- Eliminate or decrease dampness in and around the home. Termites are attracted to dampness and as you know, dampness is a given in the spring in New Orleans.
- Repair leaking faucets, water pipes and exterior AC units.
- Repair fascia, soffits and rotted roof shingles.
- Replace weather stripping and loose mortar around the home’s foundation and windows.
- Divert water away from the house through properly functioning downspouts, gutters and splash blocks.
- Routinely inspect the foundation of a home for signs of mud tubes (used by termites to reach a food source), cracked or bubbling paint and wood that sounds hollow when tapped.
- Monitor all exterior areas of wood, including windows, doorframes and skirting boards for any noticeable changes.
- Maintain a visible gap between the soil and any wood portions of your home.
- Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house.
- Schedule an inspection with DA Exterminating!
The most important thing a homeowner can do to avoid termites is be observant and look for the signs we posted in our March 2 blog post. In any case, we’ve assembled these tips to help you prevent termite invasion of your home!
In the spring DA Exterminating starts getting calls from home owners who are stressed over termites. Because of the damp conditions in the New Orleans area, termites are plentiful and far reaching.
You may notice any of these "signs" that termites have entered your space, so call us immediately if you see any of these!
Substantial quantities of winged termites, known as "swarmers," can rise in the Spring inside homes. These are sometimes mistaken for flying ants. Click here to see a total video that clarifies how they are unique. In nature, termites swarm to scatter and begin new colonies. Activated by hotter temperatures and precipitation, the winged termites rise up out of the colony and fly. Discovering winged termites inside could indicate an infestation nearby.
The good news: swarmers inside do not eat wood and are best removed with a vacuum. The bad news: they do show that an infestation is nearby. There will regularly be no obvious sign that the house is infested. Termites are obscure animals and infestations can go undetected for quite a long time, holed up behind dividers, floor covers, protection, and different obstacles.
Confirmation of a termite invasion requires the sharp eye of an accomplished termite inspector...like the ones at DA! Knowledge of building construction is needed to identify the critical areas where termites are likely to enter.
Termites develop and use mud tunnels to enter your home. These passages can be as large as a pencil...or bigger!
So if you suspect termites, give us a call at 800-650-PEST!
The most important thing a homeowner can do to prevent termites is be diligent and watch for the signs we posted in our March 1 blog post. But the next best thing is to schedule a termite inspection with DA Exterminating.
Here are some tips to keep termites out of your home.
One of a homeowner's worst nightmares is the one where his house is starting to lean and squeak due to a hidden infestation of . . . . you guess it . . . . TERMITES! In the spring we at DA Exterminating start receiving calls from anxious homeowners concerned about termites. Because of the moist environment in the New Orleans area, termites are abundant and widespread.
We’ve put together some information for you about the signs of termites in the spring. If you see any of these, don't hesitate to give us a call and we'll be out to inspect.
Large numbers of winged termites, known as "swarmers," emerge in the Spring inside homes. These are sometimes confused with flying ants. Click here to see a complete video that explains how they are different. In nature, termites swarm to disperse and start new colonies. Triggered by warmer temperatures and rainfall, the winged termites emerge from the colony and fly into the air Discovering winged termites indoors could indicate an infestation, warranting treatment.
Swarmers emerging indoors are incapable of eating wood, seldom survive, and are best removed with a vacuum. They do, however, indicate that an infestation is nearby. Oftentimes there will be no visible indication that the home is infested. Termites are cryptic creatures and infestations can go undetected for years, hidden behind walls, floor coverings, insulation, and other obstructions.
Confirmation of a termite infestation requires the keen eye of an experienced termite inspector...like the ones at DA! Knowledge of building construction is needed to identify the critical areas where termites are likely to enter. Many of these potential points of entry are hidden and difficult to access. Termite control also utilizes specialized equipment such as masonry drills, pumps, large-capacity tanks, and soil treatment rods.
Termites build mud tunnels up the foundation and use these to enter your structure. The tunnels can be the size of a pencil...or larger!
So. . . now you know! If you suspect termites, give us a call at 800-650-PEST!
In some 2013 research, 46.1 percent of households in New Orleans reported a pest sighting of some sort. At DA, we treat for virtually any pest problem but we see five pests on a regular basis that seem to us to be the most prevalent in New Orleans. We want you to know about these pests and the threats they pose to New Orleans residents.
1) Formosan termites
A single colony of Formosan subterranean termites may contain several million individuals. Because of its population size and foraging range, the presence of Formosan subterranean termite colonies poses serious threats to nearby structures.
Because of their population sizes and foraging ranges, the presence of Formosan termite colonies pose serious problems.
In New Orleans, where this termite species was introduced in the 1950's, the control and repair costs due to Formosan subterranean termite is estimated at $300 million annually (Suszkiw 1998).
2) German cockroaches
The German cockroach is the cockroach of concern, the species that gives all other cockroaches a bad name. It occurs in structures throughout New Orleans, and is the species that typically plagues multifamily dwellings. The German cockroach is found throughout the world in association with humans.
German cockroaches adulterate food or food products with their feces, physically transport and often harbor pathogenic organisms, and may cause severe allergic responses.
3) American cockroaches
The American cockroach, Periplaneta americana (Linnaeus), is the largest of the common cockroaches measuring on average 4 cm in length. It occurs in buildings throughout New Orleans, especially in commercial buildings.
It is found mainly in basements, sewers, steam tunnels, and drainage systems (Rust et. al. 1991).
The American cockroach is an omnivorous and opportunistic feeder consuming decaying organic matter but will eat almost anything. American cockroaches can become a public health problem due to their association with human waste and disease and their ability to move from sewers into homes and commercial establishments.
Mosquitoes cause more human suffering than any other organism -- over one million people worldwide die from mosquito-borne diseases every year. Due to the recent publicity about the Zika virus, many people are aware that mosquitoes can be detrimental to their health and are taking measures to avoid them. Some of the diseases associated with mosquitoes include: malaria, chikungunya, dog heartworm, dengue, yellow fever, eastern equine encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis, LaCrosse encephalitis, western equine encephalitis, west nile virus, and zika virus
5) Bed bugs
Bed bugs are parasitic insects that feed exclusively on blood and are one of the most difficult pest problems to eradicate quickly. A number of adverse health effects may result from bed bug bites, including skin rashes, psychological effects, and allergic symptoms. Bed bugs are not known to transmit any pathogens as disease vectors. Certain signs and symptoms suggest the presence of bed bugs; finding the adult confirms the infestation.
Call DA if you see these or any other pests! 800-650-PEST
Termites are constantly foraging for food. Workers will leave a pheromone trail while they are foraging. This trail allows other termites to also locate the food source.
Termites eat material that contains cellulose, such as wood, roots, plant debris, paper or cardboard. Termites can gain entrance into a structure through any part of the wood frame in contact with the ground, through openings in the foundation around pipes and conduits or through cracks in the foundation. Termites can enter through cracks that are no wider than 1/64 of an inch.
Subterranean termites require moisture to survive. They create mud tubes to obtain access to a structure that is above ground. These tubes are created from soil cemented with secretions and fecal material. The tubes are to protect the termites from exposure to sunlight or dry conditions. Termites are able to survive in a structure without contact to the ground if there is a sufficient moisture source.
Termite colonies consist of:
Small steps make a big difference. Start by eliminating food and moisture
conditions around your home. These simple steps will deter termites, making
your home a less attractive target.
Eliminate Moisture Problems
Call DA Exterminating Today! 800-650-PEST
The building of homes eliminates the termite’s natural foods found in the woods. Unlike the wood lying on the ground in the woods, the wood in structures is usually more difficult for termites to find. Termites use cracks in foundations or concrete slabs as the opening to access construction timbers. When traveling in dry air, termites construct and travel in mud tubes and avoid desiccation by keeping the tubes moist. Understanding the importance of food and moisture in termite survival will help you understand conditions conducive to termite infestations and take actions which may prevent infestations.
Studies have shown about 90 percent of structural termite infestations can be traced to wood that is in contact with the soil. Wood-soil contact provides termites easy access to food and water from the soil, and frequently, a hidden way into the structure. Wood siding, latticework, door and window frames and other wood should be at least six inches above the grade level. Eliminating wood-soil contact can require regrading or pulling soil or mulch away from the foundation. When inspecting your property, look for areas that wood and soil are in direct contact. Consider the following:
John and Mary were awakened one night by the sound of scratching in their ceiling. It sounded like a big creature was running very fast back and forth. They lay awake for hours wondering what could have invaded their home. The next morning, John decided it must be a squirrel. Off to the hardware store, he went in search of squirrel repellent, squirrel traps and anything else he could find. The store employee was helpful in helping find what he thought he needed. So $150 later, he headed home confident that he was armed with the best weapons to take care of the squirrel! He employed all the methods he purchased and went to bed that night, sure that they would not hear more scratching the ceiling. A week passed and every night, John & Mary told each other, “It takes time for these things to work, so we’ll give it another few days.”
Finally, after 5 more nights of scratching, they called in a professional. They did not have a squirrel in the attic, but rather a mouse infestation. The pest control company found chewed wires, mouse droppings and several mouse nesting areas.
The moral of the story: John and Mary spent a lot of money and many sleepless nights trying to take care of the pest problem they did not have. Only the professional could do the job adequately and completely!
While you may be tempted to do your own pest control, it’s not the smartest decision. Incidents have been reported where people used “bug bombs” to try to do their own pest control and ended up blowing up their home or causing serious fires.
There are many elements that we take into consideration when we perform pest control with chemical materials such as: 1. Is it the safest material for the job?
2. Is it labeled for indoor or outdoor use?
3. How often can it be applied?
4. What is the re-entry time for pets and humans?
5. Where is the best place to apply the material?
6. Do we need protective equipment to mix and apply the product?
7. How should the material be stored?
8. Will the material kill or repel the insects?
9. If material is spilled, what is the best way to clean it up?
10. And finally, are we treating for the right pest?
You may save money initially by purchasing products over the internet or in a store, but in the long run, it may cost you more than your initial investment. Professionals like our technicians at DA Exterminating know how to treat your home or business and they’ll service on a regular basis. When doing your own pest control, you tend to treat when you think you need to, and not on a regular basis. If you plan to do it yourself, pest control is one of those things you may forget about or may fall to the bottom of your “to-do” list, whereas we will be sure your house is taken care of regularly.
Lastly, by hiring DA Exterminating to take care of your pest control services, you reduce your exposure to the actual pest control products and ensure that they will be applied where they need to be.
The pest control service from DA Exterminating is a much better value and a more effective solution than the “Do It Yourself Approach”.
Three keys to termite detection
What’s just under 3/8” long and causes extensive property damage every year? If you thought, termite, you are right!
These destructive little creatures can invade your home unnoticed and take a bite out of your home (and your wallet) without you even knowing it! That’s why we recommend a termite inspection to tell for sure if your house is becoming dinner for termites!
Termites can be very hard to spot. They eat wood from the inside out, preferring the soft spring wood growing in layers deep inside wood construction materials, fences, fallen branches, firewood and even wood mulch. You might not be able to see their handiwork until they’ve caused a lot of damage and even spread to multiple locations on your property. Termites do leave a few clues to their presence, though. Grab your work clothes and a pair of walking shoes. We’re going to take a trip around your property to look for subterranean termites, the most common termite species active across the U.S.
Termite colonies are decentralized, spaghetti-like things that can range from 10,000 insects to millions – and might even travel from your neighbor’s yard a half-acre away.
But if you see these three things, chances are good that termites are using your house as their favorite eating spot. 1) Swarms usually happen in the spring, when some of the termites take flight from the colony in an effort to establish a new colony. A homeowner with a termite problem will often find their bodies and/or wings lying on sashes and below windows where the termites have tried to exit.
2) Termites themselves. Simply pull back mulch around suspicious areas of the house or rotting wood near the house and look for termites.
3) Hollowed wood. Probe suspect wood with a knife or flat-blade screwdriver to see if it’s been hollowed, Jones says. Severely damaged wood may sound hollow when tapped.
What to do? Call us right away!
Answer: The most important thing is to remove the conducive conditions termites need to survive. Termites love moisture; avoid moisture accumulation around the foundation of your home. Prevent termites by diverting water away with properly functioning downspouts, gutters and splash blocks. Reduce humidity in crawl spaces with proper ventilation. Prevent shrubs, vines and other vegetation from growing over and covering vents. Be sure to remove old form boards, grade stakes, etc., left in place after the building was constructed. Remove old tree stumps and roots around and beneath the building. Most importantly, eliminate any wood contact with the soil. An 18-inch gap between the soil and wood portions of the building is ideal. It doesn’t hurt to routinely inspect the foundation of your home for signs of termite damage.
It pays to be observant!
DA termite technician Lawrence Smith found this rarely seen Formosan termite queen at an account this week. Our queen is poised to lay eggs. Nice job Lawrence!