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Bed Bug Awareness

How to Spot and Treat Bed Bugs

Discovering that you have an insect problem in your home or business facility is never pleasant, but finding bed bugs is especially disturbing. A bed is where you go to relax, feel safe and get a good night’s sleep. Bed bugs can also take up residence on many other objects. Fortunately, it’s relatively easy to spot bed bugs and there are highly effective methods for treatment, such as PestFix®, your pest control specialists!

How Do I Know If I Have Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs are small insects, but they can be seen if you look carefully. Young bed bugs are lightly colored, starting at about 1/16th of an inch. The adults are approximately the size of an apple seed, about 3/8 of an inch. They’re oval shaped with six legs, and although they don’t fly or jump, they can move quickly. Bed bugs tend to be found in groups. Bed bug eggs are tiny and white, and they affix themselves to surfaces. Other signs of bed bugs include white-colored shed skins and rusty spots on bed sheets from droppings and crushed bugs. You might also see their eggs and casings in droppings or in crevices. With bad infestations, there might be a sweet, musty odor. Bed bug bites typically cause a rash or an itchy red welt.

Where Are Bed Bugs Found?

There are many places where bed bugs can hide. This includes mattresses, bed frames, headboards and box springs, especially along piping and seams, under labels and handles and underneath a dust cloth below a box spring. Bed bugs are not only found on beds! They also enjoy folds and seams in curtains. They like to hide under furniture, wall-to-wall carpeting and padding, baseboards and wood moldings and loose wallpaper. They’re found inside of and behind mirrors and picture frames, and anywhere there’s a nail hole, crack or crevice. Bed bugs can be in clothing and general household clutter in closets, underneath beds, inside electrical outlets and switch plates and in clocks, computers, televisions, phones and smoke detectors. They’re also sometimes seen on bags, backpacks and luggage.

The Dangers of Bed Bugs

While bed bugs are not known to carry any dangerous diseases and their bites are typically painless, occurring while you sleep, in some cases a person might have an allergic reaction. If this happens, there may be painful swelling. Mostly, their bites will be itchy and annoying. There can be health risks if one scratches the skin enough to damage it and an infections gets in.

How to Get Rid of Bed Bugs

Even if you don’t develop anything more serious than an itchy welt, of course you will want to get rid of these human parasites! Just using pesticides probably won’t be enough. An Integrated Pest Management (IPM) system is typically required. This includes an understanding of the pest, a rigorous inspection, ongoing control methods and monitoring, reducing clutter, using physical barriers and the smart use of pesticides. PestFix can help! We offer a highly effective IPM System that begins with inspection, analysis of your facility and pest identification. We then customize our program to fit your unique situation and requirements. Our ongoing treatment and monitoring eliminates pests and keeps them from returning. 

In addition to treating your home or facility, our professional pest control team has a wealth of expertise and experience, so we can advise you as to “best practices” for keeping bed bugs — and other pests — at bay.

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How to Select a Pest Management Partner

When you see a rodent or other pests in your home or business establishment, your first inclination is to call the first pest control company you find to take care of the problem. However, all pest management services are not created equal, and there are important questions to ask and things to consider before choosing the perfect pest management partner and signing a contract. Here are some guidelines so you can make a smart, well-informed decision.

Understand Regulations for Pest Control Companies

Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates all pesticides, pest control regulations and insurance requirements are usually the responsibility of the state where the facility being treated is located. This means that regulations can vary, and some states have stricter rules than others. Copies of laws and guidelines are usually available at the website of the state agency that regulates the pest control industry in your place of residence or place of business. Companies that operate in different states must comply with the rules in all locations.

Research Pest Management Firms with Reputable Resources

Since local state and county regulatory agencies handle regulations, testing requirements for pest control services and any complaints against companies and individual providers, they’re the perfect place to start if you’re researching a pest control company.

Some questions for the government agency include:

  • How long has the company been licensed and what licenses do they currently hold?
  • Is this pest control service (or individual) in good standing with the agency?
  • Does this company or its employees have any complaints filed against them?

If there are complaints, ask further for a total number of filings and see if they have been resolved. Consider it a red flag if there are many complaints or if there has been any action against the company or associated parties, such as a lawsuit.

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) is another good resource to learn about licensed pest control businesses. Their Find a Pest Control Professional tool lists pest control companies by location.

Pest management is extremely important for keeping family members, employees and customers safe, comfortable and healthy. Even a small pest problem can ruin a business! That’s why finding the best company is critical.

Ask a Prospective Pest Control Company the Right Questions

Before signing an agreement for pest control services, gather all the information you can about the company you’re considering. Here are important questions to ask.

  • Do they have experience with similar facilities or homes in the same areas as yours? Do they know the types of pests to expect there?
  • Do they provide an initial evaluation with a price quote, and what’s included in this assessment?
  • Are they insured? Make sure that if someone makes a mistake while servicing your facility, their insurance provider will pay for all damages.
  • What is the procedure for emergency calls? Can they address emergencies quickly?
  • If your facility deals with organic foods, does their pest control service use organic products? Consider other requirements you may have for materials and processes used, and make sure they can comply.
  • Do they have a staff entomologist to identify various insects and make treatment recommendations? (local species vs. non-local species)
  • Do they have current knowledge of pest control regulations and practices?
  • Is the company affiliated with a trade organization?
  • Will they provide you with full, highly detailed documentation on devices, methods and substances used, in addition to regular monitoring of treatments and reporting of findings and results?
  • Are they familiar with county and state laws and regulations for certain facilities, to make sure that your business complies?

Weighing Cost versus Value

As you consider which pest control company to hire for your home or business, you’ll want to consider not just the cost of the service, but what’s included in that quote.

At PestFix, we provide a complete solution for your general pest, rodent, ant, fly and odor control needs. We combine a wealth of knowledge and experience with honest, dedicated and reliable service. With our integrated pest management system, we will present you with a customized plan that directly addresses your pest problem and your requirements.

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What are Silverfish?

Have you ever seen a long silver insect without wings in your home? Maybe crawling in your tub or up your bathroom wall? These wingless insects are known as Silverfish.

You may have noticed they move quickly & are nocturnal. Silverfish prefer damp areas of your home like attics, basements, bathrooms & kitchens that hold high levels of humidity. 

These bugs might be ugly & cause minimal damage to paper, clothing or wallpaper, but they do not bite or carry disease. They prefer feeding on things like: paper, dead skin cells, glue, cardboard cereal boxes & other dry goods. 

If you see one or two of these insects in your home it likely is not an issues, but if you begin seeing more of these silver insects in greater & greater numbers it's time to call the professionals. 

Here are some preventative tips to avoid an infestation:

  1. If you have humidity issues, try using a dehumidifier
  2. Seal cracks or holes to keep Silverfish from entering & laying eggs in your home 
  3. Do not pile up mail, newspaper or boxes in high humidity areas like an attic, garage or basement
  4. Keep dry goods & food stored & tightly sealed 
  5. Regularly vacuum and pick-up food particles
  6. Store clothing in a dry sealed container or bin 
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Bug Exterminators List of Top 10 Bugs Invading Homes and Businesses

Bug exterminators come across creatures we hope to never encounter!  A variety of bug & insect invasions have consistently been pests to home and business owners.  Even with immense growth in pest control technology and the numerous means the humankind has mastered over years to subdue Mother Nature, rare creatures continue to arise.

While some of these invasions may not have been too big a nuisance, others have often caused havoc to homes, property, neighborhoods, city & environment.

Below are a list of short descriptions of ten such occurrences, which we hope will raise awareness about the need of effective & efficient pest control provisions and services.

1. Houston Rasberry Crazy Ant

These bugs are lethal. Named after Houston-area bug exterminator Tom Rasberry, these crazy ants are known to destroy entire homes, manufacturing units and commercial outfits. According to Mr. Rasberry, these voracious critters reproduce so fast that they can cover a one-acre field with billions of their kind in a matter of a few hours. And they are not actually crazy for food items, but chew through all sorts of electrical devices, equipment, wares causing short-circuits and all kinds of other nuisances. In 2014 alone, besides wrecking a number of residential properties, the invasion caused more than one factory units to shut off their productions temporarily!

2. Hungry for Money

A bizarre incident happened at a Lucknow, India bank in 2011 when it was found that a large contingent of termites had somehow made their way through into the inside of a steel chest and chewed through Indian currency notes to an aggregate of 10 million rupees ($222,000). The manager of the bank reportedly was at his wit's end trying to guess how on earth the termites could have crept into the steel chest

3. Caterpillars Wrecking a Car

Another equally bizarre event, this time at the city of Rotterdam, Holland, took place in 2009 when an army of caterpillars took shelter in a car at a car park and spun a huge web along the entirety of a car to protect themselves from potential attacks from birds and wasps. When, about a month later, they eventually turned to moths and flew away thereby releasing the car, the vehicle was so much covered with thick layers of slime that it was difficult to even recognize the object!

4. Cicadas in the East Coast

Those living in the east coast cities in the US, periodical cicadas invasion in the cities as well as in the suburbs must be a fairly familiar circumstance.  Normally they come up to the surface from underground, around tress and grassy areas, every 13 to 17 years which is the time it takes a cicada to form wings and evolve from their ur-nymph wingless form.

The catch is, however, that there are close to fifteen broods of cicadas found on the east coast, so you can realistically expect these invasions to happen pretty much every year! However, on the good side, apart from the ear-splitting buzz they make, these critters do not cause any tangible harm to us.

5. Grasshopper Invasion in New Mexico

In the recent years, the residents of the city of Albuquerque, New Mexico have noticed that the grasshopper population have grown, and at an alarming rate, too! In fact, the year 2014 saw the worst grasshopper infestation in the city.

And this may have some direct association with climate change. Since according to expert entomologists, the infestation was caused by a dry winter. A lack of winter meant that most egg pots were not killed and had survived, which is why the infestation. Although the grasshoppers can destroy large quantities of crops, the County Cooperative Extension Service still urged locals not to use pesticides since the latter could have caused even more harm!

6. Snake & Insect Invasion

Now, to go back more than a century later, a curious thing happened when the mean volcano Mt. Pelee Acute; located on the Caribbean island of Martinique, went active in 1902. The eruption obliterated an approx. 28,00 people from the nearby city of St. Pierre, but at the same time, it also drove a large number of venomous snakes and a host of other insects into the neighboring villages which reportedly resulted in a loss of more than 50 human lives.

7. Fish Flies in Minnesota

Again, from a relatively remote history, we have the account of billions of fish flies blocking the local roadways and bridges in Hastings, Minnesota in 1957--causing a deep and heavy drift, thereby effectively bringing the traffic to a hours-long halt.

8. The 'Bugnado' in Iowa

Something of a similar nature occurred in 2011, when a huge drove of midges, an aquatic insect, swept all over the cornfields of Iowa. The initial alarm was mitigated when it became clear that the insects, apart from creating a heavy slick on the road and thus disrupting the traffic, were otherwise quite harmless.

9. Ladybug Invasion

Most of the above incidents will normally appear as somewhat freakish. However, if we are to talk of more regular phenomena, the ladybug invasion of residential properties is quite common to many cities as well as rural regions in the United States. The invasions typically take place in March-April and in September. Although these tiny and otherwise adorable looking bugs do not cause any direct harm to your property, you certainly won't want them to layer every piece of furniture and equipment at your home!

10. Stink Bug Invasion

Way more obnoxious is what is commonly known as stink bug invasion. When active, they generally invade older and drafty houses and secrete a bad-testing, foul-smelling substance when squashed or even vacuumed, spreading a foul odor throughout the house.

As we can see from above, events of bug invasions (no matter of what type) are anything but out of the ordinary. This is why it is important to have the contacts of a reliable bug exterminator or pest control services from your locality handy. For you never know what kind of emergency may arise!                                             

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Holiday Lights & Decor

Do you find buying, installing and storing holiday lights and décor to be the worst part about the holiday season? The MosquitoNix® Elves have five years of experience and are once again ready to help brighten your holidays.

We supply, install, maintain, remove and store your holiday lights and décor! We will install your lights and décor along rooflines, walkways, windows, front doors, shrubs, borders and greenery, as well as wrap trees and hang wreathes. With 100% worry and hassle-free service, it couldn’t be any easier!

Contact us today!

Why Choose MosquitoNix Elves?

  • High quality lights fixtures, décor & bulbs
  • Full service maintenance program that includes:
    • Installation
    • White glove service (48 hour turnaround on repairs)
    • Removal
    • Storage of all lights & décor at end of season
  • Trained, experienced & courteous uniformed crew
  • Licensed electricians on call
  • 100% worry & hassle-free service
  • Meticulous electrical safety
  • Competitive pricing
  • Awesome results
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