Holiday Weekend

You’d think having lived in this area for – geez, is it really more than 20 years now?! – I’d know better!! But in my defense, I was so happy to finally have a full day of nice weather that, even without Jessa, I figured I could work, clear some of the backlog the wet weather has caused.

Jessa pouted – she wanted me to go to Wonderland with her and a few of the day care kids – and honestly, I would have loved to! But backlog. Oh, and a phone call with our real estate agent about the house we had on the market (yay for past tense!!!!). AND we had company, who I totally neglected (sorry!!) and who helped Ross build my shed even though I am a terrible auntie (thank you!!).

But instead, I did a couple of local jobs in Midland Point in the morning, detoured home to hear the offers, then headed off to work some more in the afternoon. Was hoping to get to everyone I still had outstanding, at least in this area – but duh! Went North on the 400 for the first (supposed to be) two jobs. No problem – until it was time to turn around and do the rest of the route (yes, I use a route planner now; don’t know why we didn’t investigate THAT a whole lot sooner; it makes a huge difference).

Had to cut out several jobs I’d hoped to get to in Tiny; my apologies! Fortunately I should have Wednesday afternoon free this week, so hopefully the weather will behave and I WILL get to all those I haven’t yet – well, except for the Orillia /Brechin / Ramara loop, but that too will get done. Soon.

Anyway, much as I’d love to sit here and ramble on, it’s almost time to leave to go spend the day with my favourite Noah. We’re heading off to the zoo to meet up with Jessa and her kids, and shopping to buy his mommy’s birthday present from Pappy (Ross). Hope your day is as fun.

If you’ve stopped by for help with gypsy moths, spiders, mice, squirrels, whatever, do give us a call at 705-534-7863. Or email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com. We’re always happy to help – well, except when we’re stuck in traffic! Doh!

Checked your trees today?

Well, they’re here – spongy ldd gypsy moth caterpillars are up in the leaves eating as of this week. Jessa and I are a little annoyed that they have reached the leaves before we managed to get everyone that wanted a spray for them done – darn rain!!

We’ve been able to do a few things this weekend, but nowhere near as many as we could have if the weather would have just cooperated!! SO annoying!! But it did mean that we were able to spend some time troubleshooting around squirrels and mice at one home in Tiny. I was pretty darn proud of myself at that one – usually it’s Jessa that finds things but this time I did it!! I found a mouse nest mostly by smell. And then I topped that off by – just as we were about to leave – noticing a (very) split beam that answered the question of how the heck the squirrels got in. Yay me!!

Solving mysteries is a fun part of this gig.

Anyway, just today we saw caterpillars eating in the leaves in Victoria Harbour, Bracebridge, Midland, and Tiny – basically every place we went whether it was about those or not. Was very satisfying to stop by some of the trees we sprayed proactively. No holes in the leaves, no caterpillars…. just as we wanted.

Too late for proactive now – we’ll have to switch to spraying up into the leaves as well as just ’round the trunks – but still able to make a huge difference in how much damage they’ll do and how much (or how little) mess you’ll have to deal with.

We’re pretty booked up right now, and the weatherman is STILL not cooperating too well!! But we are most definitely trying to get to everyone that is outstanding right now. Next weekend is Robin’s Point – if you’re here to sign up for that, there’s a link in the menu bar at the top or you can click right here: Robin’s Point Form.

If you need help with your spongy moths though – or with any other pests you didn’t bring into the world yourself, please do give us a call and we will do our very best to get there and solve it for you just as soon as we can.

Lauralee

New for 22

Did you see our newsletter? If not, it may have ended up in your spam folder, or under promotions. It’s not spam though, honest!! I only do one email newsletter a year (if that)!

So if you didn’t get it, you can, by clicking on this link right here.

There’s a link at the bottom of it that lets you set preferences (where you can sign up if you like) and another that lets you unsubscribe (but seriously, it’s only one per year; why would you?! Never mind, don’t answer that, you’ll hurt my feelings).

Spring 2022

Another year already! Time flies when you’re having fun.

And I have been having rather more fun than I expected to when I took on this pest control gig. I always did like a challenge. And problem-solving. And learning.

So, in spite of the fact that I’m way too old to be crawling under houses or climbing ladders, I do it anyway (only when Jessa isn’t around to do it for me, of course)!!  Don’t know what I’m going to do when she quits on me – now that she’s fully licensed, too, she doesn’t need me for anything, really. Well, except for answering the phone, booking the jobs, ordering the supplies, and paying for everything. Okay, so she ~might~ need me for a bit longer! But it would definitely make a lot more sense for her to be finding bed bug jobs in Oshawa and/or Durham Region and skip the drive.

Anyway …. since Jessa is only available weekends, and working just weekends isn’t going to work for much longer, I’m going to have to find a weekday helper as well. Possibly more than one if the LDD moth caterpillars stick around. Which they likely will, although I think that this should be the end of it for a few years.  Lots and lots of eggs out there, just waiting for the warmer weather….. but this year we’ll be ready for them. And, hopefully, the virus that eventually wipes them out will be that much more prevalent.

In the meantime, though, if you are concerned about the caterpillars, and want to protect your trees, we can help with that – and the earlier the better. If we treat your tree trunks early in the spring, before or just as the leaves are coming in, we can use far less product in a more targeted way, and solve the problem before it starts.

And that is the way we prefer to do pest control around here: the environmentally responsible way.

We’ve already got quite a large number of jobs lining up for early spring – if you are interested in being added to our schedule, the sooner you contact me the better. I’ll try to get a sign up form added here in the next few days – but in the meantime, feel free to email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com, or text/call me at 705-534-7863 and I’ll pencil you in.

Not sure whether you’re going to need treatment? Have a look at any trees in your area. Do they have eggs sacs? What about your home or cottage? Some areas that we’ve seen have an alarming number.  If you’re able to reach and remove them, there’s still time to do that – but otherwise, we are happy to help.

Bedbugs in Cottage Country

Bedbug and eggs

Bedbug and eggs in a small hole in a bedframe. Picture taken by Jessica Batryn.

We sure are getting a lot more bedbugs up here any more. It used to be they happened mostly when families hosted visitors. Now it seems to be a whole lot of short stay renters that are bringing them. We’re getting multiple calls a week these days!

SO unnecessary though! If you going to offer up a cottage for short terms rentals (or long term for that matter) – there are things you can do to protect your property – and your pocketbook!

  • There’s a new product that can be used as a preventative – it’s a lot cheaper to prevent than to treat, honest!
  • There are certain types of bed frames that make a lot more sense than others.
  • And there are mechanical aids (such as proper mattress covers, moats & monitors) that can be used too.

Treating often costs $1000 & up (plus HST) – prevention costs about $200+ materials.

And guess which one involves the fear of bringing home hitch-hikers? And/or bad reviews and lost revenue?

If you have rental properties in Tay, Tiny, Muskoka, Penetanguishene, Port Severn, etc – basically up to about Parry Sound (but sometimes beyond) – and (NEW!!!) now in & around Durham as well, we are happy to help. Give us a call at 705-534-7863, or email ccpestcontrol@gmail.com and Jessa and/or I will be happy to help. 

Winter is on its way

Personally, I do not approve. Especially this year, when the garage is so full there isn’t any room for my poor car. It is going to have to stay out in the driveway and be cold and covered with yuck!

Hopefully we’ll get it sorted by the time I have to start driving in to school again. That won’t be until January, so …. it could happen.

It’s unlikely. We have a lot of ~stuff~ in need of new places to be. But it could.

Anyway – we have time to worry about that. For now I’m just worrying about getting what absolutely has to be done, done. My mom’s stuff is arriving early in November, and we need to have the rest of our stuff out of the area we’ve renovated for her. Most of my ~stuff~ is up in my office (aka the attic) or at my store (still not open but I have plenty of inventory). Ross’s, on the other hand, is still in there. All of his glass and supplies currently have no place to be, and all the tools he’s been using are all over the place. So chances are, all of that will go out to the garage. I don’t think my zoom-zoom is going to get in there any time soon.

Oh well. These days I drive the SUV a whole lot more than my own car, anyway. It is a lot better at getting in and out of the places some of you guys have your cottages. There are some very steep and/or narrow and/or muddy roads throughout our area. But you know that already.

Anyway, as you might expect at this time of year, most of what we are dealing with is rodents. We don’t do raccoons or skunks for the most part; Jessa and I don’t have the experience for that and Ross isn’t into coaching us. So – rats, mice and squirrels.

Lots of rats, mice, and squirrels. Thank goodness for toys. Ross was better at being able to just spot where things were getting in and out than I am – but I am way better at collecting toys than he is. We’ve added a bunch of toys to our toolkit to help us to figure out where critters are getting in.

Of course, we can still just treat the problem …. in some places where it’s just not practical (or cost effective) to find and seal up every access point, we can use traps or bait, and come back as needed. But our preference (unlike some of the other companies) is always to prevent and solve your pest problems – managing is a last resort.

Still got one more set of assignments to mark so I guess I’ll have to leave showing you Jessa’s nifty bedbug shot till next time. There you go – something to look forward to!

In the meantime, if you have mice, rats, squirrels, or unidentified furry critters in your home, cottage or business in Tiny, Tay, Simcoe or Muskoka, you can reach us at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com, or by calling 705-534-7863. Jessa has her own M – F business in Oshawa and I teach 3 days a week and do the gramma thing the other two, so we work almost entirely weekends right now, though, just so you know.

Summertime, summertime…

…and things are starting to slow down just a little bit. I just looked at my course calendar and discovered that next week is Study Week already!!! Time flies when you’re getting old!

Things are starting to slow down a bit for pest control now – mostly because people are waiting to see what happens with the dratted gypsy moth caterpillars, I think. If they’re almost done being caterpillars, might not be worth spending the money to kill the rotten things, right?

Which it could be, if it’s only the caterpillars you’re trying to eliminate (or at least reduce the numbers). Me, I’m leaning towards it still being worth doing because every dead caterpillar is one less to participate in the next part of their life cycle. And because the residual that is left behind after we spray is effective against the moths as well, so that means, presumably, they will go someplace else to lay their eggs, which means that there will be less to start with next spring. In theory!

SO – we can treat for gypsy moth caterpillars. For most places in our coverage area, that will cost about $225 (plus HST) – if you have a lot of trees in the immediate vicinity that you need done, it may cost more. If you are considering it, here are some things you should know:

The product we use is one that can also be used for spider sprays – we tend not to do that because it can leave more of a film on windows than our regularly preferred option, which dries clear. Of course, we generally try not to hit windows any more than necessary, but it happens. This one, however, includes gypsy moths and their caterpillars on the label, so it is a better option right now.

According to the label, the product provides residual protection for up to 90 days BUT the bigger they are the longer it takes. SO even after spraying, you will likely still see caterpillars, just not as many.

We do not have a helicopter! Or a magic wand, either. We spray as high as we can safely spray given our equipment and the situation. There are a number of things that impact how broadly and how high we can treat, including weather conditions, proximity to water, and how reasonable – or not – your neighbours are. We’ll do our best to solve your pest control problem(s) but not at risk of harm to the fish/water or to people (no matter how miserable) or pets.

If you’ve got tree-eating caterpillars, carpenter ants, bedbugs, spiders, mice or rats, give us a call at 705-534-7863. Or better yet, email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com, and I’ll get back to you even faster.

Quick fly by

Yep, we’re up and running, albeit in a Ross-less way … he’s still around and occasionally even answers the phone, and he’s telling us all what to do and how to do it, but not going out on calls these days.

As you probably know, the weather has been particularly not cooperative … not rain so much, but wind, at least along the water, which is, of course, where people need spider sprays most. But we’re starting to book them – tentatively, weather permitting – so do give us a call at 705-534-7863, or email me at ccpestcontrol@gmail.com.

And now I’m off to spend the day with my grandson. Tuesday is my favourite day of the week! Have a good one 🙂

Lauralee

More questions & answers

So, if Ross is retired, who is taking over?

Many of you will have met Matt last season – he’s still with us, and in the long run, the hope is that he’ll take over all aspects of the business so that I can retire too. But we’re not quite there yet, so hi … I’m Lauralee, and I am currently studying for the licensing exams – was scheduled to take them on 16-April but got email today that they’ve been canceled (thank the good Lord!! That was way too fast given that the three books just arrived yesterday!).

I’m not actually likely to be DOING much of the actual spraying and so on but until Matt and Jessa get their licenses and enough training in all aspects to not need me any more, I expect I’ll be hanging around a fair bit. Jessa is my youngest – she works M – F in Oshawa, so is only available to us on weekends, but she wants to learn and get licensed so that she’ll have more options with which to make a living. She’s an ECE, mostly, and loves operating her home day care – but that, especially given that she’s single, has serious limitations.

So… when you call, you’ll get either Ross, myself or Matt; email is almost always me, and if/when you book you’ll get either Matt or Jessa.

All of us have been or are learning from the master, though, so you can expect the same environmentally responsible pest control solutions as ever. We’re looking forward to getting busy. Well, Matt & Jessa are – me, I still have a semester to finish, exams to study for, and so on… so I can wait a week or three yet!

By the time this ’emergency brake’ thing ends, we’ll be ready to go full steam ahead – and in the meantime, we are here and will make time to help you with any pressing problems.

Welcome Back

Here’s hoping everyone made it through another year of pandemic unscathed!

We’re about ready to get up and running again. That will look at bit different, now that Ross is retired – I’m hoping he’ll still answer phones for us and do some scheduling but he says no …. we shall see. Pretty sure a messed up shoulder doesn’t preclude doing the phones, right? Sure does make one feel older though. Especially with the pandemic on top.

Anyway – we’re still here, and looking forward to providing you with environmentally responsible pest control when you need. We are, however, somewhat reducing our offerings – unfortunately, we are no longer able to provide service for ~bigger~ rodents & critters. We’ll still do mice, and offer advice and guidance where we can for others – but we’re not trained for rooftops and unless/until something changes, we’re not in a hurry to get trained either!!

So – mice; ants (big, little & in between); spiders; fleas; roaches, and my personal favourite, bedbugs – what am I missing? I’ll have to add to the list as things come up.

We are not doing mosquitoes & ticks yet – but we’ll be working on that so that we can do it legally & effectively.

Got lots of work to get done, and a whole lot of steps, yet, also – but some quick answers to most often asked questions.

When will we start spraying?

When the weather settles a bit – generally that’s been end of April, early May – but if we can get going earlier, we will.

What areas do we cover?

All of Tay & Tiny. Orillia, Brechin, Ramara, all that fun stuff. Midland & Penetang, of course. Beyond that, we do during the busy season, but we try to avoid anything past Parry Sound or Gravenhurst-ish. Not because we have anything against you guys, but because the only way we can do that further stuff reasonably is to bunch them up with others along the way. Same goes for going any further south than Barrie – except for family, anyway!

Will you come give us a quote?

Not usually. But we’re pretty darn good at giving quotes by phone or email, and you really can’t lose. If we get there and find out we quoted too high, we lower the price. If we get there and find out we quoted too low, we honour that price, but let you know that if we have to come back, the cost will be whatever. The only time that doesn’t apply is if/when we show up and discover that a) people have grossly misrepresented the situation or b) they keep adding on additional services they didn’t mention up front – but you would never do any of those things, so that won’t be a problem, right? Right!

What if I pay cash?

No problem. Just let me know upfront so that I raise the price accordingly. Coincidentally, but 13%.

The price is the same no matter how you pay though. And while I’m on that subject, no, we don’t do credit cards. We love email money transfers though. Those can go to ccpestcontrol@gmail.com. Cheques & cash are okay too.