As We Remember the Soldiers, Don’t Forget the Pests
As a family-owned and operated company with a history of military service, Memorial Day is a special holiday for us. And while everyone commemorates America’s fallen soldiers in their own way -- like buying a veteran’s lunch or coffee -- many Memorial Day traditions are held outside.
And whether you’re attending a parade, visiting a cemetery or -- perhaps the most popular of all -- hosting or attending a barbecue, the last thing you want to deal with while enjoying the outdoors are pests. No one wants to swat away mosquitoes with a bouquet of flowers or shoo away wasps or ants from the picnic table with a beverage in hand.
Whether your Memorial Day celebration is somber or festive, here are some tips for keeping pests at bay this holiday weekend:
Mosquitoes: The Ultimate Holiday Buzzkill
Perhaps the most vexing of all Memorial Day weekend pests are mosquitoes. They buzz, they bite, and they’re the world’s number-one spreader of diseases. Thankfully, there are a few simple but effective measures you can take to minimize mosquito problems at your outdoor gathering this Memorial Day.
The most effective means of preventing mosquito bites is for you and your family to apply an insect repellent containing either DEET or picaridin, but you can’t guarantee everyone at your gathering will use it. To help cut down on mosquitoes, try installing fans in and around where people will congregate. If your gathering will be in a particularly mosquito-heavy area (near standing water, for example), it may be worth investing in some mosquito netting.
Finally, consider professional mosquito treatments for your property, especially if your family members spend a lot of time outdoors during the summer months. By breaking the mosquito reproduction cycle in your yard, you can see a reduction in their populations by upwards of 90%, making summer just that much sweeter.
The Ants Go Marching By
Where there’s food -- soon, too, there will be ants. The most effective way to combat the inevitable onslaught of ants is also the simplest: If possible, serve food indoors and keep the doors closed. Also, avoid serving beverages in cans and bottles where ants (and other critters) can hide. Instead use plastic cups -- and change trash liners often.
Wasps: Separating Myth from Fact
Wasps are another nuisance that become more active this time of year, but unfortunately there are a lot of myths surrounding how best to deal with them:
First of all, let’s dispel the myth that wasps are only attracted to sugary food and drinks. While that may be truer toward the end of summer, in May they are more so craving carbs & protein, meaning that they are just as likely to go after your ham sandwich. Regardless of what kind of food you have available, the best way to deter wasps is to keep it covered when not being served.
Don’t be tricked into making any of those DIY jam traps, either. If anything, it’ll lure them even closer to you. And if your gathering does get invaded by wasps, flailing about is only liable to aggravate them. The calmer everyone can keep, the less likely to get stung.
Finally, a little foresight goes a long way when it comes to wasp control during any outdoor event held in the warmer months. Check your property for wasp nests the week before, and make sure that they are removed prior to the gathering. Considering having a pest management professional treat them on your behalf, especially if a nest is larger than a golf ball, requires a ladder to reach, or if you are allergic to wasp stings. A professional treatment can also keep them deterred from your property altogether, making sure that they nest elsewhere so that they are less likely to pay you and your guests a visit.
Don’t Lose Sight of What’s Important
Sometimes the best way to commemorate something important is to find the freedom to ignore the less important details. By leaving pest control to the pros, you have the peace of mind knowing that -- at least on your own turf -- you’re covered against unwelcome guests.
Don’t let pests stomp on your Memorial Day. Contact us today to help ensure a pest-free holiday.