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Preventing and getting rid of pests

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As the weather gets warmer, you might see more insects and critters trying to take shelter in your home. Pest control experts have the following recommendations.

Prevention

When it comes to prevention, homeowners can take action on both the exterior and interior of the house to keep pests away.

For exterior prevention, make sure to reduce places where pests can live, and seal entrances. For example:

* Trim back bushes, shrubs, tree branches from exterior at a minimum of 12”.

* Use wood mulch sparingly.  Remove previous year’s mulch and do not let it pile up year after year. It is good for plants and also supplies moisture for pests. Consider stone as an alternative.

* Move woodpiles far away from home perimeter.

* Seal openings including cracks in foundations, rips in screens, and poor or missing weather-stripping in doors. Windows should be repaired.

* Clean gutters. Ensure leaves and debris removed and free flowing, and that downspouts direct water away from foundation.

For interior prevention, reduce or eliminate food sources. For example:

* All pests need food and water, so keep sink clean and dry, dish free, sweep floors, repair leaking plumbing. Keep drains running free, baggie the sponges, and clean disposal regularly.

* Feed pets on a schedule if possible, and do not leave dishes full of food in open.

* Rinse soda cans and bottles, and use covered trash containers and empty regularly,

* Do not over water house plants.

Picking a Professional

When picking a professional to manage your pest problem, you’ll want to ask the following questions:

* How long has the company been in business?

* Are the technicians trained and individually licensed?

* Will the technician be identifiable – company marked truck, uniform, identification?

* What are the warrantee terms/length?

* What materials will you use in my home/business?

* What information will you supply about materials?

Stinging Insects

If you discover an insect that stings, like a wasp or hornet, experts recommend you consider the following:

* Hire a pest management professional for hornet and wasp nests, but identification is important.

* Not all stinging insects are bees and some are very beneficial.

* Honeybees and other pollinators are in decline.

* Pollinators are critical to our food supply.

* DO NOT kill honeybee swarms.

* If encounter a swarm, leave it alone, and will be gone in a day or two.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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