Crazy weather for bugs!

Gotta love this heat!  STILL getting calls about spiders; pretty late in the season for that! Just realized something too – this is the first year in a while that we haven’t had any calls for either brown recluse or black widow spiders in Penetanguishene. That is most assuredly a good thing.

Anyway, carpenter ants seem to be slowing down now which is another good thing. They started early this year, so we did lots & lots of them all throughout Tiny, Tay, Muskoka and Simcoe.

And still only the one termite call – which has responded very well to treatment, thank goodness.

This heat can’t last TOO much longer though! Soon it will be time to book Ross to come out and refill/replace mouse baits, and/or to tackle any bat problems. Sure wish someone would call up for some bat houses sooner rather than later !! He’s left them sitting right where I planted morning glories; just happened to notice a few determined little flowers poking up from behind the blasted thing. THEY need to move!  Wouldn’t you like a nice seasoned bat house? I’m sure you would 🙂

If you are calling us this time of year, please do leave a message if need be and either Ross or I will get back to you as soon as we’re able…. my teaching schedule this semester is NOT ideal – have to drive down to Barrie 4 days each week for 2 or 3 hours each day. They can and will do better when I whine – but I save that for the Winter semester when I really REALLY don’t want to drive 2 hours for a 2 hour class every darn day. If I take what I’m given in the Fall semester, usually get what I want in Winter. Here’s hoping!   It does mean that I’m often not here to answer the phone right away though – but Ross will check & return messages if/when he stops in, and if he doesn’t, I will get to them as soon as I get home.

 

 

And we’re back

Had a great time at NoFishIn Lake, as Ross has taken to calling Lake Nosbonsing, where we were. Disappointed in his quest for walleye yet again! Didn’t see much of anything worth keeping, actually. The only fish that made it to the very nicely outfitted cleaning shack at Birch Hill Camp was a nice-sized bass which “I could have caught at home.” Maybe – but t’wasn’t him that caught the one up there; it was his daughter.

She out-fished us all; more of the little guys, including four too small pike in the same outing that she got the bass, and the only one worth cleaning. Clearly the champ.

Me, I think when you’re going to lakes you’ve never been to, a fish-finder is pretty much a necessity. We have two that came with the boat but neither works. Thinking to buy Ross one for his birthday next month but he wants one that is really really SIMPLE and easy to use and I have yet to find anything that straight forward. They all have multiple bells, whistles, etc – and he doesn’t WANT that; he wants to be able to use it all by his own self, darn it!!

View from our cabin at Birch Hill Camp, Nosbosing Lake. That’s Ross with his two grandkids – they went down in the pouring rain to make sure my kayak was secured.

Anyway, we did have a good week – but OMG I was happy to get back home to my own bed and even more importantly, a bathroom with a tub, a fully functional toilet, and a door that closes properly and does not have little boys opening it at will! Next time we’re looking for a cottage to rent I am SO going to remember to ask what kind of bathrooms they provide, and if there are locks on the door. Bad enough we paid so much to rent a cottage that is further away from the water (and with a lesser view, also) than our home is – shouldn’t have to give up privacy, too. Or is that just me?

 

 

 

So – now we’re back and will get back to work and

View from our front yard. 7-June-17 sunset. We are a ~little~ spoiled.

everything caught up within the next few days. Keep waiting on carpenter ants to slow down, but they don’t seem inclined to do that, especially in Tiny and Tay. Starting to get a whole lot more wasp calls this week – fall must be on its way.

And bat calls too!! Happy to hear that the bats are coming back … hopefully a good sign that perhaps the white nose fungus that has been decimating Ontario bat populations is waning? Once can only hope! But we have started seeing them outside our own home in Victoria Harbour, and we have received quite a number of inquiries about them already this year, so finger’s crossed.

Got pests? Other than the ones you brought into the world yourself? Give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com.

We were back – but now guess what?!

Got it in one – we are taking off again.

Well, assuming we can get everything done that needs doing 🙂  Got some bedbugs that must die, rats that need a new home, and on and on it goes.

Bedbugs seem to be picking up this month- let’s hope THAT is a short-lived aberration! Nobody wants bedbugs! Ever! We’ve also had our very first ever case of termites! Hundreds & hundreds of carpenter ants over the past few years – but not one termite to be seen. Until this week. Also not a positive development! Interesting that the one and only case we’ve seen is in Tiny – that’s where the carpenter ants seemed to start from, also!

But not to worry – Ross just ~loves~ to help people solve their pest problems, whether they are common or rare. For quickest response over the next week or so, email is your best bet …my dog sitter is great, but he isn’t up for doing the phone thing, so I’ll have to call home to get messages. Which I will do my best to do – but if you CAN email, please do!

Or if you prefer, you can always use the chat function on our Facebook page – that works too 🙂 And as an added bonus, you can like our page while you’re there because, you know, it will not do to have my kid’s Facebook page getting more likes than ours just cuz her pictures are ever so much cuter than ours.

Oh, one last thing – if you happen to be over in the Kawarthas/Peterborough area, we no longer cover that region. Not sure why we’ve all of a sudden started turning up in your search results but we sold our Peterborough property several years ago and I haven’t included any of those place names in my tags in forever!

Beekeeping

bees in hiveWell, I don’t know that I’m interested enough to spend money to set up hives – but did attend a beekeeping course this weekend. Mostly, I was hoping to get more information so that I’d be better able to help people that call about swarms of honey bees. We do get a fair number of calls about bees each year…. and have yet to find a beekeeper in the area that wants anything to do with them.

Fortunately, only some of them actually turn out to actually be bees – except in the case of swarms. Wasps of any variety, we have no qualms about treating, but with so much in the media about bees dying and how that will impact pollination and food production, we’d hate to harm any more than absolutely necessary.

Interestingly, one of the very first things I learned about bees is that they don’t actually belong here! Bees are imports; they don’t like Canadian weather. But they do so much good for food production that it’s worth it to continue to help them to survive here. And clearly, if’s very possible to do so, if one knows what one is doing (and is willing to invest the time & money to do things properly). And it can be a profitable enterprise as well.

I did not, however, learn a whole lot about dealing with swarms! Which wasn’t at all surprising, as it was an introductory course meant for potential beekeepers, not really for me. He did talk about when and how they happen though, and that, in combination with further research, has given me rather more to go on. Think I’d want to do a whole lot more learning before we would actually feel qualified to DO anything though.

And of course, there’s little/no point to collecting a swarm unless one has a place to relocate them to. Suppose we could purchase a hive and supplies and hope for a swarm call to come along – but that seems like a fairly big investment for something that may or may not happen.

Anyway, we shall see. For now, though, we shall continue on as we have been, which is to identify the pest, and figure out the best way to handle it. In most cases, a bee swarm really isn’t near as big a problem as people tend to think. They are in search of a new & suitable home, and as long as you’re not providing them with that, they will soon move along.

 

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.

 

 

Rainy days & spider sprays

Darn rain!!!

Got Ross’ calendar filled and then some – and the bleeping rain just messed that all up.

Truth is that it doesn’t actually have to bring everything to a standstill; rain doesn’t actually wash the product we use away once it’s set (about 20 minutes) …. so he COULD still spray and as long as it doesn’t pour immediately afterwards, it would work just fine.

BUT, we have discovered, people just don’t believe that 🙂

And since we want our customers to be happy and believe, yeah, we delay or reschedule exterior spider sprays on rainy days.

Fortunately for today, we had some carpenter ants and wasps we could move into the freed up space…. we’ll try again for sprays tomorrow if the weather cooperates…. weather network isn’t exactly being encouraging though!

If there’s anything Ross can help you with, give us a call at 705-534-7863, or email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com …. we’re pretty busy this time of year but we will fit you in one way or another. And yes, weekend appointments are available for you cottagers.

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.

Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz….. WASPS!

cleanbevswasG     I’m not sure what it is that caused this. It could be my Mom passing on her irrational terror of wasps to me while growing up. Maybe it is the fact that they emit that buzzing sound. Maybe it’s their menacing look. I don’t know. All I know is that I am positively TERRIFIED of them. I saw a wasp enter my living room through an open window, and I ran to the bedroom and locked myself in there until someone had gotten rid of it.

Because of this, I honestly think that taking precautions against those nasty pests is one of the most important things you can do once the weather has warmed and it is bug season once again.

To many people, the terms “wasp” and “bee” are used interchangeably and indiscriminately when referring to any winged, flying small insect with a sting that emits a buzzing sound. They are definitely not the same, though.

A wasp-nest!

A wasp-nest!

If you spot a slim, narrow-waisted, hairless and almost-shiny intruder with legs that are cylinder-shaped .. you have yourself a wasp.
Bees, on the other hand, are much rounder and more “hairy”, and because they are pollinators, they have flat hind legs that are used for collecting and moving around pollen.

For wasps, late June is actually the best time of year to control them and avoid running into future problems because of them. This is because the queen would have already established her colony by then, but the nest would still be small.
Although, a smaller nest DOES mean the nest would be harder to find.

If you do spot an exposed/visible nest, you should definitely call us right away. Although it is not advised, you could attempt to get rid of it yourself.

If you do decide to give it a shot yourself, the best time to do so would be at night, as the wasps as less active then.
Make sure you plan your escape route in advance (just in case), and do not stand directly under the nest, as you might end up with a face full of pesticide leaking back out after you have sprayed it. Spray “wasp and hornet” aerosol spray directly
into the entrance of the nest, following the instructions on the bottle.
The problem with doing it yourself, though, is that it is potentially dangerous and it does not always produce successful results.

Wasps never reuse old nests, so if you see any nests in the winter, then those are from the previous summer. Since its former inhabitants have either long left the nest or died inside it, you can dispose of it yourself safely.

"There was a bee/wasp in my car."

When it comes to CONCEALED wasps’ nests (i.e: nests that are in places where you can’t see them, like in spaces and cracks behind walls ..etc), where the only way you would even really know that there is a nest there would be observing wasps continuously flying in and out of the crack, a “do-it-yourself” approach to getting rid of the nest is definitely inadvisable. Sprays do not work well on hidden nests, and it is definitely much more dangerous as the risk of being injured or stung increases significantly, unless you are a professional.

Wasps (especially the Yellowjacket kind) are attracted to sweet scents, sweet foods/drink, perfume and hairspray. This is why you should always throw your trash out in properly seal-able containers and empty them frequently, make sure to put lids on pop drinks, and never use makeshift “wasp-traps” (which use sweet juice/pop as bait) closer than 50 feet to human activity, as all you would be doing then is attracting the wasps closer to you and increasing the possibility of getting stung.

If you are stung, apply cold water or ice to the area, lie down and lower the stung arm or leg. Abstain from consuming alcohol.
If you experience any of the following symptoms, seek immediate medical attention, as you may be allergic: Hives, swelling of the entire limb, joint pain, wheezing, loss of consciousness.

So, if you are anything like me when it comes to wasps, getting it taken care of right now will allow you to enjoy the summer more, knowing that you have done everything you can to prevent wasp-related …. incidents.
So, give us a call at 705.534.7863 or email us at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com, and have Ross come check it out (unlike myself, HE has no irrational fear of them).
Or you can Get a Quote.

Weather permitting

*sigh*   Yet another full day on the calendar stymied by weather.

Yesterday was rain; today is even worse – lots of wind.

Although some will spray even so, Ross won’t. Not because he wouldn’t like to –  it’s frustrating to have so many people waiting for service and not be able to get to them.

But “environmentally responsible” is not just a phrase we throw around because it’s ‘in’ … it is something we actually happen to believe in.

If you can’t control where the spray winds up, you don’t spray.

Ah well… tomorrow’s another day 🙂

And in the meantime, there’s some carpenter ant work he can do. And errands to run.

Bug bites: Part 2

Today’s post is the second part to the one yesterday about bug bites. Like yesterday, this post will show you some pictures of different bug bites….while they can give you an idea of what bit you, it’s important to know that some people react differently to different bites and if you aren’t sure about the bite(s) or if you start having any unusual reactions GO SEE A DOCTOR!

Bee sting

Wasp sting

Tick bite

Horse fly bite

Please remember these are not meant to diagnose anything. They are just examples of the bites and reactions commonly found with these types of pests. Also, if you have any of these pests in and around your home, give Cottage Country Pest Control a call at 705-534-7863 or email us today.