6 Facts About Mothballs

6 Facts About Mothballs

What are some facts about mothballs?

  1. They contain toxic chemicals.
  2. They are more than just repellants.
  3. They are harmful to humans and pets.
  4. Children are especially vulnerable.
  5. They should be used in tight containers.
  6. They don’t repel all pests.

 

There’s a certain smell that most people associate with old clothes and old closets or cabinets. It’s that mothball smell that many parents used to repel moths or other fiber-eating pests. Though it evokes some feelings of nostalgia, it may not be a good sign if you’re familiar with that scent from your childhood.

Mothballs may be great pest-repellants, but they cause harm to humans, pets, and especially children. Here, we compiled some facts about mothballs that you should know about if you plan to use them. Read on to learn more!

 

They contain toxic chemicals

There’s a reason why mothballs are effective against moths, and that’s because they contain toxic chemicals. These repellants are made with paradichlorobenzene and naphthalene, which is why they are sometimes called naphthalene balls. Naphthalene comes from crude oil or coal tar and can also come from burning things. It can also be found in some glass and window cleaners.

Mothballs are basically these chemicals in solid form, slowly dissolving into gas and dispersing into the air. Because of their toxicity, moths are repelled and sometimes killed. Unsurprisingly, the chemicals are known to be harmful to humans and other animals.

 

They are more than just repellants

They are more than just repellants

Repellants are expected to keep pests away which, admittedly, mothballs do well. But their effect doesn’t stop there. The toxic gases they produce are enough to kill insects and could potentially cause harm and death to humans and other animals. They are marketed as pest repellants, but they are actually pesticides.

Naphthalene has been used as an insecticide and was even registered as a pesticide in the United States. Knowing these, make sure you follow the instructions in the container and treat it as you would other commercial pesticides.

 

They are harmful to humans and pets

Mothball vapors, if enough is inhaled, can cause substantial damage to humans and pets. While the most common way for the chemical to enter our body is through breathing, they can also be absorbed through the skin. Also, children and pets could mistake the little white balls for food or candy and consume them. Exposure may irritate the eyes and lungs and symptoms such as nausea, dizziness, and headaches.

When naphthalene gas is absorbed by our body, it is broken down into alpha-naphthol, a chemical that can cause hemolytic anemia. The condition causes the abnormal breakdown of red blood cells, making it difficult for oxygen to reach our organs and body parts. It can then damage our organs and cause even more complications.

Naphthalene is also labeled as possibly carcinogenic for humans based on trials done on animals. This means that though it’s not confirmed, there’s a chance that the chemical can cause cancer. The chemicals in mothballs can be spread by humans through blood, fat, and breast milk.

 

Children are especially vulnerable

Children are especially vulnerable

Children and babies are more vulnerable to the effects of not only mothballs but all pesticides. As mentioned earlier, they can mistake mothballs for candy and consume them, which would definitely be bad for them. Younger people, especially babies, have fewer capabilities to clear out the toxic naphthalene from their blood, so the effects are worse.

Approximately 4000 children are exposed to mothballs per year, and over 600 of those exposures warrant emergency medical attention. It is important to remember that babies can absorb naphthalene through blankets that were covered with mothballs in storage, so make sure to wash everything before using them.

 

They should be used in tight containers

The proper use of mothballs is to put them with clothes in a sealed container. As the mothball turns to vapors, it does not escape the container and keeps the clothes safe from moths.

Mothballs placed in cabinets and closets still release toxic vapors to the air in your household as those containers are not airtight. With naphthalene present in the air, it can be inhaled, absorbed through the skin, or get absorbed into the food we eat. To keep yourself and your family safe, read the label of any mothballs you plan to use and follow the instructions accordingly.

 

They don’t repel all pests

They don’t repel all pests

Some people use mothballs to repel all sorts of pests including rodents and snakes. The reason why they were named that way is because they were designed to keep moths away. It doesn’t have the same effect on other pests. While the smell itself might make a mouse avert its attention, it’s not effective enough to repel them. Snakes don’t get affected at all. If you want to keep pests other pests away, like termites and ants, there are other ways to do that.

 

Key Takeaway

Mothballs are generally toxic and should not be used carelessly. If you still want to use them, then at least keep these facts about mothballs in mind to help you be safe.

The naphthalene balls could repel moths for you, but it won’t help with other infestations you may have. If you’re having problems with pests such as termites, ants, and rodents, then we can help! Topbest provides pest control solutions in the Philippines, helping people terminate infestations of different degrees. Learn more about us here, and simply contact us here for a free consultation!

4 Common Fly Species

4 Common Fly Species

What are the common fly species?

  1. Housefly
  2. Fruit fly
  3. Horsefly
  4. Drain fly

 

In the Philippines, flies are a common sight in homes and other business establishments. While some common fly species are typically found in these locations, there are others that occasionally appear due to their natural habitat and average life cycles. Globally, there are over 120,000 types of flies, but only a few of these will be focused on in this guide. These include the housefly, fruit fly, drain fly, and horse fly.

The average fly will have a relatively short lifespan of around 30 days, but that doesn’t mean that the destruction they bring isn’t as impactful. Most of these flies are actually carriers of harmful pathogens and diseases. Houseflies, which are common across Filipino homes, for example, may carry salmonellosis and tuberculosis. Not to mention that these flies, in general, are known to contaminate food products due to swarming in grimy or feces-infested locations.

Keeping all of these in mind, it’s crucial that you have some basic understanding of these pests that may potentially invade your home. This, alongside finding the right pest control services can help reduce the impacts these pests bring. Read on to learn more.

 

Housefly

Common housefly feeding sweet macro closeup

A housefly or house fly appears in a dark grey color with four black stripes located on their thorax. These flies will generally have hairy bodies, red eyes, and a single pair of wings. Although they grow up to ¼ of an inch on average, female house flies will usually be larger than their male counterparts.

House flies are prone to clustering in grimy locations, such as garbage dumps, sewers, drain systems, or even in agricultural landscapes. They are known to spread a number of diseases — at least 65 of them — such as diarrhea, conjunctivitis, typhoid, dysentery, cholera, and other skin infections.

When indoors, house flies are oftentimes found resting in clusters or batches in areas like floors, ceilings, and walls. Fortunately, a number of effective home remedies can control their population. Aside from the typical vinegar and dish soap cleaning solution, you could also repel house flies by growing your own herb & flower garden, buying an electric bug zapper, and spraying infested areas with insecticide.

 

Fruit Fly

As the name suggests, fruit flies are another fly species that are attracted to fruit, particularly rotten ones. These pests often gather around rotten produce, such as tomatoes, grapes, melons, squash, and other perishable food. When brought indoors, these can be sources of infestation, especially when these fruits have been left unrefrigerated.

Aside from the average household, fruit flies are common in places like restaurants, supermarkets, or wherever there may be rotten food present. Adult fruit flies will grow up to ⅛ of an inch and will also have red eyes similar to the house fly. Other noteworthy features to watch out for include black rear portions and a tanned appearance in the front of the fruit fly’s body.

To get rid of fruit flies is simply to avoid any fresh produce from decaying in the first place. For example, as soon as fresh fruits and vegetables have been purchased from the store, they should immediately be stored in cold areas, like a freezer or refrigerator. As for any rotten food, they should be thrown out immediately for added prevention.

 

Horsefly

Horsefly

Horseflies are large and dark in appearance and are usually active in the daytime during summer. While house and fruit flies will grow up to only an eighth of an inch, adult horse flies will measure up to 1 inch compared to the average fly.

Female horseflies are known for their painful and relentless bites that will cause redness of skin and swelling. In some cases, people who have been bitten by this type of fly will also eventually develop rashes that can be irritating during humid climates.

Preventing horsefly infestations at home is certainly possible through a number of remedies, such as using bug sprays, wearing long-sleeved clothing when heading out, throwing out stagnant water, and the like.

 

Drain Fly

Drain flies will oftentimes be synonymous with sewage systems where the larvae consume sludge, tar, and other forms of organic matter. These flies can be further subcategorized into moths and sewage flies, growing only up to 2 millimeters in length with hairy wings and a grey-colored body.

Similar to many of the flies on this list, drain flies can reproduce quickly — as short as 48 hours — making it easy for them to spread and attract larger clusters. You can always turn to a professional pest control service provider as the best prevention technique.

However, you can also do a number of home remedies, such as cleaning indoor and outdoor sinks frequently, avoiding standing water, cleaning with baking soda solution, or draining plumbing systems.

 

Key Takeaway

As mentioned before, some of the common fly species in the Philippines include horse flies, drain flies, fruit flies, and the typical house fly. Understanding how to get rid of them should always be one of your priorities. In order to do that, you have to learn how to identify them as well as the conditions that attract these pests.

Get rid of flies in your house with a trusted pest control professional like Topbest! Click here to get a free consultation now and learn how we can help make your home or building safer from all kinds of pests.

Pest Control Checklist for Food Industry

Man washing dish

What do you need for a pest control checklist for the food industry?

  1. Consultation with pest control services
  2. Education and training of staff
  3. Hygienic management of the establishment
  4. Recording of a pest sighting
  5. Pest control treatment reporting

 

Rodents can cause the spread of pathogens such as Salmonella and E. coli. Cockroaches move filth to your food which can cause food poisoning. Making a pest control checklist for the food industry is vital because you can’t risk contamination of your products. Keep on reading to learn more!

 

Consultation with Pest Control Services

Before starting your pest control checklist, it is vital to consult the services of a pest control team. This way, your establishment can be inspected for any infestation. Because there is no instant way to get rid of pests, treatment may span a few weeks or months to ensure that all nooks and crannies are free of this problem.

Aside from the treatment, a professional pest control service will also help you form an effective pest management program. Strategies will be formed to prevent pests from coming back, see early signs of an infestation, and ways to treat the problem. Instead of deciding on your own, the experience of a pest control team is valuable in making a checklist.

 

Education and Training of Staff

Sanitary day in the restaurant. Repeats wash your workplace. Coo

To keep everyone on the same page, all the people working in the establishment need to be trained regarding pest control. If each worker knows their role in the pest management program, even a big factory will be safe from this problem.

This way, each person can take turns in completing the pest control checklist for their station, ensuring a hygienic and clean workplace. They must know what signs to look for to determine an infestation.

Aside from completing a daily checklist, an open platform for communication is key to prevent this problem from reoccurring. In case of a pest sighting, they know the next step they need to take or the person they need to inform.

 

Hygienic Management of the Establishment

Now that your staff knows their part in the pest management program, all you need to do is make a daily checklist for preventive maintenance. These include all the tasks they need to complete to ensure that no pest will be attracted to your establishment. This includes food hygiene and proper management of waste.

A professional pest control service will give you an idea of what to put on your checklist:

  • Storing food in airtight containers.
  • Cleaning up spills and debris immediately.
  • Daily cleaning of all surfaces before closing for the day.
  • Closing rubbish bins with lids.
  • Clearing of rubbish bins located inside the establishment.
  • Deep-cleaning of hard-to-reach areas such as shelves and under sinks.
  • Closing all entry points to the building after entering the premises.

 

Recording of Pest Sightings

Man washing dish on sink at restaurant

With preventive maintenance, your risk of a pest infestation will decrease. But in the event where a pest manages to enter your building, your staff must know that it is crucial that your staff knows what to look for. Because every pest is different, knowing the signs can help you choose the best treatment.

It is useful to make a sighting log that will be submitted to the pest control manager. This can help you form the next step to control the infestation. Some of the things you can include in your checklist are:

  • Is there any evidence of pest droppings?
  • Are chew marks present in food packages?
  • Are there any new holes on the walls?
  • Is there a foul smell coming from inside cabinets and under sinks?

 

Pest Control Treatment Reporting

If you’re undergoing a long treatment, a checklist may be given to you to keep track of the pest management program’s success. You might need to check this from time to time to ensure that everything is working correctly. To keep food safe, non-chemical control methods will be recommended for your establishment. Pesticides will be used as a last resort.

While pest control services will visit your establishment regularly, they will leave tasks to you. If there are any abnormalities, report them immediately to the person in charge.

 

Key Takeaway

 Before you form a pest control checklist for the food industry, consulting a professional pest management service can make a tremendous difference. Because of their experience and knowledge, they can advise you on the tasks you need to do to prevent and treat a pest infestation.

If you’re interested in a free inspection, send a message to Topbest today!

The Importance of Pest Control After COVID-19

Pest / termites control services on wood stair in the new house that have termites signs inside it.

What is the importance of pest control after COVID-19?

  1. Prevention of disease spreading
  2. Keeping customers and staff healthy
  3. Resumption of operations

 

Experts have predicted that there is no clear timeline for the end of the COVID-19 virus. Many people even have the opinion that it’s just something that people will have to learn how to live with. As the world moves towards a whole “new normal” where health and safety are brought to the fore, it’s now crucial more than ever to understand the importance of pest control after COVID-19 — or at least after a time where the threat of contracting the virus will no longer seem imminent.

The pest control industry was no doubt one of the most impacted sectors during the economy. With hotels, retail centers, businesses, and other commercial establishments temporarily closing down, there was likely lower demand for these services. But as the economy slowly reopens and vaccinations have begun rolling out in other countries, pest control will certainly be on the top of the list for most of these affected industries. Read on to learn more.

 

Prevention of Disease Spreading

Coronavirus Pandemic. A disinfector in a protective suit and mask sprays disinfectants in the house or office

The main function of pest control in its simplest idea is to control or totally eliminate the spread and presence of pests in a given location. These pests can be anywhere from termites, cockroaches, flies, mosquitos, ants, or even vermin — some of which are carriers of diseases that can attack the immune system of a human being.

Keeping this in mind, pest control will become integral in counteracting the spread of certain diseases that may be borne from pests. Some Aedes species of mosquitoes, for example, may be infected and can be carriers of dengue. Unless mild and asymptomatic, the symptoms for dengue may manifest as fevers, rashes, and muscle pains — all of these can worsen with a COVID-19 co-infection.

Pest control services are present to prevent this extreme situation from ever happening in the first place. Businesses would benefit from a more frequent visit by their local service provider, either on a quarterly or monthly basis as needed.

 

Keeping Customers and Staff Healthy

In the latter stages of the pandemic, governments around the world felt confident enough to allow the reopening of commercial businesses, even non-essential ones, such as malls, clothing stores, restaurants, gyms, hotels, and the like. With the lifting of restrictions, these businesses were likewise tasked to make sure that their facilities are safe for use by both employees and customers.

For example, a restaurant’s cleaning crew might make the effort of sanitizing all areas such as dining spaces, kitchens, parking lots, bathrooms, and other high-touch surfaces. But there’s very little guarantee that this would be enough without the assistance of a pest control service.

If you own a business, hiring pest control can guarantee that your establishment will receive the most comprehensive level of sanitation. Professionals in this industry have been trained to identify specific problem areas and provide a personalized solution that meets the needs of every customer.

With pest control, reopening a business after the pandemic can be done much more safely, with a better assurance that the customers and the staff won’t experience health issues due to the presence of pests.

 

Resumption of Operations

Barista in face mark at coffee shop in new normal

In the age of a global pandemic, pest control and health and safety protocols come together. Here in the Philippines, before non-essential businesses can even safely be reopened, they would first have to be inspected by a government body to see if they are able to comply with safety guidelines and other requirements.

Government officials want to make sure that businesses are well-equipped to run and provide services to their customers in a safe manner. Social distancing, sanitizing, and pest control measures are part of the standards that these businesses have to meet. Without implementing just one of these services, then the business may find it challenging to resume operations even at a less than full capacity.

 

Key Takeaway

The importance of pest control services after COVID-19 should not be underestimated, especially when the capacity to implement safety guidelines seem to define the recovery for many businesses and industries.

As mentioned in the article, pest control serves not only as criteria for businesses to meet but also as a crucial factor in curbing the spread of diseases that can compromise the immune system. It also assures that businesses are able to safely reopen without any potential harm to customers or staff.

Looking for effective pest control services in the Philippines? Topbest has got you covered. Click here to request a consultation from us now!

4 Non-toxic Pest Control Alternatives That Work

woman doing house chores

What are non-toxic pest control alternatives that work?

  1. Regular cleaning
  2. Soapy water
  3. Diatomaceous earth
  4. Herbs and spices

 

While pesticides are very effective in eliminating the pests at your home, some ingredients they contain are also harmful to animals and humans. If you’re not careful when using these chemicals, there is a chance you will experience itchy, stung skin, or worse, it could affect your central nervous system. To prioritize your safety, you can try this list of non-toxic pest control alternatives. Read on!

 

Regular Cleaning

Having pests in your home can be prevented by one simple thing—cleaning. Rats, cockroaches, and ants are attracted to food and water. If you have any leftovers from lunch or dinner, you can either get rid of them or store them in airtight containers. This way, no scent will lure these pests.

When keeping a garbage bin inside your home, make sure to always put the lid on every time you throw something in. Aside from cleaning leftovers, it is also a good idea to get rid of clutter. Stacked magazines, cardboard, receipts—these are the perfect areas for bugs to gather in.

If you have bedbugs, ants, or fleas, your best option is to use the vacuum. Clean up rugs, mattresses, and every nook and cranny of your home for these pests. You may not see their eggs because of the minuscule size, but the strong suction will get them all.

 

Soapy Water

Soapy Water

Many people think of ants as stubborn pests. Even when you get rid of them, they manage to return. This happens because they leave a pheromone trail that only other members of the colony can detect. That’s why you will notice that they always crawl on a specific path. If you clean it with soapy water, it will get rid of the pheromones. Mix it with vinegar or coffee grounds for the best results.

If you have pests in your plants, using toxic pesticides can also kill the plant itself. If you have bugs like aphids, mites, and thrips, you can spray soapy water without harming your garden.

To make this non-toxic pesticide spray, you can mix 5 tablespoons of soap per gallon of water. You can also buy ready-made insecticidal soap. Soapy water is also effective in getting rid of ants and cockroaches.

 

Diatomaceous Earth

This powdered material may look simple, but it is effective as a non-toxic pest control alternative. Diatomaceous earth is made from fossilized remains of tiny creatures which are called diatoms. You can buy this in many formulations, and some products can even help eliminate ticks and fleas in dogs and cats.

When buying diatomaceous earth for pest control, look for a label that says ‘food -grade’. This ensures that the powder is not treated and in its purest form. This is very effective because it dehydrates pests, which leads to their death.

It works because the powder has microscopic abrasive properties that puncture a pest’s skin. The wounds let the necessary fluids from their body out, which are then absorbed by the powder. It is recommended to leave the diatomaceous earth for up to 5 days.

 

Herbs and Spices

Lemongrass on a white background. full depth of field

If you have a garden around your house, you can try growing herbs such as mint, basil, lavender, rosemary, and lemongrass. Not only will it make your home smell good, but it can also prevent pests from coming in.

Thai lemongrass can be used as an insect repellant if you plant it. You can also make a simple solution by mixing it with alcohol and applying it to your body. This is effective because it contains the essential oil citronella, which is effective against mosquitoes.

Spices that you may already have can also be effective in preventing pests. If you want to deter ants, you can use garlic or cayenne pepper at entry points of your home. Cockroaches also hate garlic and bay leaves. To prevent flies from contaminating your food, you can put basil and clover in a container and open it whenever you have food on the table.

 

Key Takeaway

It can be tempting to just buy a pesticide and spray it all over your home to get rid of bugs and insects. While this may be effective, it can also harm your plants, pets, children, and yourself in the process. Chemicals that are usually found in pesticides can also affect air and water quality when used often.

To prevent these from happening, non-toxic pest control alternatives such as regular cleaning, use of soapy water, food-grade diatomaceous earth, and herbs and spices can help you get rid of the pesky pests in your home.

If you’re already experiencing a widespread pest infestation, a professional pest control group like Topbest can help you solve your problem for good. If you’re interested in a free inspection, you can click here.

How Can Pests Damage Your Plants?

Closeup shot of an insect on a green leaf damaging it with a blurred background

How can pests damage your plants?

  1. Chewing
  2. Sucking
  3. Gall Formation
  4. Transmitting Diseases

 

Pests can destroy your plants in many ways. Some can bring minor harm that can be neglected, but if an infestation grows, it may decrease the amount of greenery in your garden. If you know what these insects can do, you can take action immediately after seeing the signs. To help you, we listed down the ways how pests can damage your plants. Read on!

 

Chewing

Some pests like to chew on leaves for their meals. That’s why you can see ragged edges or even holes. Some common culprits would be caterpillars, grasshoppers, slugs, snails, and beetles. Although beetles can be helpful insects in your garden.

Caterpillars like to eat the leaves and even flowers. They can eat a whole leaf, only leaving the middle vein. They can get inside greenhouses because of adult butterflies and moths that can fly into openings such as doors. Caterpillars are generally not a problem if there are only a few. Besides, they can grow to butterflies which are beneficial pollinators.

Grasshoppers are also leaf-eaters. They live in semi-arid areas and like to chew on the leaves and stems of grain plants. Having a few in a garden may be good because their excrement can fertilize plants. But in some cases when massive infestations occur, a whole field could be damaged.

If you see slime trails aside from holes and ragged edges, this may be a sign that you have snails and slugs in your garden. They like succulents, and fruits that are near the ground.

 

Sucking

Detail of an aphid infestation, Aphididae, feeding on the sap of

Some pests can suck the life out of your plants if you let them. Some of these are thrips and mites. Because they like to eat the sap from your plants, it may cause some deformation and discoloration in your leaves and flowers. Some signs of damage are wrinkled and curled leaves.

Thrips are pests that are so small that finding them can be difficult. It is easier to find traces of their feeding such specks of excrement. If you get a magnifying glass, you will see silver insects that resemble lobsters. Leaves will also have white streaks and patches.

Another sucking pest similar to thrips is mites. The most popular type is the spider mites who produce webbings in plants. After feeding, they can leave bronze specks on the leaves.

Other examples of these insects are aphids, scales, mealybugs, and whiteflies. If you leave these pests alone, they can cause plants and fruits to have stunted growth.

 

Gall Formation

Pests can also cause damage to plants through abnormal growth or galls. This may be caused by oviposition, infection, or pest feeding which irritates the plant cells. Oviposition is the process of laying eggs on plant tissues which can also cause the death of stems and fruits.

Galls can grow on any part of the plant, including the leaves, stems, flowers, and even roots. Some will look like warts, lumps, or balls.

Galls cannot technically kill your plants, but they may look unsightly especially on a flowering garden. They can also serve as homes to pests where they lay eggs and develop.

 

Transmitting Diseases

Leaf infectious (leaves disease) in bad environment isolated on

Some pests who feed on your plants can also become carriers of diseases. Some examples would be mosaic viruses that are transmitted by aphids, and yellow-type viruses that leafhoppers bring. Symptoms of mosaic viruses can be similar to what plants look like after a sucking pests feed. These include discolored and deformed leaves and can lead to plant death.

 

Key Takeaway

 If you’re asking how pests damage your plants, we hope that the information in this blog can help you. Insects can harm your garden by chewing, sucking, gall formation, and transmitting diseases. If you see a few caterpillars here and there, you can leave them be as long as the damage is not large. Some insects can be beneficial to your plants after all. But if the infestation is starting to grow, it may be time to take action.

If you’re looking for a pest control service near you, you can contact us here for a free inspection. We are experts in helping both residential and commercial establishments through non-toxic solutions that can be customized to each client.

6 Habits to Avoid Pest Infestations During the Pandemic

6 Habits to Avoid Pest Infestations During the Pandemic

What are some of the habits to avoid pest infestations during the pandemic?

  1. Keep entry points closed
  2. Don’t leave food exposed
  3. Wash the dishes immediately
  4. Throw out the trash
  5. Clear up moisture buildup
  6. Make general cleaning a routine

 

The COVID-19 has led to a series of unfortunate global events. In an attempt to stop the spread of infection, the government has mandated for everyone to stay inside their homes. During this period of time, it is important to know about the habits to avoid pest infestations during the pandemic.

An unfortunate consequence of the pandemic is that it increases the risk of pest infestations. From rats, cockroaches, mosquitoes, all the way down to flies, your household can easily become a perfect habitat for a wide variety of pesky pests.

Thankfully, we’ve rounded up the habits to keep your household pest-free. Read on to know more about this!

 

Keep Entry Points Closed

Just like any other species, pests are on the constant lookout for warm shelter and dependable food sources. This is what makes your household an attractive target for them.

Remember that pests are miniscule in size. They are very persistent as well. For example, rats may enter your household by digging under foundations. On the other hand, ants can crawl through the smallest openings and gaps in walls.

Pests will take the chance to sneak into your household if they can. If you want to avoid pest infestations, block their entryways. To do this, keep your doors and windows closed or seal utility openings such as pipes. Caulk cracks around the entry points as well!

 

Don’t Leave Food Exposed

A cockroach is sitting on a piece of bread in a plate in the kitchen. Cockroaches eat my food supplies

No one can deny that the pandemic impacted people’s eating habits immensely. There are people who are ordering more and more food items online. In the same way, there are others who are eating comfort food nonstop to counter overwhelming situations at hand.

Sadly, pests don’t take breaks even during the pandemic. In fact, they are becoming more active. As a result of the establishment closures during the past months, pests are entering households for food sources.

Do not be tempted to just leave that last pizza slice or bag of chips after you watch a movie. Exposed food items are like feast invitations for pests such as ants and cockroaches. Ensure that everyone in your household cleans up after they eat as well!

 

Wash The Dishes Immediately

No matter how busy you might be because of juggling household chores and work at the same time, don’t leave out the dirty dishes overnight.

Fat, oil, and sugar stick to dishes when you don’t wash them. Pests such as flies, ants, and cockroaches are attracted to those leftovers. Let’s not forget about the foul smell it brings due to the decomposing food items.

Immediately wash the dishes after using! Afterward, place them in a closed cabinet for drying. This will limit the access of crawling cockroaches as well.

 

Throw Out the Trash

Young woman sorting garbage. Concept of recycling. Zero waste

Now that you are spending most of your time at home, the garbage bin will surely be filled quicker than before.

Leaving trash bins full is one of the main causes of unpleasant odors in the household. It invites a number of household pests immediately too!

Houseflies love to feed and lay eggs in garbage. Its presence will not only be annoying; it can carry a number of diseases as well.

Besides the house fly infestation, cockroaches will be another issue. They aren’t picky eaters so they’ll eat whatever they can sink their teeth into, even rotten food. Throw out your trash regularly. Do not let it overflow and always close the trash bin tightly!

 

Clear Up Moisture Buildup

It has been seven months since the government announced the quarantine measures. As the Philippines enters the “Ber” months, we can expect heavy and regular rainfalls. It is a crucial time to clear up moisture buildup from your household.

If you didn’t already know any moist area can easily become a breeding ground for mosquitoes. It would take only two days’ time for a female mosquito to hatch about 100 to 300 eggs into larvae.

As mosquitoes create both a health threat and a nuisance, ensure that every corner of your household is free from moisture. Some of the places that hold stagnant water include your pet’s water bowl, leaking pipes, discarded tires, clogged rain gutters, and pools.

 

Make General Cleaning a Routine

Asian woman wearing rubber protective gloves cleaning kitchen cu

During these stressful times, it’s understandable for people to feel like they don’t want to do anything. But, remember that a messy household is an ideal nesting site for pests.

Make it a routine to clean. Sweep, mop, and vacuum the floors. Wipe down countertops and surfaces. Cleaning will be worth it as it doesn’t only avoid pest infestations, it helps improve your productivity as well.

 

Key Takeaway

It’s essential to know about the habits to avoid pest infestations during the pandemic. At Topbest, we offer an effective and integrated solution to protect your household from pest infestations. If you want to learn about our services, click here!

Pests to Watch Out for During Your Quarantine

rats eating bread

What are some pests you should look out for during quarantine?

  1. Rats
  2. Cockroaches
  3. Termites
  4. Ants

Many countries around the world have begun imposing measures to curb the effects of the pandemic and to prevent its rapid spread across populations. In the Philippines, for example, an Enhanced Community Quarantine has been one of these measures. Staying an indefinite period around the home may lead individuals to notice pests during quarantine, which they might not normally notice in earlier times.

Coupled with the high level of activity in residential spaces nowadays, there is a higher possibility that these pests can compromise the quality of life inside the home.

While it can be a challenge to deal with both the pandemic and the spread of pests in the household, one need only know what to look out for. Continue reading to learn more.

 

Rats

While many of the pests on this list would prove to be quite challenging to completely eradicate, one should definitely watch out for the spread of rats, or mice populations. For those who may not be working from home and are just relaxing in their house, there is a tendency to do nothing but to eat snacks or just simply watch television. Persisting in this kind of lifestyle would lead to instances of many crumbs falling on the floor, as well as different kinds of food wrappers just strewn all over the room.

This kind of environment is precisely a breeding ground from rats that can easily creep in the night and disturb the peace. Luckily, getting rid of rats isn’t difficult, so long as the proper materials and strategies are employed. Using humane rodent traps can solve your problem with ease. It’s best to place these traps in locations where these pests are most frequently spotted. The kitchen would be a good place to start. For a more effective solution, you can use this technique with a combination of other tools such as rodenticides, snap traps, or baiting traps.

 

Cockroaches

Cockroach

Cockroaches are another kind of pest one should definitely watch out for during quarantine.

The sedentary lifestyle that most people are enjoying due to the circumstances might lead them to put off such chores like washing dishes after use. As mentioned before, the increased activity in the kitchen would lead to cockroaches roaming this area of the house more freely.

If you want to avoid this from happening, one simple practice you can do is thoroughly clean your kitchen floors and the kitchen table. This task ensures that no food bits are left out and prevents the spread of cockroaches. Another practice you can do is by religiously washing your dishes and not leaving them to sit in a sink for long periods.

Sometimes, preventive measures can already be too late. If necessary, you might have to end up using insecticides or pesticides to completely eradicate cockroaches. Just ensure you’re using chemicals which are not harmful to the environment, as well as to the people around you.

 

Termites

Flying termites are some of the most common kinds of pests that frequent Filipino households. Fortunately, you can practice several home remedies to get rid of these pesky creatures.

One thing you can do is to locate flying termite mounds lying around your house. They’re easily identifiable, since many of these flying termites flock around these spaces. Another thing you should know about flying termites is that they’re easily attracted to light sources, similar to many insects. Prevent them from entering your home by installing thicker curtains that prevent the entry of light through your windows. You can also use a bug zapper for maximum effect.

 

Ants

a trail of ants

Finally, an insect you should keep an eye out for during the lockdown is the ant. Similar to cockroaches and rats, ants are attracted to food crumbs, especially those coming from sweet snacks like biscuits, cookies, pastries, and the like.

As a preventive measure, you should properly dispose of your food wrappers after immediately consuming the contents. You should also make it a habit to sweep your kitchen and dining room floors in order to get rid of pieces of food that have been scattered all over the area.

It’s not uncommon to find a trail of ants on the walls or floors in your house. You can easily get rid of this trail by applying a solution of glass cleaner and a mild liquid detergent. This mixture works to remove the trail of scented pheromones which the ants leave behind as they crawl.

 

Key Takeaway

Your home might be more vulnerable to pests during quarantine because of the long durations you spend inside the many parts of your house. Some places you should definitely watch out for include the kitchen, dining room, and the bathroom, due to the increased level of movement in these spaces. As such, these areas are more prone to pests like ants, rats, cockroaches, and the like.

The guide above has hopefully equipped you with information on some of the pests you should divert your attention towards, especially during the quarantine. With a combination of these methods, you’ll be able to prevent their spread in no time.

How to Inspect Used Homes for Pest Infestations

Hello, Di, First article here. Thank you.

How do you inspect used homes for infestations?

  1. Check for active pests
  2. Inspect surfaces for dead indoor bugs
  3. Holes, fecal matter, and gnaw marks
  4. Check the wood

 

Buying a new home or property can be one of the most pivotal moments in your life. However, one thing that can ruin this moment is the presence of pests and their accompanying infestations. The worst part about it is you might not detect them until you’ve spent some time in the home, leaving you questioning the worth of your investment and paying even more for repairs and pest control.

Let’s face it — nobody wants to be in that kind of situation. But without proper diligence and inspection during the home-buying process, there’s no way to guarantee a pest-free home. To help you in that regard, are ways on how you can inspect used homes for infestations.

 

Check for active pests

Check for active pests

One of the first things you should do when inspecting a used home you are interested in buying is to do a visual evaluation. The most obvious sign of a pest infestation is simply seeing pests walking or scurrying around the nooks and crannies of the house, if not in plain sight along the floors and walls.

This might not be the most likely thing to observe, but in some cases, lapses in management can lead to poor pest control before the sale of a house. This should be an immediate red flag on your end, no matter how desirable that property is to you.

To aid you in this endeavor, make sure to bring a flashlight every time you do a house tour.

 

Inspect surfaces for dead indoor bugs

Inspect surfaces for dead indoor bugs

If live pests are nowhere to be found, don’t celebrate just yet. Insects like termites and bed bugs usually leave their dead along window ledges due to it being an entry or exit point for them. Always check the corners of a room as well because dead insect bodies could also be found there.

It is important to take note of the number of dead insects that you find because an indoor infestation would usually mean copious amounts of insects like termites and bed bugs. Seeing only a handful might lead you to believe that the house is infested when in it could be random insects that go in through an open window or vent.

Dead bugs also mean an effort at pest control was made by the previous owners or the homeowners association, which should be a good sign for you.

 

Holes, fecal matter, and gnaw marks

Holes, fecal matter, and gnaw marks

Going further with the theme of ocular inspection, the next telltale signs of a pest infestation are holes, fecal matter, and gnaw marks. These three signs are grouped together because they mostly mean one thing: an active rodent infestation.

Rats have been known to be pests of habit, passing through the same established routes every time they move. This is why you should be monitoring the edges of a room that is closest to the walls.

Rodents love walking along walls since it gives them protection. It is also where they love to make holes to pass through.

Rats are also notorious producers of feces. They tend to leave their droppings anywhere they pass through. If you see tiny black pellets on the floor, along walls, or near conspicuous holes and drains, you can be sure that a rodent has been there recently.

 

Check the wood

Check the wood

No pest infestation inspection is complete without checking for termites. Termites are one of the worst pests one can have in a home regardless of whether it’s used or brand new.

During a house tour, make sure to knock on the wooden surfaces of the house in each room. If some parts sound hollow while others don’t, it could be a sign of termites. One way to verify this is by checking how brittle some of the hollow parts are. If they start crumbling at the slightest touch, then that should confirm the presence of termites.

 

Key Takeaway

Just because a used home has a form of pest infestation doesn’t mean you should automatically disregard it. In actuality, it is hard to find a home that has no history of infestation, whether it’s rodent, bedbug, or termites.

The important things you should know include the severity of the infestation as well as the options you have for pest control. Only then can you make a better decision when buying a home, so don’t forget to include those things on your checklist the next time you go house shopping.

5 Effective Methods To Deal With Pests In The Office

5 Effective Methods To Deal With Pests In The Office

How do you deal with pests in the office?

  1. Cockroaches
  2. Rats
  3. Ants
  4. Bed Bugs
  5. Termites

 

Don’t let pests in the office find their way to your home through your bags or other belongings. Pest control can be practiced effectively in the workplace. Dealing with pests is a team effort. If your office properly applies these tips and tricks, you can help protect your office from pests.

 

Cockroaches

Cockroaches

Cockroaches are one of the most annoying pests you can encounter in the office. They tend to appear out of nowhere. They’re often found in dirty pantries and moist, unsanitary bathrooms.

Cockroaches love to eat. They will often feast on various office supplies such as glue, paste, paper, and even wallpaper. If left unattended, they can transfer microbes, pathogens, and viruses to your food containers and more. They also produce odorous secretions that can exacerbate allergies, asthma, and food poisoning. Don’t let these pests win.

Start by keeping your office as clean as possible. Start the day clean and end the day clean. Pay attention to your break room area and pantry. Don’t leave unwashed dishes there and don’t leave the leftovers out in the open. If you have a refrigerator, use it to store your leftovers. Pay attention to spots behind the cabinets, tables, and refrigerators. Do a thorough cleaning of these areas when you have time.

 

Rats

Rats

Rats and rodents can do significant damage to the workplace. They can eat stored files and chew on electrical wires if left unattended. Rats also multiply very quickly. If your office is infested with rats, you can find urine, feces, and dead skin around your office. Breathing these in can immediately cause allergies and asthma attacks. Rat waste can also cause food poisoning if accidentally ingested.

Just like with cockroaches, you need to keep your environment clean to prevent an infestation. You also need to repair any leaks from faucets and pipes. This can serve as a water source for the rats. Cut the water source off and they will find the office a much less appealing living space. Make sure that your trash is also secure and take it out daily. Any leftovers and waste can be a potential food source for rats.

Lastly, make sure that all cracks are sealed with concrete or metal flashing. This can prevent the entry and exit of rodents within the premises.

 

Ants

Ants

It doesn’t take much to attract ants to your workplace. As soon as they find crumbs or leftovers, they will begin to treat your office as a potential foraging ground. Ants are persistent and will always find a way to get into your office.

The first step you can do to prevent ants from invading your workplace is to seal off any potential entrances that the ants can crawl into. Ask your building administrator to survey your building. Any crack and open space is an instant invite for these ants.

Once your building administrator identifies these entrances, they will seal them accordingly. Like the other pests on this list, make sure that everything is kept clean. Apply this to all surfaces, especially ones with food.

 

Bed Bugs

Bed Bugs

Bed bugs are common household pests, but they can still make their way to your office building. One way they can get to your workplace is by traveling with you, for example, through an office pillow that you brought with you from home.

To prevent bed bugs in the office, your office needs routine vacuum cleaning. This has to be done in all areas, especially in carpets and corners. Such areas for vacuuming include work areas, lobbies, and bathrooms.

You need to regularly inspect areas for signs of bed bugs. This can be checked by looking at the seams of furniture and upholstery. Look for an obvious brown or red spot. Storage areas with lots of clutter are very inviting for bed bugs.

Did you know that bed bugs can also live in electrical sockets, surge protectors, and behind picture frames? Be vigilant and check in these spots as well. Clean up any clutter as soon as possible.

 

Termites

Termites

Termites rarely appear out in the open. They mostly come out when no one is present. You need to start by testing walls, window sills, and door jambs. Tap these surfaces with a screwdriver. If the screwdriver breaks through or if you hear a hollow sound, you may have a termite infestation. Proceed to look for signs of an infestation. This can come in the form of mud tubes and mazes. If you see any of these, you need to call a professional immediately so they can deal with the termites.

 

Key Takeaway

Pest control in the office should be done routinely by a professional. Employees can help prevent infestations by being vigilant and practicing good habits. As long as the area is maintained and clean, you can prevent any pest problem in the office. If problems persist it’s always a good idea to ask a professional service for help.