Spring!!

ruth and the boys skiingIt’s a happy time of year for pest control …winter is pretty darn boring, although we took up cross country skiing this year, so it was a bit less so this time round. But once the weather starts to warm up and the critters start to get moving and make more critters, we start getting much busier.

Right now, it’s mostly small pests that people are dealing with – lots of calls about squirrels (& chipmunks) getting into places they don’t belong. If you have such a problem, you should definitely get on top of it asap – once there are babies things become a lot more complicated and expensive. Ross can help you get – and more importantly – keep them out.

Next up will be skunks and raccoons – it’s a good idea to have a look around your property and make sure that you haven’t inadvertently provided them with a welcoming atmosphere. Raccoons will, when given the opportunity, take up residence in odd places, especially in the spring when they’re looking for safe places to have their families.

And then, of course, after the snow melts, we’ll be back into doing exterior sprays and carpenter ants and all that fun stuff. I’m looking forward to it – it means that I get the house to myself and can watch my stupid judge shows (as he calls them) a lot more.

Have a happy and pest-free spring – but if you do find yourself dealing with any pest problems, do give us a call at 705-534-7863, or email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com and we’ll be happy to help 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.

Check your boat

One problem we had a run on last spring was raccoons in boats – momma raccoons who thought people’s boats were a really good place to set up shop and have their babies.

Not that hard to get rid of, really – but they can do some damage better avoided while they’re there.

SO – the trick is to make your boat (garage, trailer, whatever) unpleasant for momma – she won’t stick around a location that doesn’t feel secure, at least not when she’s in momma-mode…

so why not wander out to your boat and clear some snow off – give it a good bang on the sides, kick the trailer tires, whatever … once in a while?  And while you’re there, have a look around – for any indication of critter visitors (pawprints? foodbits?) and/or unauthorized entry?  What can it hurt just to make sure?

Heading pest problems off before they start is always preferable (that means cheaper) than dealing with them once they’re well established – but if you do discover a problem, give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com and we’ll be happy to help you with it anywhere in Tay, Tiny, Severn, Simcoe or the Muskoka area.

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.

Raccoons

Yes, we do deal with raccoons (although it’s not Ross’ favourite kind of call) …. they can be a royal pain in the posterior.

I have, today, been watching episodes on The Nature of Things website and happened to notice this episode called Raccoon Nation. Lots of interesting information if you’re interested.

But of course, if you have a raccoon problem – or any other pest control challenges – do give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com and Ross will be happy to solve it for you.

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.

Landlords & Tenants

Are you a landlord or a renter? Have you considered who would be responsible for any major pest control work that might need to be done in a rental property?

Well, for more information check out our blog post “Landlords and Tenants: Who is Responsible for Pest Control Costs?”

Give us a call at 705-534-7863 or email us today if you have any questions or concerns.