And we’re off…. and running, that is

I finished work Friday – well, aside from dealing with ~I don’t like my mark~ emails!

It’s like y’all knew that – today has been hopping with lots of little-critter issues – and even better (depending on one’s perspective), the rest of the week is starting to fill up as well. Works for me – got lots of Judge Judy episodes to catch up on! Joking – I have plenty of other things to keep me busy in between your phone calls and emails.

Got pests? As long as they’re not the ones you brought into the world, give us a call and I’ll be happy to send Ross over to fix them for you: 705-534-7863. Or you can email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com, or use the handy-dandy quote form up there…whatever works.

Apparently a full day’s work means ~someone~ is hungry enough to start cooking his own dinner …. guess I’d best get moving.

Gone Fishing

The boat finally made it into the water!

Haven’t got much use out of it since – out for a bit with the grandkids, and then yesterday we managed a day off to go fishing. Gone fishing

One of us caught some very nice bass 🙂

And one of us caught some ….well, they would have made good bait if that were legal but since it’s not….

With all the island calls he’s been doing lately, maybe he should start taking his rod along, get some practice in so that he can keep up.

Still lots of carpenter ant calls coming in – and surprisingly, for this time of year, still lots of mice too. And of course we’re still doing spider sprays – for those of you who are doing the seasonal thing, he’ll be back out to do your second spray in a couple of weeks – unless, of course, you start to see webs forming before then, in which case, just let me know and I’ll move it up.

You can always reach us through email at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com or give us a call at 705-534-7863.

 

 

Mouse in the house? Bats in the Belfry? Spiders in the Shower?

In our neck of the woods pests are INEVITABLE especially when you don’t live here all year round.  There are two ways people deal with this problem – WHEN it happens – or BEFORE it happens.

What do WHEN it happens – bees, wasps, shadflies, bed bugs, fleas, spiders, mice, bats or ants – what ever it is, YOU got them!!!  Give Ross a call and we’ll come and solve the problem.

Calling Ross BEFORE it happens, is an alternative solution that has many different upsides.  At Cottage Country Pest control, we use what’s called Integrated Pest Management systems to effectively control and eliminate the pests that are specific to your environment before they become a problem.

We believe that an ounce of prevention is always better than a pound of cure – especially when it comes to your homes, families and pets.  A preventative (non-reactive) approach to caring for your property will you give peace of mind knowing that:

  1.  You won’t have any surprises when arrive for the weekend with guests in tow and
  2.  We’ve used an environmentally friendly approach to dealing with the problems – so you and your family are not exposed to unnecessary chemicals.

How our service works:

  • Inspection – to find out what, where and why
  • Sanitation Recommendations – to eliminate pest food and havens
  • Exclusion – Keep pests out by screening and sealing
  • Cultural Controls – to change what people do that create the pest problems
  • Biological Controls – attack pests where they live with biological measures
  • Judicious use of Pest Control Materials on an as needed basis rather than liberally applying as is done in the case of an emergency
  • Education – if you understand the causes of the problem, you can prevent it from happening.
  • Communication – We make sure you know what’s being done, when it’s being done and why it’s being done.

Whether you are a WHEN it happens or a BEFORE it happens kind of person, know that the problem is INEVITABLE and we can help.  Give us a call 705.534.7863 or send us an email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com.

31-July

Looking for pest control help today?

Please consider emailing us at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com or using the quote form rather than calling; I’ve got class this morning, then heading to Brampton for lunch with my mom, and Ross will be out solving people’s pest problems all day…so no one around to handle the phones.

I will respond as quickly as possible to emails though (just not while I’m actually driving!)

Thanks
Lauralee

Weekends

It’s a sunny Saturday morning and Ross just left to head up to a carpenter ant job in Honey Harbour…then he’ll come back through and head to the other side of our region, over to Tiny Township. And yes, it is a lovely sunny Saturday and we do have family coming for a visit and the boat is not yet in – that’s what happens when you offer pest control services in cottage country. You work weekends 🙂

And weekdays too, of course…. but the busy season is so short, you do what you have to do. Sure wish the bed bugs would wait until the spiders and carpenter ants and squirrels slow down again, but no such luck.

If you’ve discovered pest problems in your home or cottage, do give us a call at (705)534-7863 or email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com and Ross will be happy to stop by and solve them for you.

Integrated Pest Management

Integrated pest management is something that a lot of pest control companies use in their daily operations, however not everyone is aware of what it is, so I want to explain it a bit so you can get an understanding of it and how it can benefit you.

 

IPM is an effective and environmentally responsible approach to pest management that integrates pesticides and herbicides into the management system and incorporates a combination of common-sense practices. It uses current and comprehensive information on the life cycles of pests and their interactions with the environment.

 

This information, in combination with pest control methods is used to manage pest damage by the most economical means, and with the least possible harm to people, property and the environment.

 

IPM is not a single pest control method, but as series of evaluations, decisions and controls.

 

As stated on Wikipedia, IPM focuses on the following:

 

1. Proper identification of pest – What is it? Cases of mistaken identity may result in ineffective actions. If plant damage due to over-watering are mistaken for fungal infection, spray costs can be incurred, and the plant is no better off.

 

 

2. Learn pest and host life cycle and biology. At the time you see a pest, it may be too late to do much about it except maybe spray with a pesticide[citation needed]. Often, there is another stage of the life cycle that is susceptible to preventative actions. For example, weeds reproducing from last year’s seed can be prevented with mulches. Also, learning what a pest needs to survive allows you to remove these.

 

3. Monitor or sample environment for pest population – How many are here? Preventative actions must be taken at the correct time if they are to be effective. For this reason, once the pest is correctly identified, monitoring must begin before it becomes a problem. For example, in school cafeterias where roaches may be expected to appear, sticky traps are set out before school starts. Traps are checked at regular intervals so populations can be monitored and controlled before they get out of hand. Some factors to consider and monitor include: Is the pest present/absent? What is the distribution – all over or only in certain spots? Is the pest population increasing, decreasing or remaining constant?

 

4. Establish action threshold (economic, health or aesthetic) – How many are too many? In some cases, a certain number of pests can be tolerated. Soybeans are quite tolerant of defoliation, so if there are a few caterpillars in the field and their population is not increasing dramatically, there is not necessarily any action necessary. Conversely, there is a point at which action must be taken to control cost. For the farmer, that point is the one at which the cost of damage by the pest is more than the cost of control. This is an economic threshold. Tolerance of pests varies also by whether or not they are a health hazard (low tolerance) or merely a cosmetic damage (high tolerance in a non-commercial situation).

 

Different sites may also have varying requirements based on specific areas. White clover may be perfectly acceptable on the sides of a tee box on a golf course, but unacceptable in the fairway where it could cause confusion in the field of play.

 

5. Choose an appropriate combination of management tactics For any pest situation, there will be several options to consider. Options include, mechanical or physical control, cultural controls, biological controls and chemical controls. Mechanical or physical controls include picking pests off plants, or using netting or other material to exclude pests such as birds from grapes or rodents from structures. Cultural controls include keeping an area free of conducive conditions by removing or storing waste properly, removing diseased areas of plants properly. Biological controls can be support either through conservation of natural predators or augmentation of natural predators.

 

It’s important to know that not all pest control companies that claim to follow IPM actually do. Cottage Country Pest Control is environmentally responsible, and we do follow IPM. Always.

 

We firmly believe that IPM is the way to go and that when done properly it can be the most effective approach to getting rid of pests in your home. If you have any questions or you want to book an appointment please call 705-534-7863 or email us today.

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants are a rather large species of ant (they are generally about .25 to 1 inch) and are indigenous to many parts of the world. They are a particular problem in this area of Ontario – with Balm Beach being the clear leader in our service area.

 

They reside both indoors and outdoors in moist, decaying or hollow wood and will build two different types of nest. The first is the main nest; this is where the queen will go to lay eggs and in order for her to do so, it must be a moist, decaying wood source that must remain moist in order for the eggs and young larvae to survive. The main nest will almost always be located outside in places such as rotting trees/stumps or decaying landscape timbers.

 

The second type of nest is the satellite nest. Carpenter ants will make satellite nest where they care for older larvae and pupae that can tolerate drier conditions. These satellite nests are often located in wall voids, eaves, ceilings or under insulation found in attics or crawl spaces and can also be found in roof gutters and in downspouts. Generally, any nest found in a home will be a satellite nest.

 

Each year, carpenter ants become active in the spring (March-April) and remain so through early fall (September-October). A mature carpenter ant colony usually releases reproductive individuals in springtime. The reproductives have wings and, like winged termites, are commonly known as “swarmers.” The swarmers’ purpose is to mate and, in the chase of females, to fly to a new location, lay eggs and establish a new colony. In winter, most carpenter ant colonies become dormant, although indoor nests may show some continued activity.

 

Carpenter ants, while building their nests do not eat the wood but rather tunnel through it, which is why when investigating to see whether or not you have carpenter ants, it’s important to look for piles of a sawdust-like material called frass.

 

Controlling and eliminating carpenter ants can be done and the best prevention is to maintain dry conditions, so that they are unable to find moist and decaying wood to nest in. Remember, anyplace that wood comes in contact with soil, could potentially become infested with carpenter ants.

 

Reducing woodpiles around and in your home or cottage can help to prevent infestations and damage.

 

The key to controlling any infestation is to find where the queen is laying eggs (the main nest). This will require a thorough inspection and an effort to follow foraging ants back to their nest. It is recommended that if you see 10-12 ants (or more) in your home during the evening then it is worth investigating.

 

Thoroughly inspect (or hire a professional like Cottage Country Pest Control) all crawl spaces, attics, porches, etc for signs on nesting such as the mounds of loose shavings or the frass beneath a crack in the wall or eavespace.

Give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email us to ask a question or to book your appointment.

White nose syndrome

White Nose Syndrome is a disease named for the distintive fungal growth around the muzzles and on the wings of hibernating bats. It is a poorly understood disease that has been associated with the deaths of more than 5.5 million bats within North America.

 

The first known case of White Nose Syndrome (or WNS)  was in Schoharie County, New York cave back in 2006. Since that time the disease has rapidly spread and as of 2010 was found all over the United States and into Quebec, Ontario, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The first known case of WNS in Ontario was in March 2010.

 

Since being discovered research has been done and in late 2011 it was shown that the syndrome appears to be caused by a fungas called Geomyces destructans. Unfortunately, despite knowing the cause of WNS, there is still no known treatment or means of prevention. Researchers do have a good idea how how the fungus is spread and that is bat-to-bat transmission. In a lab experiment it was shown that direct physical contact was needed in order for the fungus to be spread, however it is also know that the fungus is a cold-loving fungus that grows in cold temperatures of below 20 C and that it will grow on bats while they are hibernating in caves and mines. So this means that not only can bats get the disease just by hibernating, they can also pass it to each other through direct contact.

Bat displaying White Nose Syndrome

 

As a result of this the mortality rate of some species affected by WNS is estimated at at about 95%. In fact, a once common species of bat (the little brown myotis) has in recent years suffered a major population collapse and is headed towards being at risk for a rapid extinction in the Northeastern United States. Should the population continue to decline as it has been, this species of bat could become extinct within 20 years.

 

Currently, there are 9 hibernating bat species confirmed to have the infection and Big Brown Bats, Northern long-eared bats, Tri-colored bats, Eastern small-footed bats and the Indiana bat have also suffered major mortality. In fact, many of these 9 species are listed on the United States endangered species list.

 

In Canada, caves infected with WNS are displaying a 90-100% bat mortality rate and according to a Department of Environmental Conservation survey, there is a 93% decline of Little Brown Bats in 23 caves.

 

So how is White Nose Syndrome killing the bats? Well bats infected with WNS have been known to display odd behaviour such as waking up from hibernation every 3-4 days as opposed to every 12-20 days and are flying outside during the day. The fungus also damages the connective tissues, muscles and skin of the bats while also disrupting their physiological functions. The bats wake up dehydrated and hungry during the cold winters when there are no insects to eat and unfortunately, about 90% of the bats affected perish due to starvation.

 

The impact that WNS is having and with continue to have is serious. Not only are many bat species facing the possibility of extinction, but because bats are the primary predators of night-flying insects and an individual bat can thousands of insects every night, with such a large number of bats dying there are more and more insects being uneaten, which could lead to crop damage. Insect-eating bats are crucial to a healthy ecosystem and bats play a crucial role in maintaining an ecological balance, which is why researchers are spending so much time trying to find a treatment or cure.

Gearing up for another year

Well, it’s almost that time again …

soon the snow will melt and the bugs will be back…

and Ross at Cottage Country Pest Control will still be there to solve all of your pest problems using the most environmentally responsible integrated pest management processes & products available.

Spiders, bedbugs, mice & rats, carpenter ants, cockroaches, wasps & bees, fleas …whatever your issue, Ross will be happy to help. And yes, we do deal with the occasional racoon, squirrel or other rodents as well. Oh, and he does bird & bat remediation & exclusion also.

Give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com for any pest problems at your home, cottage or business in Tiny, Tay, Simcoe, Muskoka…. we’re situated in Victoria Harbour, but cover a fairly wide area –  and yes, he does island calls too!

Fully licensed & insured.

Mice, rats, raccoons, bats? Fall Special

As we move towards winter it is a great time to think about ensuring that your home or cottage is safe, secure, and free of pests. Bats are heading off to their winter habitats, so now is the time to clean up after them, and ensure that they can’t return.

mice-150x150And mice and other rodents will soon be looking for winter homes. You do NOT want to be their winter host, as they can do an alarming amount of damage in a very short time. Squirrels are especially problematic: in addition to spoiling food and leaving droppings wherever they happen to be, they are prone to chewing wiring & other objects as well.

Call Cottage Country Pest Control at 705-534-7863, or email us, to book your fall pest control maintenance service. Services include:

  • thorough inspection
  • rodent-proofing & exclusion
  • bat removal, clean up & exclusion
  • bait stations & product

Winter cottage maintenance services also available.