start a new colony. Here’s were some detective work comes into play. If we’re talking about subterranean termites (the species most common the the Northeastern U.S.) the flying termites will drop their wings and then burrow into the mud to lay their eggs. Look for the tale tale mud tubes they create as they burrow into the ground, or move from the ground up into the wooden structure of your home.

Locate Termite Colony – Follow the mud tubes.

What are the most likely locations to discover the mud tubes? Look in a dark moist location (the crawl space under your home is a likely candidate). If there is a water leak dripping underneath your home, so much the better for the termites! Look in cracks in your home’s foundation. Look underneath your home’s siding. Check your basement.

Once you’ve located their mud tubes, you’re close to the termite colony.

Locate Termite Colony – What if you can’t find any mud tubes?

If you’re unable to locate any mud tubes, this doesn’t necessarily mean that there is no termite colony in or near your home. It’s best to schedule a professional termite inspection:

Call ApolloX Pest Control

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Locate Termite Colony – Once you discover the mud tubes, what’s next?

The best methods to exterminate a termite colony are liquid termiticide sprays and baiting systems. Spray the termiticide around the foundation of your home. If you discover holes or cracks in the walls, spray there too. Spray where the mud tubes are located. Place termite bait in the soil around the foundation of your home spacing the bait in intervals of about one foot.

Locate Termite Colony – 4 primary dangers to avoid.

The first of 4 dangers is that the toxic termiticide and bait might come in contact with yourself, your children or your pets. 

The second danger is that you may think you’ve located and eliminated the termite colony, when in reality, you have not. What if there is more than one colony? What if there is a colony on or near your property waiting until next year to send it’s winged ambassadors back into your home?

locate termite colonyThe third danger is that, while you may have eliminated the termite colony, there is damage to your home that is in critical need of repair. For example, an important foundation support may have been compromised.

The fourth danger is that conditions remain in your home favorable to the establishment of another termite colony. There may be a hidden water leak that dampens your home’s foundation or the ground beneath your home.

Locate Termite Colony – Better safe than sorry.

Only a licensed professional termite exterminator can give you the peace of mind that all the termites have been safely located and exterminated, that there are no conditions in your home that favor termites and what damage needs to be repaired.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Consider what needs to happen to restore a home to health after a fire? Termites are like a silent fire, and even after they’ve been “put out”, your home will need attention. Though termite damage may not be as evident as fire damage, it can be as critical

Ideas, thanks to: http://killtermitesyourself.com/how-to-kill-flying-termites/

Termite Types – Not All Termites Are the Same

Termite Types – Overview

Termite TypesNot all termites are the same, and not all are  commonly found in every part of the United States. Imagine you’re visiting your retired parents in Florida, or your grandchildren on the West Coast. Wouldn’t it be important to them if you were able to recognize the presence of termites and perhaps save them the high cost of dealing with termite damage?

This article will help you recognize the different types of termites and a little about their habits.

Termite Types – Where in the U.S.?

Subterranean Termites: These can be found just about anywhere in the U.S. Their name comes from the fact that the live underground, in dirt, and even create dirt tunnels in order to stay hidden as they move from the soil into the foundation, framework and siding of a home. If you live in the Northeastern U.S., this is the variety of termites you are most likely to encounter.

Dampwood Termites: These are primarily found along the Pacific Coast and in the Southwest and Florida. They mostly eat wood that is damp and rotting. As such wood exists more in the forest or an abandoned wood or brush pile, rather than a solid man-made structure, these termites are more of a nuisance than some of the other varieties.

Drywood Termites: These are found primarily in the Western, Southeast and South-Central U.S. They’re much more destructive to property than dampwood termites. Living in wood that has low moisture content, they are more likely to be transported in the wooden objects like furniture, and from there into the structure of a home or commercial building.

Formosan Subterranean Termites: Enjoying warmer climates, these have been discovered in Hawaii, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and California. Nicknamed “super termites” these are the most aggressive termites and the soldiers will defend their nest by releasing a white toxic liquid. They have the ability to consume wood more rapidly than the other termite species. A type of subterranean termite, they’ll create a mud tube from the soil to the wooden structure they intend to consume. But they have the ability to create a “carton” or enclosed nest environment in a structure vs. having to return to the soil.  

Termite Types – How they look.

termite types, subterranean termiteSubterranean Termites: Reproductive males and females can be winged (primary) or wingless (secondary or tertiary). Each can produce new offspring. The bodies of primary reproductives, also called swarmers or alates, vary by species from coal black to pale yellow-brown. Wings may be pale or smoky gray to brown and have few distinct veins. Swarmer termites are about 1/4 to 3/8 inch long. Secondary and tertiary reproductives in the colony are generally white to cream-colored and may have short wing buds.

Credits: https://insects.tamu.edu/extension/bulletins/b-6080.html

termite types, dampwood termitesDampwood Termites: The Pacific dampwood termite is the largest termite native to the U.S. Pacific dampwood termite kings, queens and alates can exceed 1 inch in length, including their wings. They are dark brown and have brown wings. Nymphs measure about 1/2 inch and are cream colored with spots on their abdomens. Soldiers measure about 3/4 inch and are cream colored with dark-colored heads that range from reddish-brown to black.

Credits: http://www.termites.com/types-of-termites/pacific-dampwood-termite/

termite types, drywood termitesDrywood Termites: The reproductives are winged (alates or swarmers) or wingless males and females that produce offspring. The primary reproductives, also called swarmers or alates, vary in body color from dark brown to light yellowish tan. Their wings may be almost clear to smoke gray, and have few distinct veins in them. Swarmer drywood termites are about 7/16 inch long, including the wings. Credits: http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/insects/az1232/

termite types, formosan termitesFormosan Termites: Alates of formosan termite are yellowish-brown and 12 to 15 mm long (0.5 to 0.6 inch). There are numerous small hairs on the wings of these comparatively large swarmers. Soldiers have an orange-brown, oval-shaped head, curved mandibles and a whitish body.

Credits:  http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/urban/termites/formosan_termite.htm

Termite Types – Their habitat.

Subterranean Termites: Moisture is important to subterranean termites, which have very little resistance to dehydration. To survive, they must maintain contact with the soil (their primary moisture source) or other above-ground moisture sources, such as in structures with defective plumbing or guttering. Termites foraging for food above ground protect themselves with shelter tubes, which are sometimes called mud tubes. The tubes may be thinly constructed or large and thick-walled to accommodate many termites moving vertically between the soil and the food source. This construction material also is found lining the galleries built in wood being attacked and aids in identifying termite-damaged wood. Shelter tubes often are used to bridge masonry or other objects, allowing termites access to a food source (wood) above ground. 

Credits: https://insects.tamu.edu/extension/bulletins/b-6080.html

Dampwood Termites: Dampwood termites can cause significant damage. They rarely infest sound wood. However, once a Pacific dampwood termite colony has infested wood with high moisture content, it can move into adjoining areas of dry wood. This Pacific termite does not require soil contact. However, wood-to-ground contact in a home’s construction often leads to dampwood infestations. Homes built over or near water, or with wood buried in the ground, are more likely to be infested.

Credits: http://www.termites.com/types-of-termites/pacific-dampwood-termite/

Drywood termites often establish nests in roof materials and wooden wall supports accessed under eaves. However, despite being capable of surviving on low wood moisture they are also found in wood associated with a water source such as a leaky pipe or water heater. Dead wood accumulating around buildings and homes often serves as a source of infestation.

Credits: http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/insects/az1232/

Formosan Subterranean Termites: A mature Formosan colony can consume as much as 13 ounces of wood a day (ca. 400 g) and severely damage a structure in as little as three months. Because of its population size and foraging range, the presence of a colony poses serious threats to nearby structures. Once established, Formosan subterranean termites have never been eradicated from an area.

Credits:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Formosan_subterranean_termite

Termite Types – When found in your building, what to do?

View our other articles on termites to learn ways to prevent an infestation.

If you see termites or signs of termites in a home or commercial building, you’ve basically got a 5-alarm fire happening. Both in the case of a fire, and a termite infestation, if you do nothing, the building will eventually collapse. In the case of termites, you won’t see smoke or flames, and the damage will take longer to progress, but floors will begin to sag and eventually completely descintegrate beneath your feet!

If it was an actual fire, you wouldn’t hesitate to call the fire department. In this case, you have another call to make.

Termite Types – Who to call when any type of termite is discovered?

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

 

Termite Control Company – How to select the right one.

termite control companyIf you discover the presence of termites in your home, you know that it’s time to take action and that you need professional help. However, most people in your situation have little or no experience in how to locate and hire a quality termite control company. A Google search shows a confusing array of results, each claiming to be a reputable termite control company.

Termite Control Company – What’s at Stake with Your Selection?

termite control companyA wrong choice could mean failure to eliminate the termite problem from your home. You end up with the false assurance that the job was done right, only to discover in a few years that the termites were not eliminated and the damage has progressed. A wrong choice could mean paying for services you don’t need. A reputable termite control company may find that you do not have a termite problem, and will be honest with you. A wrong choice could mean unfair pricing. A wrong choice could mean incompetent people entering and possibly damaging your home. It could mean exposure to unsafe, toxic chemicals, and the list goes on.

Termite Control Company – 9 Tips for Hiring a Quality Solution

So, when looking for a quality termite control company, follow these 9 tips, given by the National Pest Management Association:

Termite Control Company – Look for Reputation

  • Look for qualified and licensed pest control professionals and companies that are members of national, state, or local pest management associations.
  • Ask friends and neighbors to recommend professional pest control companies they have used successfully and how satisfied they were with the service.

Termite Control Company – Check Licensing

  • Ask to see proper licensing and credentials from the pest management professional that comes to solve your pest problem.

Termite Control Company – Compare Options

  • If a sizable amount of money is involved, get bids from several pest management professionals.
  • Don’t rush a decision. Since you are paying for professional pest control advice, as well as skillful treatment, look for someone whose judgment you can trust.

Termite Control Company – Read the Contract

  • Before signing a contract, be sure to fully understand the pest species, the extent of the infestation and the work necessary to solve the problem.
  • Find out if the pest control company has liability insurance to cover any damages to your house or furnishings during treatment.
  • If a guarantee is given, know what it covers, how long it lasts, what you must do to keep it in force, and what kind of continuing professional pest control, prevention and management are necessary.

Termite Control Company – Look for Value

  • Buy value, not price. Do not make a purchasing decision based solely on the lowest cost.

Credits: An NPMA Interview for Termite Awareness Week – Entomology Today

Termite Control Company – Who to Call

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

We’re a fully licensed termite control company. 

Here are our credentials:

License Numbers: B-0353 and S-3313

Industry Memberships

  • NPMA – National Pest Management Association
  • CPCA – CT Pest Control Association (Brian is past V.P.)
  • EIC – Environmental Industry Council of CT
  • CT BBB – CT Better Business Bureau

Termite Infestation Signs – How to know if you have termites.

Termite Infestation Signs – North-easterners Beware

Termite Infestation SignsThe oldest, grandest homes in the country are located in the Northeastern U.S. We take great pride in our history. But our historic, long-standing homes are especially susceptible to a silent, hidden threat — subterranean termites. These pests are attracted to damp wood, and many older homes have leaky pipes and gutters. The water drips onto the wooden siding, framework and foundation creating an ideal habitat for subterranean termites. These pests have the ability to destroy a home’s foundation and literally bring the entire structure down.

“Termites cause over $5 billion in property damage each year, damage that’s generally not covered by insurance.” Credits: An NPMA Interview for Termite Awareness Week – Entomology Today

Termite Infestation Signs – Newer Homes Not Exempt.

termite infestation signsYour home doesn’t need to be on the historic register to be in danger. Some beautiful older homes, just a decade or so old, may have leaky pipes and gutters. Many roofs have a 20 year life-span, and as the roof nears that time limit, leaks can occur creating water damage and potential termite habitat. Around the 20-year point for new homes, the plantings around the home have grown and matured, and may be in contact with the home, creating an entrance way for termites. Yard debris piles may be present, additional termite habitat.

Termite Infestation Signs – How do you know if termites are present?

termite infestation signsHere are 8 warning signs that termites may be present:

  1. Discarded Termite Wings: Termites annually swarm in their winged, reproductive form looking for mates, to breed with and establish a new colony. They soon discard their wings. Look on windowsills and doors especially. If you discover many discarded wings, the new colony is not far away.
  2. Neighbors Reporting Termites: If you find that neighbors have a termite problem, your home may also be at risk.
  3. Termite Colonies Nearby: As you remove any wood lying around your property including branches, old tree stumps and long-standing firewood piles, you may discover a termite colony. The fact that this colony is on your property puts your home at risk. 
  4. Presence of Mud Tubes: This is a 5-alarm situation. You discover a mud tube rising from the ground and into the wooden foundation, framework or siding of your home. You most certainly have a termite infestation. Subterranean termites build these tubes in order to remain hidden as they travel up from the ground to the tasty wood that makes up your home.
  5. Soft, Hollow-Sounding Wood: As you inspect your home, tap the wood. Does it feel soft? Sound hollow? There may be termites or termite damage beneath.
  6. Darkened or Blistered Wood: Notice dark spots or blistering in the wood? Check it out more thoroughly for the presence of termites.
  7. Bubbling or Cracked Paint: This may indicate you have water damage, need to repaint, or it may indicate you have termites.
  8. Sawdust-Looking Feces Piles: These indicate a termite nest may be near.

Termite Infestation Signs – What to do if you discover termites.

termite infestation signsIf you discover or even suspect the presence of termites, you’ll need to take the following actions immediately in order to save your home:

  1. Inspect your home thoroughly for the presence of the termite colony or colonies.
  2. Inspect your property for the same.
  3. Exterminate all termite colonies in your home and on your property.
  4. Replace all damaged wood.
  5. Locate and repair all water leaks in your roof, plumbing and foundation.

As we said, the presence of termites is equivalent to a 5-alarm fire. If you had a fire, you’d call the fire department. If you believe you have termites, call a licensed, professional termite exterminator who will rid your home of termites and guide you through the steps you need to take to restore your home and property to termite-resistant health.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Prevent Termites – Top 10 Strategies

Prevent Termites – Why?

prevent termitesTermites, unlike carpenter ants, consume wood. Actually, they have a symbiotic relation with a fungus that breaks the wood down into a form that the termites can consume. At any rate, the wood that makes up your home’s foundation and framework is their food, and termites, left unattended, can literally “bring the house down”.

Prevent Termites – When?

Termites emerge in the spring, in their winged form, seeking a mate. Once they mate, the queen will establish a colony which then begins to destroy all wood within reach. Actually, damp wood is most susceptible since the fungus that feeds the termites thrives in damp conditions.

Stop termites in the spring before they have an opportunity to create a colony.

Prevent Termites – How?

prevent termitesIt’s far easier to prevent a termite colony from getting established in your home or business, then to exterminate an existing colony.

Here are our top 10 strategies for preventing termites.

Prevent Termites – Keep Things Dry

  1. Paint all bare wood on the exterior of your home. Bare or damaged wood attracts termites. It soaks up moisture which makes it even more susceptible to termite invasion.
  2. Keep all wood dry. Examine the wood on both the exterior and interior of your home. Look for water leaks from damaged gutters or pipes, or from the discharge of air conditioning units and refrigerators. Thoroughly vent all wall voids. Vent the attic. Inspect the crawl space of your home. Follow the path of pipes. Fix any leaks and dry, repair or replace wet wood. Basically, keep all wood dry and in good repair.
  3. Water your lawn, not your house. Check your sprinkler system for areas that spray water on the house. Train all water sources away from your house.
  4. Clean away all yard debris (branches, leaves). These tend to collect water and create conditions favorable to termites.

prevent termitesPrevent Termites – Maintain a Good Barrier

  1. Keep plants from direct contact with your house. Trim them back. Any direct contact can become a thoroughfare for the entrance of termites and other pests.
  2. Don’t let soil come into direct contact with wood…anywhere on your property! Soil in contact with wood directly invites termites. Raise your wood pile off the ground. Remove soil away from your siding, from fences and fence posts. 18 inches is a good standard distance to maintain between soil and wood.
  3. Raise your firewood pile 18 inches off the ground. And don’t store firewood indoors. Only bring firewood into your home on the day you will be burning it in the fireplace.

Prevent Termites – Additional Precautions

  1. Remove dead tree stumps and their roots. These also constitute wood in contact with soil, and create an ideal condition for termites to establish a thriving colony near your home, which is then on the ready to find an entrance into your home.  
  2. Seal any potential termite entry points. Inspect around your home for cracks in the concrete foundation. Seal them. Calk any openings around your window and door frames.

Prevent Termites – Get Skilled Help

  • Hire a licensed, professional termite exterminator to give your home an annual termite inspection. Better to be safe than sorry, as termites left untreated in the home are about the same as setting a fire in your home and leaving it to freely burn! Same result!

Call ApolloX Pest Control

We’re Licensed Professional Termite Exterminators

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See Also:

Termites

Termite Prevention Tips

Termites Create Fertile Soil

Carpenter Ant or Termite

Termites In Your Home?

Exterminate Pavement Ants by First Understanding Them

Exterminate Pavement Ants – Spring is the Key Time.

exterminate pavement antsIt’s spring at last! Think we’re happy? Guess who is just as happy? Pavement Ants. They are cold-blooded creatures, and therefore cannot be active during the winter months. As the weather begins to warm up in March, April and May, pavement ants begin to wake up.

Exterminate Pavement Ants – Know Their Habitat

Pavement ants love to create nests and satellite nests in the safety of the area under a slab of stone or concrete. This is why you are likely to find pavement ants emerging from underneath a patio, or from a crack in the sidewalk or the cracks between the stones of your front walk. For this reason, they’re hard to eliminate due to the inaccessibility of their colony.

Exterminate Pavement Ants – Know Their Behavior

To successfully eliminate pavement ants, it’s important to understand their behavior. Upon waking up to the warm temperatures of spring, pavement ants are extremely hungry, having lived off their inner food reserves during winter hibernation.

Exterminate Pavement Ants – Know Their Food Needs

What kind of food are they looking for? Pavement ants eat just about any type of food humans eat: Sweet, greasy, grains, fruits, seeds, meat…you eat it, so do pavement ants.

exterminate pavement antsHow are they looking for the food? Pavement ants normally follow scent trails left by their scouts. The trails lead to food sources. However, when they wake up in the spring, the scent trails have long since dissipated. Therefore, the pavement ants don’t know where their food sources exist. So, pavement ant scouts will wander about seeking food sources. When they find the food source, they will head back to the colony, leaving a scent trail as the go from the food source to the colony. The ants from the colony will then travel along the scent trail, creating a major freeway between the colony and the food source.

This is why spring is the best time to exterminate pavement ants. They’re hungry, disoriented from their food sources, scattered about searching, and their colony is not yet firmly established. Eliminate them now and you’ll possibly enjoy NO ANTS throughout the warm summer months.

Exterminate Pavement Ants – What to Do During the Spring Window of Opportunity?

Successful pavement ant extermination requires destroying all the ants in the colony, the eggs, and especially the queens (each colony has multiple queens). Once they emerge, swarm in their winged version and scatter about creating new colonies, extermination can be much more complicated, so you need to act in a timely manner. 

Baits can be effective, due the the inaccessibility of the colony under some stone or concrete slab. The ants take the bait back to the queen, the bait is ingested, the ants die.

Exterminate Pavement Ants – Hire a Licensed Professional Exterminator

Since pavement ants create multiple colonies in inaccessible locations, each with multiple queens… and since they are extremely difficult to exterminate once firmly established…and finally, since the major window of opportunity in the spring is fairly brief, it’s important to call in an expert.

A licensed professional pavement ant exterminator knows the pavement ant’s habits, how to locate their colony, what bait to use, where to place it, and how to accurately assess the results. Your professional pavement ant exterminator will ensure that you don’t go through the summer months with ants appearing in the kitchen, climbing up your legs, spoiling stored cereal and pet food and contaminating your home.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378 

Additional Information:

Pavement Ants

Safe Ant Repellants

Pavement Ants In Your School

Stop Pavement Ants In Their Tracks

Pavement Ants In Our Food Supply

Safe Ant Repellents – Herbs and other natural solutions

Safe Ant Repellents – The Timing Is Right

safe ant repellentsIt’s Spring and ants are sprouting wings and reproducing near your home by the millions. The goal is to keep them out of your home, even though your home contains many things that attract them. A carpenter ant colony might be attracted by moist conditions. They like to burrow into moist wood to make their home. Pavement ants are attracted to just about every food that humans eat, and have extremely keen senses.

Safe Ant Repellents – Good Scenario for Their Use

If your home is ant-free at this time, safe ant repellents may be especially beneficial in keeping ants out. On the other hand, if you currently have an established ant problem inside your home, you may be better served by contacting a licensed pest exterminator.

Call ApolloX Pest Control Now

(888) 499-7378

An established colony of carpenter ants or pavement ants inside your home may not be successfully eliminated by the natural repellants named in this article. They’re already inside!

Safe Ant Repellents – How They Work

Safe Ant RepellentsAs we mentioned, ants have extremely keen senses and can sense the slightest odor of the food they crave. This is exactly why safe ant repellents work. Certain natural odors overpower ant’s senses making it hard for them to locate the food they need to survive and breed. When these odors are present, the are likely to look for another place to live.

Safe Ant Repellents – Plant Around Your Home

The great thing about the following ant repellents, is that you can plant them decoratively around your home. Basically, consider surrounding your home with beautiful herbs that smell pleasing to humans, yet repel ants! Here are a few:

  • Mint
  • Peppermint
  • Basil
  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme

Safe Ant Repellents – Bring the Herbs Inside

You can not only use the herbs as a shield around your home. Use them for cooking. And, more importantly for repelling ants, place them in sachets (small decorative net bags – about 2 inches in diameter) in places where you store food. You can place them on window sills, near doorways, basically anywhere there might be an entry for ants.

Safe Ant Repellents – A Few More Possibilities

  • Garlic Cloves
  • Cinnamon Sticks
  • Chili Peppers
  • Eucalyptus
  • Black Pepper

You may find cinnamon sticks and chili peppers an attractive and even decorative alternative to the herb sachets mentioned above. If you continue to have ant issues, try eucalyptus, black pepper and garlic cloves.

Safe Ant Repellents – Chemical Warfare

  • White or Apple Cider Vinegar

Vinegar acts as a fungicide, and ants love fungus, they feed on the fungus in decomposing food. Fill a spray bottle with the vinegar and spray it where you see the most ants.

Safe Ant Repellents – Not Working?

If you have tried all the above means and are still seeing ants in your home, it’s likely you have an established ant colony inside your home: In the foundation, crawl space, a wall void…etc. In this case, you may be better served by contacting a licensed pest exterminator.

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

We will inspect your home for the presence of an ant colony, then safely eliminate it.

Learn more about:

Credits: Repellant list thanks to http://www.greenpestsolutions.com/2013/04/natural-green-ant-remedies/

Pavement Ants In Your School? Why Take Action Now?

Pavement Ants In Your School? Where do they live?

Pavement Ants In Your SchoolThose tiny black to brown ants, barely 1/8 inch long called pavement ants thrive in their nests under driveways, patios, sidewalks and slab-constructed buildings.

Learn how quickly they can multiply, and how to “ant-proof” a building.

Pavement Ants In Your School? What attracts them?

In the Spring, pavement ants are a particular nuisance in schools where there are lots food sources from the cafeteria, vending machines, waste containers, student lunch sacks and boxes, and food or food containers discarded by students in hidden corners that might not be discovered for weeks–at least by humans.

Those tiny pavement ants have an uncanny inner “food scent radar”, and will find the food sources long before they are discovered by even the most experienced, skilled school custodial team.

Pavement Ants In Your School? What’s at risk?

Pavement Ants In Your SchoolAs the ants move about, they can contaminate children’s lunch boxes and even the school cafeteria. Once they’ve crawled from their hidden spaces on and under the floor, then all over our children’s food and food containers, it’s a bit like the children are now eating off the floor!

It’s no wonder that colds, flues and other sickness seems to spread rapidly in a school environment, then back home to the family. The pavement ants are helping make this possible. 

Pavement Ants In Your School? Is even the best custodial team up to the challenge?

Schools can take all the most stringent measures against the pavement ant invasion. Custodial teams can clean everything down daily. We suggest they also wipe surfaces down with vinegar–an odor that repels pavement ants. Yet, no custodial team can ensure that every hidden, discarded bit of food is located and eliminated.

Cafeteria staff can tightly seal all food in ant-proof containers, however, it doesn’t take much to attract the ants.

Grounds staff can strive to locate and eliminate every visible pavement ant colony under the surrounding sidewalks, asphalt slabs, in the foundational cracks of an aging school structure. In some cases applying a pesticide to an outdoor pavement ant colony may make the colony look as if it has disappeared when, in fact, it’s actually driven the colony into the school!

Pavement Ants In Your School? What constitutes adequate protection for children and school staff? 

pavement ants in your schoolAdequate protection of our children from pavement ants and the disease they carry requires a licensed professional exterminator. A professional exterminator has the experience and the tools to locate and safely eliminate the source of the pavement ants.

In addition, a licensed professional represents a new set of eyes, from outside the organization, inspecting the school building, grounds, classrooms, offices, break rooms, gym, waste containers and cafeteria for hidden food sources that will attract pavement ants. The pest control expert can even help create or review school building and grounds policy where it speaks to conditions that could attract pavement ants and other pests.

Pavement Ants In Your School? Contact a licensed pest control professional.

When a school calls a licensed pest control professional, it’s a sound investment in our children’s health and future. If it helps eliminate even a small portion of student and teacher absences due to illness, is it not worthwhile?

Call ApolloX Pest Control

(888) 499-7378

Licensed, professional pest control for schools, restaurants, commercial buildings and homes.