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Three Things You Can Do to Control Flying Insects

Three Things You Can Do to Control Flying Insects

As a pest control professional I get frequent calls about houseflies, gnats, mosquitoes, fruit flies and unidentified, flying & swarming insects. Concerned customers and prospective customers want our technicians to go to their homes or business and “exterminate them all.” They want an insect free environment. Unfortunately, there is no easy answer to flying insects. There is no magic spray that we can use to erase their problems and there is no such thing as an insect free environment, nor should that be the goal. Sure, flying insects that are present at the time of a treatment can be killed with a quick knockdown material, but others will take their place in short order. The problem is that they, well…fly! In the case of crawling pests, a residual barrier can be placed around a home or other building and the pests crawling across the material will be killed. In the case of flying insects there is no contact with the material and they are unaffected. Having said all of this, I don’t want to leave my readers feeling defenseless. There are some practical steps you can take to significantly reduce populations of some of the more important flying insect pests.

1. The first, and most important, line of defense against flying insects is eliminating the sources of infestation. For instance, the numbers of social insects such as wasps and hornets infesting a given area, can be reduced by destroying their nests. Getting rid of standing water will reduce the numbers of mosquitoes in a given area because there is nowhere for the larvae to grow and mature. If the problem is flies, the removal of organic materials that the larvae (maggots) feed on will, again, reduce the numbers of these insects for the same reason. Vinegar Fruit Flies can’t reproduce where there is no fermenting fruit. I could go on, but I think most people understand what I’m saying. Be sure to keep all foods covered and protected. Be sure that garbage containers are tight-fitting and closed. Pick up fallen tree fruit and either use or dispose of it. Pick up and properly dispose of animal feces. These are common-sense measures that make a huge difference in the numbers of flying pests.

2. The next line of defense is exclusion. When it comes to your indoor environment make sure that all screens are intact and are tight-fitting, with no gaps. Seal openings such as areas where pipes or wires enter the structure. Make sure there are no significant cracks or gaps in the structure by which insects could gain entry. In businesses such as grocery stores, restaurants and commercial kitchens, air curtains are an effective way to keep flying pests out. Air curtains are another means of exclusion. They are basically fan systems that force air outward away from a doorway to prevent insect entry by pushing them away with rapid air flow. However, their costs and obtrusive looks make them impractical for home use.

3. There are commercially available baits and pheromone traps on the market which are species specific and quite effective. Some of these devices, such as fly baits, are food based and contain toxins to control the target pest. Some are food-based traps that attract both sexes, removing them from the environment. Others use pheromones to attract either the male or female of the species into a trap, where the insect gets stuck and eventually dies, thereby reducing the rates of reproduction. There are traps available that emit heat and Carbon dioxide to attract the female adult mosquitoes and suck them into the device, where they meet their demise. Light traps emit light in the spectrum most attractive to nuisance insects, luring them into the device, where they are either electrocuted or trapped on a glue board. When baits and traps are used they should be placed away from the areas that are occupied by people, especially those used for food preparation and serving, to attract the insects away from, rather than to these spaces.

Taking these simple steps will not control all flying pests, however they will aid in reducing the numbers and increasing your own comfort level and peace of mind.

Credit to:
http://ezinearticles.com/?Three-Things-You-Can-Do-to-Control-Flying-Insects&id=4609143

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