Tag Archives: tips

Signs that Mice Have Made Your Home a Winter Getaway

24683775 - house mouse, mus musculus, single mammal in shed, uk

Image by Mikelane45@123rf.com

Unfortunately, many homeowners have had to deal with the discomfort of seeing a rodent scurry across their floors. As winter sets in, chances of a rodent sighting in your home will rise as rodents attempt to find their way indoors to escape the cold. Being that mice can be destructive and can also spread disease, it’s important to learn identification facts to safeguard your home. Mice are nocturnal creatures; therefore you may need to search for signs to confirm their presence in your home or business.

Identify Droppings– Typically droppings are the most obvious sign of a mouse infestation. Droppings tend to be tiny (about ¼ inch), black and numerous.  You may find waste matter around nesting sites, on shelving, floors or counters. If you’re looking for additional waste clues, mouse urine will show up under ultraviolet light.

Recognize Routes– Mice tend to use the same routes and travel against walls when navigating; this leaves dirty grease smudges on walls, floors and baseboards. You may also notice urine spots on those same routes.

Sense a Scent-Open a cupboard and get a whiff of a distinctive smell? A strong ammonia odor (the scent of urine) may be obvious, especially in enclosed areas. Mice mark their territory and also mark their regularly used paths.

Locate Damage-Mice have teeth that continuously grow and so they like to gnaw to keep their teeth shorter. Gnaw marks and holes can be found on plastic and wood and most dangerously, on electrical wires which can be a fire hazard.

Food storage sites can also be areas in which to see gnaw marks. Mice will chew up boxes and contaminate stored food items.

Noticing Nests– Mice shred paper and other soft materials for nesting sites. Good hiding places for nests include: cabinets, in dishwashers, behind refrigerators, ceilings, wall voids and other storage areas. Usually young mice will be present within the nesting site.

Hearing Sounds-Noticing any scratching sounds? Listen for scurrying noises in walls and ceilings, especially at night when mice are most active.

Lastly, you may spot live or dead mice around your home. If you’re seeing live mice during the daytime, this can be an indication of a large infestation.

There are ways you can prevent an infestation in your home by:

  • Eliminating moisture sites within the home and keeping basements, attics and crawl spaces ventilated and dry
  • Replacing weather stripping around windows and repairing damaged screens
  • Sealing cracks and any open holes on the exterior of your home with caulk and or steel wool
  • Installing door sweeps on exterior doors
  • Storing firewood at least 20 feet from your home
  • Storing food items in sealed containers and disposing of garbage regularly

 

If you’re in need of professional assistance with a pest issue, Give us a call at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 and in Oconomowoc at 262-354-3444 or toll free at 800-956-0800.  

Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under mice, Pest Prevention, Rodents, Uncategorized

Avoid Bringing Bed Bugs Home After the Holidays

20977855 - bedbug  cimex lectularius  isolated on white backgroundIf you’re planning a getaway of any sort, best guess is that you’ll want to avoid bringing bed bugs home after the holidays.

Bed bugs specialize in holiday travel; they are sneaky hitchhikers who travel home easily in your luggage and personal belongings. Following the tips below can reduce your chance for bringing bed bugs back from your holiday vacation.

  • If you’re checking in somewhere, the first thing you’ll want to do is to put your luggage in the bathroom tub or elevated on a rack away from the bed and wall.
  • Next, pull back the bed sheets and closely inspect the mattresses (if you packed a flashlight, it will come in handy here), pay special attention to the crevices. You can also check surrounding areas such as the bed’s headboard and nearby couches and furniture. You are looking for tiny black dots, blood stains and for actual bed bugs, dead or alive.
  • If you do find any evidence of bed bugs, request a room change that is not adjacent to or near your current room. Make sure to inspect the new room as you did the first.
  • Perform an outside inspection of your luggage upon returning home. For an extra ounce of protection, you can vacuum out your suitcases. Lastly, as an added safety measure, wash your clothing items in hot water and place dryer-safe clothing items in the dryer for 15 minutes or more on the highest setting.

All of us at Safeway Pest Management wish you a happy and pest-free holiday season!

If you’re in need of professional assistance with a pest issue, Give us a call at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800.  

Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Leave a comment

Filed under Bed Bugs, Pest Prevention, Uncategorized

Bed Bug Peace of Mind for Sale-Products That We Offer and Travel Tips

Bedbug magnify44032861_sIt’s a worrisome question we all must ponder these days when we decide to travel, will we bring home bed bugs with us? When armed with knowledge and backed with some prevention aids, we can travel and return home more at ease.

Remember When Traveling:

  • If you’re checking in a hotel or motel, put your luggage in the bathroom tub or elevated on a rack away from the bed and wall and closely inspect mattresses, paying special attention to crevices. Also inspect the headboard, sofa and chairs.
  • If bed bugs are found in your room, request a new room, but not a room that is adjacent or directly above or below the room you were originally booked. Bed bug infestations can spread to rooms closest to the infested room of origin.
  • Perform a thorough outside inspection of your luggage upon returning home. Unpack outside of your home and as an extra dose of prevention, vacuum out your suitcase(s).
  • Launder all clothing in hot water. Lastly, as an added safety measure, place dryer-safe clothing items in the dryer for 15 minutes or more on the highest setting.

We can offer some extra peace of mind in the form of products we offer for purchase.

Products for Purchase Include:

Bed Bug Monitors– Offering a couple choice in brands of bed bug monitors for early detection and monitoring.

Mattress Covers and Encasements-Available in multiple sizes.

Large Bed Bug Monitoring Units for Property Management Companies

It is important to note that while monitoring tools and methods have certainly improved; no tool exists that is 100% reliable in detecting bed bugs. If you believe you may have a bed bug problem, we recommend an inspection be performed by one of our licensed technicians or by our certified bed bug dog, Pepper.

If you’re in need of these products, an inspection or would like service options for bed bugs, give us a call at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800  Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Leave a comment

Filed under Bed Bugs, Pest Prevention, Products, Uncategorized

Just the Flea Facts

Cat FleaThere’s a possibility that the facts found here may leave you feeling itchy, but also more knowledgeable and better equipped to fight off some fleas.

Just the Facts

Did you know that there are thousands of species of fleas worldwide? That fact alone probably has your skin crawling. In Wisconsin we (and our furry friends) tend to only have run-ins with a few types of fleas. The cat flea is the most common domestic flea that we meet.

Fleas are small, wingless parasites that feed on blood. They appear flat, dark, and reddish-brown in color and are about 1/12”-1/6” in size.

Fleas do not have the ability to fly, but they can jump! Fleas can jump as high as 8” vertically, which is 150 times their own height.

Once a flea hatches and becomes an adult, it will jump onto a host. Fleas are attracted to and can live on any warm-blooded animal, but seem to prefer humans, dogs, cats, rats and other rodents. Once attached to its host, the flea will feed. The female flea can consume 15 times her own body weight in blood daily. Fleas will mate and lay eggs upon their chosen host. A female flea can lay 2,000 eggs in her lifetime! Some of these eggs will drop off of the host and land in places such as our yards, bedding and carpeting.

The Threats

Besides the itchy, painful red bumps that flea bites leave behind, flea bites and infestations can cause allergic reactions in humans and pets and can also transfer tapeworms and cause anemia in pets. When fleas populate a mouse colony, disease can become a very deep concern, the worst disease on record being the bubonic plague. They also transmit the bacterial disease murine typhus to humans through infected rats.

Prevention Tips

Since fleas can be transported on rodents and other animals, search the perimeter of your home in fall with a mirror, looking at the bottom side of your siding for any openings where animals or rodents may be entering your home. Walk the perimeter of your home looking for freshly dug dirt and use a flashlight and search under the deck to check for burrowing animals. A good prevention tip is to use chicken wire behind lattice to create a decorative “rat wall” to keep these critters out of these areas.

Keep your home clean and vacuum regularly, wash any bed linens that you think may be carrying fleas or their eggs.

Keep your yard clear of garbage and pet droppings; keep your lawn properly landscaped.

Protect your pets by checking their coats for fleas, especially if you see any excessive scratching or licking, bathing your pet (and their bedding and plush toys) regularly and see your vet for annual check-ups and for advice on flea products and prevention.

Fleas have the ability to reproduce quickly. Contact a licensed professional pest management specialist for assistance.

At Safeway Pest Management, our technicians are licensed and trained to handle your flea problem. Give us a call at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800.  

Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Leave a comment

Filed under Fleas, Pest Prevention, Uncategorized

Carpenter Bees-Bee Informed

7293137 - carpenter bee on a butterfly bush flowerCarpenter bees (sometimes known as wood bees) are typically mistakenly identified as bumble bees due to their size and color. Unlike the fuzzy bumble bee, the Carpenter bee has a hairless, shiny and black abdomen and is about an inch in length. Carpenter bees do not eat wood, but burrow into wood and nest within the wood. Many times you will see these bees around your eaves and building nests within wood structures on your property . Carpenter bees prefer nesting within unfinished wood.

This year especially, we have had a rise in complaints regarding Carpenter bees infesting cedar wood areas.  

A few favorite nesting sites for the Carpenter bee are decks, under eaves and other wood areas such as sheds and wood piles. The female bee is quite the handy lady as she will use her strong jaws to drill holes into wood surfaces for the entrance to the nest and then she will make a sharp 90 degree turn and tunnel into the wood. These tunnels can run anywhere from 1 foot to 4 feet long and end with a carved out nesting area.

Typically, Carpenter bees are not aggressive. Only the females are equipped with stingers, and although they can sting multiple times without dying, especially if they feel their nest is being threatened, they are typically quite docile. The males may sometimes seem aggressive and you might see them flying around your head, but this is more just for show, a scare tactic really.

Interesting Fact: You can actually hear the sound of drilling within the wood as the female bees bore into the wood and carve out the tunnels and nests. You may also see sawdust around the edges of an entrance hole.

Carpenter Bee Reduction Tips: Preventive treatments such as exterior finishes with oil or polyurethane bases will help reduce nesting sites before they are found. Future generations of carpenter bees can return to try to use the holes and tunnels year after year once they have been established.

At Safeway Pest Management, our technicians are licensed and trained to safely deal with stinging insects and their nests. If you’re hearing buzzing, or see a nest, call Safeway Pest Management at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800  Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Leave a comment

Filed under Pest Prevention, Stinging Insects, Uncategorized, Wood Destroying Insects

Preventing Wasps from Building Nests in Your Backyard

22148529 - wasps on combIt’s true that some types of stinging insects are important pollinators and beneficial insects, but they are also a serious health threat to humans. Every year 2 million Americans are at risk for stings that will lead to an allergic reaction and 100 of those stings will most likely lead to death. The source of many of these stings will from social wasps such as paper wasps, bald-faced hornets, and yellow jackets, which can sting multiple times.

Preventing stinging insects from building nests on your home or in your backyard is a solid first step in protecting your family from possible attacks.

To limit suitable nesting sites:

  • Repair holes in walls, including sheds and other outer buildings
  • Caulk cracks in soffits and eaves
  • Screen vents and louvers
  • Limit attractants: Cover trash receptacles to prevent wasps from foraging for food

Some tips when dealing with a wasp threat:

  • Try to stay calm, jerky reactions and attempts to swat a stinging insect will provoke it to sting. Instead of swatting, try gently blowing the insect away.
  • A smashed wasp gives off a pheromone that will attract other wasps to attack. Try to wait patiently for a wasp to leave your vicinity.
  • If stung, gently and safely remove the stinger and clean the area with soap and water. Applying ice to the area and Benadryl and/or a hydrocortisone ointment can help dull the reaction some.
  • Anyone can have an allergic reaction to wasp venom; the chances of a reaction go up with the number of stings acquired. Let someone know you have been stung. Symptoms usually appear after a few minutes, but can be delayed up to 24 hours.
  • Seek medical attention (or dial 911) if you have any of the following occur: tongue and throat swelling, hives, wheezing, dizziness, shortness of breath, blue lips, or a drop in blood pressure.
  • If you find nests around your home, contact a licensed pest professional to deal with the nest(s) safely.

At Safeway Pest Management, our technicians are licensed and trained to safely deal with stinging insects and their nests. If you’re hearing buzzing, or see a nest, call Safeway Pest Management at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800  Visit our website at www.safewaypest.net

Ask us about our Preventative Wasp Treatment with an extended warranty until the end of October at no additional cost!

Leave a comment

Filed under Pest Prevention, Stinging Insects, Uncategorized

Ant Attractants

ANTAnts can be frustrating to deal with when they are invading your living space, especially when they are marching through food areas. The best form of action is to prevent a situation from ever happening by eliminating potential attractants.

So what are some aspects of your home that could be attracting ants? Let’s investigate!

Ants can also be found in bedrooms, inside walls, in living rooms and basements and even in air conditioning and heating units, but kitchens and bathrooms tend to be the most vulnerable locations for ants, so we will concentrate on those rooms.

Ant Attractants in the Kitchen

  • Left over crumbs and spills
  • Grease spills on the counter-tops and floors
  • Sweet staples such as syrup, honey (especially sticky bottles) and sugar left out on counter-tops
  • Fruit bowls-Over ripe fruit is an ant attractant
  • Empty juice and soda containers
  • Water sources

Ant Attractants in the Bathroom

Ants, especially carpenter ants, are drawn to areas with excess moisture; this makes bathrooms an attractive place for infestation.

  • Leaking sinks, tubs, toilets and plumbing
  • Open shampoo, lotion and soap containers

Ways to Reduce the Chance of an Ant Infestation  

  • Clean up food messes. If you’re lax about cleaning up in the kitchen, you may be supplying ants with a food source.
  • Rinse out containers and take the trash out regularly
  • Check and repair the sinks, tubs, toilets, plumbing for water buildup and plumbing leaks
  • Seal cracks and crevices, repair screens on doors and windows and replace weather-stripping to prevent ants from entering your home
  • Keep tree branches trimmed away from your home

Ant colonies can be large so it may be best to contact a licensed pest management professional if you think you have an ant issue.

At Safeway Pest Management, our technicians are licensed and trained to inspect and treat ants. Call us at our Muskego office at 262-679-4422, our Oconomowoc office at 262-354-3444, our Oshkosh office at 920-385-0412 or toll free at 800-956-0800

You can also visit our website at www.safewaypest.net  and check out our current specials while you’re there!

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Ants, Pest Prevention, Uncategorized