Author: preventative

What’s Bugging You? April & May is Pest Season

April was the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) “Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month.” If you missed it, don’t worry; the pests will let you know they’ve arrived. Around the country, the emerald ash borer and gypsy moth are emerging to wreak havoc. Each year, the USDA says just these two pests cause $40 billion in habitat destruction. We don’t even want to mention the damage from mice, pigeons, bedbugs, and roaches. In Nevada, spring brings an emergence of flying insects, scorpions, ants, snakes, mice, and more into our yards and sometimes into our homes. Let’s look at what pests are active this time of year. As the warm weather increases, what should you look for and how should you fight back?   Nevada Spring Pests Ants, crickets, scorpions, and snakes all love the weather we’ve been having. As the temperature rises, these creatures look for shade and water. As reptiles, cold-blooded snakes are particularly vulnerable to temperature extremes. Be cautious if there is debris in your yard such as old wood; dangerous snakes will seek shade there along with scorpions on the hottest spring days. If you’re doing spring clean up in your Nevada yard it’s always best to wear gloves, long pants and boots as a safety precaution. Desert pests are all around us and some of them can be quite dangerous. If you can, keep...

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New Study Shows Mice More Dangerous Than We Thought

We think of mice as cute little furry creatures popularized in movies like Charlotte’s Web, Stuart Little, and Ratatouille. Of course, we’re all happy to put on mouse ears when we go to Disney. But when a mouse gets in the house their droppings carry diseases and their voracious chewing can ruin the wiring in your home, not to mention a lot of food. But that’s just the tip of the mouse-tail, according to a new scientific study showing mice are much more dangerous than we ever imagined.   Columbia University Says Mice are Dangerous A new scientific study released in April 2018 from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health shows that mice could carry dangerous antibiotic-resistant superbugs right into your living quarters. The study, conducted by researchers at the Center for Infection and Immunity, collected and analyzed 416 mice from seven residential apartment buildings in New York City. Scientists conducted genetic analysis of their droppings and found several types of contagious gastrointestinal diseases, including E. coli, Shigella, and C. difficile. The feces also contained the number one cause of food poisoning: Salmonella. Annually in the U.S., Salmonella causes 1.4 million illnesses, with 15,000 hospitalizations and 400 deaths from the diseases. But that information wasn’t new to the Columbia scientists conducting the research. What was startling was that they found evidence of antibiotic-resistant superbugs, which when transmitted to...

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The Secret Life of – Pigeons?

Many of us call pigeons “flying rats” because they can spread quickly and cause quite a nuisance, especially around restaurants and businesses where their droppings are not only messy but also toxic. But one documentary, called The Secret Life of Pigeons, seeks to shed light on the pigeon as a creature domesticated and bred by humans. Pigeons Have Served Humans Almost Like Dogs It turns out that while most of us associated pigeons with city parks and businesses where flocks accumulate to grab a snack, the lowly pigeon has provided humans with all kinds of useful services. The documentary shows that for centuries we’ve used them for communications, food, and much more. The film does establish one thing quickly – pigeons are much more intelligent than most people give them credit for. What you may not realize is that pest control companies know how smart they are and how difficult they are to eradicate. The Secret Life of Pigeons tracked these birds to show how they are able to thrive in difficult environments like big cities where the danger is everywhere, from speeding cars to hawks. The film was made by placing an HD camera on a pigeon and it gives some incredible “birds-eye” views of what these creatures experience. Here are a few things you might not know about the “rats with wings” that you see on the...

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Top 10 Spring Pests in Las Vegas

Spring in Las Vegas is one of the best times of the year to enjoy the mix of cool evenings and warm days. It’s also one of the worst times of the year for Las Vegas pests. Sometimes it can literally seem like they’re coming out of the woodwork – and sometimes they actually are. This article gives you the low down on the top 10 creatures that might bug you this spring. The good news? One phone call to Preventive Pest will help you take back control of your home or yard. Top 10 Worst Pests in Nevada A is for ants and they are everywhere in the desert. There are seven common species in Nevada and some of them are smelly, others will sting you, while others might munch on the foundation of your home.   B is for bees, and while the lovely honeybee is important for pollination outside, there are more aggressive bee strains here that are truly dangerous to humans and animals. Since we’ve mentioned bees, as an added bonus, let’s throw in other stinging insects like wasps and yellow jackets, which can sting you repeatedly – sometimes to death. Cockroaches are disgusting, and like ants, they live with us 24/7 – but you may not notice them until you’re overrun. Homes and businesses have these nocturnal creatures sometimes hiding in plain sight, so...

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Can Ants Harm Your Garden?

There is still debate in gardening circles as to whether ants in the garden are harmful or a benefit. The truth is that it depends on the species of ant. Some are completely benign. Others can be useful. Still, others can wreck a plant faster than you can say, “A bushel and a peck.” So, can ants harm your Las Vegas garden? Read this blog to find out more. Ants are Beneficial Common ants in Las Vegas provide one interesting benefit for the home gardener. If you see an ant on your rosebush, this usually means you have aphids. Aphids, a tiny parasite, live on the foliage of fruit, vegetable, and flowering plants. Interestingly, ants like to collect aphids and take them back to their next. Aphids are kind of like tiny cows for the ant that tends them, just like you or I would tend a herd of dairy cows. Ants harvest the “honeydew” from aphids, which is a milky, sweet secretion that ants absolutely love. Ants are also one of the pollinator insect species, working hard to carry pollen from plant to plant. Unless the ant species is one of the more aggressive types we’re going to talk about in a moment, or unless they’ve made a huge next that has gotten in the way, they may have some benefit in the Las Vegas garden. However, there...

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