Organic Pest Control: The Man Made Materials

As talked about in the previous post, there is a whole world of organic solutions to pest control, of course we are talking about specific garden variety pests, nonetheless there are a lot options. Yes, pesticides, powders and sprays are among the organic solutions, and usually people become nicely attached to these non-toxic mixtures.  Sometimes we can’t eradicate every pest and egg with the use of sprays or powders, instead we need to resort to some more stealthy options, more calculated and creative.

Lets look at some ways that organic pest control can be used through materials, you’ll be very interested in how they work. It may also leave you wondering who on this earth came up with such designs, but you will be thankful they did.

Floating Row Covers

-Well this one is very common and many people already know how this works.  You most likely see them draped around large crop areas, as farmers readily use this material.

– If you haven’t clicked on what exactly a floating row cover is, then it’s simply a mesh type material, that you can buy in large, very large lengths. It has holes for breathing, it’s white usually, and it allows light to get to the plants. Additionally it allows for you to water without hassle.

-It can come in different weights, to ensure it is suited to the climate and area.

-You can also get plastic row covers, which are obviously hardier, but need to be watched more carefully, as they can collect heat.

-Sometimes people can find themselves tangled in row covers if they attempt to place them down on a breezy day, it’s more a a two person job. If its only a small surface area then you can manage it yourself, but it still is somewhat tricky. In order to keep row covers in place you need a weight to hold it down on all sides, this is so it doesn’t blow away, or allow small insects through.

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Pheromone Traps

– Phermone traps are quite impressive creations, using sex attraction against the bug species. Pheromone is a scent that bugs let off in order to attract the opposite sex for mating, but scientists have been able to replicate this smell, and use it against the poor bugs.

-Mostly adult males are attracted to the scent, which in some instances doesn’t do much if you are having a wide scale insect problem. Instead these sort of traps are best used in enclosed or small spaces, as it won’t help much for large scale eradication.

-Successfully used in cases of the gypsy moth

-It is very sensitive to all pests, so you may get some extra unwanted pests caught up in the traps.

-There are specific lures for each pest kind, not all are available, scientists keep working on collecting the pheromones.

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 Sticky Traps

-As the name suggests, these traps are based on using stickiness to catch the nasty pests. Who would have thought pest control could be so easy? There’s heaps of sticky products that can used to create a sticky trap, and with this you can very creative.

-You can also buy sticky traps pre- packaged, for those who don’t find pest control that exciting.

-It also plays on the attraction certain bugs have to colour, each species being attracted to different colour pigments. Blue sticky traps can attract thrips or leaf miners. Or bright yellow colours can attract aphids, moths, leaf hoppers.

-In order to get them effectively working you will need them hanging very close to plants, if not on the plants themselves.

-They won’t look pretty once they start working, like bug zappers, they get stuck all over the surface, and it’s quite visually disgusting. If they work, then it’s likely you won’t care too much about that.

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Those are some of the man made traps and solutions to the organic world of pest control, of course, you may still be wary.

 

Under The Lens: Coastal Carpet Snake

Name: Coastal Carpet Python/ Morelia Spilota

Physical Appearance:

Describing the physical appearance of this snake species is quite difficult; it’s not one colour, weight or size. Instead this snake comes in a variety of shades and styles. If you’re unable to determine what type of snake you’ve encountered, and whether or not it’s a Coastal Carpet Python, a pest specialist/snake catcher will be of the best assistance.

Colours: Green Tones, Yellow Tones, Brown Tones, and black (variations are common)

Length: Between 6ft-10ft (this also varies significantly)

Weight: Can reach up to 14-15kg

Pattern: Spots/round markings along body with a base colour underneath

coastal carpet snake

Location:

  • Primarily East Coast of Australia
  • Distribution of this species is one of the widest of all snake types

Natural Habitat:

When talking about the habitat of this snake species there is a few factors to consider, specifically their preferred habitat, and actual common habitat areas. Snakes, like most other reptiles and animals are akin to the natural environment, but with manmade structures built everyday they’re able to adapt their home life.

Preferably you’ll find that Coastal Carpet Pythons prefer the natural surrounds of forests (eucalypt & rainforests), rural areas, parks and gardens. However the reason for getting to know this snake type is because it can find itself bunkered up in man-made structures. Sometimes people will find the Coastal Carpet Python in chicken pens, rabbit hutches, sheds, attics and more.

Diet and Lifestyle:

When it comes to the feeding habitats of this particular snake there are many options on the menu. Basically you’ll find the Coastal Carpet Python will eat any small mammal available for capture.

  • Birds
  • Lizards
  • Frogs
  • Reptiles

No, the diet doesn’t consist of humans, for those wondering.

Additional Facts:

  • Many people keep these particular snakes as pets in captivity
  • Non-Venomous
  • Unlike some reptiles the female snake will protect her eggs viciously, but once young are hatched the mother will leave them to fend for themselves.

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If you come across the Coastal Carpet Snake you shouldn’t attack or threaten, as the snake will react adversely to this action. Although they’re non-venomous snakes they are fiercely strong and their bite can cause infections. It’s recommended that you seek a health professional if you’re bitten.

In order to remove the snake from your property make sure you contact a snake catcher or pest professional. Professionals have the right experience and equipment to undertake this process safely.

Sources Include: QLD Government Website, Wires Northern Rivers and Queensland Museum.

What you need to know about Bird Control…

Birds, you either think they’re beautiful creatures like all others, or you can have some pretty big issues with their habits.  Some people are scared of birds, known as Ornithopbia, but usually most of us simply believe birds are annoying pests.  Although we hate being swooped and get bird droppings land on us occasionally, the biggest nuisance is when birds decide to nest in your home.

You can also have birds nest in your carport or garage, anywhere that is protected and in reach of food, is a potential home for your winged enemy.  You may not have a grudge against birds in general, but when birds nest in your home, or around you home, it can cause many issues.

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What are the particular problems associated with birds?

Nesting

As mentioned above, birds like to find their own homes, and with our man made shelters you can’t expect birds to shy away. Birds usually nest in roof voids; anywhere they can squeeze a nest for their own family (even in your attic). If their nest didn’t cause major issues then it would be completely fine to share your abode with these animals, however like all species, there are always reasons we keep our distance.

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Spread of disease

Birds have their own issues when it comes to health, and with them nesting within or near your premises, they could share these health problems with you, or your family. Notably birds become hosts of other nasty creatures, mites and lice. Birds living in close proximity means mites and lice can easily be a threat, but alas, these are very treatable.

However other diseases can be transferred from birds to humans, not all are common, but all are potentially a risk to your health.  Diseases that can be spread to humans are Histoplasmosis, Chlamydiosis, Avian Tuberculosis and more. Many of the diseases are related to their droppings coming in contact with humans.

Noise:

Related to birds nesting in your home, birds that are very close to your sleeping quarters can be noisy. A lot of people put up with the noise of birds in the morning, usually because it’s impossible to avoid, and just a part of nature. However birds that nest in your roof, they’re the ones who can be extremely irritating and cause you trouble sleeping.

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If you’re having issues with any of these bird related problems it’s difficult to manage without the proper training and knowledge. It’s also important that people don’t cause harm to the birds, as this is a form of animal cruelty, despite thinking it’s warranted in some cases. It’s also dangerous for both the human and bird if you attempt to remove them yourself.  Best way to analyse the situation and rid your pest problem is  to contact a pest control specialist. You may think you can handle it alone, but you can save yourself stress and health issues by allowing a helping hand.

If you live in the Caboolture area and would like a qualified, reputable pest control company, contact Pest Control Caboolture- Bridges Pest Control.

Ants, Ants, Ants: How To Control An Infestation

Ants are an insect that you usually see when you haven’t cleaned properly, or just outside in the dirt.  However in some cases Ants can become more then just a natural element in your backyard, they can often become pests. If they make their way into your home, that’s when you need to become more focused on getting rid of them.  There’s nothing worse then being riddled with judgement from friends or family who notice these critters in your home. In order to prevent ants and to treat ant issues you need to learn some tips about them, what products are out there, and how to act.

What is the ant and what do I use?

-Firstly you must know what type of ant you are dealing with before choosing to address the problem, there are many types. Unfortunately there are more than 1000 species of ants, which is a little deflating, and it’s often hard to properly name them. Here are ones that are monitored by the Queensland government because they are of significant risk. If you want someone with more expertise to handle your ant problem you can trust in a licensed pest control specialists.

Electric ants- also known as “little fire ant”

little fire ant

 

Yellow crazy ants-one of largest ant species

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Fire ants- can cause a nasty sting

Fire Ants

 

-Most people use sprays to kill ants, which does work if it’s a small amount of ants you’d like to combat, not a nest.  So if you want to get rid of a nest of ants it is safer to include a baiting system that can destroy ant nests. You can buy ant bait systems from many commercial stores, and there are a lot of brands.  An ant bait system is used so that one ant or many will be attracted to the bait and carry it back to their colony.

-You can also use contact insecticides to cull the ant infestation, but you should not use it in conjunction with anything else. These usually come in spray form, or granules, aerosols etc.

-When attempting to completely get rid of all ants in a colony you must recognise the structure of an ant colony. If you don’t kill the queen ant then you won’t be affecting the rest of the colony too much. You should also destroy the queen’s workers.

Not working?

Sometimes you can use every method available to kill pests, but none seem to work. In this instance you should probably call Pest Stop Pest Control.

Our native nightmare: The Possum

Have you heard the endless scurrying? Or scratching? Although we all have a deep affinity to our native Australian wildlife there are some things that can change our adoration, specifically if our native animals are causing us sleepless nights.  If you haven’t already guessed what I’m talking about, then it’s that loveable (at a distance) furry marsupial, the possum. As possums are protected by the Wildlife 1975, you can not destroy or relocate them.  The reason you are not allowed to relocate the possum is because studies have found that if possums are taken out of their natural habitat, they will become stressed, and most commonly die.

You may think that relocating them is the most human way to get rid of a possum, however this is not the case. Although there is quite large debate of the protection of the possum you still must conform to the laws in place, their are big fines if you fail to adhere. If you don’t feel confident handling this issue yourself you can always call a pest control professional.

The Ring Tail Possum

-Ring Tail Possums are not very vocal

-It is grey, with some white areas around stomach and hands, face.

-Has a long short haired tail with a white tip, which is often coiled.

-Body size is about 350mm

-Eats flowers, fruit, leaves

-Lives in trees

-Can live near to 6 years, but is often hunted by other animals and doesn’t live up to it’s expectancy

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The Brush-tailed Possum

-This is your usual pest possum

– They are very furry, not like ringtail possums

-Often live in roofs of houses, and try to nest in ceilings if they can

-Are vocal and hiss

-It mostly eats leaves, but can become a bit carnivorous and eat small rats

-More widespread in population over Australia

brush tail

Preventative Measures and Control

-If you want your garden to be kept in a nice clean state, without being eaten by possums, you can create cages around your garden.

-If your happy to have the possums around your house, just not in it, then you can try building a small cubby home for them in a tree, if they have this then they may use it instead of your house. Sometimes they prefer your house though.

-Seal up all cracks around roofs, they can squirm their way into very tight places.

-A one way flap is a creation that means that possums already in your house can leave, but not return through the flap. If all other areas of the house are covered this could work brilliantly.

-Or for those who just want professional help, to trap, or just deal with possums, you can call Pest Control Lake Macquarie-SWOT Pest Services.

Possums are protected, so don’t find yourself in a rage one night and go to attack them, you can be penalised if caught. We all know that it can be an incessant pest issue with the Brush-Tailed kind, but with help, or trying new things, you can find a solution.

 

 

 

 

Electronic Rodent Deterrent, is it a winner??

We go through many fazes of DIY pest control, creating all sorts of wonderful designs, or ideas. Most of the time we end up failing miserably, devastated our genius plan has collapsed before our eyes. Instead of creating our own traps and devices to deter the pests, there are also other products that we can look at buying. Such as devices that go with the science of electronic sound. More specifically there has been a device made for rodents, and many swear by it, or swear at it. It’s hard to decipher the actual effectiveness, but it’s definitely an interesting option.

Electronic Rodent Deterrent/ Sound Machine

 

How does it work?

Well there is very specific science to the working of the electronic rodent deterrent, and it’s all to do with sound frequency.  Those who have studied music or film, or media perhaps, will understand sound waves in great detail (handy if you want to fully understand what this device does). It sends out ultrasonic high frequency waves of sound that will physically hurt the ears of the rodents, leaving them with nothing to do but run. However humans cannot hear the sound because we can only hear up to a certain frequency, which this sound does not fit into. Such as device is suppose to keep the rodents away for good, but there is strong opinion that in fact it does not.

You can also get similar devices that let off both ultrasonic waves with electrosonic waves, with this device it uses the benefit of your houses wiring to send out signals. So in turn it keeps the walls and area around covered.

It is plugged into your power point in order to work.

Is it safe?

Well, to humans, it is safe. However there is speculation surrounding how safe this device can be around pets, despite creators saying that it is safe. Many people have complained that they notice discomfort in their pets, but others are just not quite sold that such a sound could not hurt an animal, if it does this to rodents. If you are sceptical about the science behind the device, then probably best not to use them if you have pets, it will only cause you worry.

Are you convinced?

Well for those desperate for a pest control solution to rodents you may think about giving this a go, however it’s not worth the risk for those with pets. With all the criticism that the device has copped, including it not working at all, it’s not hard to see why they aren’t plugged in to every house. Maybe it’s best you do the research first before buying into this device, however the more you research the more you become paranoid, or so it seems.

If you have a rodent infestation and want a fail safe method of control, maybe it’s best you talk with some professionals. In some cases you need to call on pest control experts to eliminate the rodents. If you’re living in Toowoomba then maybe you can buzz Toowoomba Pest Control-Action Pest Services.

rodent repller

It’s really up to you what you want to do, but this device is something on the market that claims rodent control.

A not so common pest problem: The Fox

When we think of pest control we have a pretty common criteria of what type of pests we are looking at, wasp nests, rodents, termites and bug infestations. However for some people pests can be larger, more cunning, and devastating to livelihood. In more rural areas pests can be a different variety to those suburban nasties, and the methods to rid the pests have to be on a larger scale. One particular four legged, (some may say cute) carnivorous pest, is the sly fox. Yes, like in books, the fox can cause some nasty work.

The Fox

Many native animals are at risk of extinction, and the fox is major factor in killing Australian wildlife. So is the fox a more destructive pest than your termite or rodent? Perhaps this is more a matter of opinion, but most farmers would agree that the fox is major pest problem.

Why did the European Fox take over Australia?

-The European fox entered Australia during the 1800’s, and was introduced for the purpose of hunting

– Not long after it was introduced, the fox spread throughout all areas of Australia, and became a problem after the spread got out of hand.

-Now foxes are still around Victoria and other areas of Australia

Fox and damage

-One of the main problems with the Fox is that threatens native Australian fauna, because the fox is not native, it isn’t naturally suppose to co-exist with our Australian fauna.

-Some of species that are threatened by the Fox are:

  • Ground Parrot & Night Parrot
  • Mountain pygmy possum
  • Western ring-tail possum
  • Brush-tailed bettong
  • Brush-tailed rock-wallaby
  • Mulgara
  • Dusky hopping mouse
  • Eastern barred bandicoot

-These are only some of the native wildlife threatened by the Fox, it is a major predator.

Control of the Fox

– Due to the Wildlife act in Australia there are many different times in which you can use preventative and control measures toward the Fox ( for specific times you must check your state acts.

– As Foxes are large in quantity it will be impossible to get rid of the entire species, all you can do is prepare long term plans of control, which will prevent foxes at certain times of the year.

-Most common methods of getting rid of the fox:

  • You will need to bait the foxes, to attract them and you can use the 1080 poison bait (only authorised personal can buy this)
  • Fumigation of dens, you can fumigate the known dens of the fox, while cubs are inside. You will need to do this regularly to make sure they don’t come back
  • Shooting
  • Fencing

 

fox

Although not many people will have to experience the fox as a pest, some will, and knowing details about how to handle the species is helpful. If you cannot use the methods above, for whatever reason, there are services that can deal with foxes directly, such as Apex Pest Services- Pest Control Pymble!

 

 

The Silverfish…just another bug to keep at bay.

One pest the doesn’t get much attention or flies under the radar in the pest world is the Silverfish. As it name suggests it is silver in colour. Like the termite this pest loves damp places and dark places. However it does attack your timber, instead it has it’s own unique diet of carbohydrates. It will seek out glues, paper, textiles and books. This little critter will destroy your possessions without you even catching a glance of it.

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You’ll find me…

Silverfish like to reside in multiple locations in the house, going towards their most likely food sources.

-In the basement, kitchen, living room, underneath the floors and bathrooms.

I have a particular life cycle…

Silverfish are not like other insects or bugs, they have their own growth pattern.

-I have three stage life cycle, and will become an adult from a period of 3 months to 3 years.

-I moult a lot more than other insects, can be up to 30 moults per year. This means I continually moult throughout adulthood.

-My lifespan can be from 2-8 years, depending on climate and food resources.

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How can you stop me?

Silverfish are very quick and small, and often you may only see the odd single Silverfish, without being able to detect where they are all coming from. The hardest part about controlling Silverfish is being able to recognise how many reside in you home and whether it constitutes the aid of a professional. In order to repel them from certain areas of the home you can use some handy items such as cinnamon sticks, basil and soap. Although these will drive the silverfish away, it won’t kill them, and they’ll possibly just relocate to another room in your house.

Additionally there also some insecticide products that can be helpful to get rid of the pests, that include different types of dusts. If nothing seems to be working and you are finding that these pests may be on their way to a full take over of the house, call upon expert help. If your living near Rockhampton, Pro Pest-Pest Management Services can use their experience to handle the issue.

In the end our home DIY efforts are never going to be able to match the resources of pest control companies.

Sub Floor Ventilation- what?

As mentioned in a previous post termites are one the biggest and most costly pest issues in the community, and preventing their attack is very important. As these bugs are attracted to damp places of your house the best thing to do is to make sure you treat the dampness. Instead of just getting rid of the termites, you need to get rid of their attraction, or they will keep coming back. One of the termite solutions provided by a pest control company is Sub Floor Ventilation.

What is it?

Sub Floor Ventilation is installing a system of duct pipes, exhaust fans and pumps in order to remove dampness from beneath your flooring. It is an essential method that extracts the damp moisture to make sure the moisture does not cause your floor area damage. If dampness is left within the floor then it can cause timber to warp, cracking, tile damage and of course termites. Luckily you can choose a company to create Sub Floor Ventilation that will suit your home,  it is not one design fits all. With all the new types of materials used in creating ventilation you also have the choice of what particular elements will make up the entire system.

It’s Benefits?

-It prevents the termite infestation- once termites decide to make your home their living area then you have to act immediately or else the problem can be extremely costly. Termites cause building erosion and repairing building structures is very expensive, especially if you continually repairing. In order to prevent termites even entering your home you need to make sure that your house is not damp in certain areas, in particular walls and floors. When there is poor ventilation through underneath your floor you will most likely inherent the dampness of the earth and soil. Sub Floor Ventilation is essential to combat this problem, Pest Stop Pest Control Blacktown can effectively install the appropriate system.

-Health-if your house has become damp then this can cause significant health risks to your family. When your house does become damp, this means humidity is high, which releases bacterial chemicals into the air. Once in the air your family will ingest the chemicals and this can cause varying health effects. Sometimes someone can become quite ill of pneumonia, or just symptoms of nausea, headaches, dizziness etc.  If you allow this damp environment to stay the same, there becomes more risk of these symptoms becoming worse.

-Protects your property- generally speaking if dampness occurs then the structure of your house is at risk of erosion. It may not be noticed for a long while before it is too late, once cracks are noticed this can be often too late to save certain walls. Eventually the erosion will devalue you house, until you put in the expense of renewing it.

So if you’re noticing a dampness within you home, or if you simply want to prevent this from happening then give a professional a call. Pest Stop Pest Control, in Blacktown, offer this service.

How to deal with Carpet Beetles

Carpet Beetles you say? Maybe their name isn’t exactly the best to scare you into action, but these pests are worth looking out for, they can cause some issues. Having a straight forward name means that, yes, these beetles love carpets. Anything from rugs to soft surfaces and materials that resemble carpet, are where these beetles cause the damage. A good thing to remember about these beetles is that they have a different life cycle to us humans, they have four stages, and only love carpets during one stage.

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The Stages:

-Egg

-Larvae ( carpet loving stage)

-Pupae

-Adult

Bad news is that once they get into your house they might not find a way out but they will want to get out to feed on pollen and flowers once they reach adulthood. Most of the time these beetles find their way into your house through small cracks or on the back of utensils going back and forth from outdoors to indoors. Once inside the house they will damage those carpets they cling onto, as well as other fabrics, materials and furnishings. Although they are only small little pests they can be a real nuisance and cost you money on repairs. It’s better to handle the problem at it’s firsts signs or even takes steps of prevention.

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Steps of Prevention:

-Well cleaning is a major preventative measure, which luckily most people already do. However keep up regular vacuuming and steam cleaning also, this will provide the best carpet cleanliness.

– Keeping any unused clothes in vacuum seal-able storage, and regularly going through your clothes, in order to prevent any lurkers.

-You can find appropriate pesticide chemicals for this issue

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However if all prevention fails and you end up finding discarded shells, or actual bugs around your living room, choose to take thorough action. You can give you house a massive clean out, which may help, but to get better results call a pest control professional. Local Gosford folks can get help from Hancock Pest Control Gosford.