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Stored Product Pests Can Ruin the Holidays!

 

indian meal moth

The smell of Christmas, freshly cut Christmas trees and baked holiday goodies are in the air. As the holiday season approaches, we find ourselves baking tasty treats, decorating the house, hanging lights and wrapping presents. While we’re busy partaking in all this holiday cheer, something is lurking in our kitchens, something that can surely put a damper on the holidays: insects.

Indian meal moths, cigarette beetles, red flour beetles, saw-toothed grain beetles, merchant grain beetle and other pantry pests may be feasting on your cereals, rice, grains, flour and meal, along with any stored seasonal decorations made from plant or animal products. These pesky creatures, as a group, are known as stored product pests.

Stored product pests often gather where foodstuffs are stored in cupboards and pantries, and are attracted to flour, dry cereals, spices, chocolate and other candies. In most cases, these stored product pests can be traced to boxes and/or bags of dry goods in the backs of pantries that may have been opened and partially used, then forgotten. In some cases, the source may even come from outdated food that had been purchased long ago and stored for a long period of time. 

Tips for making sure these stored product pests do NOT spoil your holiday festivities.

  • Keep all food stored safely in plastic or glass containers with tight-fitting lids

  • Clean your countertops, cupboards and floors regularly, as crumbs may attract these pests

  • Refrigerate and/or freeze any baking goods that may be stored for long periods of time

  • Inspect all stored products before use

  • Read the expiration date, and when in doubt, throw it out

  • Look closely at any old decorations you’ve packed away since last season, to make sure that stored product pests haven’t set up housekeeping

In the event you do have an infestation, contact your local state-licensed pest management firm, as stored product pest infestations can be a handful.

   Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Rodent Proofing for the Fall and Winter - Rodent Control

 

Clark Pest Control
www.clarkpest.com 

Rodent-control

When fall and winter arrive, the cold weather motivates us to find warmth indoors. But we’re not the only creatures who seek such comfort. Mice and rats prefer a toasty environment over the shivery outdoors, too – and if they can find a way into your toasty environment, they will. The problem, then, is how to keep these rodents from coming in and setting up housekeeping.

As with other pests, a lot of rodent pest control problems can be solved by employing two simple principles: exclusion and sanitation. The Clark rodent control approach is anchored in Integrated Pest Management, or IPM, a process that seeks to solve pest problems while minimizing risks to people and to the environment.

Let’s start with rodent exclusion, or keeping these animals out. A house mouse only needs a 3/8-inch opening – less than the circumference of a dime – to get in; a Norway rat or roof rat needs a 3/4-inch opening, which is less than the circumference of a quarter. So, to rodent-proof your home effectively, you’ll want to close off anything larger than a 1/4-inch opening.

We’ll start with doors, one of the most common points of entry. Gaps along the bottom edge, ones big enough to let rodents in, can be eliminated by installing brush strips, usually made from nylon or polypropylene bristles. Garage doors can be fitted with compression seals that perform the same function. Also, check window screens to make sure they are not torn or otherwise compromised, and make sure that basement windows, if you have them, don’t provide a way in.

Once all doors and windows are secured, you’ll want to examine the walls and foundations around your home for cracks and holes, which can be blocked temporarily with copper or steel wool wire mesh until more permanent repairs can be made.

Look for other potential entry points, too – specifically, holes where utility lines or pipes enter, which can be blocked off with wire mesh and caulking or plastic foam. Vents and ventilation openings will need to be covered by secure screens.

Rats are excellent climbers. If you have a chimney, it should be rain-capped with a spark arrestor, and think about other places high up where a rat could get in – roof defects, gaps between roof and structure, attic vents. Also, make sure you’ve trimmed any overhanging branches that might provide an easy route for rats to access your roof.

The other principle to bear in mind that should keep your living space rodent free is sanitation.  While rodent exclusion measures will help keep them out, good sanitation practices will eliminate many of the causes and conditions that help rodents to thrive.

Every pest, include rodents, needs food, water and harborage to survive. Outside, things like unsecured garbage cans, pet food left in the open, or overgrown patches of weeds, are like hanging out a sign that welcomes rats to your yard. Make sure your garbage is kept in cans or containers that can’t be accessed by rats, along with raccoons and opossums.

Keep any pet food in secure containers, too, and pick up pet dishes and empty the contents once your pets have finished feeding. Remember that if your yard is acting as a rat magnet, when a cold snap hits, you can bet those rats will try to find a way into your home’s more comfortable interior, should they be presented with the opportunity.

Inside, clutter is the enemy. Mice, in particular, will thrive in harborage provided by randomly scattered items. By cleaning up any areas in basements, garages or other rooms, if mice do find a way into your home, they won’t have as many places to set up housekeeping.

Solving rodent pest control problems isn’t rocket science. Putting the common-sense ideas we’ve outlined into practice in your home will help you make it through the winter months without unwanted guests.

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Clark Pest Control Hosts FPA Annual Meeting

 

Food Protection Alliance Annual Meeting at Clark Pest Control

The pest control firm, founding member of FPA, hosted the organization's annual meeting in October.

Source: PCT Pest Control Technology
www.pctonline.com

 

food protection alliance

 

LODI, Calif. - In October, members of the Food Protection Alliance (FPA) gathered at Clark Pest Control for its annual meeting.

Clark Pest Control, Lodi, Calif., is a founding member of the Food Protection Alliance and graciously hosted the members as they introduced new members to the team, reviewed industry standards, recapped 2012 and prepared for 2013.

Food Protection Alliance is a group of regional pest management and fumigation companies that provide nationwide service to North America's food industry. Learn more at fpalliance.com.

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Micke Grove Zoo's Howl-O-Ween Event

 

Micke Grove Zoo Present's Howl-O-Ween, This event is Saturday October 27th from 11-3, Adult admission is $4.00, children $2.00 and the little ones under 2 are free. Activities include: Arts, Crafts, Creepy critter encounters, costume parade and much more. Be sure to bring your trick or treat bag as trick or treating will be in full effect!

The Clark Pest Control Bug Zoo will be out showing some of their creepy crawley critters such as; Tarantula's, Scorpions and rocaches. The roaches are very friendy so handling is allowed! Our Bug Zoo Keep will be doing handling demo's with both Tarantulas and a Scorpion. Hope you join us at this creepy event!

 

 

howloweenflyer2012

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Clark at Best in the West Rib cook-off this weekend! - Sparks NV

 

The ribs are back and so is Clark Pest Control

Clark, an official sponsor of the Best in the West Rib Cook-off 2012. Stop by one of our 2 booths, or both. Like always we are giving away fun goodies, photo opportunities, Meet your local Reno Clark branch representitives and more! 

Best-in-the west-ribs

About Best in the West

The country's favorite free rib festival is back! The 24th annual Best in the West Nugget Rib Cook-off will run Wednesday, August 29 through Monday, September 3, 2012. Come out and enjoy the country's best rib competition and enjoy the Best Ribs in the West!

Once again transforming the Labor Day holiday on Victorian Square in downtown Sparks into a must-attend culinary, music, craft, and family end-of-summer affair.


Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Argentine Ants - The making of super colonies!

 

By: Jackson Griffith
Clark Pest Control Corporate 

 

Super Colonies From San Diego to the San Francisco Bay

Imagine a giant, thriving city along the coastal half of California that stretches over 600 miles, linked by subterranean tunnels from San Diego in the south all the way to Ukiah 115 miles north of San Francisco, with a population of billions. A future scene from a dystopian science-fiction narrative?

No.  According to some scientists, that city exists today. However, it’s populated by ants, not humans – specifically, Argentine ants (Linepithema humile), an invasive species thought to have entered America at New Orleans on coffee ships from South America in the late 19th century. L. humile then spread westward to California via railroads and other modes of transportation.argentine ant

What makes Argentine ants different from most other ant species is that individual ants hatched from one queen’s eggs will cooperate with ants from another queen. Most ant species will fight ants from another colony, because each colony’s ants carry a unique chemical marker that signals they are family to ants from their own colony, but an enemy to same-species ants from a neighboring colony. However, Argentine ants from two different queens won’t have such conflict with each another, because their chemical markers are similar enough for a match, and so they and their sisters – worker ants are invariably female – will team up to drive out whatever native ant species is still crawling about the neighborhood.

These large cities of Argentine ants were described by a team led by biologist Neil D. Tsutsui, then at University of California San Diego, as supercolonies. Three have been identified: in coastal California, in Europe along the Mediterranean coast, and in western Honshu, the largest and most populous island of Japan. The former two have Mediterranean climates; western Honshu is subtropical. And even those are related: When researchers mixed ants from the different supercolonies together in a laboratory setting, they didn’t square off for battle, but got along like long-lost sisters.

Not all scientists agree with the concept of a supercolony, however. At Stanford University, researchers disagreed that the California supercolony is more diverse genetically, and ants around the state don’t seem to spring from a common set of parents; what appears to be a supercolony is really a large grid of interlinked colonies. In either scenario, though, the ants would rather cooperate against a common enemy than fight among themselves. We could learn a lot from Argentine ants.

In California, where one in every four ant infestations reported by pest management professionals involves Argentine ants, it means that if you’re experiencing an ant problem at home, there’s a 25-percent likelihood that L. humile is at cause. In many areas, that likelihood jumps to 100 percent. Your Clark professional will be able to identify the species of ant that’s giving you trouble, and then use the principles of integrated pest management (IPM) to restore your home to a pest-free state. 

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Unexpected and Hidden Dangers that are Lurking in the Garden

 

7 Surprising Dangers Lurking in Your Garden

 

By Sarah Shirley
homeinsurance.org

 

Gardens are beautiful and full of unexpected surprises. Every time you go outside to mow your lawn or prune your plants, you may be coming into contact with something that could pose a serious health threat to you, your family, and your pets. These dangers are way less obvious than insecticides and bee stings, but after reading this you won’t forget these risks are right in your backyard. Here are seven surprising dangers lurking in your garden:

  1. Thorns:

    Thorns

    If you have roses or other thorny plants in your garden, you’re probably well aware of the pain associated with a thorn scratch or puncture. But you probably didn’t know that you can also contract tetanus, a bacterial disease, from a puncture wound or scratch from the thorns of roses or brambles. When the skin is punctured, bacteria-laden soil and other matter enter the wound. Tetanus can have devastating effects on the nervous system, which often begin with spasms in the jaw and a stiff or locked jaw.

  2. Wild mushrooms:

    gardendangers wild mushrooms

    What may look like a tasty truffle could actually be a wild and poisonous mushroom growing in your backyard. Though many wild mushrooms that grow in backyards and gardens are not poisonous, a few can be deadly if ingested. The amanitas, the false morels, and a range of little brown mushrooms (LBMs) are poisonous and can cause anything from stomachaches and vomiting to respiratory failure and death. Wild mushrooms, even the non-poisonous kinds, should not be eaten.

  3. Arsenic-laced wood:

    gardendangers arsenic laced wood

    The picnic tables you eat on, the decks you sit on, and the play sets your children use may have something dangerous in common. Many of the older outdoor wood products that we use today still contain trace amounts of arsenic. Although the wood industry no longer uses arsenic in its pressure-treated products, old wood products may be a health risk to you and your family. Arsenic can leach out when the treated wood gets wet and spread to toys and skin.

  4. Sago palms:

    gardendangers sego palms

    Sago palms are spiky, green plants that are painful to tough and are extremely poisonous to both humans and animals if ingested. These seeded plants are particularly dangerous to cats, dogs, and horses because they find it palatable. All parts of the sago palm are toxic, with the highest level of the toxin, cycasin, in the seeds. Ingestion of the plant could result in several severe symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea, liver failure, melena, and death. If any part or quantity of the plant is ingested, call poison control or your veterinarian immediately.

  5. Fire ants:

    gardendangers fire ants

    For the most part, ants are harmless, but one particular species has been known to take over gardens and cause severe allergic reactions and painful bites in those who step on their mounds. These invasive and destructive pests are particularly bad in the South, but have made their way up to several other states around the U.S. Fire ants emerge when their mound is disturbed and aggressively sting victims, resulting in a painful, round pustule.

  6. Noisy tools:

    gardendangers noisy tools

    Working in the garden often means subjecting yourself to loud mowers, leaf blowers, chain saws, and other noisy lawn care tools. If you’re using loud tools, or within earshot of them, your hearing could become damaged over time. It’s important to limit your exposure to loud noise and wear hearing protection when you cannot avoid such exposure. Earplugs, canal caps, or muffs will help protect your ears and reduce your risk of hearing loss.

  7. Skin damage in the shade:

    gardendangers skin damage

    Even if you seek shade under a tree or umbrella while gardening, you may still be exposed to skin-damaging UV rays that have been scattered by clouds or UV-reflective surfaces, such as water or concrete. Although seeking shade is still better than sitting in direct sunlight, indirect or diffused UV light can be just as dangerous and damaging to your skin. Wearing sun-protective clothing, a wide-brim hat, sunglasses, and seeking deep shade are your best forms of protection from the sun.

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Phil Across America

 

Phil Cooper, CEO of Cooper Pest Solutions and BedBug Central is biking across the US on behalf of Multiple Sclerosis, June 1 to August 1, 2012.

Phil’s mission to raise money to help find a cure for MS began nearly 28 years ago. In May of 1984, as a George Washington University senior, he had hoped to bike across the country in celebration of his graduation. It was an idea of grandeur but due to a variety of factors his dream was put on hold.  Since then, Phil made it his personal goal to bike across the US on his 50th birthday.

Phil saw the fulfillment of his dream as an opportunity to better the world and made a difference in the lives of many.  Since 1984, Phil has ridden thousands of charitable miles raising over $250,000 and creating awareness for Multiple Sclerosis.  He, along with his family, friends and the Cooper Pest Solutions; team, have been tirelessly involved in the MS1550 City to Shore ride each year in New Jersey.  But, with the approach of his 50th birthday (July 11, 20102), Phil is set to put his involvement, passion and 28 year-old dream to the test.

Clark Pest Control, a Team Cooper sponsor, was there at the tire dipping ceremony (dipped their tires into the Pacific Ocean) with Phil at the BBQ at Crissy Field in San Francisco.


tire-dipping-ceremony

Phil Across America crew at the tire dipping ceremony

 

Clark Pest

Clark crew waiting to welcome Phil.

Robert and Phil

Robert (Clark Pest Control) with Phil at the BBQ

WAY TO GO PHIL!!!

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Top 5 Things to Consider When Choosing a Pest Control Company

 

By: Fred Speer
Clark Pest Control
fspeer@clarkpest.com 


Having a pest problem is never fun, regardless if it’s ants in your kitchen or flies hovering over the weekend family barbecue. Your first thought is either to look up pest control companies on the web, or dust off that phone book. When looking for a pest control company, you’re going to find many that offer the same services, but how do you know that you’re choosing the right company to handle your pest control needs?

Here are five things you will need to know before making your decision:

 

1. Licensed – Is this company licensed, and is its license up to date? A licensed pest control operator knows its pest control materials, knows the law and knows appropriate safety measures.

 

2. Treatment Methods – Will this pest control company discuss all its treatment methods with you? From a consumer standpoint, you want to know what the company’s game plan is: Does it offer alternative methods and techniques, such as integrated pest management (IPM) and softer, greener options, or is it a “hose jockey” operation that will spray gallons of pesticide all over your property?

 

3. Reputation – How does one pest control company stack up against the next? Is the company a Better Business Bureau member, and what is its score?

 

4. Proper Insurance – Does the company have appropriate insurance? Insurance is important. In the event of an accident, you as a consumer need to know that you are protected! It’s always a good practice to ask for proof of insurance.

 

5. Guarantee - Does this company guarantee its work?  What is its warranty? Can it provide that guarantee in writing? Always be wary about a company that doesn’t guarantee its work or provide a warranty.

clark pest control

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.

Growing Up a Pest Control Professional (Video)

 

Once upon a time, little Johnny and Janie would say they wanted to grow up to be a fireman, or a nurse. But today, young Aiden or Sophia might surprise Mom and Dad by voicing a desire to become a pest control or termite control professional instead.

Think about it: What’s not to admire about someone who looks great, drives a cool truck, and helps people solve problems that involve ants, bedbugs, spiders, termites and mice? Today’s pest control pro is like a detective who figures out life’s tiny mysteries, and they help make people’s lives easier, and more safe, by keeping all those icky pests outside where they belong.

So when that little sprout comes ripping down the sidewalk on a Big Wheel pointing at a gleaming white Clark Pest Control truck, or randomly begins spouting phrases like “Clark, we need you,” try not to worry. Pest control today is a great way to make a living and do good work that improves people’s lives.

Visit the Clark Pest Blog or visit ClarkPest.com to learn more.
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