When pests such as cockroaches, rats, mosquitoes, ticks, and stinging insects infiltrate our homes and businesses, they pose significant health risks to our communities. Cockroaches, for instance, can transmit 33 different types of bacteria, including salmonella. In addition, rats may contaminate food and transmit various diseases. Since 1999, mosquitoes have been the vector for the West Nile virus, which has infected over thirty thousand Americans. Each year, stinging insects drive more than 500,000 people to the emergency rooms.
Fortunately, there are several measures that homeowners can take to safeguard their families from pests. The most effective strategy for preventing pests from entering your house and property is to engage with a certified pest professional to execute integrated pest management or IPM. IPM is a common-sense approach to pest management that employs sound solutions for treating and controlling pests.
What is Integrated Pest Management?
Creating an environment free of pests requires effort and proactivity. Integrated pest management aims to prevent infestations from occurring in the first place rather than reacting to a pest issue that has gotten out of hand. IPM is based on conventional agricultural pest management strategies. Its fundamental concepts include reducing environmental impact and operational expenses by closely monitoring insect levels and pesticide usage.
IPM is not a single pest control solution. It is a series of evaluations, decisions, and methods and includes using green and organic insecticides, exclusions, trapping, and other methods. The strategy is to integrate pest control factors into your area’s pest issues and situational factors. It uses scientific research and the most effective, low-impact pest management and prevention methods. You can protect your house or company against a pest infestation with just a few easy techniques.
While there are several IPM options, the first step in managing any pest issue is identifying the individual pest problem. Then, you may utilize a mix of IPM approaches and practices, such as removing access to possible shelter or food sources, adjusting cleaning routines, or using mechanical controls such as traps to capture rats, ants, or roaches. IPM also involves using predatory insects in urban or agricultural contexts, such as ladybugs or small wasps. IPM is a method for controlling pests sustainably.
Implementation of IPM practices
To start, caulk or seal any cracks and crevices around door and window frames and other entrance points. Ensure that all window screens, door sweeps, and weather stripping are in good condition to prevent pest entry. Apply long-lasting pesticide dust to your wall openings to remove insects that may be dwelling in these locations.
If you have mulch heaps, be careful to turn and rake them at least 6 inches away from buildings to create a dry zone. This will deter insects from traversing the area and provide the optimal environment for applying pesticide sprays. Every 30 to 90 days, spray outside your house with a residual pesticide to keep roaches, ants and other insects at bay.
Keep shrubs, bushes, plants, and trees trimmed back so they do not touch your home. Also, eliminate as much yard debris as possible, such as leaves and branches. You should relocate firewood stacks away from structures. In yards, eliminate stagnant water that might serve as mosquito breeding grounds by draining excess water in all pots, toys, and items in the yard.
Remove tree trimmings and fallen fruit that attract a myriad of insects. Remove pet droppings from the grass and yard. In the house, ensure that kitchen counters, floors, and other surfaces are clean and devoid of any food that may attract ants or cockroaches. To prevent insects from entering the house, seal any exterior-facing holes and cracks in the inside walls, floors, and ceilings. Use a pest control treatment labeled for the pest and the intended usage area when necessary. For pests that are difficult to manage, consider contacting a professional.
People who own a garden and grow vegetables may also adopt IPM. They can practice crop rotation and other natural pest control methods.
Benefits of IPM
Integrated Pest Management has many benefits; IPM is:
- Cheap and affordable
- Easy to implement
- Protects the environment
- Reduces hazards of pesticides
IPM will continue integrating new information and technology in pest management and disease control since it is a continually changing practice.
However, the cornerstone of integrated pest management (IPM) remains unchanged: if you restrict the pest’s access to food, water, and shelter, you control the pest, and by managing the pest, you may minimize human exposure to health concerns associated with their existence.
Choose A Professional Team to Institute IPM at Your Home
EcoCare Pest Control has protected human health and the environment in the Portland, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington areas for over two decades. When you choose integrated pest management from EcoCare Pest Control, you can expect thorough seasonal inspections from our seasoned experts, who look for any emerging signs of pest problems. We can even come for follow-up visits if needed.
We will reinforce your pest defenses where necessary and provide customized recommendations to continue reducing the danger of infestations. You will not only be less concerned about a possible infestation getting out of hand but also save money since we often use the least invasive techniques to keep pests under control.
Contact us today to book a home or business inspection and to inquire about our customized integrated pest control solutions.
Image Source: hedgehog94 / Shutterstock