The planet is home to a conservative estimate of 900,000 living insect species. That’s already a lot, but some experts say it could be 2 million or even up to 30 million. Either way, the majority of these creatures are beneficial, while others are benign.
Unfortunately, about 1% of insects belong to the pestiferous class, AKA pests. They are pestilent because they destroy crops, forests, and grazing. Worse, some of them bring diseases not only to humans but to other animals and plants, too.
That’s a good enough reason to get rid of bugs you see in and around your home.
We’ll share advice about getting rid of bugs (and keeping them out) with home maintenance, so be sure to read on.
Name the Buggers
Utah’s natural geography and varying climates make it a prime spot for insects. So much so that the Beehive State is home to more than 600 insect species.
Unfortunately, some of those, such as the marmorated stink bugs, are invasive. Invasive means they’re not native to the US, but they invade homes and endanger crops.
Many boring insects, such as hardwood borers and borer beetles, also call Utah home. Unfortunately, like the more famous termites, these bugs can also cause property destruction.
Then, there are the dangerous critters, such as the mosquitoes that bring the West Nile Virus. That’s on top of the Zika virus, yellow fever, and malaria that they can also spread. Aside from these buzzing pests, roaches, flicks, and ticks can also cause health woes.
On the other hand, there are three insects in Utah under threat of becoming endangered. These include the Monarch Butterfly, Western Bumble Bee, and a species of Tiger Beetle. Utah has programs that aim to recover these sensitive species if found in public areas.
For those reasons, the first step on how to get rid of bugs at home is proper insect identification. This can help ensure that what you have is a pest and not sensitive wildlife species. Thus, it’s best to know what pestiferous insects look like before you take a swat at them.
Besides, the success of your pest control methods will depend on proper identification.
Stop Feeding Them
Let’s say you’re sure that the insects you have at home are pests, such as cockroaches.
Contrary to popular belief, having roaches don’t always indicate filthy environments. After all, roaches may have been around since 125-140 million years ago, so they can be everywhere.
However, roach sightings can mean that you have food and water that they can easily access. The same applies to other pests, such as flies, rodents, and termites.
For example, plumbing or roofing leaks can serve as a source of water to households pests. Unsealed food packages can also emit odors that these creatures can smell from afar. Leaving unwashed dishes in the sink for even only a night may be enough to attract them, too.
So, one of the most crucial tips to get rid of bugs is to remove those nutrition sources. Start by having a local pro inspect and fix leaky roofing and plumbing systems. Besides attracting pests, these problems can encourage mold and mildew growth, too.
Moreover, it’s best to avoid leaving unwashed kitchenware overnight. You should also store opened boxes of food in your fridge or containers with tight lids.
Get Those Cracks and Holes Patched Up
One possible reason roaches are so enduring is their rigid yet super flexible bodies. For example, they can fit into cracks as tiny as 3 mm in height. They can also bear external weights 900 times heavier than their bodies.
So, if roaches can squeeze into such tiny crevices, then smaller bugs can no doubt pass through, too. Rodents can also use their incisors that grow non-stop to widen existing holes and make even more.
For those reasons, one of the best methods to get rid of bugs and prevent more of them from coming in is to seal those gaps. Start with the ones with a direct connection to the outdoors, such as cracks in windows, screens, and doors. Make sure you also patch up holes where utility cables from outside enter your home.
Keep Your Lawn Well-Maintained
Tall grasses and unruly shrubs are favorite spots of fleas and ticks, as these offer them shade. These hiding places are also moist, which these blood-sucking insects prefer. If you or your pets pass by these plants, the bugs can hitch a ride on your clothes or your pets’ coats.
From there, you and your four-legged family members can bring them inside the home.
Unfortunately, fleas and ticks cause more than red, itchy bites. Fleas, for instance, can cause typhus in humans and animals. Whereas ticks can cause dangers like Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease.
So, for everyone’s safety, keep your lawn immaculate: mow the grass and prune shrubs as needed.
Enlist the Help of a Professional Pest Control Company
Professional pest control may be the best way to get rid of bugs in cases of larger infestations. However, if you hire a pest control company, it’s best to choose one that uses IPM strategies.
IPM stands for integrated pest management. Instead of using only chemicals, IPM also includes biological, cultural, and physical controls.
Biological control is the practice of using natural enemies to combat pests.
An example is the use of beneficial nematodes that feed on more than 200 soil-dwelling pests. They’re beneficial since they eat pests without harming other valuable creatures. Best of all, they can help make your garden plants healthier.
As for cultural and physical controls, these can include sanitation treatment. For instance, suppose you’re battling it out with constant mosquito infestations. In this case, IPM experts may recommend the clean-up and removal of items that collect water in your lawn.
Those non-chemical methods not only help get rid of bugs but also reduce the need for chemicals. What’s more, many chemicals that reliable pest control pros use nowadays are organic. These are safer alternatives to traditional pesticides, as they come from natural sources.
Get Rid of Bugs Before They Get You Sick
Please keep in mind that while most insects aren’t pests, those that are can cause illnesses. Moreover, they (i.e., termites and wood borers) can cause severe property destruction. So, as early as now, follow our tips to get rid of bugs before they make you (literally and figuratively) sick.
If you need prompt, reliable, and effective pest control in UT (and even CO), we here at Elevate Pest Control can help. Please feel free to get in touch with our team so that we can get rid of the critters that keep bugging you.