All posts in “garage”

What is wildlife control?

 

Most of us enjoy the occasional wildlife that we encounter but without some form or measure of keeping them at bay, we might have a bad encounter. You see the shows on TV where someone decides to take a picture of some creature and the creature feels threatened and attacks. It is never by the way that lone little bird, it is the Grizzly Bear that people want the picture of. Bears can run fast so unless you have a friend with you, that bear will catch your but and eat you. That therein lies the problem – they are animals and wild creatures.

I had a friend whose family raised a raccoon and this raccoon was still wild and got into trouble frequently. I’m reminded of this as we encounter wildlife in our day to day work. It is impossible to know for sure but these animals don’t know the difference between your home and a tree. It also becomes a problem when we feed them, then they become accustomed to handouts. One of my favorite little spots to visit is Monetzuma’s Castle and they used to have squirrels until one day when a squirrel bit the hand that was feeding it.The squirrel just sees the food and if isn’t given the food in a manner that it is used to it lashes out and bites.

skunktrap

This also applies to letting a wild animal live in your home or shed, birds and other wildlife carry parasites and once the animal is gone where are the bugs going to go? Wild animals also carry fleas and ticks and the same applies, they will seek out a new food source and that could be you. So don’t allow animals to live in your attic, if you hear something it is time to investigate.

 

What won’t termites eat?

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Termites don’t eat concrete or plastics, but they will build over it and many other products. There was a few years ago some type of foam which was filled with concrete and it always worried me as in my opinion it was just a space in which they could build a tube.

Garages are well known for termite activity, I guess when build it is the last concrete poured and who knows want went on after the pretreatment. That story for another day, but I find termites in garages often and this is not always what I find but it is interesting. Since the expansion joint is visible in the garage, this is what you look for when performing a termite inspection. Mud tubes or tunnels coming up the foundation wall into the structure, are often visible unless you have storage against the walls which most people do. So the lesson here is not to obstruct the expansion joint, better said than done since the garage is the catch all of our lives.

I recommend a yearly inspection which is free from ProBest unless it is for a sale of a home or business for termites if you live in the South or Southwest and if you notice anything that looks like mud inside the home call Professional Termite Company ASAP.

R U Seeing Signs of Termites?

 

 

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No matter where you you live, OK maybe not Alaska but you probably will encounter termites. In Florida and the east Coast chances are that you might find them in the early Spring – sometime near March and April depending on temperatures and weather. In Louisiana it might be different depending on the type of termite and in Arizona our main push of termites is usually after monsoon and the rains,  August – November give or take.

This picture above is typical of our Western Subterranean termites, they will find their way up into a wall and then sometimes make a little hole and mud it up or they will make down tubes. But anyway you look at it, this is what you are looking for.

My recommendations for your home and a termite inspection:

  1. You can look yourself, since you’re on my home seal – type in termites to see what it looks like.
  2. Normally you can get a free inspection, unless it’s for a sale of a home or business.
  3. When your doing housework, glance around for anything you haven’t noticed before.
  4. Looks for mud tubes on the foundation of your home, garages are an excellent place for termites – look at expansion joint.
  5. You can always call ProBest for our opinion, you can send photo’s to service@callprobest.com

Hospitals sharing more than health

 

Bed Bugs Invade Hospitals

 

Bed Bugs continue to show up in weird and strange places. So do you have a plan before you vacation or stay in a hospital?

  1. Keep an eye out for bugs or fecal spotting on beds or sheets. If you notice something mention it to staff.
  2. If you place clothes in drawers just be sure to leave the suitcase in the garage and wash/dry everything.
  3. If you bring items home, check them for Bed Bugs.
  4. If you encountered bites, have someone check them before checking out of hospital.
  5. If you accidentally find them at home call a Pest Management Professional immediately.

bed bug male, female, and eggs

 

How do the bugs or rodents get into your home?

Can you guess how many ways the bugs or rodents can get into your home?

Lets see how many ways we can come up with:

  1. Garage Door, homeseal or garage door seal if possible.
  2. Do you ever bring firewood into the home?
  3. Do you have pets?
  4. Do you ever bring in plants or flowers?
  5. Do trees touch your roof?
  6. Are there holes in your stucco where pipes go into the home?
  7. Are the weep holes sealed?
  8. Are the shingles or tiles in place?
  9. Are your door seals in good condition?
  10. Do you have door sweeps in place?
  11. Are your screens in place?
  12. Are yout attic vents in good condition?
  13. Do you have a chimney guard in place?
  14. Does your stucco go all ythe way to the dirt or stone? You should be able to see your foundation.
  15. Do you have a wood fence and does it connect with your home? Its best if there is no dirt to wood contact.
  16. Do you have siding on the home? This could allow bugs or rodents the option to sneak underneath.
  17. Do you have shrubs or trees to close to the home?

Common-Rat-Entry-and-Harbor

Picture from this site http://www.ci.berkeley.ca.us

Can you think of any more, make comments below and thanks….

It’s winter – who’s knockin on your door?

It’s winter – who’s knockin on your door?

 

Even in Arizona it gets cold or at the very least cooler, so making sure your home is bundled up tight to prevent pests from getting in  is important. So what have you done?  One of the biggest costs associated with a home is the loss of heat or cool air depending on the time of season. It is also a entry point for pests like ladybugs that try to overwinter in homes and sheds. Installing new windows, sealing and crack and crevices or installing door sweeps are excellents ways of saving money and keeping those pests out.

When was the last time you checked to make sure mice or rats weren’t getting in, they don’t like cold weather just as much as we don’t. So checking your home for holes or opening that rodents and birds can get into. There are many new devices available to seal holes and even garage door thresholds.

Storm shield is designed to keep out rain and bugs and is more durable than door-mounted weather-stripping, our floor mounted, and precision-engineered vinyl threshold provides a tight fitting, long lasting barrier between your garage door bottom and the floor. The weight of the door presses down on it to keep out most rain, rodents, leaves and insects.

It really works, we have tested it…

Rodents and your home, what do you need to know?

Rodents and your home, what do you need to know?

 

You must know your enemy! An inspection of your home or business is the first part of your investigation. Most people don’t really care to think about these little furry invaders of our home, but think you must. These creatures carry diseases and can pass along other not so fun stuff, like parasites and other pests. So what should you look for:

  1. Any opening which could allow rodents to slip into your home.
  2. Check high and low, check the ceiling, attic  and crawlspace areas thoroughly.
  3. Check the garbage areas, it can often be about food sources.
  4. Have you seen signs of activity, feces or strange smells.
  5. Check the attic, also look for chewed wires.
  6. Trees should not touch the structure, this is like a super highway into the home or business.
  7. Check screens or windows, check that they are in place and not damaged.
  8. Check to see that doors are equipped with door sweeps.
  9. Check where wires come into the building for signs of rub marks.
  10. Don’t leave pet food laying around indoors or outdoors.
  11. Check out buildings for nesting of birds or rodents, check under buildings if they are raised. Checks decks and other types of structures – like gazebos, swings or play areas.
  12. Check garage door seals.

If you decide to attack the issues yourself, use care and caution. If you need some expert advice see out a Pest Management Professional and THINK like a mouse…

 

I suggest you wear your shoes!

I suggest you wear your shoes!

 

It’s dark outside and you need to run to the garage, so you ask yourself “Should I put on my shoes?” – The answer is an unequivocal – YES. Bark Scorpions pack a sting that could send you to the hospital and this whopper – Desert Hairy Scorpion will sting you but generally is not as bad as the Bark Scorpion.

Rattlesnakes and pest control

Rattlesnakes and pest control

 

Rattlesnakes just come with the territory out here in the Wild, Wild West and we do occasionally run across one or two or more a year. I try my hardest to relocate them, it’s not their fault that they get into our yards. They are usually just looking for food (rodents, ground squirrels etc) and they get trapped into enclosures or pool areas.  We have them in electrical or water meter boxes, pool or drop down embankments and sometimes even in garages. A word of caution – don’t try this on your own! This takes skills and equipment and a very steady hand.

So let’s talk about two of the most dangerous – rattlesnakes…

  1. Mojave rattlesnake – probably the most dangerous rattlesnake, it’s venom is neurotoxic. Generally found in the southeast of Arizona and with the expansion of its territories we could encounter them more often.
  2. Western Diamondback rattlesnake – one of the largest venomous snakes in the U.S. and rivals its cousin the eastern Diamondback rattlesnake. It tends to be very aggressive and is one of the most common snakes in the Southwest.

    

There is an excellent book by Carl Ernst “Venomous Reptiles of North America” which I suggest you read if interested in snakes.  I keep this book handy to identify any snake I think are dangerous or venomous.

Those damn termites………

Those damn termites………

 

     

If you live in the South you should be familiar with termites, Subterranean termites live in the ground and make their way into your home or structure in a manner of ways including the first picture above. Once they are inside they will forage and look for food, that could be the studs in your home or books like the second picture above. Termites are always looking for food and they will eat anything that contains cellulose. Never store books or papers in the garage on the expansion joints or above any crack in the slab. I recommend a yearly inspection for termites and I also suggest that you walk around your home monthly to take a quick glance at the structure.

ProBest Pest Management offers Free Termite Inspections (this offer doesn’t include WDIIR or Wood Destroying Insect Infestation Reports needed to sell your home)

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